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Theatre Review: Otterbein’s Addams Family Soars Over Its Material

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Otterbein’s Addams Family Soars Over Its Material

Otterbein opens their 2016-17 season this weekend with 2010′s Broadway musical The Addams Family, based on the cartoons by Charles Addams, with a book by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice and music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa. The fast, vibrant production directed by Christina Kirk can’t overcome the banal, tedious source but is a classic example of […]

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Theatre Review: Big Laughs in CATCO’s Act of God

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Big Laughs in CATCO’s Act of God

God so loved the theatre he appears before us in the body of an actor five shows a week. Fans of the original Twitter feed on which it was based or irreverent religious humor are well-served by CATCO’s production of David Javerbaum’s recent Broadway hit Act of God, directed by Steven Anderson. Act of God finds the […]

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Theatre Review: Short North Stage Does Right by August Wilson’s Fences

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Short North Stage Does Right by August Wilson’s Fences

Fences might be the greatest American play of the 20th century and, with a lot of stiff competition, I think is August Wilson’s masterpiece. It’s a perfect choice for the centerpiece of Short North Stage’s August Wilson Festival and the opening of SNS’s 2016-2017 season. Their production, directed by Mark Clayton Southers, while not without flaws, […]

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Theatre Review: MadLab’s Muddled Scritch Scritch

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: MadLab’s Muddled Scritch Scritch

Christopher Lockheardt has made his name on sharp, witty, short plays produced at MadLab and around the country. The world premier of one of his first full-length dramas, Scritch Scritch, opened at MadLab this weekend in a production directed by Jim Azelvandre (assisted by Becky Horseman). Rebecca (Kyle Jepson), feeling stuck in her life, decides to […]

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Theatre Review: Crowd-Pleasing Wicked Returns to Columbus

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Crowd-Pleasing Wicked Returns to Columbus

Stephen Schwartz (music and lyrics) and Winnie Holtzmann’s (book) adaptation of Gregory Maguire’s Wicked is one of the longest-running shows on Broadway, and still going. This funhouse-mirror-that-shows-only-the-truth look at the Wizard of Oz returns to the Ohio Theatre this week in a touring production that retains every bit of the charm and razzle-dazzle that keeps audiences lining […]

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Theatre Review: Shadowbox’s Broken Whispers Sometimes Shines New Light on ‘Gatsby’

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Shadowbox’s Broken Whispers Sometimes Shines New Light on ‘Gatsby’

Shadowbox Live continues its recent trend of interspersing their bread-and-butter sketch comedy and song revues with more ambitious, serious work, with Broken Whispers. I attended a preview performance on Wednesday of this dance-theatre adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s modernist classic The Great Gatsby. Choreographed and staged by Katy Psenicka, adapted by Jimmy Mak and directed by Stev […]

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Theatre Review: Evolution’s Moving But Jumbled Poz

Richard Sanford Richard Sanford Theatre Review: Evolution’s Moving But Jumbled Poz

The regional premiere of Michael Aman’s Poz opened Thursday in a glowing production directed by Greg Smith at Evolution Theatre Company.  It’s a noble play, stuffed Dreiser-full with threads of legitimate societal complaint but also with a beating heart. The blood flowing through its veins is an understanding of exactly how real people react. So […]

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