Erector Square’s “Underdog” Theater Has BIte

by Cara McDonough | Nov 16, 2017 1:10 pm | Comments (1)

Cara McDonough Photo The room in Erector Square on Peck Street that houses Collective Consciousness Theater seats 60 at the most, and that’s pushing the limit. Its small size means that during a show audience members — sitting on folding chairs, with the front row just a few feet from the stage — are incredibly close to the actors. And each other.

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A Jewish Actor’s “Chosen” Challenge

by Brian Slattery | Nov 15, 2017 12:10 pm

Courtesy PhotoActor George Guidall had grown up receiving his Jewish education from a melamed. He had deeply religious family members. So he knew a lot about the background of the rabbi he plays in Long Wharf Theatre’s upcoming production of The Chosen, which runs Nov. 22 to Dec. 17.

But he also found himself in tension with that character — and possibly, in doing so, practicing his culture and his faith.

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CCT Takes On Tale Of Two Brothers

by Donald Brown | Oct 31, 2017 6:43 am

Donald Brown PhotosOn a recent rainy night, I arrived at the packed parking lot at Erector Square, then waited outside a glass door to be admitted to hallways and stairs. Two people led me to a double door on the second floor, and the rehearsal and performance space of Collective Consciousness Theatre. My guides were Production Stage Manager Brionna Ingraham and Assistant Stage Manager Eddie Chase. I entered and walked into a down-at-heels bedroom. Cracked plaster, a bed, a mirror, some wall art. A big chair. Jamie Burnett was on a ladder, hanging lights.

It was David Sepulveda’s set for the first CCT production of the new season: Suzan-Lori Parks’ Topdog/Underdog, a play described as “two brothers in a room.” It won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2002, making Parks the first African-American author to win that award.

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Fireflies Lights Up A November-November Romance

by Brian Slattery | Oct 26, 2017 11:21 am | Comments (1)

T. Charles Erickson Photo Eleanor Bannister and Abel Brown are at odds again. Abel says he’s looking for work, but has also made it pretty clear that his interest in Eleanor goes beyond the professional. Eleanor can’t decide if he’s a con man or just a man with a complicated life, and can’t deny the feelings she has for him, too. They’re both too smart, and a little too stubborn, to just let it go. Abel makes a last pitch to help Eleanor fix up the rundown cottage at the back of her property, which they both know also means they’ll be seeing a lot more of each other. Or, he says, in a moment of counterfactual argument, he could just burn the old cottage down and be on his way.

“If that’s what you want,” Abel says.

Eleanor lets her guard down. “I don’t know what I want, Abel,” she says.

Abel thinks about this. “Seems right to tell you, Eleanor, that those are exactly the words every con man wants to hear.”

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Co-Op High Changes The Faces Of “Steel Magnolias”

by Allan Appel | Oct 24, 2017 4:18 pm

Allan Appel Photo The male director didn’t know much about the culture of beauty parlors in general, and even less about black women’s salons and their hairstyles and how you use hot tools to achieve those big hairdos popular in the distant past of the 1980s.

The actors—all teenagers—had never operated such an ancient device as a rotary telephone and honestly didn’t know which button to push to send the call. Most also had never seen an old-fashioned coffee table ashtray.

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Yale Rep Makes “An Enemy Of The People”

by Brian Slattery | Oct 13, 2017 6:57 am | Comments (2)

Joan Marcus Photos Early in the first act of the Yale Repertory’s production of Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People, Dr. Thomas Stockmann (Reg Rogers) has just had a confrontation with his brother, Peter Stockmann (Enrico Colantoni), who happens to be the mayor of the town where they both live. The mayor has asked his brother to keep an unpleasant discovery under wraps. The doctor agonizes over what to do, then settles on defiance.

“I’ll never bow my neck under their yoke,” he says. He will not be silent.

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City Connects To Telephonic History

by Lucy Gellman | Oct 5, 2017 11:38 am | Comments (1)

Lisa Daly Photo National Parks Service PhotoA fledgling experiment after the Civil War. A voice, clear as a bell, on the other end of the line. A heartbeat of current and wire. A signal that the only way was onward, through person-to-person communication.

This is the starting point for Exchange: This Electronic Age is Both Wondrous and Horrible, a new work from A Broken Umbrella Theatre (ABUT) based on the history of the telephone exchange in downtown New Haven.

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