Category Archives: Theater Reviews

Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival delivers two winning plays

What a difference a year makes.

In 2008, Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival began producing its plays in house for the first time, and the result was rocky. The shows were inconsistent in quality, and the original musical “Cambio” had more problems than any production I’ve seen at the festival’s lovely Sand Harbor venue.

Fast forward to 2009 and the festival is happily back on track with two terrific plays: “Measure for Measure” and “Much Ado About Nothing.”

Click here for full review: http://www.rgj.com/article/20090724/ENT/307240001/1056/ENT/Review–Performances-and-plays-combine-for-terrific-evening-of-Shakespeare

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‘Scoundrels’ musical is a kick

Left to right, Brian McKay, Christy Adamson and Stephen Patterson in a scene from "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels."

Left to right, Brian McKay, Christy Adamson and Stephen Patterson in a scene from "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels."

Steve Martin and Michael Caine are tough acts to follow, but Stephen Patterson and Brian McKay do just fine in the national touring production of “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels,” playing through Sunday at Reno’s Pioneer Center.

The show is a musical adaptation of the 1988 film starring Caine and Martin and while the plotting is similar, the music adds a new dimension. This version of “Scoundrels” is a full-on song-and-dance show in the classic musical theater tradition. Dialogue is interspersed with jazzy tunes that are often even funnier than the Jeffrey Lane script.

Click here for full story: http://rgj.com/article/20090404/ENT/90404035/1056

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‘Pajama Game’ lively in Reno

Cast of the national touring company of "The Pajama Game."

Cast of the national touring company of "The Pajama Game."

Modern musicals are dandy, but they are rarely as charming as Golden Age Broadway works. Like classic film, vintage musicals are a reminder of an earlier, less cynical age. Yet, when well-staged, they feel fresh and relevant thanks to live performance.

The national touring production of “The Pajama Game,” which opened a three-day run at Reno’s Pioneer Center Friday, is particularly well-staged. Everything from set changes to curtain drops are timed to perfection, and the musical numbers feature dazzling Mark Minnick choreography.

Click here for full review:  http://www.rgj.com/article/20090117/ENT/90117012&OAS_sitepage=news.rgj.com%2Fbreakingnews

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‘Cirque Dreams’ is visually stunning

The fantastic imagery that governs “Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy” begins even before the show officially starts. The audience is jarred from pre-show conversation when a huge turtle (actually a performer in costume) begins to scoot across the stage. The turtle is followed by a man-sized frog, a tree, and then the obligatory opening comments, which include notice that the show will begin when the turtle — finally — makes his way to the other side of the stage.

Click here for full review: http://www.rgj.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200881206014

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