Theatre

Jason Alexander Will Take Over for Larry David on Broadway

It’s a big day for Seinfeld-related pop culture news. First we got word that Julia Louis-Dreyfus may be … Read More

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Carole King Stage Musical ‘Beautiful’ Is Being Made into a Biopic

Sony is turning Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, based on the life of the eponymous singer-songwriter, into a biopic. Like… Read More

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‘Cymbeline,’ Baz Luhrmann’s ‘Romeo + Juliet,’ and Why Shakespeare Is So Hard to Adapt for the Screen

When a director does Shakespeare today, it seems there are three options most commonly selected, each of which has its drawbacks. The first is to do a loyal interpretation, maintaining the original setting and time specified by the Bard (for if you’re the type that chooses loyalty, you also may use this insufferable term), but risking the adaptation seeming like an ostentatiously astute encapsulation of a period and lifestyle that’s now irrelevant. The second is to set it in the present day,  underscoring the barbarism, archaism, and/or hilarity of a current societal norm by aligning it with Elizabethan text, but also risking bifurcating the text and its original meaning. The third is to set it somewhere and sometime else completely, avoiding the distraction of current day trappings (Lady Macbeth discovers Seinfeld emojis!), not to mention the equally distracting trappings of Elizabethan imitation (vocal fry is especially noticeable when it’s coming from a ruff-encased throat). … Read More

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‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ Meets Moliére in Larry David’s ‘Fish in the Dark’

After the success of Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm, there are plenty of people who would probably pay good money to eat dinner with Larry David for the sole purpose of having him insult and nitpick their table manners (“You eat your peas with a fork?”) while arguing with the waitstaff about his dish’s preparation and the appropriate tip. During the matinee preview of his Broadway play A Fish in the Dark, that I attended, David got close to the biggest applause of the afternoon for flubbing a line and ad-libbing, “I messed that up.” Later, when he finally recited his signature line — “prettay, prettay good” — the Cort Theatre went nuts. In other words, the bar for his fans’ appreciation is prettay, prettay low. … Read More

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Can National Theatre of Scotland’s ‘Let the Right One In’ Pave the Way for Horror on the Stage?

Throughout the National Theatre of Scotland’s Let the Right One In, adapted from John Ajvide Lindqvist’s novel and Tomas Alfredson‘s film, audiences are subjected to a parade of lyrically gruesome images: a man tied upside-down to a tree, his throat perfunctorily slit and drained into a bucket; another man literally self-effacing with acid; a diminutive teenage girl in a candy-pink sweater whose mouth brims with vomit when she actually tries to eat candy, and whose face cascades with blood every time she enters a home uninvited. All of this stirs a reverent, rapt silence in the audience. This is not the type of play where spectators listlessly turn to their programs mid-show, pretending that looking up the catering credits will somehow enhance their experience. … Read More

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Jane Eyre, Lizzy Bennet, and Jo March Walk Onto a Stage: Remixing a New Canon of Heroines

Last night I saw You on the Moors Now, an experimental play currently running in New York City’s Greenwich Village, which cannily combines characters and plot points from four novels: Little Women, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. The story, such as it is, consists of the respective heroines banding together after spurning their various suitors. They end up camping out on the moors. Meanwhile, they are pursued by the rejected men, themselves united in an attempt at revenge, or requited love, or some other concession. The cast features a delightfully queered Mr. Darcy, a manic Jane Eyre who longs to travel in space, a Cathy Earnshaw with unexpectedly pronounced leadership qualities, and sundry twists and gimmicks which wouldn’t have worked if much of the audience didn’t have a basic understanding of at least a few of the four novels. … Read More

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Pot, Kettle, Etc.: Bill O’Reilly Probably Lied About His War Reporting

Insert your own stone-throwing, glasses-houses variation here: the spotlight is shining brighter on Fox News commentator Bill… Read More

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John Cameron Mitchell Sees Follow-Up to ‘Hedwig’ as an ‘Olive Kitteridge’-Like Miniseries

After Neil Patrick Harris, Andrew Rannells (The Book of Mormon), and Michael C. Hall reignited the flames of Hedwig fandom as… Read More

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