Saturday, July 15, 2017

WTF Stopover - Jen Silverman's "The Roommate"

For the 4th holiday, I headed up to Vermont - my first visit to the green mountain state. On the way up, I just had to make a stopover in cozy Williamstown to catch one of the plays in this year's festival - Jen Silverman's The Roommate.

Oh, what a treat experiencing this delicious comedy starring the amazing S. Epatha Merkerson and Jane Kaczmarek.

Play Synopsis: 
Empty-nested and alone in her Midwestern home, Sharon (Merkerson) takes on a roommate, Robyn (Kaczmarek), who has just arrived from New York City. Before she has even unpacked, Robyn challenges everything about Sharon’s way of life. Book clubs, 80s pop music, and the occasional shared toke complicate their unlikely but enduring relationship, even as they venture into dangerous territory. Mike Donahue directs Jen Silverman’s new play which celebrates unexpected re-invention later in life.

WTF's The Roommate ends this weekend. However, if given the opportunity, it is definitely worth catching a production of Jen Silverman's gem.

At The Williams Inn, a wall features the plays in this year's festival: 


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Quote from Samuel Beckett's "Happy Days"

Winnie in Samuel Beckett's Happy Days:
One keeps putting off - putting up - for fear of putting up - too soon - and the day goes by - quite by - without one's having put up - at all. 

Friday, June 2, 2017

Villain: DeBlanks

Earlier this week, I dropped into 54 Below to check out my first performance of Billy Mitchell's Villain:DeBlanks. What a raucous time I had at the fill-in-the-blanks comedy. And to top it all off, proceeds from the performance benefited the New York Civil Liberties Union

Cast for the Evening
Bob Frapples..........Stephen Wallem
Lynn O'Liam..........Dale Soules
Aaron Matires..........Ben Rimalower
Fonda Jewels..........Bebe Neuwirth
Rhoda Pony..........Brenda Braxton
Orson Buggy..........Tony Sheldon

How The Evening Works
The cast works the room asking for adjectives, nouns and verbs, which they note on their script. This is lots of fun because the audience actually gets to interact with the cast (something I rarely get to do). Also, after a drink or two, who knows what kind of words people are throwing out. Then, unrehearsed, the cast reads the Philip DeBlanks’ whodunnit, improvising along the way. The audience then decides whodunnit...

Loads of fun. 
Good evening. 
Good cause. 





#VDBdoes54   


Monday, May 22, 2017

Quote from Lillian Hellman's "The Little Foxes"

Addie in Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes:
..there are people who eat the earth and eat all the people on it like in the Bible with the locusts. Then, there are people who stand around and watch them eat it. Sometimes I think it ain't right to stand and watch them do it. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Meat Pie and Sondheim

Downtown's Barrow Street Theater is serving up meat pies and Sondheim (Tooting Arts Club style). Both are absolutely delicious! Here is more on the meat pie (and mash).
The Tradition of Pie and Mash - 
Good old-fashioned “pie and mash” has been a London food tradition since the days of Queen Victoria. A small meat pie and a generous helping of mashed potato with an optional addition of the steaming parsley sauce known as “liquor,” pie and mash became the staple dish for many hungry families and workers alike. Affordable, filling and tasty–it was often the only hot meal one might eat in a day.
Bill Yosses' Meat Pie and Mash -
Flaky Crust Chicken Pot Pie with Mushrooms, Carrots, Onions, Jerusalem Artichokes, Black Truffle Zest, served with Yukon Gold Smashed Potatoes and optional Italian Parsley & Herbs Sauce.






Thursday, May 18, 2017

It's Spring Thyme at Signature Center

At the Spring Signature Cocktail Hour, the mixologist shook things up and taught theater lovers how to make Spring Thyme, a vodka based cocktail that can be summed up in one word -- YUMMY! 

I enjoyed the cocktail very much and even had a pitcher stirred up for my beloved mom on Mother's Day. Check out the recipe if you want to stay refreshed during the Spring heat wave or simply want to enjoy a cocktail before heading to the theater.















Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Lynn Nottage's "Intimate Apparel" at the McCarter Theater Center

A production of Intimate Apparel is currently mounted at the McCarter Theatre Center through June 4th. It is well worth a day trip to Princeton NJ to experience this wonderful play written by two time Pulitzer winner - Lynn Nottage. 

As a fan of actress Quincy Tyler Bernstine, I was pleased to witness the dignity and determination she brought to the role of Esther, the black seamstress who in the early 1900s supports herself by creating intimate apparel for women - wealthy and otherwise - and dreams of love and marriage like many young women then and now.

As a seamstress, Esther lovingly strokes and admires various fabrics throughout Intimate Apparel. This poster board outside the theater displays the fabrics seen and mentioned in the production. Definitely spend a few moments and see the fabrics up close. 

Enjoy!


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Hallelujah, "Carmen Jones" Will Return to the New York City Stage

Classic Stage Company just announced that they are mounting Carmen Jones in 2018 - the first major New York revival since the musical debut on Broadway 75 years ago! 
As the Second World War rages, parachute maker Carmen Jones wages her own quarrel involving an airman and a boxer. Using the score from Georges Bizet’s opera Carmen, this adaptation by Oscar Hammerstein II resets the story with an all African-American cast.
BOOK AND LYRICS BY OSCAR HAMMERSTEIN II MUSIC BY GEORGES BIZET DIRECTED BY JOHN DOYLE
I can finally cross this musical off my New York City Stage Wish List. According to the CSC website, further details to follow; tickets go on sale April 2018. 

Related Posts
"Carmen Jones" - A Broadway Revival I Would Love to See!!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Quote from "Come Back, Little Sheba"

Doc in William Inge's Come Back, Little Sheba:
No...no, Baby. We should never feel bad about what's past. What's in the past can't be helped. You... you've got to forget it and live for the present. If you can't forget the past, you stay in it and never get out. I might be a big M.D. today, instead of a chiropractor; we might have had a family to raise and be with us now; I might still have a lot of money if I'd used by head and invested it carefully, instead of gettin' drunk every night. We might have a nice house, and comforts, and friends. But we don't have any of those things. So what! We gotta keep on living, don't we? I can't stop just 'cause I made a few mistakes. I gotta keep goin'... somehow. 

Saturday, April 22, 2017

One Day Intensives Are Coming to Juilliard This Summer Y'all

Juilliard Evening Division is offering a new series of intensive one-day history and appreciation courses this summer, and I've just got to find a way to work either the Swan Lake or Fences session into my summer fun...

Swan Lake
Henning Rübsam
Why is Swan Lake the most enduring and beloved example of classical ballet? In this day
of immersion, we explore the history and music of this treasured masterpiece. A famous
Swan Queen visits the class to illuminate the legendary dual role of good and evil, Odette/
Odile—including the challenge of transforming from white to black swan. A production
history of the ballet and an examination of its masterful score by Tchaikovsky will prepare
students for a matinee by American Ballet Theatre at the Metropolitan Opera House. A
discussion about the performance concludes the day. 

August Wilson’s Fences: Masterpiece of Theater and Film
Shana Komitee
August Wilson’s play Fences, the sixth installation of his 10-play “American Century Cycle,”
won both a Pulitzer and Tony when it appeared on Broadway in 1983. This year, it hit the big
screen, also to great acclaim. Helmed by Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, the film was
widely distributed throughout the U.S., as well as in Brazil, New Zealand, South Africa, and
numerous European countries. Why has the story of Fences—about a garbage collector
named Troy Maxson and his family in Pittsburgh’s working class Hill District in 1957—riveted such diverse audiences? In this class, we read excerpts from the play; analyze its stage-to screen adaptation; and discuss the artistic lives of Wilson and the film’s stars (most of them worked with him). Student and alumni performers deepen our understanding of this majestic work and its place in the American theatrical, and now cinematic, canon.