All stories by Herb Merrick on BroadwayStars

Sunday, September 24, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill’ at Baltimore Center Stage by Herb Merrick

“Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill” is a jukebox musical written by Lanie Robertson. The setting is a cabaret bar in South Philadelphia in March 1959 in which vocalist Billie Holiday…

SOURCE: at 09:06PM

Concert Review: ‘Get Happy! Michael Feinstein Celebrates the Judy Garland Centennial’ at Strathmore by Herb Merrick

Michael Feinstein, vocalist and pianist, is a music revivalist and archivist of the Great American Songbook. He is the Principal Pops Conductor of the Pasadena Orchestra and the Artistic Dir…

SOURCE: at 08:40PM
Tuesday, September 12, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘Sister Act’ at Toby’s Dinner Theatre by Herb Merrick

“Sister Act” is a musical adapted from the popular 1992 film of the same name, with new music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Glenn Slater, and book by Bill and Cheri Steinkellner, with additi…

SOURCE: at 08:31PM
Monday, September 11, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘A Doll’s House’ at Everyman Theatre by Herb Merrick

Henrik Ibsen’s three-act play, “A Doll’s House,” was published in 1879 in Copenhagen and sold 13,500 copies within the first three months. The world premiere at the Royal Theatre in …

SOURCE: at 10:26PM
Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Theatre News: The World Premiere Revival of ‘The Wiz’ Launches pre-Broadway Tour at Baltimore’s Hippodrome Theatre by Herb Merrick

The pre-Broadway national tour of “The Wiz” kicks off in Baltimore at the Hippodrome Theater from September 23-30, 2023, with a limited Broadway engagement planned for spring of 2024. Th…

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Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Concert Review:  ‘Chuck & Eva’ presented by IN Series at Theatre Project by Herb Merrick

This production was not what I expected—a play about the story of the two musicians, Chuck and Eva, and how their unusual friendship led to the development of an album of songs from the Gr…

SOURCE: at 04:34PM
Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Concert Review: ‘Broadway in the Park’ featuring Megan Hilty and Lea Salonga presented by Signature Theatre and Wolf Trap by Herb Merrick

Directed by Signature Theatre’s Artistic Director Matthew Gardiner, with the Wolf Trap Orchestra conducted by Jon Kalbfleisch, Signature’s resident music director, “Broadway in the Par…

SOURCE: at 11:10AM
Saturday, June 10, 2023

Theatre Review: Disney’s ‘Frozen’ at The Hippodrome by Herb Merrick

Disney Theatrical Productions faced a challenge when it decided to produce a musical stage version of their successful film. “Frozen” is based on the beloved Hans Christian Andersen fair…

SOURCE: at 11:23AM
Monday, May 1, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘Harvey’ at Everyman Theatre by Herb Merrick

Written by Mary Chase in 1944, “Harvey” won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama the following year. The original Broadway production ran for over four years (1,775 performances) and was directe…

SOURCE: at 11:09PM
Sunday, April 16, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘Grease’ at Toby’s Dinner Theatre by Herb Merrick

  The musical “Grease” (music, lyrics, and book by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, with additional songs by John Farrar) has remarkably survived over 50 years of Broadway and West End prod…

SOURCE: at 11:11PM
Sunday, April 2, 2023

Concert Review: Leslie Odom, Jr. with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra by Herb Merrick

Leslie Odom, Jr. (actor/singer/composer) has accomplished a lot in the first 25 years of a diversified career spanning many performance genres. He has appeared in leading roles on film and s…

SOURCE: at 09:48PM
Friday, March 24, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘R.E.S.P.E.C.T. – A Celebration of the Music of Aretha Franklin’ at the Hippodrome Theatre by Herb Merrick

Aretha Franklin (composer-singer-pianist), the “Queen of Soul,” had an astonishing six-decade career (1954-2017) during which she received 18 Grammy Awards and 44 nominations. She was th…

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Monday, March 20, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘Tiny Beautiful Things’ at Baltimore Center Stage by Herb Merrick

John Dunton was the first known advice columnist. He answered questions sent to his British periodical “The Athenian Mercury” in 1690, with the assistance of experts in science, history,…

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Monday, March 13, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘The Sound Inside’ at Everyman Theatre by Herb Merrick

“The Sound Inside” by Adam Rapp (novelist, playwright, screenwriter, musician, and film director) is directed by Everyman Theatre’s founder and artistic director, Vincent M. Lancisi, a…

SOURCE: at 04:52PM
Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Concert Review: ‘Rodgers, Hart, and Hammerstein’ at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra with Ashley Brown by Herb Merrick

  Composer Richard Rodgers (1902-1979) and lyricist Lorenz (Larry) Hart (1895-1943) collaborated on 28 musical shows during the period 1919-1943. Upon Hart’s death in 1943, Rodgers formed…

SOURCE: at 12:14PM
Saturday, February 18, 2023

Concert Review: ‘Marin Conducts TITAN’ presented by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall/Strathmore by Herb Merrick

Gustav Mahler (1860-1911), an Austro-Bohemian conductor-composer, once said, “As soon as I am in the midst of nature and by myself, everything that is base and trivial banishes without a t…

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Monday, January 23, 2023

Concert Review: ‘Conlon Conducts The Verdi Requiem’ presented by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra by Herb Merrick

Oscar Wilde once said, “The critic has to educate the public; the artist has to educate the critic.” My experience of the Italian composer Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901) and his music began …

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Monday, January 16, 2023

Concert Review: ‘Revolution: The Music of the Beatles. A Symphonic Experience’ presented by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra by Herb Merrick

An interviewer once asked John Lennon how the Beatles named their songs. John said he was getting a haircut at a salon when he heard one of the stylists ask a customer how she liked her hair…

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Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Theatre Review: ‘My Fair Lady’ at the Hippodrome Theatre by Herb Merrick

“My Fair Lady,” with music by Frederick Loewe and book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, is based on the 1913 play “Pygmalion” by George Bernard Shaw. Shaw refused to give permission fo…

SOURCE: at 08:59PM