Improvisational performers know when to get out of their own way and let their characters respond to situations suggested by an audience.
After 27 years as the Boulevard Ensemble Studio’s founder, artistic director, box office manager, janitor and just about everything else, Mark Bucher says he’s ready for his life’s third act.
A conference on how to make the Broadway experience better for theatergoers has come up with some prescriptions: Be brave in the stories that are told onstage and embrace youth and technology.
“Broadway, I don’t think, has boldly gone where it needs to,” said openly gay “Star Trek” actor George Takei, riffing off his old TV show’s motto. “I have a sense that Broadway hasn’t entered into the 21st century.”
Life is an educational experience, and everyone we meet is part of a series of lessons through which we learn about others and ourselves. That’s the premise driving “Educating Rita,” which continues Milwaukee’s Renaissance Theaterworks’ 2012-13 season starting Jan. 18.
The 1980 play by British author Willy Russell concerns the relationship that develops between Liverpool hairdresser Rita (Cristina Panfilio) and her tutor Dr. Frank Bryant (Jonathan Smoots) after Rita enrolls in the U.K.’s Open University, the nontraditional school in which Frank teaches.
Singer/songwriter Sam Cooke was shot to death in a cheap motel in South Central Los Angeles on Dec. 11, 1964. No identification was found on his body, and it took police three days to identify him.
Life is – or should be – a journey of self-discovery. Those of us who fail to initiate that quest are often prodded by life’s circumstances down roads they wouldn’t otherwise have chosen.
Such is the case of the protagonist in “Underneath the Lintel,” the latest production by the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre.
Before long plane flights, Thomas Schumacher likes to download talks from some of the world’s brightest and creative minds speaking at TED conferences, watching them on his iPad while thousands of feet in the air.
“I marvel at the range of stuff. I like the passion of the speakers and love the content,” says the president of the Disney Theatrical Group about the various conferences dedicated to technology, entertainment and design. “I am a giant TED freak.”
Al Pacino came back again and Jessica Chastain showed up for the first time. “Annie” returned and so did “Evita” and “Elf.” Katie Holmes made a second appearance and that old stalwart “The Lion King” celebrated its 15th anniversary. Yes, 2012 was a year of old and new, theatrically speaking.
It also was a year in which the theater community tried to keep the show going despite several disasters – a natural one in Superstorm Sandy and two man-made ones in misleading monologist Mike Daisey and the phantom investors of “Rebecca.” None of those, of course, made our Top 10 list of the best moments in 2012:
Richard Maltby Jr. has a lot to say about Broadway musical revues, and not all of it is positive. He has composed multiple revues and won the only Tony Awards ever given to musical revues for two of them – “Ain’t Misbehavin’” in 1978 and “Fosse” in 1999. By his own estimation, he is the king of musical revues.
Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome – to middle age.
The landmark film “Cabaret” – starring Liza Minnelli, Joel Grey and Michael York – has turned 41, but that’s not going to stop a party: All three actors will be attending an anniversary celebration screening planned Thursday at the Ziegfeld Theatre, where the movie premiered in 1972.
Milwaukee actor and singer Leslie Fitzwater did not know who Edith Piaf was when she was asked to perform one of the French chanteuse’s songs during the Bastille Days celebration in 1987. Twenty-five years later, no area performer has a stronger connection to “The Waif Sparrow” than Fitzwater.
For every loss, there is equal gain, and for every gain equal loss, according to Kyle Leland. That life philosophy has helped the out dancer and choreographer through difficult times, but his current role as dance captain for the traveling production of “Memphis” is most definitely a time of gain and increased self-awareness.