Orange County Theatre Reviews

Once Upon the Stage… Once @ South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa – Review

(photos by Jordan Kubat) 

Written by Scotty Keister 

Once, the movie and the stage musical now running on the South Coast Repertory Segerstrom Stage, is a romance that defies clichés. There is no last minute run to the airport, no sudden eye-opening change of heart, nor is there a throw everything away and surrender to the passion of the moment. There are two people who fall in love, make each others’ lives better, and then move on as friends. It is a romance that celebrates compassion over passion. It celebrates a love of music over a love of self. The title itself is an abbreviated take on the fairy tale line “Once upon a time…” As such, this musical is one of a kind and an exquisite treat. Continue Reading

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Catch Me If You Can, or Can’t: CATCH ME IF YOU CAN The Musical @ The Attic Theatre in Santa Ana – Review

Written by Scotty Keister 

Frank Abagnale, Jr. is a fascinating character from 1960s American crime lore. Before reaching the  age of 21 he forged checks and bilked million of dollars from banks. He posed as a Pan Am pilot, a surgeon in a Georgia hospital and even an attorney—to name but a few of his alleged professions. Eventually he was caught, and after serving a minimum sentence, he became a fraud consultant for the FBI. Steven Spielberg made a lighthearted and fun movie of his life, Catch Me If You Can, which focused on the taut relationship between Abagnale and Carl Hanratty, the FBI agent who pursued and eventually arrested him. Sound like the perfect recipe for a Broadway musical? It’s not. The production currently running at the Attic Community Theater ably demonstrates its shortcomings. Continue Reading

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Broadway in the Park, Musical, Review, Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on Broadway In The Park Presents: Annie @ Peppertree Park in Tustin – Review |

Broadway In The Park Presents: Annie @ Peppertree Park in Tustin – Review

(Photo Courtesy: Sharyn Sakimoto)

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

Ladies and gentlemen, she’s back.  The girl with the curly red hair, the sandy-colored dog, the steadfast optimism and the voice of gold–Annie.  Annie has returned to us, this time for one week over at Peppertree Park in Tustin.  Her mission, to spread courage and good cheer while entertaining families in an outdoor setting late at night.  Does she succeed? In spite of sound issues and rushed pacing, I would say its close enough. Continue Reading

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Musical, Musical Theatre Orange County, Review, Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on Musical Theatre Orange County presents: The Little Mermaid @ PYLUSD Performing Arts Center in Plancentia – Review |

Musical Theatre Orange County presents: The Little Mermaid @ PYLUSD Performing Arts Center in Plancentia – Review

(photo courtesy: MTOC) 

Written by Patrick Chavis 

Originally a Hans Christian Anderson story written in the 1800’s, The Little Mermaid underwent a serious revamping in 1989, courtesy of Disney. It created one of the most successful animate features in Disney filmography, while also cementing the title mermaid Ariel as one of their most popular princesses. There is no need for imagination here, Musical Theatre OC’s The Little Mermaid is Disney to the core.  The show posts a high production value–a fun familiar story and a mostly game cast with some minor direction issues. Continue Reading

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Maverick Theatre, Musical, News, Press Releases, Review, The Chance Theater, Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on Best Shows This Month (07/2017) |

Maverick Theatre, Musical, Review, Uncategorized Comments Off on Welcome to the Splatter Zone! : Evil Dead The Musical @ Maverick Theater – Review |

Welcome to the Splatter Zone! : Evil Dead The Musical @ Maverick Theater – Review

Written by Daniella Litvak 

Adapting a single film into a stage show is a challenge.  Adapting a film series into an under two-hour, musical theater extravaganza is a Herculean labor.  If you’re going to undertake such an audacious feat then you are going to need some audacious source material.  What better fits the bill than Sam Raimi’s cult classic Evil Dead trilogy?  Now I’ll be honest, most of my knowledge of the films comes more from pop culture osmosis rather than memories of watching them.  From what I do know and what people around me in the audience told me is that Evil Dead The Musical is fairly faithful to films —more importantly it captures the elements everyone loves about the movies.       Continue Reading

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