Reviews

What’s Yours Is Mine

With the closing of the Pearl, the stakes have been raised for Theatre for a New Audience, our last, best hope for classical revival in New York City.  Their new production of Measure for Measure is a fairly good sign.  As we enter the theater, we are encouraged to stroll through Mistress Overdone’s brothel: through glass, […]

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Reviews

Mauling and Muttering

They called them the “angry young men,” but Shelagh Delaney’s A Taste of Honey is filled with enough class rage to argue for an amendment to the term.  Originally produced in 1958, the play follows the down-and-outs Jo (Rebekah Brockman), a seventeen-year-old girl lurching toward womanhood, and her mother Helen (Rachel Botchan), who quickly abandons her daughter for […]

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Reviews

Thou Art Changed

Well.  Last season I was worried that the Pearl Theatre had become complacent.  Years of working together can turn actors and directors lazy, and there were signs that this company’s members were no longer challenging each other.  Productions of The Winter’s Tale and Don Juan were not only stale but betrayed a lack of faith in the texts, […]

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Reviews

Where’d You Go?

Molière’s Don Juan is an amiable little comedy, a recklessly blasphemous sendup of religious faith and other hypocrisies, with the title character (Justin Adams) abandoning all calls for decency and kindness in favor of a monomaniacal pursuit of sexual gratification.  And he really does seem sincere every time, worshipping each successive woman and then quickly abandoning her once a new one appears. […]

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Reviews

Things Dying and Newborn

When Peter Francis James, who plays Leontes in the Pearl’s current revival of The Winter’s Tale, says the word “issue,” he pronounces it as if the first syllable rhymed with with piss instead of dish.  Or, perhaps more appropriately, as if it rhymed with hiss.  Thus, he virtually spits at Antigonus (Dominic Cuskern) of the child he presumes to be […]

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Reviews

Come and Make Explosives with Me

Major Barbara at first appears like a rather innocuous play, nothing that would inspire the economist Beatrice Webb to call it a “dance of devils” and “the triumph of the unmoral purpose”: Her children all grown up, Lady Britomart Undershaft (Carol Schultz) finds herself in a precarious position: her husband, the weapons manufacturer Sir Andrew (Dan […]

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Reviews

The Days Are Getting Shorter

Fall has come and all of New York’s institutions are waking from their summer slumber, including the Pearl Theatre, the best revival company in the city.  They are opening their 2014-15 season with Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya, a chronicle of old, disappointed Russians who have been doing nothing but “talking and talking for the last fifty years.”  The […]

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