Monday Matinee 11/4/13


First things first; I need to apologize to Arthur Miller.  I saw CCM’s version of “The Crucible” a few weeks ago and while I thought the actors did a fine job I found the show long and boring.  I thought it was a bad play.

And then I saw what Brian Isaac Phillips, the CSC crew, and Xavier’s theater department did with it.  I was blown away and now I get why it’s considered an American classic.  Sorry, Mr. Miller, for not getting it.

Special props have to go to Brent Vimtrup, Stephen Skiles, Sara Clark, Billy Chace, Kelly Mengelkoch, Bruce Cromer, and the rest of the equity players in the show.  Folks like Patrick Phillips and Maya Farhat held their own and had to love sharing the stage with those seasoned professionals.  I enjoyed watching it very much.  I hope this collaboration was a success because I’d love to see more from these two groups.

Up next for Xavier is “From White Plains:”

After a shocking announcement on international television, 30-year-old Ethan Rice finds himself finally having to confront who he was and what he did as a teenager.

From White Plains follows four men, straight and gay, as they attempt to take responsibility for past actions and move beyond them, aided and frustrated by social media and viral videos. The play examines how male relationships change as boys grow into men and asks who speaks for a victim of bullying when he is no longer here to speak for himself.

Just because it gets better doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.

Cincinnati Shakespeare Company is currently producing “Of Mice and Men” wrapping up this coming Sunday.  They put up “Twelfth Night” beginning November 20th.

Also this weekend, I had the pleasure of seeing “Singin’ in the Rain” twice.  My review of it is here.  I love old school musicals when they are done well – and this one was done very well.  The League of Cincinnati Theaters gave it a 4.5 star recommendation and all the reviews I read were positive.  Congratulations to these fine students – the “stars of tomorrow.”

Up next from CCM’s Musical Theater department is “Les Miserables” in February.  Opening February 27th, this two week show is likely to sell out.  Tickets are on sale now and I’d recommend buying them early.  After that, they will produce one of my favorites in their black box studio space.  “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” will open on April 3rd.

So many great shows to see out there.  As always, please utilize Rob Bucher’s fantastic resource – “On Stage This Week” – at his web site.  With the information at your fingertips, there’s no excuse why you can’t get out and support local theater!  I will be seeing “Oklahoma” this Sunday and hope to pick up tickets to one or two other shows before the week is up.  Any suggestions?

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