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CurtainUp

The Internet Theater Magazine of Reviews, Features, Annotated Listings --On Line Since 1996
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Interested in writing for us? With Curtainup's editor and critic in chief currently sidelined from theatergoing due to an accident, our need for some additional theater loving, insightful backups is urgent. However, able new reviewers are welcome to stay with us on a regular basis. . . so check out our Guidelines and then get back to us with details about yourself at esommer@pipeline.com

NEW DOUBLE FEATURE: How "Streaming" Eased the Summer of My Discontent . . . BInge Streaming Part 2: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel & Shtisel
Broadway
sound inside
The Sound Inside - beautifully written/emotionally involving play by Adam Rappl Starring Mary Louise ParkerRead More

Linda Vista
Linda Vista - Descriptive Excerpt: If the title were not already taken by a much produced French classic, Tracy Letts might well have called his play about a middle-aged guy who hates everything and everyone — including himself Read More

lightningthief
The Lightning Thief - If you had told me at age 12 that my two favorite literary protagonists — Harry Potter and Percy Jackson — would be headlining Broadway shows side-by-side in less than 15 years, I can't imagine I would have believed you. Read More

The Rose Tattoo - Tomei’s performance is stunningly operatic Read More
great society
The Great Society - If you invest the time and money to watch Cox's LBJ get all these bills that made America greater than ever passed, I suspect you'll exit the theater fervently hoping that Robert Shenkkan — or some playwright — - will soon have the facts to write a play to fit the title The Rise and Fall of Donald J. Trump. Read More

Slave Play - Jeremy O. Harris's uncompromising, graphic, sexually explicit play Read More
Free Style Love Supreme - Extended to 1/12/10! This isn't an introspective show. No group member attempts to persuade you that anything done on stage is IMPORTANT. What IS important, however, is the shared theatrical experience between the artists and audience members and finding truth in the moment.Read More

height of the storm
The Height of the Storm - Eileen Atkins and Jonathan Pryce manage to turn Florian Zeller's overly clever script into a truly unmissable point counterpoint performance duet Read More

Betrayal
Darren Brown: Secret - The charismatic British mentalist is back in New York, this time on Broadway Read More

Betrayal
Betrayal - Jamie Lloyd directs a compelling, minimalist take on Pinter's play with impressive Broadway debuts by Zawe Ashton, Charlie Cox, and Tom Hiddleston. Read More

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Moulin Rouge! The Musical - a brightly wrapped, intricately decorated package with little inside. It's racy, sometimes vulgar, and always indifferent to historical context and narrative logic. This makes it just the right stuff for the Trump eraRead More
frankie/johnny
Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune - Closing 7/28! This new Broadway revival has two extraordinary actors simply having a good time romp Read More

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beetlejuice
Beetlejuice - Like the movie, the musical has been cast with artists who are first-rate clowns. . . . Read More
Tootsie
Tootsie - To paraphrase Al Jolson's famous song, Toot, toot,Tootsie, hello! Read More
Hadestown
Hadestown - the most original new musical on Broadway takes us to hell and back to a soaring musical score. Read More

ainttooproud
ain't too proud - The Life and Times of The Temptations - No less than thirty-one Motown songs are performed with a slick and polished vigor in Broadway's newest jukebox musical. . . Read More

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Winner of Best Play Tony! Read More

mockingbird
To Kill A Mockingbird - A beautifully acted and staged new and more relevant production of Harper Lee's iconic novel Read More

Mean Girls
Mean Girls - Another teen audience targeted movie now sing and dances on Broadway Read More
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Frozen
Frozen - A visually rich production that keeps us wide-eyed and on tenterhooks for more than two hours, even when we know how things are going to end. . . Read More
Come From Away
Come From Away - Its uplift message has helped this fact-based musical fly from Canada to Broadway. . . Read More
Dear Evan Hansen
Dear Evan Hansen - A small musical's big heart and big on talent cast is now a welcome addition to the Broadway musical scene. . . Read More
waitress
Waitress
Closing on Broadway 1/05/20! Read More
New York Off-Broadway
fires
Fires in the Mirror - Anna Deavere Smith’s gripping one-person/thirty characters play Read More

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Broadbend, Arkansas - a 2-character chamber opera that's a thoroughly rewarding musical theater experience . . . Read More

 Cyrano
Cyrano -Peter Dinklage does Cyrano without that famous appendage. . .but his Cyrano does sing. Read More

Dr. Ride's American Beach House
Dr. Ride's American Beach House - Liza Berkenmeier's historically inspired play offers a meditation on queer desire and repression. Read More

Little Shop
Little Shop of Horrors - Mayer convincingly sells Little Shop of Horrors as a near-perfect piece of musical theater writing. Read More

hamnet
Hamnet - Shakespeare, played maturely with a mix of grim optimism and snarky despair by Aran Murphy in his professional debut, has been stuck at eleven for a long, long time. Read More

Micheels
The Michaels: Conversations During Difficult Times - beautifully acted and meticulously directed by its author Richard NelsonRead More

chalfant
Woman of theworld - This is the story recounted in Rebecca Gilman that's now making its premiere at 59E59 Theaters, under the direction of Valentina Fratti smf stsrring the luminous Kathleen Chalfant as Mabel Loomis Todd. Read More

Seared
Seared - Theresa Rebeck's literslly tasty comic take on art versus commerce is having its New York premiere at the beutiful new MCC Thesters's intimate Susan & Ronald Frankel Theater. Read More

macbeth
Macbeth - Though John Doyle breaks the rules in all the right ways, newbies to the play are likely to t become confused at times by its gender-blind casting and the nine cast members who play multiple roles in this all-hands-on-deck production.Read More

isthisaroom
Is This A Room - As an animation of a single document, that feels like a refreshingly innovative concept. Read More

Scotland, PA
Scotland, PA - It's all very irreverent, casual, and American-- but is there enough Shakespeare to go along with its ambience? After all, the language has almost entirely gone missing here, so that the show counts on the spirit of the original to live in this equal-opportunity approach to Shakespeare. Still the Bard doesn't belong to any single class, race, creed, or geographical locale. He belongs to anybody with the imagination to transplant his tales to fresh new places. And, thanks to the musical's creative team that now includes the little town of Scotland, PA Read More

for colored girls
for colored girls who have considered suicide / when the rainbow is enuf - Director Leah C. Gardiner has crafted a production nourished by the affection shown and attention paid across this rainbowed community Read More

bellla
Bella Bella - Harvey Fierstone's biographical solo play is filled to the brim with Bella Abzug's trenchant wit and wisdom. For older theater goers, it's a trip down memory lane that spans many administrations, detailing presidential good deeds as well as the all too frequent surrenders to political expediency. . . for millenials it's an enlightening history lesson Read More

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forbidden bway
Forbidden Broadway: The Next Generation - How did we survive this long interval without Alessandrini's insightful satirizing and inspired spoofing of Broadway shows both current and on occasion recent past? This corner welcomes it back as it again demonstrates that it has what it takes to mock the mediocre even as it also joyously celebrates the parodic life upon the wicked stage Read More
Soft Power
Soft Power - Extended to 11/17!. . . With the key cast members as well as director, choreographer aboard , David Henry Hwang's and Jeanine Tesori's genre busting Soft Power has arrived in New York. I can't think of a better place than the Public's Newman Theater for it to find an audience ready to buy into Hwang's dazzlingly original but flawed mash up of fact and fiction.Read More
wrong man
The Wrong Man With the help of Hamilton's director Thomas Kail and orchestrator Alex Lacamoire, Ross Golan's almost two dozen story telling songs became the musical, The Wrong Man, now premiering at MCC's beautiful new theater in Hell's Kitchen section of Manhattan. Read More

The New Englanders - The changes in the typical American family (if ever there really was one outside of Rockwell's famous idyllc canvases and 1940s movies) are indeed welcome. But these now acceptable new family units have brought on new new issues to deal with. And it t should thus not come as a surprise that the marriages possible in our more open minded societies don't all follow a blissfully ever after path Read More

dublin carol
Dublin Carol - It was inevitable that Conor McPherson's morose but incisively impassioned one-act play would find its way to the Irish Repertory Theatre. Here it is receiving as polished and vivid a production under the direction of Ciaran O'Reilly as one would want. Read More

Kingfishers Catch Fire
Kingfishers Catch Fire - Although superbly staged and acted, this is not light entertainment. However, who go will have a rare theatrical experience that will linger after the house lights go down.Read More

davinci
Da Vinci & Michelangeo: The Titans Experience - His voice catches on a plaintive note, then crescendos to peals of laughter. Is this Lear? Is this Hamlet? No, it's just Mark Rodgers. . .delivering a 2-hour lecture performance Read More

fidder
Fiddler On the Roof - The not to be missed Yiddish version of the golden era's most perfect musical is now uptown. . . Read More

fiddler
Fiddler on the Roof The show will move uptown to Stage 42 from 2/11/19; opening 2/21/19 - The National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene's (NYTF) excellent Yiddish production of Fiddler on the Roof as directed by Joel Grey makes us fall in love with Tevye, his wife, Golde, and his three daughters all over again. Read More
Review links to all currently running Broadway and Off-Broadway shows






London

highfidelitylon19
High Fidelity -he Turbine Theatre at Battersea launches its first musical with a vibrant production of Nick Hornby's High Fidelity . . . . Read More

crowslon19
When the Crows Visit-powerfully recreates the themes of Ibsen's Ghosts in modern day India . . . Read More

sohocinderslon19

Soho Cinders The pantomime season starts early with a gay pantomime based on the legend of Cinderfella with pretty tunes and a difference. . . . Read More

botticelliinthefirelon19
Botticelli in the Fire is a fantasy set in Renaissance Florence. . . . Read More

vassalon19
Vassa Gorky's 1910 play confuses and bemuses Read More

blanklon19
[BLANK] Clean Break 's production explores women at the hands of the criminal justice system. . . . . . Read More

lungslon19
Lungs Claire Foy and Matt Smith re-pair in a less royal role . . . . Read More

maninwhitesuitlon19
The Man in the White Suit Stephen Mangan steals the show in Sean Foley's delightful rewrite of the 1951 film and play . . . Read More
noisesofflon19
Noises Off Michael Frayn's brilliant farce of farces goes behind the scenes of repertory theatre . . . Read More

watsonslon19
The Watsons Laura Wade tackles an unfinished Jane Austen novel, The Watsons and creates a dramatic coup . . . Read More

ladyvanisheslon19
The Lady Vanishes In the perfect play for Brexiteers comes this accomplished thriller from Alfred Hitchcock as a tale of the British abroad, heroic and eccentric. I want to cheer! . . . Read More

biglon19
BIG The 1988 movie is recreated as a musical three decades after the film . . . . Read More
Hamilton
Hamilton The Hamilton phenomenon takes London by storm . . . Read More
Links to all currently running shows London


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New Jersey
last  days
Last Days of Summer - a new musical that is full of nice surprises Read More

Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein - David Catlin has written as well as directed a stunning dramatic narrative that combines a period in the life of the novelist herself, and the circumstances that served to ignite her imagination for her novel. Read More
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California
onbeckettl
On Beckett -When you consider that so many of Beckett's iconic characters are face to face with the reaper, Bill Irwin &emdash; a very youthful 69 year old &emdash; could conceivably be Hamm-ing and Krapp-ing for years to come. For now, he is content to draw back the curtain and give us all a look at what has been so inspiring. Read More


Washington - DC
 whitepearldc19
White Pearl - Anchuli Felicia King hass juxtaposed race, ethnicity and the responsibilities of the cosmetic business, which after all is engaged in the practice of illusion. Plenty of conflict to work with.
 A Chorus Line border=
A Chorus Line - Signature Theatre has a reputation that goes far beyond its Arlington, Virginia home for taking "classic" or "forgotten" musicals and making them new again. That's certainly true of their current show Read More

 Everybody
Everybody - Read More
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Conn
On the  Grounds of Belonging
On the Grounds of Belonging - Starting with its poetic title, this is not only a strong work, it’s a positive harbinger of Long Wharf’s future, led by its new artistic director. . . Read More
girls
Girls - The only items missing from Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' ambitious but messy Girls, having its world premiere at Yale Rep, are cellphones. Otherwise, this modernization of Euripides'weird 5th century BCE Bacchae fits right in with our current solipsistic society where self is all and we communicate via technology.Read More
Berkshire Reviews


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Moulin Rouge If this musical has long life, Marl—a Maples, President Trump's showgirl second wife, and Stormy Daniels, his short-term whatever, would be ideal as Santine and Nini in the bus-and-truck tour.—Charles Wright, summing up his review for Curtainup.

The world has gone mad today/ And good's bad today/ And black's white today/ And day's night today/ And that gent today/ You gave a cent today/ Once had several chateaux …/ Anything goes.

Just think of those shocks you've got/ And those knocks you've got/ And those blues you've got/ From that news you've got/ And those pains you've got/ (If any brains you've got). . ./ 'Cause Franklin knows/ Anything goes.

—Cole Porter lyric quoted in Thomas Friedman's 3/06/09 New York Times column The Trump Musical: 'Anything Goes'.

You gotta crawl around in another man's skin 'fore you can really know him —Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mckingbird

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