Monday, July 1, 2013

Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson - Portland Playhouse

Book by Alex Timbers Music & Lyrics by Michael Friedman
Directed by Brian Weaver
Storyteller - Lorraine Bahr
Andrew Jackson - Logan Benedict
Adams/Ensemble - Sean McGrath
Tour Guide/Ensemble -Cristi Miles
Black Fox/Ensemble - Jared Miller
Clay-Ensemble - Chris Murray
Rachel - Melissa Murray
Monroe/Ensemble - Darius Pierce
Ensemble - Danielle Purdy; Alexandra Ramirez
Van Buren/Ensemble - Jason Rouse
Announcer/Ensemble - Jennifer Rowe
Cheerleader/Ensemble - Beth Thompson
Naomi/Ensemble - Sara Catherine Wheatley
Calhoun/Ensemble - John San Nicolas
Lyncoya - Ethan Reed Mckay
Lyncoya - Maeve O'Connor

The story of Andrew Jackson's rise from Indian fighter to President with attendant historical figures.  A great production music and scenes.

And So It Goes - Artists Repertory Theatre

Written by Aaron Posner and directed by Aaron Posner
Tom Newton - Tim True
Kate Newton - Valerie Stevens
Newt, Stage Manager, John - Andy Lee-Hillstrom
Catherine, Helene, Paula - Kayla Lian
Harry, Roy - Alex Hurt
Verne, George - Leif Norby
Doris, Gloria - Sarah Lucht

The Mask and Wig Club puts on a play every year in a small town.  A shy new woman in town is invited to join the cast which includes a shy hardware store stock boy who only comes alive when he is in character in one of the plays.  Fun production.

The Gin Game - Artists Repertory Theatre

Written by  D. L. Coburn and directed by JoAnn Johnson
Weller Martin - Allen Nause
Fonsia Dorsey - Vana O'Brien

Man and woman in a nursing home face the reality of aging and the end days of life across a card table on the back patio playing gin.

Mother Teresa Is Dead - Portland Playhouse

Written by Helen Edmundson  and Directed by Isaac Lamb
Jane - Nikki Weaver
Frances - Gretchen Corbett
Mark - Chris Harder
Srinivas - Luke Bartholomew

Personal responsibility in the face of the gulf between the developing world and the industrialized world. Explores what it means to try to address the problems both from a political and personal basis.  Woman leaves husband to go to India to do good leaving behind a child in order to save other children.

Ten Chimneys - Artists Repertory Theatre

Written by Jeffrey Hatcher and directed by Damaso Rodriquez

Alfred Lunt - Michael Mendelson
Lynn Fontanne - Linda Alper
Uta Hagen - Abby Wilde
Hattie Sederholm - JoAnn Johnson
Sydney Greenstreet - Todd Van Voris
Carl Sederholm - Chris Harder
Louise Green - Sarah Lucht

A ham-handed take off of  The Seagull the play is a comedy/drama with a bit of wit and a very slender narrative thread.  Not brilliant but perfectly acceptable performances.

My Children! My Africa! - Profile Theater

Written by Athol Fugard; directed by Adriana Baer
Mr. M - Bobby Mermea
Isbel Dyson - Chelsie Kinney
Thami Mbikwana - Gilbert Feliciano

Setting:  Camdeboo, South Africa, 1985

Thami, a black student in an apartheid school is in a debate contest with a white girl from a privileged white school under the direction of Mr. M.  Mr. M believes his student Thami is outstanding and has a chance to go far within the limits of blacks in apartheid South Africa--Thami turns to revolution, to break the boundaries that Mr. M sees no way to escape in the short run and turns in the revolutionaries and is subsequently killed by them.

Well acted, another excellent play from the incomparable Mr. Fugard.

Ithaka Artists Repertory Theatre

written by Andrea Stolowitz
Director - Gemma Whelan
Odysseus/Jacob - Victor Mack
Captain Elaine Edwards - Dana Millican
Lance Corporal Eve Richardson - Danielle Purdy
Bill Edwards - Paul Angelo
E.M. Richardson - Valerie Stevens

mc: Good storytelling, good acting, got me into the emotions and struggles of the context.
sz:  Story about PTSS woman returns from war tortured by guilt and questions of her role in an incident in which her friend dies:  should she have shot the child instead?