Reviews

Only We Shall Retain the Name

Perhaps this production of King Lear was never going to live up to the story: after twenty-three years in Parliament, Glenda Jackson returned to acting with the most challenging Shakespearean role, typically reserved for actors of her caliber as a final achievement, one that spawns nostalgic reflections on a career that began with an historic performance […]

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Reviews

Some Superstitions Are Very Nice

In All My Sons, the play that would precede Death of a Salesman, Arthur Miller offers another portrait of an American family withering under the pressures of capitalism.  The entire play is set in the backyard of Joe Keller (Tracy Letts), a successful suburban businessman who sold parts to the military during the war.  A scandal involving […]

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News

Everything You Need to Know About Shakespeare in the Park 2014

“Like one swallow,” wrote John Simon when reviewing the premiere of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, “one Shakespeare does not make a summer.”  Fortunately, for the first time since 2011, Shakespeare in the Park is eschewing musicals for two revivals from the Bard.  This year, they are presenting Much Ado About Nothing (June 3 – July 6) and King Lear (July 22 – […]

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Reviews

The Snail’s House

One of the toughest parts about playing iconic Shakespearean roles is convincing the audience that you are saying and thinking these lines for the first time.  How is one, for example, to recite “To be or not to be?” or “Never, never, never, never, never” without summoning up the legion of actors who have already […]

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Reviews

A Poor Bare, Forked Animal

I fully expected to love Frank Langella’s King Lear.  After all, aging movie stars may be even better candidates for the role than those versed in Shakespeare.  Saturated for decades in shallow adulation, applauded for their every move, they have far more to fear in losing what Mr. Langella calls our “metaphorical crown[s],” the “props we […]

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Reviews

Keeping Chekhov’s Cherry

Chekhov is one of the most difficult modern playwrights to stage.  His writing, like Tennessee Williams’, is incredibly flat on the page–lines like “It’s just six years ago father died, and only a month later our baby brother Grisha drown in the river” read as painfully expository–and thus an incredible burden is placed on his […]

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