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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Theater Reviews

Making its world premiere this month at the Milwaukee Rep’s Quadracci Powerhouse Theater, Charles Randolph-Wright’s The Night Is a Child is a compelling drama marred by few flaws. Elizabeth Norment stars as Harriet—a mother of three whose husband has passed away. The play is set one year after Harriet’s son Michael walked into a nursery, killing nine people before committing suicide. Unable to endure the ongoing questions about the event, Harriet escapes to Brazil, where she hopes to relax. Her surviving adult children, Brian (Tyler Pierce) and Jane (Monette Magrath), follow Harriet to Brazil in an effort to bring her back home. Harriet is drawn into the mystery of Brazil by a series of fascinating characters, her central tour guide being an enchanting woman named Bia (Lanise Antoine Shelley).
Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2008

Theater Reviews

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre’s production of Crime and Punishment invites audiences to enter the mind of a murderer. It’s a cramped and tawdry place. Oddly angled walls painted a bilious green seem to close in on you; disembodied sounds emanate from the background and doors swoosh open and shut, marking phantomlike entrances and offering glimpses of a diaphanous limbo in which the protagonist’s fearsome existence appears to be couched. Rarely does stagecraft, sound and lighting play such a significant role as it does here in this pareddown production.
Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2008

Theater Reviews

The Rep’s new production of Enchanted April is not the gossamer offering the title implies. Banking its ample charm in a production rich in slight-of-hand comedy, Matthew Barber’s 2003 play is an adaptation of a 1922 novel that echoes the disruption and monotony constituting women’s lives after World War I. He takes an even-keeled, lighthearted view of the boredom that two English housewives claim to experience as a result of the ongoing tediousness of the “surety of the routine.” The women place an ad in The Times of London for two more ladies to share the month of April in a secluded villa among the “wisteria and sunshine” of the Italian Riviera. The mismatched foursome discover that some miscommunication and uneven objectives have tagged along on their sojourn . . .
Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2008

Theater Review

One of the classic scripts of the late 20th century, Glengarry Glen Ross, is a fascinating journey into the dark heart of big-ticket sales—the lifeblood of American capitalism. The Milwaukee Rep continues an impressive season with its well-executed production of the David Mamet play . . .