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Comment Archives: stories: Arts & Culture: Review

Re: “Who You Gonna Call?

Dear Sherilynn,

Hi. I am a regular visitor at the Gaslight Theatre and I wanted to make a few respectful and professional comments on this review. The song is called "Can't Smile Without You", the costume designer's last name is Cloutier, not Clouthier, and the first sentence doesn't make sense. I thought it should say this is A good one.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Snoopy on 07/23/2014 at 7:03 PM

Re: “Short, Not Short Enough

The Weekly will nurture every new band no matter the skill level. They also nurture one another with congratulatory comments about their opinions. There are thousands of people in Tucson interested in theatre and it is not always the most common or commercial. Mr. Skinner wrote a rave review of a commerical house company previously. Despite the digital age, theatres still count on positive press. I think this reviewers inability, for example, to discuss anything about the actress but her eyes is not only telling but a little creepy. My takeaway from this review was that the reviewer does not know how to look at a play or a performance. It may be the show was unsuccessful. I liked many things, other things bothered me. The theatre community depends on places like the Weekly to deliver arts news and it is very disappointing that this is the result. Who will review the reviewrs? Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Tomas Ulises-Soto on 06/10/2014 at 10:44 AM

Re: “Short, Not Short Enough

Just got around to reading the May 29th ‘review’ by M. Scott Skinner’s of “Iraq in 3/3 Time With A Coda”, which I had the good fortune to see at Live Theatre Workshop.
My husband and I just moved here from the North Shore of Boston, and one of the things that attracts us to Tucson is its wonderful theater community and the many theaters and the many new plays, innovative companies, writers groups, responsive audience, and more that exist here. We both hope to become a part of it.
One of the many things we’ve learned about theater and about new plays in particular is advice from the Chicago Dramatists group (which has done a phenomenal job of creating a dynamic theater culture in Chicago), and they feel that the Chicago theatrical renaissance owes much to the reviewers who went to all the plays, who supported the theaters and playwrights and actors through thick and thin, and gave public structure to the efforts of that artistic community. They built audience, and sensibility, and sensitivity, and confidence in what was once backwater Chicago. They did it.
This review is really not much of a help in building the community here in Tucson. It’s snarky, and about the critic and how clever and funny one can be, and not useful or constructive in any way. There was much to say about Iraq in 3/e Time With A Coda, and much good, and there are things that could be better, too, lessons that could be learned, but this review doesn’t try in any way to nurture the playwright, the actors, the theaters that make themselves available for new work, or the audience. It’s a turnoff.
It’s fine not to like a play. It’s fine not to like a production. But it is vicious to put together a review like this. And it does little good except to give a critic the chance to perform some sort of public execution.
I like playwright, I liked the risk he took to put the play on, to direct it himself, I like new plays, I like these actors who took up this challenge, I like people who take risks, I like people who go to plays who share their thoughts and reactions in the hope of making Tucson a greater center of theater.
I really don’t appreciate people who lurk outside the lights and look for signs of weakness to prove ---what? I guess I don’t know what the point is.
Thank you to the playwright, the actors, and Live Theatre Workshop for putting up new plays. I hope to see more.
Leslie Powell

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by lp on 06/09/2014 at 3:18 PM

Re: “Short, Not Short Enough

Worst and most infantile 'professional' review I have ever read. This told me little or nothing constructive about the play, only that the 'reviewer', (I use the term loosely), did not like it, but gives no reason for his views. Methinks there may be more than just a bad burrito in the mix.

3 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by rockerc on 06/01/2014 at 5:17 AM

Re: “Short, Not Short Enough

While the topics in these short plays may not be to everyone's taste, this "non-review" is just downright mean! If Skinner said he was not going to review the play, he should have left it at that. Instead, he went on a rampage, detailing his thoughts as the play progressed. The actor "saying so many words" as Skinner put it, was obviously reciting instructions from a sniper's manual and pitting his own guilt against his indoctrination. The actors did a fair job, some better than others. Jared Stokes, in particular, performed his multiple roles convincingly. This is the nastiest "non-review" I've ever read. Me thinks there was a bad burrito consumed with that cup of coffee before the show.

10 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Liz on 05/30/2014 at 2:32 PM

Re: “Olive and One-Liners

Susan this sounds so funny and I'm sure you were so funny and wonderful in it.. I would love to read a copy. Aline in London

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Aline Waites on 04/29/2014 at 11:52 PM

Re: “Oklahoma! Way More Than OK

What a great review, makes me want to hop a plane to Tucson to see how they do Oklahoma! there.
The soaring music is unforgettable and will stay with you as long as you live.
Perhaps the students get into the performance with so much enthusiasm because the musical is a simple story of human nature, mostly good, with really only one, Jud, the bad.
Oklahoma! is a happy play, unlike the usual American entertainment of violence and vulgarity. No crotch shots here, no bad guys win. It is nice to see good prevail. The audience will no doubt leave feeling happy for having such a fine evening with Oklahoma!

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by TXJesse on 03/21/2014 at 7:30 PM

Re: “Oklahoma! Way More Than OK

Please let's agree not to notice that the cowboy's called Curly in one paragraph and Curley in another and then back to Curly on third reference. I did that on purpose!

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by mscot on 03/19/2014 at 5:31 PM

Re: “The Glass Menagerie Glows

Oh, & I also botched the original press release for THE GLASS MENAGERIE in January when I typed that Bette Davis was in the film instead of Katharine Hepburn. I had Bette on the brain b/c I had been promoting the film, THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER starring Bette Davis & Monty Woolley. So, you see...we are all human. =)

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Lisa Pierce on 02/24/2014 at 4:30 PM

Re: “The Glass Menagerie Glows

Apology accepted & appreciated. If it helps, I spelled Jay Leno's last name wrong in J-School at Michigan State & that was an immediate failing grade. Course, it wasn't a "real" article, but lesson learned. LOL

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Lisa Pierce on 02/24/2014 at 4:26 PM

Re: “The Glass Menagerie Glows

My apologies for the phone number. I feel like a sub-human mongrel.

Posted by mscot on 02/22/2014 at 4:01 PM

Re: “The Glass Menagerie Glows

Just FYI... there's a typo in the phone number - instead of 622-1162, it should be 621-1162. Thanks!

Posted by Lisa Pierce on 02/22/2014 at 11:52 AM

Re: “Without Papers

Guess we are supposed to feel sorry for "another" illegal alien who did not enter here legally? Nope, not going to. I think it's a Hispanic Guilt" crap we are supposed to swallow. Multiply this by 20,000,000 and you have them being a majority by 2050.
Take your guilt and shove it.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Fraser007 on 01/24/2014 at 5:30 PM

Re: “Without Papers

The precautions Alejandra takes to not get caught are the same precautions American Citizens take when they know they have a warrant out for their arrest, have committed a crime and are not sure if they are a suspect, etc. Ultimately Alejandra was taking the same precautions as an illegal immigrant as American Citizen criminals take everyday. I know plenty of legal immigrants and they are proud of their citizenship papers that they earned legally and the right way. No one seems to care about the people who enter the U.S. legally, they are more concerned with being sympathetic to those who entered the U.S. illegally.

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by MadamJenny on 01/23/2014 at 11:26 AM

Re: “Cabaret, Triumphant

I saw this brilliant production @the Sunday matinee - I felt as tho I was back in NYC. If you miss this version of Cabaret, blame no one but Urself.....

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jeff Bilkanich on 12/16/2013 at 3:33 PM

Re: “Cabaret, Triumphant

And yes, the ensemble is so worthy of the random bold-facing.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by mscot on 12/12/2013 at 2:42 PM

Re: “

Nutcracker by the Numbers

Ooops! Must be an oversight to not include Moscow Ballet's company of 40 performing "Great Russian Nutcracker" in the "professional" category....if they are not professionals (dance as a full-time career and are paid for it) then who is? Go to www.nutcracker.com for all about the tour and company

Posted by Moscow Ballet on 12/05/2013 at 9:34 AM

Re: “Shows With Tunes

Hello,
I am a distant cousin of Terry Howell and would like to email Cindy. Her husband and I found each other online back in 2003. He wanted to exchange Dalton genealogy at the time.
Thank you,
Jackie in ID

Posted by Jackie Cadle on 11/26/2013 at 7:51 PM

Re: “Targeting the Drones

I wonder: the reviewer is a woman. The "actress" is a woman playing a female fighter pilot. View points expressed 360 degrees are all feminine. I wonder if all of this is circumspect to the female sex: men would feel differently about the whole process because we are cultured differently. Dr. Laura Schlessinger once commented on her radio show about the film Air Force One, one fighter pilot put his plane between AF1 and a rocket and exploded protecting the president. " A natural instinct for a man," she explained. She did not think so for a woman. I ran into a female fighter pilot from D/M at the landromat off-base one Saturday who was a bit prickly about the same subject. The major said to me, " it's all the same - men/women, we're all fighter pilots." Yeah? Well....maybe. Maybe not.

Posted by frank McLaury on 10/11/2013 at 12:42 AM

Re: “Not-So-Fresh Feeling

In my opinion, this production was fabulous. I fell in love with the directing choices made by Stephen Wrentmore and for the most part agreed with the way the characters were played. Stephen's additions to the already-fun play such as the addition of the Beastie Boys and Guns N' Roses only enhanced my enjoyment of the play. The "modern" additions accurately underscored the most fun elements of the play and perfectly complemented the overall theme and mood. Placed where they were, they also could not help but re-invigorate the audience for the exciting conclusion of the play. In her review on the Arizona Daily Star, Kathy Allen calls the modifications "gratuitous and anachronistic," saying that they "seemed to be there for no other reason than to attempt to put a contemporary spin on the play ." She then goes on to say that "the thing about “Earnest” is, it doesn't need spin." I heartily disagree with Ms. Allen. I believe that theater was not meant to be taken strictly by the script-if that was so, why would we as theater goers go to see a play more than once, whether put on by the same company or a different one? It would be the exact same performance. I believe that scripts can and should be played with, especially with so playful a playwright such as Oscar Wilde. I do not think that the additions distracted from my enjoyment of the performance; rather, they added to it. Sherilyn Forrester of Tucson Weekly added that "whatever the new spin, it's important that it be true to Earnest" which I believe Stephen was, in keeping with the fun spirit of Oscar Wilde. In addition, I very much enjoyed the characters in Earnest and thought that for the most part, they were wonderfully portrayed. Algernon, Jack, Cecily, and Gwendolyn had all found that character spark that manifests itself internally as well as externally that really determines whether the actor is the character or whether they are playing the character. However, I did not enjoy Lady Bracknell's performance nearly as much. The character to me felt flat and unexciting-the lines were delivered painfully slowly, the cues were a beat behind, the accent was not enjoyable, and the characteristic spark was lacking. I very much agree with Ms. Forrester when she reports that "this attempt falls flat" because "when [Bracknell]...enters, all the energy flees the room." I think this is an accurate description because I found Lady Bracknell's portrayal to be just flat.
The technical aspects of this play were glorious. The set, lights, sound, and costumes were so cleverly done and gorgeously rendered that it was hard not to just stare at them. The costumes were beautiful examples of nineteenth century Victorian wear, and the set took a creative spin on the classical Victorian decorations while still staying true to the Victorian spirit and perfectly exemplifying the overarching themes of the show. One of the most creative aspects of the set was the rotating fan that was hand-painted like a peacock feather that sunk into the stage at the end of Act I. It reflected the aristocratic peacock theme of the script and the production while being a marvelously clever work of set design. I agree with Ms. Allen when she says that the production "looks beautiful." It definitely does.
In conclusion, I would wholeheartedly recommend this play to a friend. I believe that this production does a great job and retaining the original fun, jovial spirit of Oscar Wilde while incorporating even more fun aspects in order to increase the audience's enjoyment of the play. The technical aspects are gorgeous, creating a production that is pleasurable to look at, and the acting and directing choices are almost all spot on. I would most definitely say to go see The Importance of Being Earnest!

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by sherlock0719 on 09/26/2013 at 9:50 PM

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