Prolific American playwright Ken Ludwig has been producing laughter on stages across the world since his farce Lend Me a Tenor hit Broadway in 1989. Since then his work has included a variety of plays, musicals, and comedies. In 2010 he debuted The Fox on the Fairway. Billed as “A tribute from Ken Ludwig to the great English farces of the 1930s and 1940s,” it nonetheless has a contemporary (cell phones, Tiger Wood’s meltdown) setting. As presented by Insight Theatre Company, golf, that game of “sticks and dimpled balls,” is the milieu here.
The St. Louis MUNY’s 94th season has opened fresh and bright in many theatrical aspects with the energetic Thoroughly Modern Millie. The stage musical was based on a 1968 film musical of the same name, but with a lot of the plot and music replaced. It won the TONY for Best Musical in 2002.
The Washington University Ovations Series continued its 2011–2012 offerings with a performance by The Water Coolers, a company based in New York.
I’ve never seen the musical Avenue Q before, nor read a review. Having seen it now, however, as performed by the [Insert Name Here] theatre company, I can just imagine some of the witty phrases that might, in the past, have been used in reviews, based on its life-size puppets and obvious ties to Sesame Street and Jim Henson’s Muppets. I would guess its themes of racism (“Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist”), sexual preference (“If You Were Gay”), on-stage puppet, um, physical encounters (“You Can be as Loud as the Hell You Want (When You’re Makin’ Love)”), online porn (“The Internet is for Porn”), and females of questionable morals, among others, would no doubt have engendered a load of double-entendres and naughty plays on words. My timid contribution is the title of this review.
NTC Productions®, the Nebraska Theatre Caravan, is currently touring the country (their 33rd touring year) with the classic Christmas season production, A Christmas Carol. Originally a novella by Charles Dickens (first published in 1843), this musical adaption was written by Charles Jones, former NTC Executive Director. They recently stopped for a four-show run at the Fox Theatre, featuring a large cast and modest, yet very effective, set.
OnSite Theatre Company has an intriguing new production in its latest offering, the world premier of Hit-Story, by St. Louis playwright Carter Lewis. OnSite Theatre does not stage their productions in a particular theatre, but instead selects venues that enhance the work in question. In this instance, their venue for Hit-Story is Sweat, 8011 Maryland Avenue, a fitness center/boxing gym in Clayton, a perfect location, as the play requires a boxing ring. I am then intrigued and wonder if the play was written specifically for the venue, or the venue was chosen in response to the creation of the play? Just curious.
The moaning. The shambling, The insistent scratching. The mindless shuffling. The various states of decomposition. The blood. The lust to eat human flesh. Well, if not for the last two, we might well be watching a session of Congress. But no, instead we’re at 426 Crestwood Court watching Marble Stage Theatre’s presentation of the play Night of the Living Dead, the last offering in their 7th theatrical season.
The Alpha Players of Florissant have definitely taken on an ambitious production in their staging of South Pacific. This lavish musical is set against the backdrop of American and Japanese hostilities in the islands of the south pacific during WWII.
Family Musical Theatre is putting Guys and Dolls through its paces at the Ivory Theatre in South St. Louis. This quintessential bit of musical theatre has been given a slightly uneven, but still entertaining outing by Directors Mike Hesser and Alison Driscoll, and Musical Director Michael Blackwood.
In the nearly ten years I’ve been writing theatre reviews, I don’t recall ever leaving a show not having a clue as to what I will write about it. Muddy Waters Theatre’s current showing of the first of its season of three plays by Paula Vogel, The Baltimore Waltz, was my cause for concern. The short of it is, I didn’t get it.