Author Archive

Hir at Mixed Blood Theatre

Hir at Mixed Blood Theatre

“Let’s put the fun in dysfunctional!” exclaims playwright Taylor Mac and – for a while, anyhow – he succeeds. The Mixed Blood stage for Hir (at MB through Mar 22) swirls with a wild scatter of dirty laundry (“I don’t do laundry any more,” asserts Mistress Paige, played by the great Sally Wingert. “I’m...
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A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Guthrie Theatre

A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Guthrie Theatre

The Guthrie‘s production of William Shakespeare‘s delightful A Midsummer Night’s Dream clocks in at a bladder busting three plus hours. Loud and long, massive and ambitious, this show entertains – does it ever – but doesn’t pull you in. One sits back, marveling at the talent and creativity so richly on display. But one...
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Oliver! by Theater Latté Da, performing at the Pantages Theatre

Oliver! by Theater Latté Da, performing at the Pantages Theatre

I took my 18 yo son to see Oliver! (Theater Latté Da and Hennepin Theatre Trust, performing in the exquisite Pantages Theatre, through March 1). During intermission, we had the following conversation: “Whaddaya think?” “I’m having a problem with the tech – the mics. I keep hearing scratching and feedback. Uneven sound. Sometimes the...
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The Coward by Walking Shadow Theatre Company, performing at Red Eye Theater

The Coward by Walking Shadow Theatre Company, performing at Red Eye Theater

I have never ever, in my exalted theatrical career, seen so much blood. The Red Eye stage is awash in it and, indeed, the raked set (a terrific design by Eli Schlatter) contains a trough, to catch the copious sanguine flow. The Coward features myriad deaths by handgun: head shots, chest shots, gut shots....
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Death And The Maiden, a co-production of Torch Theater and Gremlin Theatre, at the Theatre Garage

Death And The Maiden, a co-production of Torch Theater and Gremlin Theatre, at the Theatre Garage

This production of the oft-produced Death And The Maiden (Torch Theater and Gremlin Theatre, co-producing at the Theater Garage through Feb 21) begins with a prologue of sorts: Paulina Escobar (played with calm and statuesque fire by Stacia Rice) moves into the half-lit (Death And The Maiden often uses – overuses? – murky lighting)...
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Gertrude Stein And A Companion at the Jungle Theater

Gertrude Stein And A Companion at the Jungle Theater

How could Claudia Wilkens and Barbara Kingsley have played these roles in 1992, when the two actors were 14 and 12 years old, respectively? The characters Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas demand substance, solidity combined with lightness of touch, maturity, quiet self-assured power and now, in 2015, Wilkens and Kingsley have the above...
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The Hothouse by Dark & Stormy Productions, performing at the Grain Belt Brewery

The Hothouse by Dark & Stormy Productions, performing at the Grain Belt Brewery

  Dark & Stormy Productions performs Harold Pinter‘s giddily nonsensical The Hothouse in ye olde Grain Belt Brewery’s Atrium (79 13th Ave. NE, through Jan 4). D&S excels at utilizing “found” venues for their plays – empty offices, warehouse spaces, etc. This lends the work a unique quality, seemingly half-improvised yet crafted and perfect....
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4000 Miles by Park Square Theatre

4000 Miles by Park Square Theatre

It’s those tell-tale hugs. Sweet, warm and tender, tension dissipating. Complete with comforting pats on the back: there, there. I think you’re just swell. I’m so glad you are who you are. Gosh. The hugs will clue you in: there’s no real danger in this play, little drama. It’s all about wordless healing, the...
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The Whale by Walking Shadow Theatre Co., performing at Mixed Blood

The Whale by Walking Shadow Theatre Co., performing at Mixed Blood

The Whale, by Samuel D. Hunter (Walking Shadow Theatre Co., performing at Mixed Blood Theatre, through Dec 20), is a grim little play. In it, we watch Charlie, the eponymous whale, committing suicide by gluttony. In the years since his boyfriend’s death (pneumonia complicated by anorexia), Charlie’s weight has ballooned. “It’s been a long...
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Grounded by Frank Theatre, performing at the Playwrights Center

Grounded by Frank Theatre, performing at the Playwrights Center

“You are the blue,” the Pilot in Grounded (Frank Theatre performing at the Playwrights Center, through Nov 23) intones and we really feel it. Shooting and swooping and soaring through the sky, the freedom, the power of it. To be a mile high, turning and twisting. The beauty of the weapons (to cadge a...
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