May 22, 1989 |
The Walnut Street Theater Company is planning another lightheaded season on its main stage - two musicals, a mystery and two comedies. Nothing on the agenda even hints at the serious mission of the nonprofit- theater movement. Nothing remotely high-minded clouds the horizon. At the Walnut, theater is just another kind of television, except you have to come downtown for it. And even television occasionally ventures into social problems or psychological byways. For its downstairs audience, the Walnut pretends there is no such thing as tragedy, no dark side to life, only easy laughs and song-and-dance.
April 13, 1986 |
Legends, like old soldiers, never die, but they don't fade away either. Legends grow with the fleeting years, adding even more romance and mystique to the myths, facts to the contrary. This is about such a legend, a legend about an Indian reservation at Broad and Walnut, where, Philadelphia lore holds, a small plot of ground was set aside in colonial times for visiting Indians. I recently learned of the legend when Russ O'Neill, who is big in hardware in Cape May, was in town for an eye check and topped off the day with dinner at the Union League with Bob Mendte, the ad man and historian.
December 11, 1986 |
In reviving a musical of such indelible memory as A Little Night Music, the trick is not to make us forget the original but to discover a fresh approach that does justice to the memory. The Walnut Street Theater Company has tried. Its production, which opened last night, bears evidence of rethinking. A new concept is tried for this beautifully conceptual show, but the effort has been made, plainly, by people who are not in the same league as the creative talents who made such magic with the 1973 Broadway production.
May 5, 2012 |
It's a Grand Night for Singing at the Walnut Street Theatre's Independence Studio, and it no doubt will remain so for the run of this cozy Rodgers and Hammerstein revue. Winding through nearly 40 of the legendary team's tunes, this production is fueled by amorous intentions, driven by a quartet featuring three of Philly's favorite performers — Jennie Eisenhower, Fran Prisco, and Michael Philip O'Brien (he's also artistic director of the all-musical 11th Hour Theatre Company) — and Rebecca Robbins, a fine, flame-haired New York import and Walnut regular.
April 8, 1991 |
The Walnut Street Theater will no longer extend the courtesy of free review tickets to Philadelphia's City Paper and the Courier-Post because the theater's executive director, Bernard Havard, is displeased with negative reviews by the papers' critics. "If they want to trash the Walnut, they can pay to trash it," Havard said in a phone conversation Friday. The City Paper, a free weekly paper that serves primarily a Center City audience, heard about the Walnut's policy first from a publicist, who called managing editor David Warner Tuesday.
February 19, 2004 |
In my favorable review last season of the Walnut Street Theatre Studio Series production of Wrong for Each Other by Norm Foster, I noted that it was the first local production of a work by the very popular Canadian playwright and that I would like to see more. The Walnut has obliged with Here on the Flight Path, and I'm pleased to report that, even though the play's characters and relationships are not as satisfyingly drawn as they were in Wrong for Each Other, the Walnut's sharp and snappy production is even more humorous and breezily entertaining.
July 2, 1986 |
A month or so ago I wrote a piece about one of the lasting Philadelphia legends - the legend of the Indian reservation at Broad and Walnut, said to have been set aside in colonial times as a camping ground for visiting Indians. I had heard talk of an Indian reservation behind the old Horn & Hardart Building, at Broad and Walnut, once the site of the Ritz Carlton Hotel, principally from Bob Mendte, the ad man and historian. But when Bob Mendte researched the legend, he couldn't find anything to back it up. To the contrary, Bob Mendte was informed by Ward Childs, of the city archives, that the legend had been debunked in 1940 by M. P. McGeehan, an attorney commissioned by the Welcome Society to search the titles to properties at Broad and Walnut.
October 21, 1988 |
A week or so ago I was an eyewitness to a quasi-bank robbery at Broad and Walnut. I say a quasi-bank robbery because this one was no Willie Sutton masterpiece. This one was the act of a rank amateur, but he fared a lot better than Willie Sutton. He didn't get caught. It was more akin to a purse snatch, except it unfolded inside the Meridian Bank, on the northwest corner of Broad and Walnut. This tall, lean kid grabbed the payday envelope from the hands of a tall, lean and pretty lass as she left a teller's window.
July 29, 2011
A mob of teens injured at least two people and robbed others during a brief rampage Friday night in Center City, police said. About 9:15 p.m., police started receiving 911 calls of a group of 20 to 40 teens assaulting people. Police found a man on the ground bleeding badly from the head at Walnut and Juniper Streets. He was transported to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. A street robbery was reported at 16th and Spruce Streets, police said. An iPhone was taken in that or another robbery.
July 3, 2012 |
As we celebrate independence, we'll be losing some traffic freedoms. Here's a rundown of coming street closures in Philadelphia. For more event information, click on highlighted names, or go to www.welcomeamerica.com. For transit info, see SEPTA's guide to schedule changes and extra services . TODAY-SUNDAY Penns Landing food, music, fireworks . Chestnut Street will be closed at Front Street from 9:30 a.m. today until 9 p.m. Sunday. SEPTA buses will be detoured onto Front, and "SEPTA will not have any buses lay over on the viaduct," say police.