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Review: Tír Na Theatre Company's Trad

Trad delivers a kiss and a kick to Irish drama
The fiddler’s on the ground floor in Trad , but Tevye would nonetheless identify with the play’s history-bound patriarch — though compared with this venerable coot, Sholem Aleichem’s beleaguered dairyman is a spring chicken.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  April 13, 2010


Portraits of artists

Opus at New Rep; From Orchids to Octopi at Central Square
Yikes! Is this really what it’s like behind the scenes with, say, the Emerson String Quartet?
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  April 06, 2010



Lady Day at Lyric bar & grill
As Billie Holiday fell apart, so did her fragile if expressive voice.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  March 30, 2010


Zero at the bone

SpeakEasy’s Adding Machine sings
A bleak expressionist fable centered on a murderous bookkeeper symbolically named Zero. Even when you throw in sexual repression, religious zealotry, a trip to Heaven, and enough dissonance to sate Stephen Sondheim, that doesn’t sound like the stuff of song and dance.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  March 23, 2010


Moral surgery

Becky Shaw at the Huntington; Entertaining Mr. Sloane at the Publick; Othello at Actors' Shakespeare Project
You know upon meeting Becky Shaw that you're in the presence of a smart, snappy writer. But you picture playwright Gina Gionfriddo as someone more akin to Theresa Rebeck than William Makepeace Thackeray.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  March 24, 2010


After Eden

Stick Fly at the Huntington; Paradise Lost at the ART; boom at New Rep
One of the heroines of Stick Fly , a post-doctoral student of etymology, likes to smear honey on the table and then scrutinize the flies that get stuck in it.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  March 11, 2010


Parallel worlds

Legacy of Light at the Lyric; Not Enough Air from Nora; The Island of Slaves from Orfeo Group
Playwright Karen Zacarias would seem to have taken long drafts of Tom Stoppard Elixir.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  February 17, 2010


Present laughter

Trinity throws a Twelfth Night party
Director Brian McEleney returns to Trinity Repertory Company for a raucous Twelfth Night that hums with energy, drollery, and a makeshift score that meshes Shakespearean ditty with such seasonal fripperies as "Auld Lang Syne" and the Mariah Carey hit "All I Want for Christmas Is You."
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  February 10, 2010


History plays

The Good Negro from Company One; Harriet Jacobs in Central Square; Indulgences at New Rep
Tracey Scott Wilson manages to knock off Martin Luther King Jr.'s halo without removing the glow.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  January 29, 2010


American dreams

All My Sons at the Huntington; In the Heights at the Opera House; [title of show] at SpeakEasy
It's hard to imagine being dwarfed by the titanically insignificant Willy Loman.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  January 19, 2010


Diamonds in the rough

Gatz at the ART, Groundswell at the Lyric Stage
The setting is more boring '90s than Roaring '20s.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  January 13, 2010


2009: The year in theater

Stage worthies
A quick look at this past year in Boston's theater scene.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  December 21, 2009


Joyful noise

Best of Both Worlds rocks The Winter's Tale
From the clamorous arrival of some ghetto hot wheels to a scorching gospel finale, Best of Both Worlds warms up The Winter's Tale . The third entry in American Repertory Theater's Shakespeare Exploded! Festival, this sizzling and soulful gloss on the Bard's late romance mines Shakespeare's time- and realm-hopping fairy tale.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  December 09, 2009


No country for old men

Shipwrecked! at the Lyric; Heroes in Lowell
Louis de Rougemont makes James Frey look like a documentarian. A sickly Victorian lad who arose from his cot, knocked around the Southern Hemisphere for a while, and returned to England with a hifalutin new moniker and captivating tales of seafaring perils and aboriginal idylls, he was the subject of a popular serialized autobiography.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  December 01, 2009


Lincoln Yule log

The Huntington celebrates A Civil War Christmas
Abraham Lincoln, as he said in his second inaugural address, yearned to "bind up the nation's wounds." Since the great man was assassinated little more than a month later, he didn't quite get around to it. No worry, Paula Vogel has taken over the job with A Civil War Christmas: An American Musical Celebration.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  November 24, 2009


Dodging death

Reckless, The Salt Girl, and The Overwhelming
Even the sweetest life can shatter in an instant, sending you through the looking glass like Alice. For the euphoric heroine of Craig Lucas's 1988 fable of holiday festivity and arbitrary mayhem, Reckless the moment of reckoning comes when her husband tearfully confesses, on Christmas Eve, that he has taken out a contract on her life.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  November 18, 2009


Mars vs. Venus

Speed-the-Plow; The Taming of the Shrew; A Long and Winding Road
It’s been 21 years since Speed-the-Plow first milked the cravenness of Hollywood and the self-described “whores” who turn its celluloid tricks. But David Mamet’s scathing, staccato comedy has held up at least as well as Madonna, who made her Broadway debut in the original 1988 production.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  October 28, 2009


Only connect

The Lyric answers the call of Dead Man’s Cell Phone
Usually when a cell phone goes off in the theater, you want to kill someone. In the case of Dead Man’s Cell Phone , that’s not necessary.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  October 20, 2009


The games people play

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?; The Caretaker; Little Black Dress
Who’s afraid of Edward Albee?
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  October 07, 2009


Black beauty

Fences, plus The Savannah Disputation and Mister Roberts
August Wilson pioneered a magical realism all his own.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  September 22, 2009


Disco ball

The Donkey Show gets its kicks at the ART
C-dust pinch-hits for fairy dust in The Donkey Show , Diane Paulus & Randy Weiner's disco-set riff on A Midsummer Night's Dream . Forget the juice of "a little western flower" with which fairy king Oberon and hench-sprite Puck mix up the libidos of the hormone-drenched characters charging through Shakespeare's Athenian wood.
By: CAROLYN CLAY  |  September 17, 2009

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