Non-Registered Critics: Sean McMullen

Mar

The Andrews Brothers

The musical seems to line itself up with this mission. High art it is not, a good time it is. Sweet and silly and totally improbable and lovingly executed by folks who take the harmonies seriously and the rest of it with a 5-pound bag of salt. The small ensemble of four — Michael D'Elia, Max DeLoach, Kelly Dorney and Grant Hodges — are just so bright and shiny you can't help but enjoy the ride.

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Oct

Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill

From the first syllables of the first song, she draws you into the essence of Lady Day. Sometimes sweet, sometimes bitter and very broken, she is always alluring. Some performers approach the spirit of Billy Holiday with a ferocity that makes you aware that you are a hostage. Foreman is like smoke exhaled slowly. She enfolds the audience seductively, hypnotically until they are willing participants in this emotional heist. Bottom line — she will steal your heart.

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Oct

Something Rotten! presented by Musical Theatre West

Lots of dance, lots of dance with set pieces moving while actors dance on them and lots and lots of perfectly timed scenic shifts. It is a whirlwind of buffoonery and brilliance.

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Aug

Beast on the Moon

“Beast on the Moon” is a delicate meditation on healing. I hope we can all focus on its simple message. We are all broken, we are all holding on, and there is hope.

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Jun

Bestseller

There is much more opportunity for this work to grow. I craved higher highs and lower lows, truly dark dangerous moments and truly sensual ones. It was like a dinner made without seasoning; perfectly prepared from the freshest ingredients, yet there was something missing.

There are the makings of a truly hilarious play, but what is there is funny. There just needs to be contrast, conflict, and something to give it an unpredictable kick at the end.

sweet-sour - ...read full review

May

The Price

“The Price” emerges in ICT's superbly acted production, as one of Miller's best. At its heart it is an exploration of our need for illusions because, in Miller's words, the truth is too terrible to face.

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Apr

SILENT SKY

The production at the Long Beach Playhouse, directed ably by Phyliss B. Gitlin, finds just the right tone to bring the story of Leavitt and her fellow computers to life. ...

"Silent Sky" is a lovely portrait of yet another important and little known woman who made huge contributions to the sciences.

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Feb

Life Could Be A Dream

The cast is solid vocally and takes on the simple plot with speed and camp...

"Life Could Be a Dream" takes you back, if back there is where you came from. So, if you happen to have lived in the day and long for a moment to return to the idealized world of the Kennedy era, you will find it here.

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Dec

ELF the Musical

The team has brilliantly guided their actors into the world of fanciful holiday children's book frivolity... While the musical may not be as subtly constructed as the film, this production's sweetness and sparkle is just right for Christmas time.

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Nov

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE

This production has a gentle ferocity, however oxymoronic that may sound, that seems to be the work of Director Aurora J. Culver. She has landed on the perfect blend of genteel and passionate, guiding her talented actors to nuanced characterizations.

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Nov

BRIGHT STAR

Follow this "Bright Star" to Musical Theatre West and have your heart filled and your faith restored.

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Aug

The Glass Menagerie

Tennessee Williams's "The Glass Menagerie" is the ultimate portrait of this dynamic that is all at once fragile and stronger than steel. International City Theatre's current production illuminates Williams's menagerie with a haunting light. Director John Henry Davis coaxes delicate and sensitive portraits of Williams's characters out of a capable cast... This production lives in the simple choices and clear decisions made by a caring group of artists who hold this play the way that Laura holds her glass menagerie.

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Aug

Yankee Doodle Dandy

Skilled performers make it work, especially when they have skilled leaders. Director and Choreographer James Rocco, along with Music Director Jeff Rizzo, have crafted a delightful evening from an epic and problematic book. But they had some help, should old acquaintance be forgot... George M. Cohan was there all the time.

sweet-sour - ...read full review

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