October 29, 2012

The Woman in Black


 Take one deserted mansion in an English marsh, add in rumors of possible hauntings, children’s laughter and a nervous solicitor and what do you get: the perfect Halloween treat!

The Woman in Black is on stage now at the Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre. The beautifully dark show has long been a favorite in England. It’s the second longest-running play in London and was turned into a film starring Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) earlier this year. Now the ICT is presenting the creepy production just in time for Halloween.

As Hitchcock taught audiences for years, the less you see the scarier it is. That idea holds true for this show as well. The show features a play within a play and though it starts out slow, the momentum builds in a wonderfully satisfying way.


This two-man show features excellent performances by both of its leads. Dan Scharbrough is the earnest Arthur Kipps, a troubled man who wants only to unburden himself of his terrible story.  John Michael Goodson – last year’s Salieri in Amadeus – plays “the Actor.” He offers to perform  Kipps story, but doesn't know exactly what he's getting himself into.

The set, designed by Ryan Koharchik, is just incredible. His clever use of curtains and lighting achieves so much without ever overwhelming the story. It was truly one of the highlights of the show.


Since opening in its new Carmel location last fall, it feels like the ICT has evolved in so many ways. Everything from the sets to the plays and musicals it has chosen to produce feel like they are a step up. The ICT has impressed me in so many ways in the past year and I’m excited to see what they have in store next. I hope that if you haven’t been to the ICT in a few years, you make it a priority to see at least one show there this season. You won’t regret it.

Don't Miss the Show

Performances:
The show closes Nov. 10. Performances begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. The Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre is located at 3 Center Green, Carmel, IN 46032 at the Center for the Performing Arts.

Tickets:

Ticket prices start at $39 and can be purchased by calling (317) 923-4597 or visiting www.civictheatre.org. There are $13 tickets available to students with a valid ID.
 
Photos courtesy of Zach Rosing

October 25, 2012

The Book Thief


The Book Thief was selected as this year's One Book One Town for Chicago. As part of the festivities, author Markus Zusak collaborated with a playwright to turn his wonderful book into a stage production.

The play is currently on stage at the Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago. I had the opportunity to see the show and you can read more about my experience here.

October 15, 2012

Away in the Basement


 
The Church Basement Ladies are back for a third time at Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre. This installment, Away in the Basement, is actually set in 1959, before the other two chronically. B&B’s audiences have grown to love the devoted crew and their playful banter. The ladies, so proud of their Norwegian heritage and Lutheran traditions, keep their churches’ events running smoothly.
 
The whole cast is back for a third installment with the exception of Lisa Bark, who is replaced by Hillary Smith as Beverly. Karen Pappas returns as Mavis, a hilarious woman with her own particularly style. Vivian (Licia Watson) is the group's matriarch with a strong aversion to change. Katherine Proctor is Karin, Beverly's mother and Vivian's deputy.

 
The Church Basement Ladies shows are always at their best when the women are supporting each other through both the heartbreaks and celebrations life brings. Vivian shows her softer side in the second act and Eddie Curry, the church's pastor, has a surprisingly tender number in this production as well.
 
This musical is particularly perfect for church groups and families. Beef & Boards is continuing the Christmas fun through the end of the year with both its holiday variety show, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, and The Christmas Carol.

 

Don't Miss the Show

Performances: The show runs until Nov. 25. Doors open for evening performances at 6 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. The buffet is served from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and the show begins at 8 p.m. For Wednesday matinees doors open at 11:30 a.m. and the buffet is served from 11:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The show begins at 1 p.m. For Sunday matinees doors open at 12 p.m. and the buffet is served from 12:15 to 1 p.m. The show begins at 1:30 p.m.

 
Tickets: To purchase tickets call (317) 872-9664 between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Prices range from $37 to $60 and include the show, tax, coffee, tea and the buffet. As Beef & Boards’ 2012 Family Show, this production offers a $10 discount off tickets for kids ages 3-15. This production offers discounts; call the box office for more details.
 
Photos Courtesy of Beef & Boards Dinner Theatre