Reviews for Texas State University Performances

Review: The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Texas State University

Review: The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on April 29, 2019

James Lapine's rewrite of the film reaches toward the seriousness of grand opera. The craft and art of the Texas State program elevate it impressively.

 

You're unlikely to see a musical production of this scope and flourish on Broadway these days. In fact, the stage version of Disney's 1996 animated film was produced and premiered in Berlin in 1999, where it had a successful three-year run. It didn't get to America until 2014, but Broadway wasn't in the cards. The Disney folks were convinced that the popularity of the film wouldn't be great enough ...

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Review: Cabaret by Texas State University

Review: Cabaret by Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on November 16, 2018

CABARET, that warhorse of American musical theatre, was up and rearing at Texas State, not about to give up -- a memorable and very twenty-first-century evening.

Christopher Isherwood's stories of 1930's Berlin, that sink of jolly depravity, have transmuted since their 1945 publication. First reworked as John Van Druten's play I Am A Camera, then chosen by Kander and Ebb for the 1966 musical, the strange weird world became the 1972 film in which Michael York seemed clueless and Liza Minelli was a heedless chanteuse indifferent both to conventional morals and to the storm gathering over Germany ...

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Review: Ragtime by Texas State University

Review: Ragtime by Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on April 21, 2018

If you missed this RAGTIME, take heart. As astonishingly impressive as was this production of Ragtime and as heart-breaking was the shortness of its formal run, Texas State under the leadership of Ms Hopkins is bound to go from strength to strength.

 

"They're running only six performances?" Karen exclaimed afterwards. "That's a crime!"

 

All right, that reaction was a bit exaggerated, but it captures what the Texas State musical theatre people have done: by building the program over the past decade, the school has assembled an artistic critical mass that allows it to fill and paint the stage with such an overabundance of talent that their productions, including this one of the epic ...

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Review: A Chorus Line by Texas State University

Review: A Chorus Line by Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on September 28, 2017

Let's applaud long and hard to signal our appreciation for these beautiful aspiring performers. We wouldn't wish such agonies upon any of them. Unless, of course, they insist. . . .

 

One reason A Chorus Line endures is that it captures for us the intense ephemeral nature of theatre and dance --  by portraying the anxiety of performers who've trained to the highest level but are subject to the arbitrary whims and preferences of a director or backer of a show. It's a peek behind the curtains of Broadway and Baghdad-on-the-Hudson. It's a glimpse of the ever true: for every dancer or actor ...

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Review: The World According to Snoopy by Texas State University

Review: The World According to Snoopy by Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on February 16, 2017

Every second of the two hours of performance was thought out, mapped, drilled and rehearsed to easy perfection. These young pros entertain us mightily as they take us to Charles Schultz's sweet world.

It's not surprising that Kaitlin Hopkins, head of musical theatre at Texas State University, was motivated to bring the Peanuts gang back on stage. The director's note in the program of The World According to Snoopy, the reworking of a 1980's musical, reveals that her father was co-producer of You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown, the first musical with those charactersAs a child Hopkins was taken to visit the cartoonist ...

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Review: Belleville by Amy Herzog, Texas State University

Review: Belleville by Amy Herzog, Texas State University

by Michael Meigs
Published on November 16, 2016

In BELLEVILLE Kailey Hyman has the charisma of an actress capable of evoking sympathy, pity, elation and panic in turn, all couched coherent in a character in search of resolution.

Amy Herzog's Belleville at Texas State offered a clever cross between an Innocents Abroad tale and a psychological thriller of deceit, confusion and crossed cultures. It's no sordid tale of crime; it's a story of loving too much and too blindly.

 

The protagonists are Abby and Zack, married during Zack's med school studies and now relocated to the mixed-ethnic eastern Paris suburb of Belleville. Zack disappears during the day for ...

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