Dan O'Neil is a critic with Culturebot. This account has been auto-generated, and does not indicate that this person is an active member of Show-Score.com. That said, if you "follow" this member, you will automatically be updated whenever s/he writes a new review.
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“George arms herself with a promising and inventive premise...For a while, the setup delivers...George’s language and character work is crisply hilarious...One gets the sense that George, during the act of writing, realized two thirds of the way through that this dramatic arc wasn’t going to pan out...The play, like the subject, veers directly into its unwieldiness, which is both necessary and somewhat dramatically underwhelming.” Full Review
"Delivers a similar momentary respite from the battering harshness of the outside world, in a straightforward but skillful production...The production takes on the risk of casting both roles with actors who are within a few years of the actual age of their character, and for the most part the gambit succeeds...The overall effect is static, yet there is something calming in its predictability...I’d describe my experience of the work as peaceful." Full Review
"One of those plays that almost exactly matches its succinct descriptor...With 'Transfers,' straightforward you will get...The humanistic dialogue, Thurber's strong suit, crackles with animation and hums along at the right speed, although it has a tendency to reward emotional hyperbole. More problematically, this paint-within-the-lines approach casts the play's point of view rather widely...'Transfers' curiously avoids a full exploration of its own character." Full Review
“The show is equal parts concert and séance, and an unforgettable experience...She exists, she conjures, she illuminates through whisper and scream...The ghosts will keep speaking. She will sing whether or not we’re there, because they are there alongside the rest of us, circling the dragon-slayer in the body of a waif, humming with her, communing with her history, her stories, her voice, her electric ability to commune right back at us." Full Review
“The production super-imposes the 'Amélie' narrative over a generic contemporary musical structure…It’s workmanlike at best, and one often experiences an uncomfortable tension between the forced whimsy of the narrative and the bland expression of it…What stage magic that does exist is consistently undercut by the constant use of unimaginative projected visuals…The performers find what moments they can to shine." Full Review
"The understated performances evoked by this strange, three-act exploration of suburban ennui are halting, sad, and funny…LeFranc is determined to give us an accurate depiction of people like us and is invested in the idea that we’ll discover something of meaning or use, even if there probably isn’t all that much to find. Whether or not you’re okay with the empty landscape at the end of the tunnel is – admirably on a formal level, but riskily on an emotional one – left up to you." Full Review
"Occasionally impressive as spectacle, 'Caenis' in its best moments reminded me of a Chuck Mee outtake, or a section of 'Dionysus in ‘69'...The topical appeal to embody this particular myth is clear, but the take-away is decidedly less so. The cast’s reliance on physical and visual storytelling creates an ambiguity that suggests a take on gender fluidity and what it means in the context of the performance but never fully positions itself...But the more striking sequences remain memorable." Full Review
"It is, intentionally, exhausting, for actors and audience alike. Like any long haul, there is a period in the middle where it’s uncertain as to whether continuing on will be worth the work. And like the more memorable durational experiences, the last third is exceedingly exhilarating...It’s an infectious seduction of a novel, and hearing it read out loud is surprisingly effective in and of itself...Each word was required to keep the spell from breaking." Full Review
“Like one of those Celtic knots...‘The Ferryman’ wills and weaves itself into focus right in front of you. But the thing about a knot is that you’ve got to be careful not to leave loose ends to tug at, lest the whole thing unravel...Pull too hard, and you’ll find yourself left with two or three really strong dramatic sequences to hang your hat on, but not much else of substance. Which is also to say, a play shouldn’t unravel so easily.” Full Review
"It’s a just-fine freeway of a play, one that you feel okay about driving down, but also one that doesn’t inspire too much of anything on an emotional, dramatic, or intellectual level. It’s sometimes funny, and maybe that’s enough?...What 'The Amateurs' is after is admirable and actually rather rigorous, and it’s difficult to argue against any of the choices the play makes individually. But when viewed as a whole, it’s hard to decide whether this particular trip needed to be taken." Full Review
"The collection of ambitions and forms and storytelling devices can’t sustain a consistent position on this particular juxtaposition between depicting a powerful black female in the 1870s who is battling to reclaim her ancestry versus the action-hero 21st century satirical version of the same female who effortlessly fights off the bad guys by booty-smacking them...The prevailing tone is one of antic silliness, one that straddles the line between the absurd and the asinine." Full Review
"A softly-glowing night-light of a narrative, a beacon of memory illuminating a forgotten childhood hallway...Each character receives a well-developed setup which invites us into their personal experience of this particular, but nameless lost feeling...The play feels a bit more like a first act than complete gesture–the exposition is so carefully set in place and well crafted that it is a bit startling when the play ends without really knocking down anything that it set up for us." Full Review
"We need to feel something for these characters if we’re to invest ourselves in their plight. Unfortunately, we’re not given emotional access...Karam’s translation has an ear for contemporizing the jokes, but otherwise the language falls curiously flat...There is a decided tentativeness in the staging that suggests that the production isn’t sure if it should fully acknowledge what it is making an attempt to do. As a result, it becomes almost impenetrable to read." Full Review
"All the text in the play is pulled from actual written comments and updates posted on Facebook...There’s something that keeps us from feeling particularly close to or engaged with the characters. Partially, I suspect, the comments used aren’t quite junky enough...What feels like a strong initial idea to use social media text in order to render a world in which that media no longer exists never quite pays itself all the way off." Full Review