TACT presents a revival of Oliver Goldsmith’s 1773 comedy of manners, which combines heightened language with great heart and timeless humor. More…
This celebrated romantic comedy pits country manners against city snobbery, and features mistaken identities, rustic rubes, and a barmaid who isn’t what she appears to be. Directed and adapted by TACT's Artistic Executive Director, Scott Alan Evans, this production takes a fresh, streamlined look at this classic and includes some audience participation.
"It delights today just as it did over two hundred years ago...The TACT revival, directed by Scott Alan Evans, is pretty faithful to the original...The TACT production is exciting and vibrant in all of the best theatrical traditions...It is the boisterous, sparkling performances of the cast that make this production as funny and bright as it was when people really did wear waistcoats and hooped skirts." Full Review
"The Actors Company Theatre (TACT) revival of Oliver Goldsmith’s 'She Stoops to Conquer' is enchanting. Stripped down yet keeping in the era, the actors rely on their craft, energy and their camaraderie...What TACT has done is made this play appealing for contemporary audiences...Director and adapter Scott Alan Evans keeps the piece moving and we follow along. The cast is all good but Jeremy Beck, and Richard Thieriot make the best of their parts." Full Review
"Scott Alan Evans keeps the action whizzing along from scene to scene with a roistering quality that diverts attention from the most outlandish points of Goldsmith's plot...Director Evans has adapted Goldsmith's text in a way that's solicitous of the limitations of today's audiences but respectful of the playwright...Evans and his cast are demonstrating that Goldsmith's gem holds up as a source of merriment and a fine chance for actors to flaunt their comic gifts." Full Review
"High-spirited, funny, snappily adapted and paced by Evans, and crisply acted by a superb cast, 'She Stoops to Conquer' is a comic delight...It’s not the details of Goldsmith’s preposterous plot that make it work; it’s the skillful way he wove them together and his sly way with dialogue. And it’s not any of these fine performances individually that galvanizes this revival; it’s the brightly colored vision saddled up by Evans, and the gusto with which the actors take the reins." Full Review
"Three words to describe this production would be wit, whimsy and wherewithal...The actors are uniformly excellent and very well cast, each finding both the humor and the heart in the character...Within...the pared-down nature of the production, the actors find numerous colors and levels, in some ways liberated by the imposed limitations. It is a testament to their commitment and the director’s intelligence that they embrace this experience and run with it." Full Review
"'She Stoops to Conquer' encompasses all the tricks of that trade: mistaken identity, extreme characterizations, convoluted and zany plot lines, and miraculously favorable outcomes...Staged in a bare bones’ style, Evans lets the ridiculous but guileful text speak for itself...In addition to being simply comedic, it is layered with societal elements that are universal and timeless...Performances are first-rate...A lively and entertaining evening." Full Review
"The cast and crew have managed to execute a purely delightful production at a time when the theater is too often used as a soapbox...The cast knows exactly what they’re doing, and the chemistry between one another allows the story to flow freely...For a show that premiered in 1773, it holds up remarkably well...Scott Alan Evans’ direction allows certain moments to sizzle and pop, taking full advantage of the overtly theatrical world cultivated throughout the show." Full Review
"Presented in an intimate space, the company performed with heart, spirit, skill, and fire. And if the actors aren't famous, they range from good to superb. Here was one of the most charming plays in our language given a production it deserves: rousing, lively, engaging and amusing. Credit for that must start with the company's artistic director, Scott Alan Evans, who had the good sense to keep the production simple and to cast his actors largely by their talent." Full Review
"The jokes and one-liners in Goldsmith's 'She Stoops to Conquer,' a flagrantly silly comedy about love and mistaken identity, still hit the mark...Though it slouches for a few scenes in the beginning, the Actors Company Theatre production rights itself in the end and delivers some good old-fashioned hilarity. Goldsmith's 'She Stoops to Conquer' still packs a comical wallop, and the Actors Company Theatre proves it — no mistake about that." Full Review
"The TACT Company offers a lighthearted rendition of this classic replete with some genial audience contact between acts, occasional dissolution of the fourth wall, a couple of rousing tavern songs, and cleverly inclusive use of the entire theater, not just the stage. It’s fun...Scott Alan Evans’s adaptation is smart, witty, and economic. His direction, especially use of the aisles, arrives lively and well mannered. Accents, however, are all over the place." Full Review
"The self-conscious antics are further heightened by the increasingly tired, Brechtian convention of having the cast remain visible on the sides as they wait to make their entrances. This isn’t the wisest of choices for a play whose plot may strain credulity but is kept alive by the warm-heartedness of its characters, in each of whom the audience must believe. Only now and then does anyone seem flesh and blood." Full Review
"An evening that ought to be uproarious is little more than mildly amusing. The problem, I think, is that Scott Alan Evans has pressed his cast to maintain such a cheerful, friendly tone that the play's wellsprings of laughter are severely discounted. These nice people don't really mean it, do they?...Evans' production is rarely, if ever, dull, but throughout it lacks a strong point of view and an eye for detail...This one doesn't conquer; it merely tries to ingratiate." Full Review
"Lacking polish and with intrusive direction, this revival of Goldsmith’s classic 18th-century comedy of manners is an amiable but dull affair. The recorded snippets of harpsichord music periodically played are about the only energizing element of this dutiful production...Most crucially, it’s not that funny...They’re all technically accomplished actors but their aptitude for comedy and command of period style is individually variable...Overall this rendition is pleasantly adequate." Full Review
"The Actors Company Theatre's revival of this classic farce works hard to be contemporary. Maybe too hard...It seems that almost every other show wants to be interactive these days. I guess producers think that will lure younger people to their shows. But I'm hoping this is a short-lived trend, particularly when it's gratuitous, as it is here...But the show still has a few pleasures. That's mainly due to the cast, a mix of vets and newcomers to TACT's resident company." Full Review
"It’s very difficult to do, particularly with an American cast, for it is British to the core...Nothing wrong with minimalism, but as there are no walls, the company must lounge around against the side walls of the stage when waiting in what would be the wings if there were wings...I’ve seen several of the resident company...and a few have been well-placed here. But I found little consistency in style with the playing." Full Review
"Yes, 'She Stoop to Conquer' deals in romantic silliness that Goldsmith gives the sort of oomph that requires inspired directing and playing to realize its full potential. That's exactly what fails to occur here. Though the actors strive mightily, that may be the problem: too much effortful thesping. But it's not their fault. Their unrewarding toil is a consequence of Evans's direction." Full Review
"Goldsmith’s characters are imperfect, and therein likable. The Actors Company Theatre is staging a slightly imperfect (and therein quite likable) production...The moments when this production shines most are when it is faithful to Goldsmith’s unique genre of 'laughing comedy,' aimed to elicit belly laughs with physical ridiculousness and silly twists of plot...A fun night at the theater as well as an opportunity to experience one of England’s most important and beloved plays." Full Review
See it if ...enjoy classic British stage comedies, or their modern counterparts.
Don't see it if you have little patience for language that isn't dumbed down, contemporary speech or prefer toilet humor.
See it if You like classic (1700s) farce/comedy. You can follow non-modern language.
Don't see it if You need full sets to enjoy a show. You want modern language. You can't set aside modern ideas about dating and women.
See it if you like 18th century romantic comedy. This clever play has lasted thru the ages. This production is bare bones but offers a lot of fun.
Don't see it if you have difficulty with English accents, fast-paced dialogue and light subject matter.
See it if if you'd enjoy a modern adaption of a classic play from 1773; enjoy good ensemble acting; want to support a good resident theatre company.
Don't see it if you don't like revivals, prefer your drama modern and edgy.
See it if You like Restoration Comedy with its very complex literate language.
Don't see it if Don't want to listen carefully to the old fashioned language and rather silly plot.
See it if Charming revival of Goldsmith's seldom seen Restoration comedy. Impeccable acting from TACT ensemble
Don't see it if Farcical situations & broad comedy don't entertain you; trouble with multiple plot lines
See it if you like to laugh, enjoy excellent acting and want to see a groundbreaking comedy from the 18th century
Don't see it if you don't like a goofy type comedy from th 1700s; you don't like period type plays; you want a contemporary play
See it if You like historical comedy, can deal with classical language and a variety of British accents, but aren't a purist about production values.
Don't see it if Classical language and period theater isn't your thing. You can't appreciate a modern take on the classics, and don't like small, innovative
See it if you enjoy comedic period pieces. Quite funny with a great cast that delivers the fun. Nice touch with the cast sitting on the sidelines....
Don't see it if you're looking for razzle and dazzle over the top productions or if 'older style language' doesn't appeal.
See it if you'd like to see an able, talented cast have a good time with this classic comedy of manners; you seek an enjoyable theatrical diversion.
Don't see it if you can't (for some reason) abide 18th Century British comedies; you're a linguist/study dialects. [The accents vary widely in authenticity]
See it if you like period pieces, costumes, mix ups, convoluted plots. Funny. Excellent acting. TACT always had good productions. Goldsmith important
Don't see it if you have a hard time with English cadence of the 1600's. Kinda like Shakespeare (but not). Not for everyone although well done.
See it if You enjoy revivals, watching competent actors have a thoroughly good time on stage and silly & fun comedy of manners
Don't see it if You are interested in high budget productions, fancy sets, and prefer serious drama or more realistic, contemporary plots
See it if you're interested in so-called classic theatre, very inventive direction, good acting, the company is a delight, a fun evening
Don't see it if you are only familiar with contemporary theatre and you are hesitant to expand your theatre experience.
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