Recent Reviews

Review: Hang by Horizon Line Theatre

Review: Hang by Horizon Line Theatre

by Michael Meigs
Published on October 08, 2019

HANG is a three-character, slow-motion, high-resolution view of naive good intentions smashing into the messy business of collateral damage and revenge. You just can't look away. Nor should you.

 

It's devilishly difficult to craft a review of debbie tucker green's Hang without flinging spoilers. This is because the playwright's structural approach to this story is based on withholding information. We don't know these three persons' names; they're identified only as One, Two and Three. More to the point, we don't know why Nadine Mozon as Three, a married woman who underwent some terrible trauma (what?) inflicted by ...

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Review #2 of 2:  Dracula: Mina's Quest (adapted by Dietz) by Zach Theatre

Review #2 of 2: Dracula: Mina's Quest (adapted by Dietz) by Zach Theatre

by Michael Meigs
Published on October 07, 2019

Steven Dietz's reworked Dracula at the Zach Theatre is a loud, over-the-top version played out on a set that looks more appropriate for Cartoon Network or THE ADDAMS FAMILY. And to tell the truth, we found it really boring.

 

We looked at one another at the intermission and had to decide if we were just going to walk out on this one. Steven Dietz's reworked Dracula at the Zach Theatre is a  loud, over-the-top version played out on a set that looks more appropriate for Cartoon Network or The Addams Family. And to tell the truth, we found it really boring.

 

Dietz, brought to UT some years ago from Seattle ...

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Review #2 of 2: The Duchess of Malfi by Hidden Room Theatre

Review #2 of 2: The Duchess of Malfi by Hidden Room Theatre

by David Glen Robinson
Published on October 06, 2019

Nothing illuminates an involved story like excellent performances, and The Duchess of Malfi is full of them. The heart, soul, and agony of the play reside in Judd Farris’s character of Bosola, the murderer and spy.

 

The Hidden Room and Artistic Director Beth Burns have scored another spectacular success with their production of The Duchess of Malfi. The tragedy is a Jacobean drama written by Englishman John Webster in 1612 and 1613. As with many Jacobean (English Renaissance) dramas, the play is based on actual events in the lives of historical figures. The Duchess of Malfi, real name Giovanna d’Aragona, Duchess of Amalfi, was a tragic figure caught up in ...

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Review #1 of 2: The Duchess of Malfi by Hidden Room Theatre

Review #1 of 2: The Duchess of Malfi by Hidden Room Theatre

by Michael Meigs
Published on October 04, 2019

Judd Farris is a standout among standouts as grim, swift murderer Bosola; Robert Matney as the cardinal is Orsonian (as in Welles); and Ryan Crowder as the duchess's wicked brother goes mad with wild élan.

 

The Hidden Room  is a tight little Early Modern Drama gang grouped under the sheltering, nourishing genius of Beth Burns, and they've periodically been transporting a narrow, sophisticated slice of the city's theatre-going public back 400 years or so for what seems like forever. If that sounds like a convoluted timeline, consider this: CTXLT catalogs show 22 productions since April, 2010 by these gifted zealots. Most were of dusty dramas that only ...

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Review: Jungalbook by Zach Theatre

Review: Jungalbook by Zach Theatre

by Michael Meigs
Published on October 04, 2019

Big John Christopher as Baloo the Bear is the sweet, avuncular conscience repeatedly admonishng the young -- wolf cubs -- and the adult anthropomorphic animals of the law of the jungle. JUNGALBOOK is a lot of fun, and not just for kids.

 

Jungalbook is a lot of fun, and not just for kids. It's fast and colorful, an imagining of the same narrow selection from Kipling's 1894 story collection used for the Disney animated film in 1967. Playwright Edward Mast's reworking provides the same principal characters but without the sugar coating; Mowgli the protagonist becomes "humancub" in the Zach retelling, a nod to today's sensibilities about gender and roles, but also an ...

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Review #1 of 2: Dracula (adapted by Dietz) by Zach Theatre

Review #1 of 2: Dracula (adapted by Dietz) by Zach Theatre

by Brian Paul Scipione
Published on October 02, 2019

There is a line in that play that suggests that what man recognizes as evil takes the deepest root in those that are most pure. Yet Sarah Kimberley Becker as Mina the heroine shows that there may be some so pure that evil may never truly take root in them at all.

 

Just in time for the spooky days of autumn and the celebrated night of All Hallows’ Eve, ZACH Theatre presents the classic story of the original vampire, Count Dracula. The plot is taken from the original Bram Stoker novel with updates by prolific American playwright Steven Dietz. Dietz has composed more than 30 original pieces and 11 adaptions. His Dracula was originally produced in 1996 but has been given a twist and restaged in ...

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