Sandra Mardenfeld is a critic with Show Showdown. 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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"The harshness would work better if the play employed less cursing though. The show uses salty language so consistently that it eventually becomes ineffectual...Bathesheba, played by Tanyamari, embraces a graceful outlook on what life offers her—something the actress, who seemingly glows from within, conveys... Roussos’ direction introduces whimsy into the story, with missives dropping from the ceiling and a child’s playroom box of costumes on stage." Full Review
“Watching 'Salome,' you understand why it's rarely performed. That doesn't mean Rutherford's new English translation is without merit...At times, the action intoxicates even as it horrifies. Several scenes are too long — Salome’s dance...is initially discomforting and intimate, though the moment’s power fades the longer it lingers...'Salome' acts as a cautionary tale about the ruthlessness of people and the easy acceptance of horrific acts." Full Review
“Action unfolds inches from the audience making the piece more voyeuristic and disquieting...The stories fall into shallow cliches - and the play's discussion about sex never amounts to more than a casual conversation...Hunter shows disdain, swagger and callousness but he never touches the vulnerability that Toth discovers, especially in the more damaged individuals...Costumes challenge the smoothness of the production...Bulky, too, are set changes." Full Review
"Unfortunately, the show merely brushes the surface of the many complex topics threaded through the dialogue...Lampooning the inequities of Native Americans without trying to explain the history more thoroughly is a missed opportunity. Even the videos have no captions so the audience does not recognize what they're seeing...Borst-Tarrant shines as the drily humorous centerpiece of the play's show...Many of the skits in 'Don't Feed' simply don't work." Full Review
"The intent is admirable, although the scenic design offers a more insightful look into the pioneering Lou than the play...Rice's play offers a harsh portrayal of a complex individual that emphasizes her strident, stubborn, selfish nature without showing the softer side...The audience never sees this magnetic allure and that absence hurts our understanding of Lou...Ultimately, while Rice's play paints a historical time period worth visiting...she fails to provide insight into her character." Full Review
"The Queen’s Company tackles Shakespeare's comedy by infusing their take with a campy feel and a more feminist, redemptive ending...Mostly, the construct of women playing men works...Sometimes, though, when the traditional dialogue is spoken, the crispness of the language is lost in slipped words and too much gesticulation...Ultimately, this 'Shrew's' ending is touching and showcases Abercrombie's wonderfully expressive face." Full Review
for a previous production "This version sought to insert moments of laughter into the traditional story...Grinstead tackled the dual role of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde admirably...Especially well done were the transformation scenes where his body changed dramatically from one character to the next...Stromberg ably acted all other roles...Especially poignant is Dr. Jekyll's interactions with his maid, who ultimately becomes his moral conscience as the story navigates to its conclusion." Full Review
“An engaging yet uneven presentation...At times, the show seems overly frenetic with a false frivolity. When the cast enters and tosses their music on the floor and dons clown noses the pace of the show races unnecessarily so. Then, suddenly, the action falls as a more quiet pieces like 'Nanna's Lied/Songs About My Mother,' begin without real transition. The hyperactivity dilutes the fire of Brecht's activism." Full Review
“Perfectly cast and great fun, but it's not much of a play. The nonlinear plot makes little sense, the characters aren't compelling - except in their quirks, which are fascinating...'Meteor Shower' is like a really good Saturday Night Live skit - one that meanders on longer than it should (even at 80 minutes) but, at least, it keeps you laughing...Without this star-studded array of talent this show would languish. The cast makes ‘Meteor Shower’ work...at least well enough for a few laughs.” Full Review
“The production offers a landscape view of Castle's life and uses music, dancing and projections of Castle's artwork to give insight into his silent world…Unfortunately, the play lags at times—especially during the second act where Castle's art comes alive around him—when scenes become repetitive and difficult to understand. Ultimately, though, Mee educates us in a moving story about this almost forgotten artist whose perseverance inspires as much as his art does.” Full Review
"A sometimes annoyingly frenetic, immersive experience that both irritates and captivates...The electro pop opera-styled music and lyrics by Dave Malloy (who also did the book and orchestrations) are often clever and entertaining, but sometimes feature too much oversimplification and not enough emotion...Ultimately, despite the show's flaws, director Rachel Chavkin deserves much credit for creating an experience that allows the audience to feel a show rather than just see it." Full Review