All stories by Barbara Trainin Blank on BroadwayStars

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Interview: Sheldon Bair from The Susquehanna Symphony Orchestra by Barbara Trainin Blank

Nothing is as certain in the arts as change. Born near the banks of the Susquehanna River (in Harrisburg, Pa.), Sheldon Bair started out playing drums and bass. “By my senior year in h…

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Thursday, July 26, 2018

News: Hersheypark and ZooAmerica Rise Above The Floods by Barbara Trainin Blank

Animals may not know enough on their own to come in from the rain. But at least some of the inhabitants of ZooAmerica, which is part of Hersheypark, were given a little prodding. Because of …

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Monday, July 2, 2018

Theatre News: Arts-oriented camp includes ‘campy’ activities, Jewish culture by Barbara Trainin Blank

When you ask children a question, they usually give you an honest answer. So, when Allison and Jeremy Goldman of Ellicott City asked their children during the school year of 2017 what they w…

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Saturday, April 14, 2018

Theatre News: ‘Fire at Adventure Theatre, MTC – #FillTheGap’ by Barbara Trainin Blank

It was a cruel irony. Adventure Theatre MTC was about to launch its production of “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” when it entered a “run”…

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Theatre Review: ‘The Legend of Pufferfish Pat: A Tall Tale for Mad Times’ at InterAct Story Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

It’s a beautiful fall day in Montgomery County when many potential audience members are probably outside enjoying the weather. But those inside the Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center …

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Thursday, August 3, 2017

In Memoriam: Sam Shepard by Barbara Trainin Blank

Bleak fascination: The legacy of Sam Shepard Within a few days of Sam Shepard’s passing from complications of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) on July 27, the Red The…

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Monday, April 3, 2017

Interview: Logan Vaughn, Director of ‘A Human Being Died That Night’ at Mosaic Theater Company by Barbara Trainin Blank

MD Theatre Guide: This is your directorial debut at Mosaic. What drew you to this particular theatre company? Logan Vaughn: I met Ari Roth (founding artistic director) at a directing worksho…

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Theatre Review: ‘Three Sisters’ at Studio Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

If any work of art epitomizes despair, it is Anton Chekhov’s “Three Sisters.” The Prozorova sisters of the title, stuck in a provincial backwater, dream of returning to the Moscow of t…

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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Theatre Review: ‘King Charles III’ at Shakespeare Theatre Company by Barbara Trainin Blank

As often happens when a play has been “hyped” a great deal and receives more awards than one can count, I resisted, in the beginning, the lure of Mike Bartlett’s King Charles III. But…

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Monday, January 23, 2017

Theatre Review: ‘Lear’ by Lumina Studio Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

If you’re looking for a strictly traditional “King Lear,” you won’t find it in the Lumina Studio Theatre production, now having a sadly short run at Silver Spring Black Box Theatre. …

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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Interview: Bobby Smith on His Role as Thomas Andrews in ‘Titanic’ at Signature Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

Now playing at Signature Theatre through January 29, 2017, “Titanic” is set on the ocean liner RMS Titanic. More than 1500 individuals lost their lives when the luxury ship sank on its m…

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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Stupid F*cking Bird’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Since seeing a performance of Aaron Posner’s “Stupid F*cking Bird” at Silver Spring Stage on October 30, I find my mind racing in a blend of contradictory emotions. Is Posner paying h…

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Romeo and Juliet’ at Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) by Barbara Trainin Blank

No one ever tires of “Romeo and Juliet,” a tale of young love thwarted by poor choices, bad luck, and warring families. So the production of the Bard’s beloved comedy-turned-tragedy at…

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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Clybourne Park’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Not much time left to catch one of the theatrical hits of the decade at Silver Spring Stage. Seeing Clybourne Park in a week punctuated with racially tinged violence makes Bruce Norris’s P…

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Sunday, June 12, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘District Merchants’ at Folger Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

Through the centuries actors, directors, and audiences have had a complex attitude of both attraction and revulsion to The Merchant of Venice. Somewhat perplexingly labeled one of Shakespear…

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Monday, May 23, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Miss Witherspoon’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Miss Witherspoon refers to a theoretical character who might appear in an Agatha Christie mystery–an older woman who has accumulated crotchiness along with age. Veronica, the protagoni…

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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Theatre Review, ‘The Body of an American’ at Theater J by Barbara Trainin Blank

In The Body of an American, written by Dan O’Brien, the subject of the play, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who has been assigned to many war zones, asks: “If I’m not crazy anyw…

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Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Hkeelee (Talk To Me)’ at Mosaic Theater Company by Barbara Trainin Blank

At a time when refugees are streaming out of the Middle East and seem to be engendering fear and mistrust rather than compassion, Mosaic Theater Company is presenting a solo show that offers…

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Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Remember those romantic comedies of the ‘30s and ‘40s, in which two people who dislike each other end up falling in love? Or realizing they loved each other all along? It could be said t…

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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ at Round House Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

Arguably the most widely performed of Tennessee Williams’s play, and according to many, his personal favorite, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is more rooted in reality and less in symbolism or the …

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Sunday, February 21, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Animals out of Paper’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

You don’t have to know about origami to appreciate Rajiv Joseph’s play Animals out of Paper, on view at Silver Spring Stage. But it helps. There’s mystery to how origami is created, bu…

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Theatre Review: ‘The Promised Land’ at Mosaic Theater Company by Barbara Trainin Blank

Mosaic Theater Company’s mission expresses a commitment to powerful, transformational, and socially relevant art. That certainly describes The Promised Land, a play about East African refu…

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Monday, February 1, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘The Glass Menagerie’ at Ford’s Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

If you’ve ever (as I have) attended a production of The Glass Menagerie lacking the poetry and turbulent emotions inherent in the Tennessee Williams classic, you’ll delight in the curren…

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Friday, January 15, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘The Critic’ and ‘The Real Inspector Hound’ at Shakespeare Theatre Company by Barbara Trainin Blank

Want to see critics in the hot seat? Then run, don’t walk, to Shakespeare Theatre Company’s Lansburgh Theatre (STC), where they’re getting what many actors and directors think they…

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Monday, January 11, 2016

Theatre Review: ‘Humble Boy’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

No pun intended, but the water main brake near Silver Spring Stage on January 9–causing heavy traffic delays and a late curtain at the performance–did not dampen the enthusiasm o…

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Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Theatre Review: ‘The Gospel of Lovingkindness’ at Mosaic Theater by Barbara Trainin Blank

Long before he founded Mosaic Theater Company earlier this year, Ari Roth was known for thoughtful, even provocative, theater. At Mosaic he is continuing that mandate, but also presenting in…

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Theatre Review: ‘Every Christmas Story Ever Told (and Then Some) ‘ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Yes, Virginia, there is A Christmas Carol. But that’s not what audience members at Silver Spring Stage will be seeing this holiday season. The myriad versions of the Dickens classic—film…

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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Theatre Review: ‘Stage Kiss’ at Round House Theatre by Barbara Trainin Blank

Sarah Ruhl’s Stage Kiss, enjoying its regional premiere at Round House Theatre, proves yet again that a kiss can be much more than a kiss. It may, in fact, be the most-erotic form of lovem…

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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Theatre Review: ‘Entertaining Mr. Sloane’ by Edge of the Universe Players 2 by Barbara Trainin Blank

Audiences back in 1964, when the play first opened, apparently found Entertaining Mr. Sloane anything but. To put it mildly, they were shocked. Joe Orton’s inaugural work for theater is de…

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Saturday, November 21, 2015

Theatre Review: ‘Akeelah and the Bee’ at Arena Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

Looking for inspiration and joy in the holiday season? See Arena Stage’s presentation of Akeelah and the Bee by the Children’s Theatre Company. There’s plenty of humor and some pathos…

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Monday, November 2, 2015

Theatre Review: ‘The Metal Children’ at Silver Spring Stage by Barbara Trainin Blank

As intriguing as its premise, The Metal Children, a play by Pulitzer Prize nominee (not for this work) Adam Rapp lacks subtlety. If vigilantes wearing pig’s masks who terrorize people they…

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All that Chat

May 30, 2023: Grey House - Lyceum Theatre
Jun 26, 2023: Just For Us - Hudson Theatre
Jul 24, 2023: The Cottage - Hayes Theater
Nov 16, 2023: Spamalot - St. James Theatre
Dec 18, 2023: Appropriate - Hayes Theater
Mar 07, 2024: Doubt - Todd Haimes Theatre
Apr 14, 2024: Lempicka - Longacre Theatre
Apr 17, 2024: The Wiz - Marquis Theatre
Apr 18, 2024: Suffs - Music Box Theatre
Apr 25, 2024: Mother Play - Hayes Theater
Jun 10, 2024: The Drama Desk Awards