PeterMliked the seats at Signature's Into the Woods, but liked the acoustics a bit less. Tboy had the same reservations about the way the new house sounds, but he imagines they'll fix it.
He can't imagine, however, what Marks was smoking when he suggested that Eleasha Gamble would've been better suited for Little Red than for the Witch. It's true that Tboy liked Gamble's performance better than Marks did, but even if he hadn't, a less likely Little Red he can hardly imagine; the voice is all wrong.
Speaking of Gamble, and apropos of that photo over there on the right: This is the first time Tboy has seen that image. He sat, believe it or not, in a spot from which the staging made it impossible to see the Witch's transformation. And her disappearing act.
Which, if you've never seen Into the Woods, are kinda two of the big moments. You'll want to steer clear of the seats at the very back of the section that's straight ahead of you as you walk into The Max.
Random other opinions: DCist is here, Potomac Stages here.
Meanwhile, down at the Lansburgh ... Richard III gets a qualified rave from BMon in this week's City Paper: "Slow patches plague a second half that really ought to be building to a flashy finish," he warns, but "the finish is there"-- and "Kahn helps the actors run with the text to places nearly as unfamiliar as the strangely angled stage they’re ricocheting around."
Where Mondello riffed (interestingly, Tboy thought) on the off-kilter set and what it says about the play's skewed world, Marks led with Geraint Wyn Davies' singularly scarred Richard: "Add a half-mask," says the WashPo, and he'd be the Phantom of the Plantagenets."
N.B.: Nobody said much about the gloriously ripe Queen Elizabeth of Margot Dionne. Your mileage will vary, and she's certainly not always in the same play with the others. But Tboy and Dr. H both decided they liked it -- and not just a little -- for two reasons:
She's flinging a lot of fur around up there, and the grandness of the portrayal goes rather nicely with that. In a way that approaches camp, but then stops just short.
Elizabeth, née Woodville, is essentially a commoner, remember--a commoner who's been elevated to royalty by a marriage some claimed she bewitched Edward IV into. (One of the kinder summarys Tboy can find online says only that her folks were "not entirely parvenus.") So of course she's a little over-the-top.
All in all, Tboy thought Dionne's Liz was rather delicious.
Other things what got themselves reviewed this week:
The Folger's King Lear, by a not-amused Mondello: "A director less intent on illuminating the script than on managing showy acrobatics ... Preisser’s staging is not helped by a certain unevenness in the cast. " (Second item.)
And that, sez Tboy with an exhausted sigh, was the week that was.
If you missed Kryztov L.'s Enoch Arden recommendation down in the comments on this post, here's a link to the Amazon.com page for the recording. Which, as Kryztov points out, he worked on. Which Tboy thinks is cool, seeing as how Tboy reviewed him once upon a time -- in, what was it, La Bete? ...
Tboy has just ordered a copy for his own self. But don't count on a review: In these days of the newly classicalized WETA-FM, Tboy is rather enjoying just listening to stuff...
Welcome to the new, cleaner Theaterboy. The old design: Pfaugh. Three columns + a few ads + all those blogrolls and booklists and whatnot = way too cluttered.
Notice the category cloud, which looks fun and is more compact than the old category list. Notice the new e-mail sign-up box, for those of you who might not always be tied to your computer, but who lust to have Tboy delivered to your CrackBerry. (No more than one a day, or at least that's what the nice people at FeedBurner promise.)
Notice the adorable Stageblogs logo, which links you to an ever-growing "hive" of theaterbloggers (including Tboy) with whom you may advertise the projects of your choice.
You may have noticed that the press-nights calendar was a giant pain in the butt, and unfortunately it still is. Google doesn't offer a setting narrow enough for it to work in that left-hand sidebar.
But fear not: Because he craves your pity, Tboy will embed the calendar here, in the very mainbar of the blog, each week. Starting in just a minute. Under the now-traditional heading "Death By Theater."
Not that Tboy ever resents the way y'all schedule openings, or anything.
Tboy's Atlanta-based co-conspirator Curt Holman (we met two years ago on an NEA fellowship, from which a listserv Mafia survives) has a profile of D.C.'s own Ari Roth in the new Creative Loafing.
Turns out one of the theaters down thar whar Tboy grew up (OK, he was closer to Augusta, but still) is producing Ari's play Born Guilty and its quasi-sequel, Peter and the Wolf, in rep; both of the plays have been staged here at Theater J.
Best line is this one, about how the guy Ari imagined in the first play turned out, in the real world, to be rather different:
I created a protagonist who would seem to be the second coming of George Clooney -- he's an attractive go-getter who's comfortable with liberal college students. At the beginning of Peter and the Wolf (and Me) you realize that, no, he's more like Ron Silver. He was always a conservative journalist.
Read all about it here, and then more here, in the Atlanta Jewish Times ...