Jonathan Spira

Jonathan Spira is a critic with Frequent Business Traveler. 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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Reviews (17)
80
Frequent Business Traveler

“This production – as almost all others of the show – doesn’t fall far from the tree with direction by Avian and choreography by Lee...In short, little has changed...The anonymity of the chorus line is great and most visible as the boys and girls of the chorus perform ‘One’ in full and identical costume, making it almost impossible to tell them apart and illustrating how they too have been consumed by show biz. Oh, and the audience? They all felt something.” Full Review

90
Frequent Business Traveler

“Theodore Bikel would have approved...An authentic and, at times, extraordinarily moving experience...A Broadway-class production with beautiful staging and choreography...and an excellent 12-piece stage orchestra...The show’s authenticity makes this not only the most authentic rendition of the show but places it into the pantheon of must-see theater for all.” Full Review

75
Frequent Business Traveler

“While the setup takes a while, the dénouement is worth waiting for, thanks greatly to the superb acting of the trio, Buether’s brilliant set, and truly illuminating lighting by Mumford...What did we just see, I asked upon exiting the theater. I wasn’t completely certain but one thing is clear: ‘The Children’ made a disturbing enough statement about the price we may pay in the future because of how we treat the present to merit further consideration.” Full Review

80
Frequent Business Traveler

"It’s hard to single out a single cast member but the brooding Shuler Hensley, Danny Wolohan, as well as the wonderfully inept team of Erin Markey and the inimitable Victoria Clark, were all worthy of note...The image of the nine assassins singing about 'another national anthem' without having to invoke current imagery clearly resonated with theatergoers." Full Review

25
Frequent Business Traveler

"A poor copy of its London incarnation...Anything of any consequence really happens in the final minutes of the first act or in the second act, including the truly unique dance sequences by the Oompa Loompa factory workers portrayed by dancers merged physically with puppets...The Dylan’s candy bars sold in the lobby are pretty good and all in all bound to be more satisfying than the show itself." Full Review

55
Frequent Business Traveler

"Despite the presence of the talented Phillipa Soo in the title role, 'Amélie' never seems to grab the audience to the point where they will care about the characters. It is, however, full of good (albeit not very memorable) songs, a beautifully designed set, and dreams...It is creative, albeit in a childlike manner...While the show itself is agreeable, it’s simply too sweet and oddly sentimental in a way that does not seem genuine." Full Review

90
Frequent Business Traveler

"Will make you laugh and cry and restore your faith in humanity...This Canadian export, written by the husband and wife team of Irene Sankoff and David Hein, and directed by Christopher Ashley, comes at a time when divisiveness is far more prevalent than inclusivity, where countries talk about building walls rather than building bridges...It’s one you won’t want to miss. If you see just one show on Broadway this season, this should be it." Full Review

85
Frequent Business Traveler

"While there’s no dialog as such (although there is some magnificent acting) and no overarching plot is to be discerned, there are running gags and memorable as well as entertaining sketches. Even without dialog, members of the 'Stomp' ensemble credibly interact and communicate with each other...While non-traditional, 'Stomp' is a powerful and mesmerizing show. Who knew that everything including the kitchen sink could be so entertaining?" Full Review

70
Frequent Business Traveler

"The play has many of the elements of the genre – shadowy scenes, silhouetted figures, a black-and-white-ish visual style, and of course, femmes fatales--but how well does this translate to the stage?" Full Review

85
Frequent Business Traveler

“Performed in segments, it all kind of gels, albeit with two exceptions: a supposed riot that apparently required participants to don a beret and the first part of the church segment which seemed to be going nowhere quickly but was soon revived in the segment’s second half...The entire ensemble was brilliant but two performers in particular – Aisha de Haas and Wayne Pretlow – merit special mention for the range and powerful rendering.” Full Review

80
Frequent Business Traveler

"Coming into the Circle in the Square Theatre on an icy winter’s day, the stark contrast of islanders fishing in the lagoon, milling on the beach, and parading around a goat wearing a diaper was striking...Leaving the theater, deterred only by the icy sidewalks, the exuberant songs stayed with me and all I wanted to do was dance down 50th Street. Perhaps you will as well." Full Review

85
Frequent Business Traveler

"This particular production continues on its very own trajectory making excellent use of the various talents that the superb cast brings to the Delacorte’s stage...Much of the success is due to the music, with some incredible vocals by Marcelle Davies-Lashley...The result is an interesting and hilarious yet thoughtful production that is likely to beguile and enchant the theatergoer." Full Review

85
Frequent Business Traveler

"The colorblind casting that made 'Hamilton' so incredible is amplified by gender-blind casting as well: who knew Marc Antony (played so brilliantly by Elizabeth Marvel) had a Southern drawl? The play gets progressively more immersive and more intense as it goes on...As Roman protesters appear loudly voicing their opinions, many audience members seemingly join the chorus of voices. It made the mere act of sitting in my seat feel dangerous and possibly even subversive." Full Review

90
Frequent Business Traveler

"From the moment she appeared on stage, Midler owned the show...Indeed, practically everything she does stops the show...From the songs to the colors to the real train to Yonkers, this is a big, bright, and brassy musical, best captured by the sentiment uttered by Horace Vandergelder in submission when he proposes to Dolly: 'Wonderful woman!' he says. The audience agreed most enthusiastically." Full Review

90
Frequent Business Traveler

for a previous production "This show within a show keeps audiences on both sides of the Atlantic laughing non-stop. Mangled lines and dozens of missed cues and bungled entrances all contribute to a surreal atmosphere of a not quite ready for prime-time production...In my review of two years ago, I summed up the evening saying, 'Never have so many laughed so hard for so long.' Fortunately for theatregoers, even with a few nods to the play’s American audience, that still holds true." Full Review

90
Frequent Business Traveler

"Few theatergoers have seen something as lavish and as complicated as this...'The Great Comet' is immersive theater at its finest...Despite the warnings of a dizzying array of names and people, since the characters sing points of narration and make clear whom they are referring to, the story is easy to follow...The pageantry is simply spectacular and it all makes sense in the end." Full Review

75
Frequent Business Traveler

"It’s more of a living jukebox filled with Carole King’s works, with minimal context and a cringe-worthy Jewish mother added...The audience is there for the great music and choreography, and the cast does not disappoint...Unfortunately, some of the references will only make sense to AARP card-toting audience members...It’s practically a given that everyone will leave the show humming something from the Carole King catalog." Full Review