Carlotta Festival Keeps The Faith

by Donald Brown | May 1, 2018 7:14 am

The daughter of an evangelist must come to terms with her own faith and doubt while traveling on the revival circuit in the Great Plains in Majkin Holmquist’s Tent Revival. The aftermath of a rape is depicted for both the assailant’s mother and the victim in Genne Murphy’s The Girl is Chained. Recidivism within a Philadelphia family occurs in a span from the 1980s’ crack epidemic to today’s opioid crisis in Josh Wilder’s Marty and the Hands that Could.

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A&I Draws Strength From City

by Brian Slattery | Apr 30, 2018 12:18 pm | Comments (1)

Jazz heavyweights and artistic emissaries from Africa will mix with New Haven’s finest talent at the International Festival of Arts and Ideas this year. That’s just the way Chad Herzog, co-executive director of the festival and director of programming, wants it, as the festival continues to deal with a tighter state budget by sinking its roots deeper into the Elm City.

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The Music Makes The Crown At Long Wharf

by Jason Fitzgerald | Apr 30, 2018 7:36 am

T. Charles Erickson PhotosIt’s not only Latice Crawford’s powerhouse vocals, athletic melisma, and seemingly bottomless reserves of soul that are bringing audiences to their feet at the Long Wharf Theatre. The force of her rendition of the gospel classic “His Eye is On the Sparrow” is sustained by its dramatic context.

Crawford is not just singing her heart out; she’s struggling to reach an angry and emotionally closed teenage girl, wounded by violence and betrayal, who can’t imagine that gospel music might have something to say to her. The girl’s reluctant opening to her heritage is the thin but effective plot of Crowns, the musical written and directed by Regina Taylor now being revived in a spirited and talent-riddled production co-presented with the McCarter Theatre.

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Bright Star Shines At Shubert

by Brian Slattery | Apr 27, 2018 8:06 am

A young man is leaving his home in rural North Carolina, heading for the town of Asheville. He’s stopped in a bookstore before he goes. A young woman works there. There’s something between them that they’ve never really talked about, but they both feel it. He dances out the door.

She reaches out a hand and stops time. Reverses it. The young man sashays back into the bookstore, in reverse. His hat leaps from his head, as if by magic. He’s back where he was, right before he said his goodbye. She stops time again, and sings in that frozen moment, a song full of hope that the young man finds what he’s looking for. She wants the best for him. But she wants him, too, and she doesn’t quite know how to reconcile the two.

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by Christopher Peak | Apr 12, 2018 8:04 am | Comments (1)

Christopher Peak PhotosSome high schools put on an abridged version of Romeo and Juliet. Cooperative Arts High School is staging an immersive, site-specific, feminist rewrite of Hamlet.

Written by a drama teacher, Capillary Waves shoves Hamlet out of the spotlight and instead centers the story on Ophelia. In Shakespeare’s version, she’s the jilted lover who commits suicide. In Co-Op’s version, she’s the heroine who talks back to men, rescues Hamlet from his uncle’s plots and is ultimately murdered trying to save him.

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“Father” Brings The War Back Home

by Jason Fitzgerald | Mar 27, 2018 7:40 am | Comments (1)

Joan Marcus PhotosIn the opening scene of Suzan-Lori Parks’s Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2 & 3, a series of characters, all black slaves in Civil War Texas, hold out their palms and extend their thumbs horizontally, squinting at the horizon. Even though standing on dry land, they are navigators, measuring the imminence of the sunrise and their position relative to the north star. The gesture, which becomes a motif, holds a poignant double meaning in Parks’s three-act drama. In the scene, they are measuring the time before one of their number must decide whether to join the Confederate army as his master’s servant or disobey him and face the consequences.

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