All stories by Sara Holdren on BroadwayStars

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Theater Review: Can Cabaret Be a Tool of Liberation? by Sara Holdren

The Boys in the Band have left the building, and Arnold Beckoff’s Broadway transfer is still in previews, but if you’re looking for torch songs in the meantime, Midnight at the Never Get…

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Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Theater Review: The Diva Soul of Black Light by Sara Holdren

Who is Jomama Jones, the rooted and radiant soul diva whose show Black Light, which premiered at Joe’s Pub in the spring, has reemerged downtown for a run at the Greenwich House Theater? A…

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Monday, October 8, 2018

Theater Review: An Oklahoma! Where the Storm Clouds Loom Above the Plain by Sara Holdren

Stephen Sondheim, comparing two big hits by Rodgers and Hammerstein, memorably quipped, “Oklahoma! is about a picnic, Carousel is about life and death.” I’m not sure if the director Da…

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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Theater Review: Bill Irwin Takes a Sprightly Bounce Through Beckett by Sara Holdren

It always seems a touch sentimental to call a show a “gift” (not to mention dubious — most theater is far from free), but in the case of On Beckett, the oversize shoe simply fits.…

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Monday, October 1, 2018

Theater Review: Girl From the North Country Shows Another Side of Bob Dylan by Sara Holdren

Using Bob Dylan’s song catalog, the Irish playwright Conor McPherson has written a play with music set in America. And to hear him tell it, and his characters sing it, we the people of the…

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Sunday, September 30, 2018

Theater Review: What the Constitution Means to Me Is Personal, Political, and Uncannily Timed by Sara Holdren

“Thank you all so much for being here!” Heidi Schreck beamed, effervescent in a sunny yellow blazer, as she made her entrance at the start of What the Constitution Means to Me. Then she …

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Thursday, September 27, 2018

Theater Review: Crooked Billiards and Straight Zingers in The Nap by Sara Holdren

Until someone adapts The Great British Baking Show into a musical using re-lyricized Beatles songs (seriously, the possibilities are limitless: “While My Soufflé Gently Sinks,” …

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Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Theater Review: Uncle Romeo Vanya Juliet Sets a Gun on Shakespeare’s Mantel by Sara Holdren

Uncle Romeo Vanya Juliet begins casually and ends by breaking your heart. The latest from the adventurously lo-fi theater troupe Bedlam — which has earned a reputation for joyfully reinvig…

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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Theater Review: Is Theresa Rebeck Interested in Sarah Bernhardt, or Only Pretending to Be? by Sara Holdren

There’s a special kind of cringing reserved for plays that seem like they’ll be up your alley and instead get aggressively on your nerves. Watching Moritz von Stuelpnagel’s overwrought…

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Monday, September 24, 2018

Theater Review: Craig Lucas’s I Was Most Alive With You Aims High by Sara Holdren

Craig Lucas’s I Was Most Alive With You, now at Playwrights Horizons under the direction of Tyne Rafaeli, is a complex and far-reaching project. It’s a family saga, a riff on a biblical …

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Thursday, September 20, 2018

Theater Review: The Hard Facts of Backroom Politics in The True by Sara Holdren

The title of Sharr White’s drama The True—about real-life Democratic party insider Dorothea “Polly” Noonan and her relationship with Albany “mayor-for-life” Erastus Corning II—…

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Sunday, September 16, 2018

Theater Reviews: A Vanya in Contemporary English, and a 20th-Century Emperor Present But Not Seen by Sara Holdren

It’s an easy leap to call Richard Nelson “Chekhovian.” The prolific playwright and director, known for his trilogies about American families at political turning points (The Gabriels a…

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Wednesday, September 12, 2018

On Collective Rage and Its Detachment by Sara Holdren

Over the course of its self-consciously frolicsome 90 minutes, Jen Silverman’s Collective Rage: A Play in Five Betties grew on me. Then, after I left the theater, it shrunk on me again. I …

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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Theater Review: Pretty Woman and the Trouble With Onstage Nostalgia by Sara Holdren

As you approach the Nederlander Theatre, the marquee flashes a series of bold all-caps phrases: “BOLD WOMAN—FIERCE WOMAN—FUNNY WOMAN—SMART WOMAN,” and finally, inevitably, the titl…

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Monday, August 13, 2018

Theater Review: Direct From Exit 9, It’s Gettin’ the Band Back Together by Sara Holdren

Before Gettin’ the Band Back Together kicked off, the show’s producer bounded down the aisle and up the steps to the stage to do a little hyping. He wanted to know how we were all doing …

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Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Theater Review: It’s Always Sunny in This Twelfth Night by Sara Holdren

There are over 130 bios in the Playbill for Kwame Kwei-Armah and Shaina Taub’s musical adaptation of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, now receiving a revival at the Public’s Central Park h…

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Monday, July 30, 2018

Theater Review: On Fertile Ground With The House That Will Not Stand by Sara Holdren

At the end of the first act of Marcus Gardley’s The House That Will Not Stand, an angry mother stands center stage, a mounting storm whipping at the windows of her home as she rails agains…

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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Theater Review: The Go-Go’s Go to Grad School in Head Over Heels by Sara Holdren

Oh, to have been a fly on the wall in the elevator where Jeff Whitty, best known for a musical about the neuroses of New York Muppets, originally pitched the idea for Head Over Heels: “It…

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Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Theater Review: The Conventional Spin of This Ain’t No Disco by Sara Holdren

I bought a cookie at the intermission of This Ain’t No Disco. Weirdly, I needed the sugar. For all the insistent, glitter-ball-bedecked, in-your-face-sleazy-sexy exuberance of the new rock…

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Monday, July 23, 2018

Theater Review: Straight White Men Dares to Be Complicated by Sara Holdren

A few days ago, the Times published an extensive profile of Young Jean Lee in anticipation of Second Stage’s revival of her 2014 play Straight White Men, which marks—in that equally exci…

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Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Theater Review: Ivo van Hove’s The Damned Pulls the World Into the Armory by Sara Holdren

There’s a word in Russian: obraz. Translated simply it means image, but more accurately it refers to an icon or a sacred image, an image replete with expansive figurative meaning. More tha…

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Monday, July 16, 2018

Theater Review: Jump Cuts and Auteur Wannabes, in Fire in Dreamland by Sara Holdren

Like a nightingale caught up in a footrace with a bioengineered cheetah—having forgotten its wings and its voice in a befuddled attempt at high-tech speed—contemporary theater can often …

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Thursday, July 12, 2018

Theater Review: Mary Page Marlowe Is a Simple Carbohydrate by Sara Holdren

If you’re a Shakespeare in the Park kind of person, your summer will be bookended by two characters, the villain Iago and the heroine Viola, making the koan-like confession “I am not wha…

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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Reviewing Fairview, a Play That Almost Demands That I Not Do So by Sara Holdren

“I thought you said race is a construct,” says a mocking, identifiably white male voice coming from the sound system at Soho Rep halfway through Jackie Sibblies Drury’s vehement, searc…

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Friday, June 8, 2018

5 Long-Shot Votes I’m Casting for the Tony Awards by Sara Holdren

I’m a Tony Awards voter. If you know me as New York’s theater critic, this isn’t particularly strange or hilarious. But if you know me in person, it is. For the past few weeks I’ve b…

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Monday, June 4, 2018

Theater Review: Geopolitics and the Pick-and-Roll, in The Great Leap by Sara Holdren

Lauren Yee’s smart, feisty, highly enjoyable new play The Great Leap—currently having its New York premiere at Atlantic Theater Company under the high-energy direction of Taibi Magar—i…

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Thursday, May 31, 2018

Theater Review: Can The Boys in the Band Work in 2018? by Sara Holdren

Attending the still-contentious, oddly timed, star-studded 50th anniversary Broadway revival of Mart Crowley’s 1968 gay theater trailblazer, The Boys in the Band, is a strange, somewhat re…

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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Tom Hollander Talks Playing a ‘Grumpy’ and ‘Immortal’ Brit on American Stages in Travesties by Sara Holdren

The appallingly talented British actor Tom Hollander has been John Ruskin, T. S. Eliot, and Dylan Thomas; the prime minister and a motion-capture hyena; two King Georges, a periwigged pirate…

Linked From Vulture at 02:21PM
Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Theater Review: Watching The Beast in the Jungle Dance by Sara Holdren

Henry James would probably die all over again if he could hear one of his characters describe the looming, intangible something that dominates his life, that he’s in search of and afraid o…

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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Theater Review: A Well-Scrubbed Our Lady of 121st Street by Sara Holdren

Stephen Adly Guirgis’s Our Lady of 121st Street is a play whose combustible energy would benefit from compression and claustrophobia, but in the current revival at Signature Theatre, it’…

Linked From Vulture at 10:39PM

Theater Review: In Spandex and Sweat, Singlet Goes Its Own Way by Sara Holdren

The wolf-eyed Erin Markey wants you to be a little scared in the theater, kind of in the way you’re a little scared when you’re talking to someone attractive and you suddenly experience …

Linked From Vulture at 02:25PM

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