Steven Oxman is a critic with Variety. 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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“A jaunty new stage musical adaptation...Most everything comes off with a vibrant musical-comedy zeal, from Horn’s fresh and funny one-liners to Yazbek’s brassy-funky-jazzy score to the comic performances led by Fontana...It’s all absurd, ridiculous to the point of surreality, but the musical-theater setting enables the show to poke giant fun at itself and have lots of fun doing it...The show makes fun of mansplaining while still doing it...But the show has a personality...all its own.” Full Review
for a previous production "When performed with the type of care and precision on stage in this exquisite production, the work still passes the time...The sublime cast of protean performers each reveal a range of skills, combining styles from the classical to the campy, the silly to the serious, the lyrical to the laid-back, all while maintaining a consistent reality...Hynes brings a good degree of patience to this show...She’s not afraid to let time feel slower for a bit before speeding it back up again." Full Review
for a previous production "‘Ride the Cyclone’ seems awfully likely to make a major impact…It surprises with just how unusual, and unusually good, it is…The exquisite score ranges wildly, from a high-energy pop dance number that recalls Michael Jackson to a Marlene Dietrich-ish cabaret piece, and that’s just within the first few songs…Other than being simultaneously dark, funny, and poignantly life-affirming, the show stands out for how it privileges its characters’ inner lives." Full Review
for a previous production "A nearly unimprovable production...D’Amour’s deep and decidedly soulful work takes us convincingly into the world of strippers, hookers and party-animal bartenders in pursuit of the search for what Miss Ruby, their dying substitute mother, calls “ecstatic experience”...The play doesn’t sugarcoat human misery, although it is also filled with wit and humanity and plenty of energy stemming nonstop from an ensemble that doesn’t have a weak link...It’s a beautiful play." Full Review
for a previous production "The play never brings to dramatic life the thematic conflicts at play: What is human sexual nature, if there is such a thing? For all of Norris’s talk, he just isn’t quite willing to take the audience into dangerous territory — there are no sex scenes, not even a touch of nudity." Full Review
"The musical based on the songs of Abba, is a silly affair all around, and that's its greatest asset. Feather-light, simple, pure pop, set the tone for the evening and provide the lingering sentiment. And feeling is ultimately all that matters with an enjoyably vacuous show like Mamma Mia!" Full Review
"Captures a good amount of the vibrant personality and genuinely admirable perseverance that make Cher the ultimate celebrity survivor...The real star of the show, though, turns out not to be the stars of the show, nor the music, but Bob Mackie’s costume...But costumes can carry a show only so far. And here’s the tricky thing: what’s good about this show also happens to be what’s not great about it. It’s funny but not that funny, clever but never interesting." Full Review
"Samantha Barks proves highly capable of sweeping us up, if not completely away, into this faithfully scripted, blandly scored, capably but not imaginatively directed version of the 1990 mega hit...The songs don’t contain drama, nor are they specific enough to play the important story-telling role of filling in for the lack of cinematic close-ups...The lack of creativity surrounding her only makes Barks’ performance more noteworthy." Full Review
for a previous production "First and foremost, it’s a double display of delicious diva-dom, with Patti LuPone as Rubinstein and Christine Ebersole as Arden expertly commanding the stage…The show is also a demonstration of offbeat theatrical craftiness…Wright’s book is a model of efficiency… And while the show follows the business of beauty, it may have an over-focus on the business end, leaving the elusive and myriad interpretations of beauty as an opportunity still to be plumbed….A richly rewarding show." Full Review
for a previous production "There is something comfortingly familiar and predictable about 'On Your Feet!' It never goes deeper than the superficial and its narrative follows a TV-movie template. But the show boasts sufficient sincerity with its schmaltz, and features a fluid, structurally sound story...It’s sure to please the built-in audience that will find absolutely exactly the entertainment they expect, and even the less fully acquainted will find that the rhythm really is going to get you." Full Review
for a previous production "Sincere earnestness, along with expert pacing, theatrical flair and superb, intense performances, carry this show with moments of genuine potency. But it’s an open question whether those strengths can ultimately overcome a mostly workmanlike score and a bold but elongated focus on the wretchedness of its main character, whose song-inspiring soul-saving doesn’t occur until halfway through the second act." Full Review
for a previous production "Audacious in its ambition but not fully satisfying in its execution, 'Kafka on the Shore' possesses plenty to admire but not quite enough to adore. Still, while it doesn’t quite achieve the level of theatrical lyricism it attempts, this production does find an exceedingly accessible tone, lending a gentle, deeply humane sensibility to a play filled with philosophical aspirations." Full Review