Author: Donna Herman

Our Lady of 121st Street

 Our Lady of 121st Street by Stephen Adly Gurgis is missing several elements that are usually vital to a play – like a plot and an ending.  But the biggest thing it’s missing is…more.  When the lights came down on the revival of Our Lady of 121st Street currently playing at the Signature Theatre, I didn’t want it to end.

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Paradise Blue

Paradise is in the eye of the beholder in Dominique Morisseau’s Paradise Blue.  It is the second play in her 3-play cycle “The Detroit Projects,” and the first offering in her 5-year residency at Signature Theatre.  The Paradise Club is a kind of living hell for its owner Blue (J. Alphonse Nicholson). For Pumpkin (Kristolyn Lloyd), his girlfriend and the club’s cook, waitress, bartender & laundress, it’s heavenly.

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Summer: The Donna Summer Musical

What Summer: The Donna Summer Musical does brilliantly is remind us why LaDonna Adrian Gaines was the Disco Queen. And why, even today, when the DJ plays “Hot Stuff” or “Last Dance” or “She Works Hard for the Money,” everyone gets on the dance floor.    It may not have the most scintillating book, but that’s not why anybody bought tickets.

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Travesties

Don’t be afraid of Tom Stoppard and miss the wonderful revival of Travesties that the Roundabout Theatre has brought over from London. Across the pond, director Patrick Marber’s lauded production at the Chocolate Factory got raves and transferred to the West End. The Roundabout has snagged the production, and its star Tom Hollander, for the first revival of Travesties on Broadway in 42 years.

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The Seafarer

Do not expect a tale of marine life from Conor McPherson’s The Seafarer. The only thing the characters in this play are swimming in is alcohol.  Oceans of it.  Mixed with self-loathing, shame, regret and despair.  It wouldn’t seem to be a fertile field for comedy, but The Seafarer delivers plenty of lighter moments and has been called McPherson’s funniest play.

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