The sentiment expressed in the jaunty tune “Slap That Bass” tells us why Signature Theatre has chosen to stage Crazy For You: “the world is a mess with politics and taxes and people grinding axes… so slap that bass and let that be your tonic.” This vivacious production is certainly good medicine for a low […]
A look back at the past that contains a look back at the distant past, Top Girls comes across as almost more of a recently-written period play than the 1982 piece that it is. That is a credit to playwright Caryl Churchill’s balanced eye, which captures the tone of the era in which she wrote […]
“A lot with a little” encapsulates 4615 Theatre Company’s jewel-box production of Sophocles’ Electra. British dynamo Nick Payne’s clean, contemporary translation of the classical revenge-and-reunion drama is a perfect fit for director Stevie Zimmerman’s approach. A few subtle lighting cues, judicious use of a Mediterranean percussion soundtrack, and a small platform with a basin of […]
The best thing about The Smartest Girl in the World is that it is not actually about how smart the titular girl is, but about how much she learns from her brother, and how much her brother learns from her. At its core, Miriam Gonzales’ breezy tale is about siblings who move from a rose-colored […]
Spiraling in, and spiraling out: two opposing journeys are on offer in a pair of hour long Pinter plays, directed by Shakespeare Theatre’s Artisic Director, Michael Kahn. The Lover and The Collection may well have been pet projects for the seasoned director, as there is a game spirit evident that enlivens these thorny dramas and makes […]
Black People’s Houses might be this play’s title if it were a play written today and set in DC. That title would probably give a better sense of how provocative and satirical it is. Concerned, as it is, with slum landlords and gentrification, it is much more relevant and sharp than the creaky word “widower” […]
Two plays in one: a well-observed drama about a woman’s mid-life crisis, and an academic and occasionally comedic delve into the complexities of feminist theory. Peter’s Alley Theatre Productions’ staging of Gina Gionfriddo’s 2012 Off-Broadway smash is too lax to keep the two halves knotted densely together. This Rapture, Blister, Burn – a play described […]
Lakeboat was thought controversial when it debuted 40 years ago, but now it seems almost quaint, verging on classy. The very first script by David Mamet, it features many of the hallmarks of his style: vulgar language, clipped and repeated dialogue, and men being macho and misogynistic.
A choose-your-own-adventure review – pick one of the following: a) I have little or no idea what the Burning Man festival is; b) I know about Burning Man, but have never been; c) I am a Burner.
Satire is a noble pursuit, but it can also be used as an excuse. Regardless of what a would-be satirist puts onstage, if you dislike it, he can say that your negative reaction is the point. “I found it tasteless,” you might say, and the satirist can say, “it’s a satire on tastelessness.”