Tag: Brad Woodard

Review: The Heavens Are Hung in Black (Shattered Globe Theatre)

Darren Jones and Lawrence Grimm star as Dred Scott and Abraham Lincoln in Heavens Are Hung in Black             

           

The Heavens Are Hung in Black
   
Written by James Still
Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont (map)
thru Oct 21  |  tix: $35  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
     

October 6, 2017 | 0 Comments More

Review: In the Heat of the Night (Shattered Globe Theatre)

Manny Buckley and Joseph Wiens in In the Heat of the Night, Shattered Globe Theatre          
 

          
In the Heat
   of the Night

Adapted by Matt Pelfrey
From novel by John Ball
at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont (map)
thru June 5  |  tix: $33  |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets   
    

May 11, 2016 | 0 Comments More

Review: The Whaleship Essex (Shattered Globe Theatre)

Shattered Globe Theatre presents "The Whaleship Essex" by Joe Forbrich, directed by Lou Contey. (photo credit: Emily Schwartz)        
      
The Whaleship Essex

Written by Joe Forbrich  
Directed by Lou Contey
at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont (map)
thru Oct 11  |  tickets: $15-$30   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

September 17, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: The Roper (The Den Theatre)

Michael Downey and Tony Bozzuto star in The Den Theatre's world premiere of "The Roper" by Will Dunne, directed by Ron Wells. (photo credit: Joe Mazza)        
       
The Roper 

Written by Will Dunne
Directed by Ron Wells
The Den Theatre, 1333 N. Milwaukee (map)
thru April 13  |  tickets: $25   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
                   Read review
     

March 28, 2014 | 0 Comments More

Review: Burn This (Shattered Globe)

Kate LoConti, Jake Szczepaniak, Brad Woodard and Ryan Kitley star in Shattered Globe Theatre’s production of "Burn This" by Lanford Wilson, directed by Linda Gillum.  (Photo by Sean Parks)       
      
Burn This 

Written by Lanford Wilson 
Directed by Linda Gillum
at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont (map)
thru Nov 18  |  tickets: $27-$32   |  more info 
        
Check for half-price tickets 
      
          
        Read entire review
     

October 26, 2012 | 0 Comments More

Review: Her Naked Skin (Shattered Globe Theatre)

Sheila O'Connor as Eve and Linda Reiter as Celia in Shattered Globe's "Her Naked Skin" by Rebecca Lenkiewicz. (photo credit: Kevin Viol)       
      
Her Naked Skin 

Written by Rebecca Lenkiewicz  
Directed by Roger Smart
at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont (map)
thru June 3  |  tickets: $18-$34   |  more info
       
Check for half-price tickets 
    
        
        Read entire review
     

May 12, 2012 | 3 Comments More

Review: Educating Rita (Shattered Globe Theatre)

Charming chemistry redeems Russell’s perfunctory plot

Whitney White (Rita) stars in Shattered Globe’s production of "Educating Rita", running through Aug. 14th at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. (photo: Kevin Viol)

Shattered Globe Theatre 2.0 presents
Educating Rita
Written by Willy Russell
Directed by Richard Corley
at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago (map)
through August 14  | tickets: $28  | more info

Reviewed by Dan Jakes

Assuming you’ve at least heard of George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion–hell, assuming you’ve seen “The Simpson’s” parody of My Fair Lady–there should be few surprises in Willy Russell’s 1980 British comedy. From the moment working class Rita bursts through professor Frank’s office seeking a step up in life through a school’s Open University program, years of similarly-framed satires make apparent Brad Woodard (Frank) and Whitney White (Rita) star in Shattered Globe’s production of "Educating Rita", running through Aug. 14th at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. (photo: Kevin Viol)what lessons will be learned and who will end up teaching whom. In this case, it’s a sassy hairdresser with a hidden penchant for poetry testing the wisdom of a jaded lecturer with a not-so-hidden penchant for pubs. Buried strengths get unearthed. Boundaries get tip-toed. Roles get reversed.

Educating Rita follows a familiar formula, one that a few updates (a laptop computer and contemporary-ish desk phone, as far as I can tell) can’t quite make feel new. Both characters in Russell’s two-person play are drawn from popular archetypes, especially Frank, the sardonic, conventionally-unconventional tutor. The privileges and prestige one garners working in upper-echelon Academia are apparently not enough to satisfy these middle-aged curmudgeons. Like his peers from similar stories, Frank spends considerable time hiding from his wife and students in his personal office, a musty haven where the weary tutor can steal away to be both comforted and oppressed by stacks of collected works by classic authors. That is, of course, until his whiskey-stocked oasis is breached by an eager, earnest, foul-mouthed instigator. What follows is a story we’ve heard before, but it’s a mostly well-told story directed by Richard Corley in this Shattered Globe 2.0 production.

Questionable accents aside, Whitney White (Rita) and Brad Woodard (Frank) are believable as the unlikely duo–like any good odd pairing, White and Woodard balance and temper their offended social sensibilities with amusement and curiosity. When Rita’s reveals her favorite book, Frank relishes in her enthusiasm in spite of the convenience-store-novel’s ability to make his flesh crawl. Woodard also effectively taps into the play’s sexual subtext effectively, playing the intentions of an educated and rational man who knows the tension in the room stems only from himself. White creates an authentic arc as the titular student, shaping her role from a broad comedienne in the beginning to a thoughtful, layered character in the end. Her energy and charm helps carry the show’s dawdling pace, a problem otherwise exasperated by a little too much time listening to Robyn and Lily Allen in the dark.

Rating: ★★★

Whitney White (Rita) and Brad Woodard (Frank) star in Shattered Globe’s production of "Educating Rita", running through Aug. 14th at Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave. (photo: Kevin Viol)
Shattered Globe Theatre’s Educating Rita continues through August 14th, with performances continuing Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 3pm. Tickets are $28, and can be purchased on-line with no booking fee at www.shatteredglobe.org or by phone at 773-236-0764.


July 3, 2011 | 0 Comments More

Review: Down & Dirty Romeo & Juliet (Shattered Globe)

  
  

Who will play your Romeo? Who will be your Juliet?

  
  

Dion Rice (Romeo) and Alice Pacyga (the Nurse) star in Shattered Globe Theatre’s interactive and ever-changing production of DOWN & DIRTY ROMEO & JULIET playing at various Chicago venues.  (Photo: Kevin Viol)

   
Shattered Globe Theatre presents
  
  
Down & Dirty Romeo & Juliet
   
   
Written by William Shakespeare
Directed by Roger Smart
at various Chicago locations (see below)
through July 17  |  tickets: $18   |  more info

Reviewed by Katy Walsh

‘Where art thou Romeo?’  Well, Juliet, last time I saw him, he was on the 94th floor of the Hancock….

Shattered Globe Theatre presents Down & Dirty Romeo & Juliet.  Shakespeare’s greatest love story ever told is being told in various locales around the city.  The Montagues and Capulets hate each other.  Their family feud is the town’s gang problem.  For fun, the Montagues crash the Capulets’ house party. It’s just a silly prank until Romeo falls hard for the host’s daughter.  But he’s not alone in enemy territory, Juliet is equally smitten.  Their forbidden love unites them in fatal ecstasy.  Christina Gorman (Lady Capulet) and Angie Shriner (Juliet) star in Shattered Globe Theatre’s interactive and ever-changing production of DOWN & DIRTY ROMEO & JULIET playing at various Chicago venues.  (Photo: Kevin Viol)The story is familiar.  The surroundings may not be.  Shattered Globe takes Shakespeare’s ‘all the world’s a stage’ to heart and hits the road.  Down & Dirty Romeo & Juliet is a classic to go!

The unique experience starts upon arrival.  At check-in, the audience must pick a side.  Each guest is literally labeled Montague or Capulet.  A cheat sheet of Shakespearian insults is issued to help the discord mood.  Guests are encouraged to concoct personalized abuse from piecing together four columns of choices.  My favorite is ‘grow unsightly warts thou puking maggot-pie.’  It’s all a part of a build-your-own-adventure theme.  Before the show starts, actors are introduced with their potential parts.  By applause and cheers, the audience decides on the starting line-up.  Roles are assigned and the action starts immediately.  There’s no curtain, stage or fourth wall separating the drama from reality.  The story unfolds in between tables.  Because they are wearing street clothes, it’s impossible to tell the actors from the audience. At the Capulet’s dance party, it’s a blur of family enemies and non-acting revelry.  The interactive experience is a surreal engagement. 

Under the direction of Roger Smart, the show is tightly paced professionalism. It’s an impressive surprise. The informality around the show, before it starts and during intermission, seems to indicate a more loose affair.  The charades-in-the-living-room comfy vibe is sidelined as the first line cues up the polished acting.  The Shakespearean prose is delivered with conversational passion. On the night I attended, the doomed lovers were Behzad Dabu (Romeo) and Melissa Nedell (Juliet). Dabu and Nedell have all the youthful innocence of love at first sight: charming, lusty, slightly clumsy flirtation. Their sweet synergy produces a hopeful optimism for a possible different story outcome. The entire cast fights, dances, dies with zesty commitment. Despite the obvious rehearsed mastery, there is still an improv twist.  An actor will interface with an audience member as in conversation or just by stealing a sip of beer.  During my performance, a young girl was coughing during Lord Capulet’s (Brad Woodward) monologue.  With a perfectly uttered ‘we are all dying’ line, Woodward cracks the house up.  Alice Pacyga (Nurse) is hilarious delivering some sass while chomping down at the refreshment table.

Dion Rice (Romeo) interacts with audience member (Balthasar) in Shattered Globe Theatre’s interactive and ever-changing production of DOWN & DIRTY ROMEO & JULIET playing at various Chicago venues. (Photo: Kevin Viol)The Hancock provided incomparable scenery to the Shakespearean tragedy. The sunset magnificently filled the room with a vibrant glow. Although missing its earlier line cue, the moon did finally rise beautifully over the lake. In the background, the city shimmered into its evening wear adding an urban enchantment. It looks stunning but it sounds not so attractive. The only issue with the Hancock locale is the noise level. The show utilizes the Observatory’s café for the production. It’s not closed to the non-theatre public. Unfortunately, the chatter is most distracting at very tender moments when the actors use softer voices. Because the tale is legendary, the issue doesn’t poison the overall effect. It just annoyingly stabs it… several times. Down & Dirty Romeo & Juliet is an entertaining one-of-a-kind theatrical experience…every show!

  
  
Rating: ★★★
    
   

Performance Times and Locations (more to come)

        
Monday, May 16th, 7:30pm
Hancock Observatory, 875 N. Michigan
Tickets only $3 
Buy Tickets
  Thursday, May 19th, 7:00 PM
The Spot, 4437 N. Broadway
Tickets: $18 
Buy Tickets
            
Sunday, May 22nd, 7:30pm 
Hancock Observatory, 875 N. Michigan  
Tickets: $18
Buy Tickets
  Tuesday, May 24th, 7:00pm
Schubas, 3159 N. Southport
Tickets $18
Buy tickets
       
Sunday, May 29th, 7:00pm
Justins, 3358 N. Southport  
Tickets: $18
Buy Tickets
   July 17th, 24th and 31st
Millennium Park, 201 E. Randolph
Times and Tickets: TBA

Angie Shriner (Juliet) and Dion Rice (Romeo) star in Shattered Globe Theatre’s interactive and ever-changing production of DOWN & DIRTY ROMEO & JULIET playing at various Chicago venues. (Photo: Kevin Viol)Running Time:  Two hours and fifteen minutes includes an intermission

  
  
May 18, 2011 | 0 Comments More