Author: Tulis McCall

Romeo and Juliet

Someone left the cake out in the rain. I don’t know how, but this production has managed – on the night I saw it – to nearly obliterate passion.  I mean the one that counts, the one between Romeo (Orlando Bloom) and Juliet (Condola Rashad).  Surprisingly, this is due more to Mr. Bloom, who appeared tired and unfocused in his performance, as opposed to Ms. Rashad who gives it all she has.  She still misses the mark, but she is in there swinging with more life and zip than I have seen in her previous performances combined. We begin with a flash of lightening and a well trained dove who sits as directed on the upper lip of an enormous bell and upstages poor Brent Carver (Friar Lawrence) who delivers the prologue.  This is followed by the set up of the two families Capulet and Montague – here racially divided black and white – who have nothing better to do than hang out in the street and beat the crap out of each other.  After a bit Romeo enters and is supposed to be in a dither because he is not being treated fairly by love.  The woman he desires ahs chosen chastity and Romeo (a teenage male) is about to burst.  When he and his chums are mistakenly made aware of a party that night, they decide to...

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Inexcusable Fantasies

BY ALICE KLUGHERZ   This is a well-seasoned two-character performance piece about too many things. The piece centers around Suzi, played by Susan McCully, her physical issues, her embarrassment of riches in the fantasy department and what feels to me like an over-arching dislike of her physical self. She is accompanied by Rachel Hirshorn, who expertly plays a different character in every scene she is in. Both Susan McCully and Rachel Hirshorn are strong performers, committed and interesting to watch. The props and set pieces by Lien French are perfect. Most of the scenes in the piece come off...

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1st Irish Festival

As a fan of Irish writers Martin McDonagh, Conor McPherson and Colum McCann, I’ve always fancied myself a Celtophile. But thanks to Origin’s 1st Irish’s artistic director George C. Heslin, I now know that those writers are just the tip of the iceberg. And thanks again to Heslin – we’re about to be treated to the abundance and diversity that makes up the true wealth of Irish talent. Now in its sixth year, Origin’s 1st Irish 2013 is the world’s only theatre festival dedicated to Irish playwrights. It runs from September 2nd through September 29th and is curated and...

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      BY NATALIE ALLEN Reach by Ryan Sprague, struck me as a piece designed to magnify the power of grief and failure and the devastating effects they can have on a person’s life, however, I could not relate to the characters on stage and therefore: didn’t care. A story of two hapless ex-lovers reunited by the stubborn efforts of Jordan (Christo Grabowski) to rekindle a seemingly hopeless relationship with Lindsey (Emily Tuckman) seems to boil down to an hour long tug-of-war devoid of laughter. The two act play begins with an empty apartment full of a mess of...

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