When Charles Dickens died, he left unfinished his last novel, “The Mystery of Edwin Drood.” A hundred years later, the multitalented Rupert Holmes finished it by inventing a musical that was being performed in Dickens' own time in the styles of the English music hall, with its presiding Chairman, popular songs, and lively audience participation, and of the pantomime, with its Lead Boy, a male character played by a woman in drag.
‘Cabaret’ tells the story of the last days of the Weimer Republic before the Nazis seized power and engineered one of the most horrifying chapters in recorded history. Fittingly, the show is set in a decadent cabaret, the Kit Kat Klub, where anyone and anything goes.
Though "The Little Dog Laughed" is filled with biting and insightful humor that keeps the audience laughing along, I can't remember the last time a "happy ending" made me feel so blue. The short scenes, well defined characters and sharp direction complement Douglas Carter Beane's Tony Award winning play in Stray Dog Theatre's enjoyable production.
It find it interesting that an IMDB listing on screenwriter and playwright William Gibson — he of “The Miracle Worker” fame — fails to mention his 1975 Christmas play, “The Butterfingers Angel, Mary & Joseph, Herod the Nut and the Slaughter of 12 Hit Carols in a Pear Tree” (hereafter “Tree”). Although, once you’ve covered dramatizing the early life of Helen Keller, tackling the birth of Jesus with talking trees and animals, a psycho Herod, a confused but patient Joseph, and a Mary who could probably reconcile the parties involved in the war in the Middle East, I think we’d all focus on the success with Helen.
If you like your scary stories served with a generous helping of ribald and slapstick humor, you'll want to put "Evil Dead The Musical" at the top of your must see list. Stray Dog Theatre kicks off its eleventh season with a show that takes the company's tagline "Come out and play" and ratchets it up to new levels in an energetic, yet playful, spoof on the teen horror movie genre.
Stray Dog Theatre's New Works Laboratory presents an opportunity to participate in the development of new plays, and its free performances offer St. Louisan's a unique look at the creative process. The collaboration between playwright, actors and audience serves the company and the theater community well and I applaud Stray Dog Theatre for its commitment.
Stray Dog Theatre closes its tenth season with the deliciously twisted musical "Little Shop of Horrors." One of the delights of this musical is that even though we know the story, the show, when done well, feels fresh. As usual, the company does not disappoint with this production, adding a touch of earnest to the inside jokes and dark humor inherent in the original script.
The late 20th century idea that everyone on earth is connected to everyone else through six people has fascinated the public since its introduction, to the point of inspiring a pop culture meme. Stray Dog Theatre's current production largely succeeds in presenting this idea. The staging and direction puts the emphasis clearly on the idea of separation, which at times creates uncomfortable distances across the small stage and minimizes a sense of connection between the actors and the story.
According to many students and fans of stage musicals, Arthur Laurents’, Jule Styne’s, and Stephen Sondheim’s "Gypsy: A Musical Fable" is the best of the best traditional book musicals ever produced.
Stray Dog Theatre’s production of Charles Busch’s “Psycho Beach Party,” is a spirited romp through the “golden age” of beach and surf movies that playfully, occasionally darkly, jabs at the funny bone.