Posts Tagged ‘musical’

Music by Stephen Flaherty, Lyrics by Lynn Ahrens
Book by Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty
Directed and Choreographed by Dan Knechtges
The Muny
July 22, 2014

Abigail Isom, John Tartaglia Photo by Eric Woolsey The Muny

Abigail Isom, John Tartaglia
Photo by Eric Woolsey
The Muny

The stories of Dr. Seuss are among the familiar, much loved staples of childhood reading for countless children around the world. Filled with clever rhymes, fantasy and wonder, these classic stories have entertained and inspired generations of children, and it’s not surprising that someone eventually had the idea to adapt them into a musical. The latest entry in the Muny’s current season, Seussical is a show that’s full of rhyme, song and whimsical flights of fancy, cast with a strong lineup of Muny veterans that bring the classic tales to life in a gentle  fashion that seems designed to appeal most to the youngest members of the Muny audience.

Paying musical tribute to the various works of the esteemed Dr. Seuss, this show focuses primarily on the Horton the Elephant stories, with elements from many other Seuss tales thrown in here and there.  Narrated by the illustrious Cat in the Hat (John Tartaglia), the story begins with a group of children celebrating the works of Seuss in the bouncy, memorable song “Oh, The Thinks You Can Think”. A little girl (Abigail Isom) is brought into the story as Jojo, the daughter of the Mayor of Whoville and his wife (Gary Glasgow, April Strelinger). The Whos live on a tiny planet contained in a speck of dust that is found by the earnest, dependable Horton (Stephen Wallem), who deposits the speck of dust on a clover and vows to keep it safe.  Horton’s neighbors in the Jungle of Nool are very skeptical and, led by the confrontational Sour Kangaroo (Liz Mikel), question his discovery.  Meanwhile in Whoville, Jojo is questioned by her parents and the other townspeople because her imagination is too vivid, so she’s sent to a military school led by the loudly belligerent General Genghis Khan Schmitz (James Anthony), in order to teach her discipline.  In the Jungle of Nool, insecure bird Gertrude McFuzz (Kirsten Wyatt) pines for Horton while the self-absorbed Mayzie La Bird (Julia Murney) flies off to enjoy a vacation while leaving Horton to sit on her egg.  From there, the story unfolds in fantastical Seuss fashion, as Horton and Jojo struggle to find their place in their worlds and the Cat in the Hat guides the audience through the whole journey, as narrator, commentator and occasional participant.

The first word that comes to my mind when thinking of this production is “colorful”. The design team, led by scenic designer Robert Mark Morgan and costume designer Leon Dobkowski, has certainly brought a whole lot of color to the Muny stage, inspired by Seuss’s style but not directly copying it, especially in the costumes.  The stage is set up like a storybook wonderland, with a giant open book at center and surrounded by several giant-sized Dr. Seuss books with familiar titles such as Green Eggs and Ham, The Cat In the Hat, Horton Hears a Who, etc. The books and scenery are painted in a rainbow of bright colors, as are the inventive, simply styled costumes that suggest the characters rather than literally representing them. The birds, for instance, wear bright dresses with fluffy skirts, and many other characters are wearing brightly colored outfits with earpieces and/or tails or, in the case of Horton, a trunk to distinguish their species. The Whos are similarly colorful, and General Schmitz is decked out in garish purple camouflage. It’s a visual feast, and fitting for the bright, imaginative tone of the musical itself. The staging is also well imagined, using every inch of the Muny stage, and even involving the audience in some fun moments such as bouncing beach balls around and following the Cat as he wanders throughout the audience followed by his “news camera” on various occasions, including a fun Muny in-joke referencing Tartaglia’s last appearance at the Muny in Aladdin. Aside from the Cat and a few other more energetic moments, the show is mostly paced more gently and a lot less madcap than I had expected.  It’s a kids’ show first and foremost, and the staging makes that clear.

Performance-wise, the cast is in excellent form, with strong performances all around, supported with much enthusiasm by the Muny’s Youth Chorus.  Tartaglia brings a great deal of charm to the role of the Cat, serving as an ideal tour guide through the production, and playing various other characters as needed along the way.  He’s not nearly as over-the-top as he was as the Genie in Aladdin, although that is fitting for the more gentle tone of this production, and he leads the production with style from start to finish. Wallem is appropriately earnest and likable as Horton, and Isom turns in an especially impressive performance as the imaginative, determined Jojo, with a strong, clear voice and great stage presence. Her duet with Wallem on “Alone In the Universe” is a memorable moment.  Wyatt is also very strong as the quirky, lovesick Gertrude, and Murney has some great moments as the impossibly vain Mayzie. Anthony as the stubborn General Schmitz is also a stand-out, bringing a lot of energy to his song about “The Military” and leading his army (and the reluctant Jojo) into a ridiculous and futile battle using “Green Eggs and Ham” as a marching chant. Mikel also makes a strong impression as the bold, contrary Sour Kangaroo, and the ensemble seems to be enjoying every minute on stage.

There are several sweet moments in this show, such as the bouncy, recurring “Oh, The Thinks You Can Think” theme and the lullaby “Solla Sollew”, and even some wit and irony in the many reprises of “How Lucky You Are”. There are a few moments here and there of humor and themes that adults will be able to appreciate more than kids, although everything is primarily geared toward the children.  I brought my 14-year-old son to this show, and he agreed that this production is probably best appreciated by kids a few years younger.  I think it’s most suited for kids ages 5-10, as well as anyone with a particular appreciation or nostalgia for Dr. Seuss’s stories.  It’s all very sweet, charming and colorful, with a strong cast and a very Seuss-esque aesthetic, although it isn’t quite as crazy or energetic as I had hoped. With a valuable message that encourages imagination and acceptance, and a catchy, memorable score, Seussical is definitely a worthwhile production especially for the very young.

Stephen Wallem (center) and Seussical cast Photo by Eric Woolsey The Muny

Stephen Wallem (center) and Seussical cast
Photo by Eric Woolsey
The Muny

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Night of the Living Dead

Music by Matt Conner, Book by Stephen Gregory Smith

Lyrics by Stephen Gregory Smith and Matt Conner

Directed by Scott Miller

New Line Theatre
October 11, 2013

Cast of Night of the Living Dead Photo by JIll Ritter Lindberg New Line Theatre

Cast of Night of the Living Dead
Photo by Jill Ritter Lindberg
New Line Theatre

Lock the doors, board up the windows and make sure you know where everyone is (and who’s on your side).  There are some fearsome creatures out there, and you don’t want them to get you, but it turns out that the threats from inside might be just as insidious as those outside.  That’s the premise for Night of the Living Dead, the musical adaptation of George Romero’s famous 1968 film, presented by New Line Theatre with all the boldness and energy that New Line is known for. In the hands of New Line’s excellent cast and creative team, it’s a thoroughly compelling and riveting production.

I have to admit that I’m a wimp when it comes to horror films, and I had never seen the film of Night of the Living Dead before attending this production, so I didn’t know exactly what to expect.  I guess I was expecting a stage full of shambling undead creatures along with blood, guts, gore and lots of sheer terror.  Well, the “sheer terror” part is right (in places), and the story does involve zombies, but pretty much everything else I had assumed was wrong.  What I saw was an old-fashioned suspense thriller that just just happens to revolve around a zombie invasion.

In the ominous opening number, “Perfect”, the various cast members recount the day, which started out very promising and then descended into the apocalyptic despair and desperation that begins the action, as Ben (Zachary Allen Farmer) arrives at the house to find Barbra (Marcy Wiegert) in a semi-catatonic state and unable to adequately communicate how she got there or much else.  In the midst of trying to board up the house, they also encounter the paranoid, bullish Harry ((Mike Dowdy) and his exasperated wife Helen (Sarah Porter), as well as naive young sweethearts Tom (Joseph McAnulty) and Judy (Mary Beth Black).  Together, these very different people must learn to work toward a common goal–protecting against “those things” out there (the show never uses the word “zombie”) and trying to find a way to escape. The events progress in a slow, deliberate way as the personalities clash, theories and ideas are discussed, and the secrets of the house and its former owner are revealed, as occasional news broadcasts (ingeniously presented in a chant-like song and its reprises) reveal the escalating situation in the outside world.  The actual zombies are shown very rarely, but when they do show up, it’s positively chilling.

I did check out the film online after seeing this production, and I was surprised in how well this film was adapted for the stage instead of just trying to replicate the film.  The stage version is much more in the vein of a psychological thriller, well crafted by writers Stephen Gregory Smith and Matt Conner so that the music adds to the building tension and reveals the characters’ stories.  There is no dancing and no showy production numbers—everything serves the story, from the foreboding of the opening number, to Barbra’s haunting “Music Box” song, to the various character establishing songs such as “Drive” for Harry and Helen” and “This House, This Place” for Judy, and then ratcheting up the tension as the Broadcasts continue and the characters’ desperation builds.  Barbra’s explosive “Johnny and Me”, where she finally tells her whole story, is an emotional breakdown in musical form, and “The Cellar” (reprise) from Helen is at once terrifying and powerfully sad.  There are several truly terrifying moments that had me glued to my seat in fear, as well as moments of comic relief, brief hope and profound despair.

The performances are excellent across the board, anchored by Farmer, who displays excellent stage presence and a strong voice as the determined, resourceful Ben. Wiegert was also outstanding as the traumatized and fragile Barbra.  Dowdy makes a convincing antagonist as Harry, and his moments with Porter as Helen are charged with belligerent energy. McAnulty and Black also work well together as Judy and Tom, and Black has probably the best singing voice in the show, shown to powerful effect in her solo song “This House, This Place”. The whole cast works together as a seamless unit, making all the relationships and conflicts believable and frighteningly intense.

The production design, from the highly detailed set designed by Rob Lippert, to the period-appropriate costumes by Sarah Porter and Marcy Wiegert, to the outstanding lighting (also designed by Lippert), sets the mood, time and place extremely well. The late 1960s atmosphere was meticulously accurate, with great little touches like the portable television and period-specific radio, and also in the women’s hairstyles.  It truly felt like 1968, or how I would imagine it to be, and that also added to the overall tone of an old-fashioned cinematic thriller.

This isn’t the type of show I usually rush to see. I had been so impressed with the last show I saw at New Line, Next to Normal, that I was willing to give this show a chance despite my squeamishness about horror films, and I’m glad that I did. Yes, I was terrified, but that’s the point of a show like this, and wow, was it done right! I was literally shaking in my seat, and the sense of terror was palpable in the audience.  This is an old-fashioned suspense thriller in the very best sense.  Kudos to New Line for scaring me out of my wits and showing me that a horror show well done can be an evening well spent.

Zachary Allen Farmer and Marcy Wiegert Photo by Jill Ritter Lindberg New Line Theatre

Zachary Allen Farmer and Marcy Wiegert
Photo by Jill Ritter Lindberg
New Line Theatre

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 Les Miserables

Music by Claude-Michel Schoenberg

Lyrics by Alain Boublil (French) and Herbert Kretzmer (English)

Based on the Novel by Victor Hugo

Directed by Richard Jay-Alexander

The Muny

July 15, 2013


It’s no secret that I love Les Miserables. It’s been one of my favorite musicals since I was in high school in the 1980s, but for various reasons I had never seen the show live until the Muny produced it for the first time in 2007. That production was excellent, and it was great to finally see this all-time classic live onstage (I have since seen it twice in London as well).  Now, six years later, the Muny is producing this wonderful show again, in a production that emphasizes the youth, energy and revolutionary spirit of the piece.  The outdoor setting is ideal and adds to the overall ambience of this remarkable production.

I know the story by heart by now, of paroled convict Jean Valjean, who served 19 years hard labor for stealing a loaf of bread and then trying to escape, who is shown kindness by a bishop and turns his life around, breaks his parole and is pursued by the determined Inspector Javert.  Valjean takes in Cosette, the daughter of the ill-fated factory worker-turned prostitute Fantine, and flees to Paris, where years later they find themselves in the middle of a student rebellion. It’s a story that explores themes, among others, of perseverence, loyalty, legalism vs. mercy, idealism vs. injustice, and fatalism vs. optimism and hope in the midst of tragic circumstances. It’s a timeless tale that has been adapted many times, but the musical has become the most recognizable for it’s compelling portrayal of these themes and characters, and its truly spectacular score, played here with verve and fervor by the wonderful Muny orchestra.

Hugh Panaro is an excellent Valjean, emphasizing the character’s great strength, displaying an excellent voice especially in his upper range,  delivering a beautiful rendition of the prayerful “Bring Him Home”.  He plays the transition from convict to respected citizen to secretive fugitive well, and his scenes with Norm Lewis as Javert are particularly strong.  Lewis, who has previously played the role on Broadway and in the televised 25th Anniversary Concert, makes an ideal Javert—rigid, unyielding and yet displaying a passion for his ideals. “Stars” is a highlight in an evening of many strong moments for him, and he was one of the three real stars of this production for me.

The other two star performances, as far as I’m concerned, come from Michael McCormick and Tiffany Green as the villainous innkeeper-turned-thief Thenardier and his wife.  I loved the physical contrast between them—the smaller, oily, sneaky McCormick and the statuesque Green, who towers over him and displays a strong, booming voice and lots of attitude. Every moment they are onstage  is a highlight, from the show-stopping  “Master of the House” to their swansong “Beggars at the Feast” and everything in between.

For the younger roles, director Richard Jay-Alexander has cast a collection of promising young performers–many of whom are college and university students–including Charlotte Maltby as the tragic Fantine, Alex Prakken and Katie Travis as the young lovers Marius and Cosette, Lindsey Mader as the the Thenardiers’ daughter Eponine, and Bobby Conte Thornton as the charismatic revolutionary leader Enjolras. Maltby in particular is a standout–with a gut-wrenching interpretation of “I Dreamed a Dream” and a poignant death scene.  Her visceral anger at Valjean when he first tries to help her is strikingly powerful.  Prakken and Travis are wonderful as well, displaying excellent chemistry in all their scenes together. They were particularly strong in their first song together, “A Heart Full of Love”, portraying all the excitement and awkwardness of that first real meeting and making this love story more compelling than in some previous interpretations. Thornton as Enjolras shows off a strong voice and a whole lot of charisma, leading stirring renditions of “Red and Black” and “Do You Hear the People Sing?” and igniting an infectious fervor for the students’ cause.  Rounding out the younger adult principals is Mader in a fine performance as Eponine, portraying the character as gutsy, melancholy and waifish and with a strong voice. Young Jimmy Coogan as the urchin Gavroche also gives an extremely strong, scene-stealing performance, and his last scene is heartbreakingly compelling.

This is a very large show with a large cast, but the production values made the proceedings seem more immediate and intimate than in the previous Muny production.   The ensemble, portaying factory workers, urchins, students, city dwellers and more, is top-notch and in excellent voice, and the production is impeccably staged.  The set, by Rob Mark Morgan, is simply magnificent—minimal but perfectly suited, with towering shutter-like setpieces that are moved into position to set the various scenes, and a few other simple pieces like the gates for Valjean’s house in Paris as well as the towering, stage-filling barricade that is the center of much of the action in the second act. The electronic scenery wall is also put to good use, providing backdrops of city streets that are sometimes reminiscent of the Les Mis film.  The lighting, emphasizing shadows and contrasts, set the mood and added depth and interest to the already compelling story. The production also made excellent use of the Muny’s large  turntable for very smooth, fluid scene changes and keeping up the pace of the epic plot.

This was, overall, an even better production of the show than last time at the Muny.  Rather than emphasizing the sheer size of the show, this production seemed more intimate, and that made for a powerful presentation of this timeless tale.  For all the tragedy of this show, the final message (in the magnificent finale) is one of hope for the future.  With this production, the Muny has taken its audience on a memorable journey, and I’m glad I went along.  This self-confessed “Les Mis geek” is thoroughly impressed!

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Ship of Dreams

Titanic: The Musical

The Muny, July 9, 2010

Everybody knows the story of the Titanic, the supposedly unsinkable ship that struck an iceberg in April 1912 and sank, carrying over 1,500 people to their deaths.  Most people know the Oscar-winning film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, but the musical, despite winning a Tony for Best Musical in 1997, is more obscure.  Titanic: the Musical, has had its maiden voyage at the Muny this season, directed by Don Stephenson.  I had never seen the show before, nor had I heard most of the music.  I vaguely remember the performance from the 1997 Tony Awards broadcast, and I think I liked it at the time, but mostly I was going into this production blind, and, for the most part, I thought the production was a remarkable success.

In the stirring introduction, several musical themes are introduced that carry throughout the rest of the show, including “There She Is”, which refers to Titanic as the “Ship of Dreams”.  The entire first act of the show seems to be about dreams.  Various characters are introduced and they all have dreams.  Thomas Andrews (Tom Hewitt), the ship’s designer, dreams of seeing his vision become a reality. J. Bruce Ismay (William Youmans) of the White Star Line dreams of setting speed records.  Stoker Frederick Barrett (Ben Crawford) dreams of completing the journey and returning to his girl back home, while three Irish girls named Kate (Jessica Grove’, Madeline Trumble, and Amanda Choate) and other third class passengers dream of a better life in America. Second class passenger Alice Beane (Michele Ragusa) dreams of rubbing elbows with the elites in First Class, to the bewilderment of her husband, hardware-store owner Edgar (Rich Pisarkiewicz). Also, the crew members of the Titanic led by Captain E. J. Smith (Joneal Joplin) dream of a triumphant maiden voyage for the colossal new ship.

The theme of dreams continues throughout the first act, and provides some wonderful moments, like Barrett proposing to his girl via telegraph while radio operator Harold Bride (Telly Leung) sings about the excitement of his job (“The Proposal”/”The Night Was Alive”).  Also, the three Kates and the steerage passengers sing of the new jobs they would like to pursue in America (“Lady’s Maid”), and Mrs. Beane sneaks into first class to dance with the elites (“Doing the Latest Rag”, which also features some excellent ragtime dancing).  The dreams are shattered as, inevitably, the ship strikes the infamous iceberg and starts to sink.

The sinking is handled in a very clever way technically, except for one slight misstep–when a small motorized model of the Titanic chugged across the stage to meet its doom, it drew audible laughs from the audience, which I doubt was the intended effect.  Despite that, the air of desperation builds in the second act, and this is helped greatly by the staging, as ramps and tilted sets are used to great effect to suggest a sinking vessel.  The second act also brings some excellent musical moments, as Andrews, Ismay, and Captain Smith argue about whose fault the accident was (“The Blame”), and as passengers hurry to their lifeboats, sharing a tearful goodbye with loved ones they must leave behind (“We’ll Meet Tomorrow”).

I thought the music by Maury Yeston was excellent, with several repeated themes that ran throughout the show to good effect.  Also, the story (book by Peter Stone) was well-plotted and built well.  There are perhaps one or two too many subplots, and there are a few characters who are not given much to do, but still the plots come together reasonably well, giving a good cross-section of life in the first part of the 20th Century, and building to a tense and heart-wrenching climax that even made me almost want to cry.

As for the performances, the large ensemble worked together convincingly, with solid performances all around.  Crawford as Barrett, with his strong stage presence and gorgeous voice, and Ragusa as Mrs. Beane, who handled both the comedic and dramatic aspects of her character in a very believable way, were two of the standout performers.  Also notable were Joplin in a solid, commanding performance as Captain Smith, Youmans as the weaselly Ismay,  Henry Stram as First Class Steward Henry Etches, and Leung as the determined, eager Bride.  The only casting that didn’t really work for me, though, was Matthew Braver as First Officer William Murdoch.  Braver tried his best and had a strong tenor voice, but he appeared at least ten years too young for the role, which made the character less believable than he should have been.

The sets were relatively minimal as far as the Muny goes.  There were a few movable set pieces, like the two-level bridge setup and the radio operator’s office, but most of the set was done with large painted backdrops.  The deck of the ship, for instance, was just the open stage with a backdrop of the ocean behind a rail.  It was simple but effective, as was the staging of the scenes, using the large Muny stage to full effect as well as suggesting the vastness of the ship.

Overall, I thought it was an effective, engaging presentation of a fascinating show.  The Titanic was a grand ship and its story is a well-known tragedy of history, and I thought that was presented very well in the Muny’s production. The grandness of the ship was matched by the grandness of the production, and it was an enjoyable, moving experience.

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It’s summer, and in St. Louis that means it’s Muny time!  (Complete with cheesy TV commercials!)

The Muny is a St. Louis tradition that is somewhat hard to explain to people who haven’t been there.  In one way, it’s easy—it’s an outdoor theatre that shows seven large-scale musicals every summer, and they do a lot of their casting in New York, which means that many of the performers are Broadway and touring veterans, from Tony winners like Randy Graff (Hello Dolly, 2006), to touring favorites like Eric Kunze (who has been in several Muny productions and who stars as Joe Hardy in Damn Yankees this year), and rising stars like 2010 Tony nominee Kate Baldwin, who has been in five shows at the Muny—most recently last year when she played Marian in The Music Man.  They usually put on well-known, crowd-pleasing shows that draw thousands every year to their large outdoor venue in Forest Park, just a few blocks from our house.

That’s the easy part to explain.  The hard part to describe is the whole atmosphere of the place, which is a large part of what makes it such a beloved St. Louis institution despite its drawbacks (which I will also try to explain).   The Muny is an experience.  It’s not just about going to a show.  It’s about going to a show with a picnic dinner and sitting in the grass surrounded by hundreds of others before the show, taking in the live pre-show entertainment provided by various local acts.  It’s also about lining up for ice cream and popcorn at the concession stands, and sitting down in the huge stadium-like outdoor auditorium while huge fans buzz overhead on hot days before the show.  It’s also about rising for the National Anthem before the show like at a baseball game, but unlike at most sporting events, the vast majority of the thousands of people in attendance actually sing—at the top of their lungs.  It’s also about watching possums run back and forth in the lighting rigs, sometimes during the show.  And because it’s outdoors and the stage is so huge, it’s about special features like an actual helicopter flying over for Miss Saigon (2008), and real fireworks at the end of Meet Me in St. Louis (2004). The stage is so big that colossal productions like Les Miserables (2007) actually have to have larger casts than Broadway.  Also, the outdoor setting and the stage backed by real trees adds an interesting element to the sets.  And then, there are the free seats in the back, which have an atmosphere of their own.

I mentioned drawbacks, and there are a few.  First, the schedule tends to get repetitive.   There are certain shows (like Cats, Annie, My Fair Lady, and The Sound of Music) that seem to be on a perpetual five year cycle.  If you go to the Muny long enough you are guaranteed to see many repeated shows.  My family and I moved to St. Louis in 2004, and we’ve already seen them repeat quite a few shows, like The Music Man, Meet Me in St. Louis and Annie, and this year they have already repeated Beauty and the Beast, and will be repeating The Sound of Music and Cats. Next year’s season is bound to bring a few more repeats from the previous 5-6 years, as well.  There are classic shows such as Carousel that have not been performed at the Muny in over 20 years, because the Muny has a voting system.  Every year they pass out surveys and the audience members vote for the shows they want to see.  This results in many repeats and a few debuts of newer favorites like The Producers (2008) and Hairspray (last year), but also often results in some well-known classics being overlooked and more obscure shows being ignored, with occasional exceptions such the the excellent 2007 production of The Pajama Game, which hadn’t been performed at the Muny since 1968.   This also often precludes productions of some of the edgier or grittier shows like Sweeney Todd and Rent.

Still, despite the drawbacks, the Muny is well-loved fixture of summers in St. Louis, and we always try to see at least some of the shows every year.  This year, we plan on seeing Titanic, Damn Yankees and Show Boat. We have seen some first-rate productions, as well as some less-than-great ones, but it’s always an experience, and it’s one you can only get in St. Louis.

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So, for many years many people have told me “Michelle, you should start a blog”, because I like to write, and I guess people think I’m good at it.  I also love theatre, both musical and non-musical, and I’ve always thought it would be fun to write a blog about the shows I see, as well as my general thoughts about theatre.  Well, at long last, here it is!

Just by way of explanation, here are some things you should know:

1. “Snoop” comes from a name I have used on various message boards for many years.  The “Snoop” part does not come from the rapper (Snoop Dogg), but from Snoopy, the Peanuts comic strip dog, because I’ve loved Snoopy for as long as I can remember.  It has gotten to the point where several of my online friends just call me “Snoop” instead of my real name, so I figured I should carry it over to this blog, because it’s fun.

2. As the blog title says, I do not claim to be an expert in theatre.  The closest thing to formal training I have is four years of drama class in high school, and one playwriting class in college.  I have a smattering of experience in various areas of amateur theatre, but mostly I’m just an avid fan.  I love to see plays, and I love to read, talk and write about plays and performers.

3.  The opinions expressed in this blog are my own, based on my years of being a major theatre geek.  The level of my geekdom has waxed and waned over the years, but it’s in full swing right now and I’m excited to finally get this blog going so I can have an outlet for my thoughts.

4. I will try to write reviews of all the shows I see, whether in St. Louis or elsewhere.  I will also be sharing my opinions on various theatre-related topics, and maybe a few other random things as well–but mostly having to do with theatre in some way.

5. My interests run the gamut from high-brow to low-brow to everything in between.  From Shakespeare and Sondheim to Andrew Lloyd Webber to original shows thrown together by a bunch of college students (see A Very Potter Musical, below).  I do not like everything (Cats and High School Musical, this means you), but I like things of all levels, both well-known and obscure, and I always love discovering new shows and performers.

6. I will share links to videos of performances I like.  I have lots of favorite performers and shows, and I will post my favorite videos as the whim strikes me.  Like now (hints of blog entries to come!)

There.  I think that’s it.  So, this is my blog, for better or worse.  Whoever reads it, I hope you enjoy!

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