Review: Hairspray Live (The Show Must Go On)

A joyous production of Hairspray Live gives you hope that the show will go on with The Show Must Go On

“You can wonder i you wanna but I never ask why”

I assumed that since The Show Must Go On went with The Sound of Music Live last week that they would be working their way through the series of live TV musicals that NBC had aired in the US. In going with Hairspray Live this weekend though, it seems that we’ve skipped Peter Pan and The Wiz (maybe due to rights issues?), though it’s not necessarily the worst thing as Hairspray is such a joyous show it should perk up many a flagging spirit.

It proves far superior to The Sound of Music and you have to believe that it stems from a far more successful casting policy. Heading out for a national casting call for Tracy works because she’s such an everywoman character but even then, newcomer Maddie Baillio is thoroughly charming. Having Harvey Fierstein reprise his Edna is a masterstroke and then roping in Tony winners Kristin Chenoweth and Jennifer Hudson indicates that the right strengths were being looked for. Continue reading “Review: Hairspray Live (The Show Must Go On)”

Nominations for 2020 Lucille Lortel Awards

Outstanding Play
BLKS Produced by MCC Theater Written by Aziza Barnes
Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven Produced by Atlantic Theater Company and LAByrinth Theater Company Written by Stephen Adly Guirgis
Heroes of the Fourth Turning Produced by Playwrights Horizons Written by Will Arbery
Is This A Room Produced by Vineyard Theatre Conceived by Tina Satter
Mrs. Murray’s Menagerie Produced by Ars Nova Created by The Mad Ones and Phillip James Brannon, Brad Heberlee, Carmen M. Herlihy, January LaVoy
 
Outstanding Musical

A Strange Loop Produced by Playwrights Horizons in association with Page 73 Productions. Book, Music, and Lyrics by Michael R. Jackson
In The Green Produced by Lincoln Center Theater/LCT3. Book, Music, and Lyrics by Grace McLean
Octet Produced by Signature Theatre. Book, Music, and Lyrics by Dave Malloy
Soft Power Produced by The Public Theater and Center Theatre Group Play and Lyrics by David Henry Hwang, Music and Additional Lyrics by Jeanine Tesori
The Secret Life of Bees Produced by Atlantic Theater Company Book by Lynn Nottage, Music by Duncan Sheik, Lyrics by Susan Birkenhead. Based on the novel by Sue Monk Kidd

Continue reading “Nominations for 2020 Lucille Lortel Awards”

Review: Torch Song Trilogy, Turbine Theatre

The Turbine Theatre opens with a production of 80s gay classic Torch Song Trilogy

“Just because I said that’s what I want doesn’t mean that’s what I want. I mean, that’s what I want but that doesn’t mean that I’m necessarily ready for it”

I remain unconvinced that what London wants, needs or is ready for is yet another new theatre but regardless, the Turbine Theatre is here, lurking under the arches in the shadow of Battersea Power Station like a cross between the Menier Chocolate Factory and the Union Theatre.

Its opening salvo is a production of Harvey Fierstein’s Torch Song Trilogy, directed by Drew McOnie in his straight play debut and in terms of appealing to – indeed finding – a new core audience (in lieu of the community of people who will actually live in this new development, heading for the gays makes for a wise choice. Continue reading “Review: Torch Song Trilogy, Turbine Theatre”

Nominations for 2018 Lucille Lortel Awards

Outstanding Play
Cost of Living  Produced by Manhattan Theatre Club in association with Williamstown Theatre Festival Written by Martyna Majok
Miles for Mary Produced by Playwrights Horizons. Written by Marc Bovino, Joe Curnutte, Michael Dalto, Lila Neugebauer, and Stephanie Wright Thompson
Pipeline Produced by Lincoln Center Theater. Written by Dominique Morisseau
School Girls; Or, the African Mean Girls Play Produced by MCC Theater. Written by Jocelyn Bioh
The Treasurer Produced by Playwrights Horizons. Written by Max Posner

Outstanding Musical
Bella: An American Tall Tale Produced by Playwrights Horizons. Book, Music, and Lyrics by Kirsten Childs
Desperate Measures  Produced by The York Theatre Company in association with Cecilia Lin and Hu Guo. Book and Lyrics by Peter Kellogg, Music by David Friedman
Hundred Days Produced by New York Theatre Workshop. By The Bengsons and Sarah Gancher
Jerry Springer – The Opera Produced by The New Group. Music and Lyrics by Richard Thomas. Book and Additional Lyrics by Stewart Lee and Richard Thomas
KPOP  Produced by Ars Nova in association with Ma-Yi Theater Company and Woodshed Collective. Conceived by Woodshed Collective and Jason Kim. Book by Jason Kim, Music and Lyrics by Helen Park and Max Vernon, Immersive Design by Woodshed Collective Continue reading “Nominations for 2018 Lucille Lortel Awards”

Nominations for 2013-2014 Outer Critics Circle Awards

John Gassner Playwriting Award
Scott Z. Burns, The Library
Eric Dufault, Year of the Rooster
Madeleine George, The (Curious Case of the) Watson Intelligence
Steven Levenson, The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin
Lauren Yee, The Hatmaker’s Wife

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Michael Cerveris, Fun Home
Neil Patrick Harris, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Andy Karl, Rocky
Jefferson Mays, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love Murder
Bryce Pinkham, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder Continue reading “Nominations for 2013-2014 Outer Critics Circle Awards”

Winners of 2012-2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards

John Gassner Playwriting Award
Ayad Akhtar, Disgraced
Paul Downs Colaizzo, Really Really
Joshua Harman, Bad Jews
Samuel D. Hunter, The Whale
WINNER – Aaron Posner, My Name Is Asher Lev

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Bertie Carvel, Matilda the Musical
Santino Fontana, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Rob McClure, Chaplin: The Musical
WINNER – Billy Porter, Kinky Boots
Matthew James Thomas, Pippin
Continue reading “Winners of 2012-2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards”

Nominations for 2012-2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards

John Gassner Playwriting Award
Ayad Akhtar, Disgraced
Paul Downs Colaizzo, Really Really
Joshua Harmon, Bad Jews
Samuel D. Hunter, The Whale
Aaron Posner, My Name Is Asher Lev

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
Bertie Carvel, Matilda the Musical
Santino Fontana, Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Rob McClure, Chaplin: The Musical
Billy Porter, Kinky Boots
Matthew James Thomas, Pippin
Continue reading “Nominations for 2012-2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards”

Winners of 2009-2010 Outer Critics Circle Awards

John Gassner Playwriting Award
John Logan, Red
Jon Marans, The Temperamentals
WINNER – Geoffrey Nauffts, Next Fall
Bruce Norris, Clybourne Park

Outstanding Actor in a Musical
WINNER – Douglas Hodge, La Cage aux Folles
Brandon Victor Dixon, The Scottsboro Boys
Chad Kimball, Memphis
Nathan Lane, The Addams Family
Sean Hayes, Promises, Promises Continue reading “Winners of 2009-2010 Outer Critics Circle Awards”