Mostly Revivals and Musicals on My Top Ten Lists for 2018

    By Karen Isaacs /As I was looking back on the theater I’ve seen, like many, I wanted to make a list of those that stand out in my memory. Here’s my list of the most memorable productions in Connecticut and NY. (A caveat: I see a lot of shows in Connecticut, but not all and many in NYC but only a small percentage … Continue reading Mostly Revivals and Musicals on My Top Ten Lists for 2018

The Age of Innocence, Rags Tops 28th Annual Connecticut Critics Awards

The world premiere of Hartford Stage’s The Age of Innocence and a revised version of the musical Rags from Goodspeed Musicals took top honors at the Connecticut Critics Circle Awards Monday, June 11. (Complete list of nominees and winners). The event, which celebrated the work from the state’s professional theaters during the 2017-18 season, was held at Westport Country Playhouse. Among area theaters, Ivoryton received … Continue reading The Age of Innocence, Rags Tops 28th Annual Connecticut Critics Awards

Looking Back at My Nights in Connecticut Theaters This Season

By Karen Isaacs  Do you realize how many professional theatrical productions are seen in Connecticut each year?  What would be your guess? With the ending of the Connecticut theater season which runs from about June 1 to May 31, I attempted to count up the shows. I know I missed some. But including all the professional theaters (those that have some type of contract from … Continue reading Looking Back at My Nights in Connecticut Theaters This Season

“Oklahoma!” “The Age of Innocence” Lead In Connecticut Critics Nominations

(Revised from a press release) Hartford Stage’s world premiere of “The Age of Innocence” and Goodspeed’s “Oklahoma!” led the shows nominated for the 28th annual Connecticut Critics Circle Awards. Yale Rep’s production of “Native Son,” Goodspeed’s production of “Rags,” and “Diary of Anne Frank” at Playhouse on Park also received numerous nominations. The awards event, which celebrates the best in professional theater in the state, … Continue reading “Oklahoma!” “The Age of Innocence” Lead In Connecticut Critics Nominations

Is it farce? Melodrama? Reality TV? Kiss at Yale Rep Tries to Be All Things

By Karen Isaacs  During the first part of Kiss now at the Yale Rep through Saturday, May 19, you think you know what type of play this is: a melodramatic romantic comedy with some satire thrown into it. But you will quickly realize it is more than just that. Guillermo Calderón has written a play that touches on so many fascinating topics including the interaction … Continue reading Is it farce? Melodrama? Reality TV? Kiss at Yale Rep Tries to Be All Things

Yale Rep’s “Father Comes Home from the Wars: Parts 1, 2 &3” Make for Compelling Theater

By Karen Isaacs  Father Comes Home from the Wars, Parts 1, 2 &3 is an epic work in more senses than one. Suzan-Lori Parks has woven a story of a slave during the Civil War and the Greek Odyssey into a compelling story. Parks is well known to Connecticut theater goers. The Yale Rep presented the world premieres of The Death of the Last Black Man … Continue reading Yale Rep’s “Father Comes Home from the Wars: Parts 1, 2 &3” Make for Compelling Theater

“Field Guide” at Yale Rep Challenges the Concept of Theater

By Karen Isaacs Field Guide which is now at Yale Rep through Saturday, Feb. 17 is an example of exactly what a university based theater should be doing: presenting works that push the boundaries and challenge audiences. You may find the work, a world premiere commissioned by Yale Rep and developed by the Austin, Texas based Rude Mechs company not to your liking, perhaps even … Continue reading “Field Guide” at Yale Rep Challenges the Concept of Theater

Yale’s “Enemy of the People” Mix of Styles and Ideas Confuses the Message

By Karen Isaacs  Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People, now at the Yale Rep through Saturday, Oct. 28 is one of the four great realistic dramas he wrote between 1879 and 1890. They include the better known A Doll’s House and Hedda Gabler as well as Ghosts. These drama dealt with real people dealing with social issues that still reverberate today. Yet, the show … Continue reading Yale’s “Enemy of the People” Mix of Styles and Ideas Confuses the Message

Connecticut’s Smaller Theater Well Represented at Awards Ceremony

By Karen Isaacs  The gala celebration of Connecticut’s professional theater, co-chaired by Shore Publishing’s own Amy Barry, produced winners from both the largest professional theaters in the state and some of the smaller. The big winners were The Invisible Hand produced by Westport Country Playhouse and Next to Normal produced by TheaterWorks. Invisible Hand by Ayah Akhtar won outstanding drama, outstanding director (David Kennedy) and … Continue reading Connecticut’s Smaller Theater Well Represented at Awards Ceremony

The Hits & Misses of the 2016-17 Connecticut Theater Season

By Karen Isaacs  Connecticut’s professional theaters produced over 40 shows from June 2016 to the end of May 2017; plus various national tours played the major producing houses. Connecticut theatergoers had over 60 productions to choose from. I saw nearly 90 percent of the shows at the professional theaters and some of the national tours. So how did the season measure up? My top plays: … Continue reading The Hits & Misses of the 2016-17 Connecticut Theater Season