Orange County Theatre Reviews

Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach Academy for the Performing Arts, Musical, Review, Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on The Phantom of the Opera @ Huntington Beach Academy for the Performing Arts – Review |

The Phantom of the Opera @ Huntington Beach Academy for the Performing Arts – Review

Written by Daniella Litvak

Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera (“Phantom”) isn’t just a musical — it’s the musical.  Famous for its dramatic score, elaborate costuming and stage design, iconic title character, and for being the longest running show in Broadway history, Phantom is the musical all other musicals measure itself against.  Seeing a performance is considered a must for any musical theater fan. Continue Reading

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Anaheim, Musical, Review, Stage Door Repertory, Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on CABARET @ Stage Door Repertory Theatre in Anaheim – Review |

CABARET @ Stage Door Repertory Theatre in Anaheim – Review

 (Photo Credit: Amy Gettys)

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

Cabaret is a musical about German people having orgies in clubs, or at least that is what I would have told you before Saturday night.  I had heard of Cabaret, even listened to some of the music, but it’s somewhat striking how off-base I was about the actual premise of the show.   It’s a drama about — wait.  No.  If you haven’t seen or heard in great detail about Cabaret just wait, pause for a moment, and think.  The musical takes place during the early 1930’s Germany, so I want you to close your eyes for a moment and guess what it’s about.  Ready?  What is it about?  It’s about the Nazi’s rise to power because obviously, what else could it be?  Seriously, the performance began and I thought, “How interesting, a raunchy night club running during 1930s. ”  By the end of the show, I was thinking, “Dear God, has anything good happened in Germany ever?” All snark aside, this was a musical with some interesting material, the quality of which rose quite a few notches once we made it to Act 2. Continue Reading

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Laguna beach, Laguna Playhouse, Musical, Review, Uncategorized Comments Off on Blues in the Night @ Laguna Playhouse – Review |

Blues in the Night @ Laguna Playhouse – Review

(PHOTO CREDIT:  Ed Krieger)

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

Make of this what you will, but to me, the “blues” was only something that plays in the background while at restaurants (quietly of course so as not to distract from the table chatter).  I couldn’t help but feel underwhelmed at the prospect of spending an evening attending a show called Blues In The Night.  Yet once the show began, my biases were proven completely unfounded. Almost against my will, I was lured into the music and into the lives of the characters onstage.  Though I wouldn’t necessarily describe it as ‘riveting’ all the way through, Blues In The Night varies in range, tempo, and soul.  It is one of the most pleasant surprises I have had in a while. Continue Reading

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Anaheim, Musical, Review, The Chance Theater, Uncategorized Comments Off on Rockin’ Lizzie Borden : Lizzie The Musical @ Chance Theater – Review |

Rockin’ Lizzie Borden : Lizzie The Musical @ Chance Theater – Review

Written by Patrick Chavis 

(All photos by Doug Catiller, True Image Studio)

“Lizzie Borden took an axe
And gave her mother forty whacks.
When she saw what she had done,
She gave her father forty-one.”  -anonymous

I had heard of Lizzie Borden before this production, and I had previously heard the folk rhyme that I posted on the top of this article.  However, that was the extent of my Lizzie Borden knowledge.  While I can definitely say I know a little bit more now after watching the show, I wouldn’t say Lizzie the Musical is the place to satisfy your itch for accurate history.  What I would say is this: unlike Rent, which was a rock musical with lots of theatricality and some rock thrown in, the Lizzie production at the Chance Theater felt like a rock concert with a small dose of theatricality thrown in — but most importantly — it does ROCK!!!

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Costa Mesa, Musical, Review, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Uncategorized Comments Off on Canada Rocks : Come From Away @ Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa – Review |

Canada Rocks : Come From Away @ Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa – Review

Written by Patrick Chavis 

Even though Come From Away is set against the tragic backdrop of 9/11, it focuses more on the tension, feelings, and emotions of the time — as opposed to a more strait-laced recap of the period. The characters we see stranded in Canada remind us of the pain felt by all Americans at home and abroad alike. Yet even in tragedy, the characters were about to find a silver lining.   Continue Reading

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La Mirada Theatre, Musical, Review, Uncategorized Comments Off on McCoy Rigby Entertainment presents : 1776 @ La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts – Review |

McCoy Rigby Entertainment presents : 1776 @ La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts – Review

(PHOTO CREDIT: Jason Niedle)

Written by Patrick Chavis 

There are many stories of brave men fighting on the battlefield for freedom against seemingly impossible odds.  As is often the case when telling stories about the American Revolution, the battles where farmers, common people, and soldiers fought side by side to free themselves from the tyranny of England take the spotlight.  In 1776 we see no battlefields nor musket fire, only the men of Congress. These men fought feverishly over the idea of freedom and what that meant.  McCoy Rigby Entertainment’s production of 1776 handles the material with an enormous amount of professionalism and fun.  1776 succeeds because of how well it humanizes the founding fathers’ warts and all. Continue Reading

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