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  • Spotlight: Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven

    Article

    Spotlight: Songs of the Dragons Flying to Heaven

    Young Jean Lee sets out to make a show about being Korean-American without lapsing into easy identity politics or in-your-face confessions. I've only seen this show on DVD (it opens tomorrow night as the third installment of the Walker's Out There s...

    by Quinton Skinner on January 17, 2007
  • Bonnie Fuller, Your Conscience Is Calling - 'Us' against them

    Article

    Bonnie Fuller, Your Conscience Is Calling - 'Us' against them

    Dirt Tuesdays at 9:00 p.m. FX The Surreal Life Fame Games Sundays at 8:00 p.m. VH1 Does anyone smell trout and gunpowder? After the catastrophic premiere of her new tabloid drama Dirt, Courteney Cox is the proverbial fish in a barrel being...

    by Diablo Cody on January 17, 2007
  • No Child Left Behind - What can stop 'High School Musical':  The Musical? Nothing.

    Article

    No Child Left Behind - What can stop 'High School Musical': The Musical? Nothing.

    The best thing about high school, as I remember it anyway, was that after all the health classes, early morning bus rides, and ineffectual insubordination, I still instinctually understood that there would come a time when it was all over (save for ...

    by Quinton Skinner on January 10, 2007
  • Spotlight: Loot

    Article

    Spotlight: Loot

    The world in Joe Orton's 1965 Loot is jauntily rotten: a place where the pious meet their ruin without a word of explanation, sincerity prompts only withering disdain, and wickedness reaps riches. The action opens with a woman's corpse lying center ...

    by Quinton Skinner on January 10, 2007
  • Spotlight: Must Don't Whip 'Um

    Article

    Spotlight: Must Don't Whip 'Um

    It might be an oversimplification to divide humanity between those who trust the veracity of memory and those who view their own narratives as something more mutable and ambiguous, but as oversimplifications go, it's pretty compelling. Two years ago...

    by Quinton Skinner on January 3, 2007
  • Curtain Call - Let's bring back the year's best (and worst) performances for one more round of applause (and jeers)

    Article

    Curtain Call - Let's bring back the year's best (and worst) performances for one more round of applause (and jeers)

    Looking through my notes from 2006 (to be donated upon my demise to the National Archives of Overwrought Obfuscation), I found no fewer than 34 candidates for my Top 10 List--and that's knowing that I missed several worthy shows this year. The open...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 27, 2006
  • Spotlight: Altar Boyz

    Article

    Spotlight: Altar Boyz

    First, this satirical boy band show garnered critical praise during a long and ongoing off-Broadway run; now it has spawned a handful of touring productions, including casts in Korea and Hungary (where it stars no one less than Attilla Dolhai and Ar...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 27, 2006
  • Spotlight: Protection Program

    Article

    Spotlight: Protection Program

    Urban Samurai's contemporary farce unashamedly embraces its own shaggy illogic to tell the story of Otto Pfaff (Nate Hessburg). Otto, it seems, lacks the ability to properly pronounce his own (false) name, which he took up after entering the witness...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 20, 2006
  • Spotlight: The Mousetrap

    Article

    Spotlight: The Mousetrap

    The program for The Mousetrap notes that the show has been playing in London since 1952, making it the longest continuously running play in history. Of course, no one has showed up in the audience for the last 20 years, but a record's a record (just...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 13, 2006
  • What Happened to the Incest and the Moonshine? - Where would rural America be without the pathos?

    Article

    What Happened to the Incest and the Moonshine? - Where would rural America be without the pathos?

    When most writers set their sights on small-town rural America, they tend to veer toward two ultimately condescending dramatic extremes: salt-of-the-earth valor in the face of challenges both natural and societal ("Don't worry, Sally Mae, we'll fig...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 6, 2006
  • Spotlight: Waiting for Godot

    Article

    Spotlight: Waiting for Godot

    For those unfamiliar with Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot, it will take no time at all to get you up to speed. Two down-on-their-luck vagabonds wait in a deserted locale for the arrival of the mysterious Godot, who they feel will turn their fortu...

    by Quinton Skinner on December 6, 2006
  • Spotlight: World Wide Church of the Handicapped

    Article

    Spotlight: World Wide Church of the Handicapped

    We're all misfits in our fashion, whether we admit it or not, and Interact Center's World Wide Church of the Handicapped vividly expresses the notion. Written by John Francis Bueche, the show revolves around a motley bunch of pub patrons (portrayed ...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 29, 2006
  • Who Needs Pussy? - A gay cat burgler loses his pants, finds himself

    Article

    Who Needs Pussy? - A gay cat burgler loses his pants, finds himself

    About 10 minutes into P.S. Your Cat Is Dead!, our risk-averse and timid hero Jimmy (Clarence Wethern) has lost his girlfriend, both his acting jobs, and, he soon learns, his cat (see title, above). To balance things out, he gains an unwanted compani...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 22, 2006
  • Spotlight: A Midsummer Night's Dream

    Article

    Spotlight: A Midsummer Night's Dream

    The striking thing about A Midsummer Night's Dream, no matter how many times one has crossed paths with it, is how relentlessly weird it is. Shakespeare hijacks folklore to radically shift his characters' romantic passions; love lasts about as long ...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 22, 2006
  • Pope Not-So-Pious - The Pontiff ate my baby; Angelina Jolie plays the whore of Babylon

    Article

    Pope Not-So-Pious - The Pontiff ate my baby; Angelina Jolie plays the whore of Babylon

    When Elian Gonzalez's fate bobbed in the tide back in 2000, many on the Yankee side of the Florida Straits made the argument that the boy would be better off here in the U.S., with our unimpeded access to consumer goods, pop culture, and, oh yeah, p...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 15, 2006
  • Spotlight: Ligustrum Vulgare

    Article

    Spotlight: Ligustrum Vulgare

    Neighbors Phillip (Tim Cameron) and Malcolm (Adam Hegg) find themselves in similar straits: One is a divorced dad living on his own, the other a lonely widower with his wife's ashes in a coffee can. You might hope they would commiserate over the tit...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 15, 2006
  • Isaac's Haze - You can say this for an autistic teen: He's not melodramatic

    Article

    Isaac's Haze - You can say this for an autistic teen: He's not melodramatic

    In the opening scene of Vestibular Sense, 19-year-old Isaac (Brian Skellenger) sits alone in his living room at his electronic keyboard, slowly picking out the notes to Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries." At first he is hesitant, mechanical. Soon enou...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 8, 2006
  • Spotlight: The Rivals

    Article

    Spotlight: The Rivals

    There's the wayback machine and then there's the way, way, wayback machine. Here the Jungle stages Richard Brinsley Sheridan's 1775 British farce in full period costume, and you can just about smell the chamber pots. The intricate and deeply ridicul...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 8, 2006
  • Grandmaster Flash - A musical about a board game? Mamma mia!

    Article

    Grandmaster Flash - A musical about a board game? Mamma mia!

    There's a shopworn adage about the '60s to the effect that if you can remember them, you really didn't do things right. There's no equivalent about one's being able to remember the '80s, except that if you can, you're getting kind of old. A parallel...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 1, 2006
  • Spotlight: Tartuffe

    Article

    Spotlight: Tartuffe

    Behind every William J. Bennett there is a possessed fat man jacking off a slot machine at $1,000 a pull. Moliere knew this as well as anyone, and cooked up Tartuffe in response to the religious grandstanders and moral scolds of his day. David Ball'...

    by Quinton Skinner on November 1, 2006
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