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Showing posts from May, 2009

Interpreting William

For its final show of the season the Indiana Repertory Theatre presents the world premier of "Interpreting William." The fascinating play is the work of the theater's playwright-in-residence, James Still. It splits its time between the life of frontiersman William Conner, of Conner Prairie fame, and the present day character Bill Montgomery, who is a professor attempting to finish his book about Conner.

Anna is a caffeine-addled, former professor who inspired Bill during his days as an undergrad. Her life has since disintegrated in many ways, but her razor sharp wit has not dulled. She is wonderfully written and brought to life with perfect execution by Carmen Roman. Her quick quips are captivating to watch and clearly cover a deeper pain. The show is at its best when Anna and Bill are conversing. They have a perpetual student/teacher dynamic that fuels discussions.

Still's greatest strength in this show, as well as in his past IRT productions, is his ability to captur…

Annie

"Annie" is the latest family-friendly show to grace the stage at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre. The familiar musical includes songs like "Tomorrow" and "It's the Hard-Knock Life." A few lesser known songs, like "N.Y.C.," provided highlights as well.

A young girl, abandoned by her parents, refuses to give up on finding them. She endures much before falling into a two week visit at a millionaires home for the holidays. Despite their drastic differences, Oliver Warbucks, the millionaire, and Annie develop a unique kindred relationship. Annie's sweet optimism has a softening effect on the business titan and he finds himself wanting to adopt the unfortunate adolescent.

"Annie" has a talented and enthusiastic ensemble cast from the ragamuffin orphans all the way up to the President of the United States. A few particular stand outs were John Vessels as the smarmy radio host Bert Healy, Cynthia Collins in the role of the perpetually u…

Rabbit Hole

From the first moments of the show there is an overwhelming feeling that you've stumble into someone's house and you're overhearing their conversations. That atmosphere, aided by the homey set, lends an air of authenticity to the actors' emotions.

"Rabbit Hole" is the story of the intense pain of four very different individuals; a married couple, the wife's mother and her younger sister. Even though their heartbreak comes from the same loss, no one deals with it in the same way. The play has something everyone can identify with; family relationships, spousal tension, life's shattering disappointments and the struggle to overcome them, the ache of not knowing how you will possibly make it through another day.

When people experience pain to this extent it's almost impossible to believe that anyone else's pain hurts as much as yours. They inevitably compare and critique each other's grief in an effort to understand their own.

In one particularly…