(All photos by Doug Catiller, True Image Studio)
1913, Leo Frank, a Brooklyn-raised Jew living in Georgia, is put on trial for the murder of 13-year-old Mary Phagan, a factory worker under his employ. Already guilty in the eyes of everyone around him, a sensationalist publisher and a janitor’s false testimony seal Leo’s fate. His only defenders are a governor with a conscience, and, eventually, his assimilated Southern wife who finds the strength and love to become his greatest champion. Parade is filled with soaring music and a heart-wrenching story, offering a moral lesson about the dangers of prejudice and ignorance that should not be forgotten. Groups looking for powerful, moving theatrical experiences will need to look no further than this unforgettable show. Taken from Website
Written by Alina Mae Wilson
Bonnie and Clyde are no strangers to the spotlight. Although I am certain not everyone knows exactly who they were and what they did, their names are forever linked with a certain sense of notoriety and tragedy. Now, I remember meeting an older gentleman who expressed frustration that a movie like the 1967 film Bonnie and Clyde would be made considering the nature of the subject matter (he viewed the couple as contemptible and any film featuring them to be needless glorification of thuggery). Had he watched the Curtis Theatre’s production of the Broadway musical Bonnie and Clyde, he might have noticed that glorification of criminality occurs at a minimum. The show is much more about the title characters’ relationship than it is about how exciting it is to rob banks. And the story of that relationship is played up well enough to be more exciting than any bank robbery any day. Continue Reading
Alina Mae Wilson
Every once in a while you come across a show that causes you to feel a genuine emotional investment. It is the type of show that speaks the truth about human nature without being totally grim and allows us as viewers to feel for and understand each of the characters onstage. A show like this makes us want good things to happen for these people onstage because the people we are watching are us. They are every person at their best and worst moments in life. And as in life, a show like this keeps us guessing. Abundance at South Coast Repertory is one of these shows. Continue Reading
Written by Zack Johnston
(Photo Courtesy of CSUF College of The Arts)
For the dense slice-of-life story Dancing at Lughnasa, it can be understandably tricky to create an entirely captivating production. While Cal State Fullerton’s production of the Irish drama fails to engage in compelling storytelling, it succeeds in some of its performance and technical aspects.
Set in Donegal, Ireland in 1936, the humble Mundy siblings struggle to maintain their household while different obstacles threaten their stability. With an absent father, an ill-minded brother and the household’s main source of income on the line, the five Mundy sisters must find a balance between pleasure and discipline. Continue Reading
Written by Daniella Litvak
Have you ever watched an episode of television where the hero is trapped in a room with another character? Most of the time the other character is someone the hero despises, or the trapped characters have unresolved romantic feelings for each other. It could even be both. Once trapped, secrets get revealed. Feelings get shared. However, at the end of the ordeal, the issues are resolved, and the characters have a newfound appreciation for themselves and for each other. Yasmina Reza’s Tony Award winning play God of Carnage completely deconstructs this scenario.
The cast consists of four characters –two pairs of husbands and wives. Cassidy McMillan and Wade Williamson play Veronica and Michael Novak. Veronica is a social activist who considers herself a “citizen of the world.” Michael runs a hardware company and appears supportive of his wife’s ideals. Keith Bush and Laura Flores bring Alan and Annette Raleigh to life. Alan is an amoral attorney while Annette is increasingly frustrated with his unbreakable attachment to his cell phone and apathy towards everything else. Together, the two couples meet in the Novak living room to discuss what they should do about the Raleigh’s son hitting the Novak’s son. The conversation quickly steers away from the children and towards topics that shed light on everyone’s darker nature. Continue Reading