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The House Theatre has magic to do in The Magnificents opening this week at the Arsht Center’s Theater Up Close series (Photo by Michael Brosilow)

“The Magnificents” Is Theatrical Ode To Classic Magic At Arsht

By Michelle F. Solomon, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, April 8, 2015 – If the House Theater of Chicago’s Death and Harry Houdini was about neglecting life in the pursuit of conquering death, The Magnificents is the other side of the coin. “The Magnificents is about a guy who is really trying to reclaim his life in the face of death,” says the House’s Artistic Director Nathan Allen. Allen wrote Houdini, which played the Adrienne Arsht Center’s Carnival Theater in 2012 as […]

Kitt Marsh tries to inspire Susie Kreitman Taylor in New Theatre’s Women Playing Hamlet (Photo by Eileen Suarez)

“Women Playing Hamlet” Wryly Examines An Actor’s Inner Life

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, April 7, 2015 – “Inhabiting a role” is high praise invoked by drama teachers, directors and critics to describe when a performer melds so seamlessly with a part that it doesn’t seem that they are acting at all – even when they are employing every bit of craft they possess. For such a very funny play, the world premiere of Women Playing Hamlet at New Theatre digs deeply into that alchemical process when an […]

Wick’s O-o-o-o-o-klahoma! Is Tuneful Mainstream Fairy Tale

Wick’s O-o-o-o-o-klahoma! Is Tuneful Mainstream Fairy Tale

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, April 6, 2015 – In recent years, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s 1943 Oklahoma! has been mined for deeper meaning and given some revisionist twists: some had a black Laurey or Jud, several have underscored psychological, even sociological underpinnings. The Wick Theatre’s production is not one of those – and it doesn’t want to or try to be. This is an apple cheek fairy tale drawn in only two dimensions, a broad musical comedy (with an […]

Intriguing Thought-Provoking Look At The Nature Of God On GableStage’s “New Jerusalem”

Intriguing Thought-Provoking Look At The Nature Of God On GableStage’s “New Jerusalem”

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Apr. 5, 2015 –  Paul: It must be nice to always believe you know better. To think you’re always the smartest person in the room. Jane: No, it’s awful. Oh my, it’s awful. —James Brooks’ Broadcast News Baruch de Spinoza was the smartest person in the room, possibly in Western Civilization, then and now. And like another gentle Jew, he sacrificed everything because he was congenitally compelled to proselytize his vision of God’s […]

Sam Lips leads the cast in the Glory number in Pippin’s national tour (Photo by Martha Rial)

Lots Of Circus Spectacle But Not A Lot Of Heart In New “Pippin”

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Apr. 4, 2015 – Aerialists contort their muscles aloft on trapezes. Tumblers leap through hoops. Performers juggle knives and fiery torches. And somewhere under all that flash and glitter is the beloved Pippinthat generations of nascent theater fans have cherished as “their” musical. The 2013 revival making a national tour stop at the Broward Center transmogrifies the 1972 show from a medieval morality tale related by a disreputable debauched troupe of strolling players. It […]

39th Carbonell Awards Honors Excellence At Theater Prom

39th Carbonell Awards Honors Excellence At Theater Prom

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar. 31, 2015 – Roars of applause and waves of cheers greeted recipient after recipient as the South Florida theater community bonded Monday night at the 39th annual Carbonell Awards recognizing excellence. The egg sculptures were bestowed on a wide range of productions, both geographically and stylistically ranging from such edgy fare as Actors’ Playhouse’s jet-black chamber rock musical Murder Ballad to the mainstream strains of the percussive classic musical 42nd Street at The […]

Rob Donohoe and Paul Tei as two members of of the venal family in Palm Beach Dramaworks’ Buried Child  (Photo by Alicia Donelan)

Palm Beach Dramaworks To Unearth Shepard’s Buried Child

By Michelle F. Solomon, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar. 30, 2015 – Director J. Barry Lewis has a way of approaching a play like Sam Shepard’s Buried Child, the Pulitzer Prize-winning work that gets a staging by Palm Beach Dramaworks beginning March 27 and through the month of April. “Sometimes with a play like this, you just have to let it wash over you,” says Lewis, about the surrealistic drama that a New York Times reviewer described as a play where […]

John Rubinstein as Charlemagne in the national tour of Pippin  (Photo by Terry Shapiro)

John Rubinstein & Pippin: I’ve Heard That Song Somewhere

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar. 28, 2015 – Déjà vu is inevitable for John Rubinstein as he portrays the father of the title protagonist in Pippin revival’s national tour coming to the Broward Center next week. After all, Rubinstein created the young man’s role in his Broadway debut 42 years ago. So while he’s on stage acting in one show, another one sometimes nibbles at his consciousness. Rubinstein is not quite resistant to new interpretations such as this […]

Stage Door Resurrects Cohan, Vaudeville & Vintage Broadway

Stage Door Resurrects Cohan, Vaudeville & Vintage Broadway

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar. 27, 2015 – Vaudeville and vintage musical comedy may be dead but the ghost of the emperor of that era resurrects them in Broward Stage Door’s enthusiastic revival of the one-man George M. Cohan Tonight! Jon Peterson, who has been impersonating Cohan in Chip Deffaa’s show on and off since 2006, has every vocal flourish and hand gesture of this two-act biographical revue polished to a high gloss, only outshone by his determined […]

Laura Hodos, Conor Walton, Erica Lustig, Roland Rusinek, Clay Cartland, Nick Duckart and Jessica Booth in Actors’ Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre’s production of First Date (Photo by Alberto Romeu)

This Is A “First Date” Worth Going Out On

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar 25, 2015 – For years, we’ve been talking about The Theater of Recognition whose mass success ratchets up a level by resonating with the specific issues and culture of a sub-set of the mass audience: Jews (Fiddler on the Roof) African Americans (A Raisin in the Sun) Latinos (In The Heights) Arty Gen-Xers (Rent) Green-Skinned Outsiders (Wicked.) So, the utterly charming new show at Actors’ Playhouse is a musical for, by and about […]

“Earthquake”: One Night Only, Benefit For Mad Cat Theatre

“Earthquake”: One Night Only, Benefit For Mad Cat Theatre

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar 23, 2015 – A new play, Earthquake, written and directed by Mad Cat Theatre Company member Jessica Farr, will be performed one night only, in a benefit performance, as part of the South Beach Comedy Festival with the proceeds going to the Mad Cat Theatre Company. The plot was described in a Mad Cat news release as “In an attempt to crawl out of obscurity and find himself relevant once again, Pulitzer Prize […]

The cast of Undo, the last offering from Parade Productions

Breaking News: Parade Productions Takes Final Bow

By Bill Hirschman, FloridaTheaterOnStage.com, Special to EyesOnNews.com, Mar 20, 2015 – The three-year-old Parade Productions is shutting down as a purveyor of professional theater, its founder reported Wednesday. The Boca Raton-based troupe headed by Executive Director Candace H. Caplin is closing a few weeks after Undo played its last performance March 1. Caplin wrote Wednesday, “Artistic dreams and financial realities don’t always go hand in hand.  As such, Parade Productions will no longer exist as we’ve known it.” The company opened […]