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Showing posts from February, 2009

Crime and Punishment

"Crime and Punishment" is currently on the Indiana Repertory Theatre's Upperstage. Three actors and a sparse set greet audience members attending this condensed adaptation of the classic book. For 90 minutes sinners and saints tangle together in the mess that is human life.

Andrew Ahrens plays Raskolnikov, a man tortured by his inability to reconcile his intellect and faith. Ahrens' turn as Macbeth earlier this season now feels like a taste of what was to come in this role. Like Macbeth, Raskolnikov's guilty conscience seeps out in all of his actions. Even his health begins to suffer under the wait of his guilt.

He is dressed in threadbare rags, the edges caked in mud. The former student finds it easy to postulate about the necessity for great men to break the law for the greater good, but his life falls apart when he attempts to introduce his theory into the real world. The abstract idea of morality is easy for him to discuss, but as soon as he puts himself into t…

Movin' Out

Over Valentine's Day weekend the Murat Theatre rocked with the familiar songs of Billy Joel. Broadway Across America presented the Tony awarding-winning "Movin' Out" for one weekend only.
The loose narrative follows a handful of youths whose idyllic lives are shattered when the men are shipped off to fight in Vietnam. The guilt, anger and mourning that follow cripple the characters as they try to find their way back to a normal life.

"Movin' Out" is created in the same vein as other rock shows like "We Will Rock You," which showcases Queen's music, and "All Shook Up," an Elvis musical. It is unabashed celebration of Billy Joel's music. It forgoes a complicated plot to become a choreographed concert.

The show is an original collaboration between Joel and choreographer Twyla Tharp. Tharp's unique dance routines embrace every style of motion - swing, ballet, modern and more.

Tharp uses sweet melodies like "Just the Way You …

To Kill a Mockingbird

As classic books go, "To Kill a Mockingbird" has long been an American favorite. The story, which deals with tolerance, racism and poverty, is all the more poignant because it unfolds through the innocent eyes of a child.
The Indiana Repertory Theatre is currently producing the play on its main stage. The set, designed by Robert M. Koharchik, transports the audience to the quiet street where the Finch family lives. The depth of the set, complete with peeling paint on the walls and a red dirt road, transforms the theatre so completely that it's easy to forget you aren't actually down south.

Lynne Perkins plays Miss Maudie and acts as the narrator for the show. Her constant asides to the audience keep scenes flowing with minimal explanation. Mark Goetzinger's Atticus Finch is patient, but stern. His portrayal of the iconic figure is wonderful in its simplicity. Atticus Finch is one of the most revered literary figures, but Goetzinger captures his humble nature and st…