January 29, 2013 |
A full moon soared diagonally across the stage backdrop at Temple's Conwell Theater Friday night for the opening of Wolf-in-Skins . Hounds and wolves bayed; the hair on my neck prickled. The animals loped in on all fours, knuckles fisted like paws. From the opposite fly, three consorts of the prince regent of Annwfn (Gwyn ap Nudd, a stag) danced across in vertical contrast, often in relevé. Their breasts were cupped loosely in petals, their diaphanous empire-waist tutus flared by acrylic.
November 17, 2012 |
If nothing else, Thanksgiving should constantly remind us of how exceedingly blessed we are. But sometimes we forget. Simple comforts we take for granted - food, shelter, a flushing toilet, a winning football team (let us pray for next season), a family who loves us, a government that supports us - tend to drop off the radar, replaced by what we think we want and deserve. Well, have I got a talented, inspirational, and perfectly delightful reality check for you. I'm talking about the Watoto Choir, a children's choir based in Kampala, Uganda.
September 3, 2012
An Eagle and a rock-and-roller While reading the stories devoted to the life and career of the late football Hall of Famer Steve Van Buren I couldn't help but notice that there was a missing chapter ("Steve Van Buren, Eagles great, dies," Aug. 24). Following his sports career, Van Buren had a hand in promoting the love of song and dance for the teeny boppers of the 1950s and '60s. My memory is a little cloudy as to the exact year, but I'm certain that it was sometime in the mid-1950s that Van Buren's Danceland opened its doors in the middle of the 1000 block of Wood Street in Bristol.
February 5, 2012 |
The big-ticket item for NBC in 2012 is - drumroll, please - show tunes. Seriously. They won't let me make this stuff up. The network has sunk some serious cash into Smash , a series built around the mounting of a major Broadway musical about Marilyn Monroe. What a refreshing concept for a play! No one has exploited Marilyn's legacy in the last, let's see, 15 minutes. Smash , which airs at 10 p.m. Mondays on NBC10, is executive-produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron ( Chicago )
December 30, 2011
THE ORDER of march for the 2012 Mummers String Bands. The first band steps off at Broad and Oregon at 10 a.m. (Number in parentheses is how the band placed last year.) 1. Duffy String Band (13) Captain: Ted Kudrick Theme: All Decked Out A full deck of cards comes to life featuring Jacks, Queens, Kings, Aces and Jokers. Luck and sleight of hands are plentiful. Duffy knows when to hold 'em and when to show 'em. Captain Ted Kudrick plays the King of Spades. 2. Fralinger String Band (4)
November 18, 2011 |
WHAT APPEARED fresh and fun back in 2006 now feels like recycled goods in "Happy Feet Two. " The first time around, the sight of multicultural penguins singing and dancing in a gorgeous, environmentally threatened setting seemed disarmingly novel. But while a number of new characters have been introduced into the zoologically varied cast, the format and themes have a shopworn air that even the 3-D Antarctic vistas and intermittent cleverness can't surmount. Commercially, however, there's no reason this splashy sequel won't perform similarly to the original, which pulled in $385 million worldwide.
June 2, 2011 |
Summer TV's not the old song and dance anymore. It's the new song and dance, with NBC's America's Got Talent and Fox's So You Think You Can Dance (both premiered in May) leading the charge of reality shows. They'll try to marry people off (The Bachelorette is back) or stick them in a box until they blow the roof off (Big Brother premieres July 7). And enough freaks and fakes, not to mention chefs with their fryers and fricassees, will fill the tube to give everyone a huge tummy ache.
April 1, 2011 |
The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley, a Walnut Street Theatre for Kids Production, will bring song-and-dance entertainment to the young set this weekend. The stage production, to be presented at the theater through April 16, tells the story of Stanley Lambchop, who leads a regular life with his family but wishes things weren't so mundane. Stanley's luck changes when his bulletin board falls on him while he is sleeping and makes him flat. Making the best of his new shape, Stanley folds himself into an envelope and travels the globe.
March 3, 2011
CHANTILLY, Va. - Talking is good, we have been continually told. "Talking," NFL Players Association president Kevin Mawae said yesterday after the owners and players spent another 4 hours in a room together with federal mediator George Cohen, "is better than not talking. " Yesterday's session between the two sides was the ninth in the last 2 weeks, totaling 51 hours. With the current collective bargaining agreement scheduled to expire tonight at midnight, they will meet again this morning at 9 o'clock.
February 11, 2010 |
Greatest-hits productions can go a couple of ways. One is the smorgasbord approach, providing songs that make you want to see the shows they're from, each number giving you a little musical drama, with character and plot implied. Another is the nostalgia route, the one taken by The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber, currently at the Merriam Theater for a brief run. This approach depends on you already knowing - usually lyric by lyric - the songs and their shows; you enjoy the performance partly because you're remembering when you last saw Phantom of the Opera.