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Walnut Street Theatre

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ENTERTAINMENT
September 21, 2012 | By Monica Peters, For The Inquirer
Go inside the phobic world of 10-year-old Sheila Tubman, who is scared of everything, at the Walnut Street Theatre for Kids' stage production Saturday of Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great , based on the 1972 book by Judy Blume. While at day camp, Sheila meets an adventurous girl named Merle "Mouse" Ellis. Sheila covers up her fears with bravado to be friends with Mouse. Meeting Mouse, combined with a family vacation to Tarrytown, forces Sheila to overcome some of her secret fears, including being in the dark, swimming, spiders, dogs and more.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 19, 2014 | By Monica Peters, For The Inquirer
On Saturday, you can see what happens when a pink thing goes too far at Walnut Street Theatre's stage production of Pinkalicious , which runs through April 27. Despite her parents' warnings, Pinkalicious Pinkerton just can't stop eating pink cupcakes. Now she's come down with a case of pinkititis and is turning pink from head to toe - then pinker, and even pinker. The cure? Could it be green and leafy? The play is based on the popular children's book by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 22, 2013 | By Toby Zinman, For The Inquirer
David Lindsay-Abaire's Broadway hit play Good People , at Walnut Street Theatre, is about class. It is a sociological cliche that the American inclination is always to root for the underdog, which often means, as it does here, the unlucky, the uneducated, the unemployed. "Un" is the fact of life in "Southie," a thickly accented rough and tough neighborhood in Boston. The plot centers on Margaret (Julie Czarnecki) who, fired by her nice-guy boss (Jered McLenigan) from her job at the Dollar Store, faces eviction from her not-so-nice landlady (Sharon Alexander)
NEWS
November 22, 2013
IT'S A good thing I thoroughly enjoyed "Elf," the musical-stage version of the hit 2003 movie that runs through Jan. 5 at the Walnut Street Theatre. If I hadn't, I'd likely have to surrender my membership in the human race. That's because only the Grinchiest of Scrooges (or is that Scroogiest of Grinches?) could give a "Bah, humbug!" to this merry melange of yuletide music and mirth. Like the film upon which it is based, "Elf" follows the misadventures of a bumbling but lovable North Pole denizen who, though raised from infanthood as one of Santa's elves, is actually a human being (hence his unusual height and inability to speedily and efficiently construct toys)
NEWS
May 23, 2014
HAD ENOUGH of deformed, subterranean opera-house denizens, barricade-building, 19th-century French student revolutionaries, musical adaptations of obscure movies and the endless parade of Disney characters come-to-life? Then head to the Walnut Street Theatre and bask in the glory of the way things used to be, when musicals sparkled with clever comedic banter, genuinely funny jokes and honest-to-goodness songs that stayed in your head long after the curtain fell, as opposed to dialogue delivered via instantly forgettable melodies wrapped in ersatz rock or watered-down R&B. Through July 13, the Walnut is presenting "How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying," one of the most popular musical comedies of all time.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 2, 1987 | By NELS NELSON, Daily News Theater Critic
Three one-act plays: "One for the Road" and "Applicant," by Harold Pinter, and "Audience," by Vaclav Havel. Directed by Andrew Lichtenberg, costumes by Christine A. Moore, lighting by Rebecca R. Klein, sound by Jeff Chestek. Presented by the Walnut Street Theatre Co. in the Studio 3 Theatre, 9th and Walnut streets, through April 12. By arrangement or coincidence, two contemporary plays dealing with the interrogation of political prisoners have opened in this city within three days of each other.
NEWS
October 20, 1988 | By Nels Nelson, Daily News Theater Critic
Another season and another show at the Walnut Street Theatre, and still another hearty slap on the back of Bernard Havard for his keen assessment of the largest, non-profit theater subscription audience in Pennsylvania. The Walnut subscribers like their shows corny, cliche-ridden, easily digested, happily ended, devoid of distressing surprises and preferably over in time for a leisurely nightcap before snuggling in their cocoons for the 11 o'clock news. "Social Security," the season opener which Havard served up for his people last night, meets the Walnut standards about as well as any production in the company's brief and prodigiously successful history.
NEWS
November 21, 2002 | By Douglas J. Keating INQUIRER THEATER CRITIC
With a $5 million grant from the state and a purchase agreement on a parking lot next door, the Walnut Street Theatre is poised to launch a campaign to build a 300-to-350-seat theater adjacent to its historic building at Ninth and Walnut Streets. Bernard Havard, the Walnut's producing artistic director, said the state grant - part of $43 million that Gov. Schweiker awarded to area cultural groups Tuesday - was a major initial step toward the construction of a second performance space.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 1, 2009 | By Howard Shapiro INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Buy a single ticket to the Walnut Street Theatre - just one ticket for a specific show - and you'll be asked to be a theater critic. "How did you like the show?" someone will inquire in a phone call a few days later - and then tell you what subscription options you have for more shows at the nation's oldest working theater. Tomorrow - the actual date it opened in 1809, as a circus - the theater company celebrates its bicentennial with an invited audience and some performers who have appeared there over the decades.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
ENTERTAINMENT
May 23, 2015 | By Jim Rutter, For The Inquirer
'Inspired by actual events" has become one of the more misleading phrases used to push entertainment. In Memphis , now in a musically sensational staging at the Walnut Street Theatre, the claim to a factual basis creates huge dichotomies within the production, and makes a mess of the entire evening. In the 1950s, Memphis DJ Dewey Phillips broke radio's color barrier by becoming one of the first white DJs to play "race music," then a euphemism for rock-and-roll and blues sung by African Americans.
NEWS
May 3, 2015 | By Jim Rutter, For The Inquirer
The sheer number of songs in I Love a Piano wouldn't surprise an Irving Berlin scholar - but their power and number astounded in Ray Roderick and Michael Berkeley's musical tribute. More than 50 selections from Berlin's songbook fill the delightful 95-minute production at the Walnut Street Independence Studio on 3. With a cast led by Ellie Mooney and Owen Pelesh, these songs soared, charmed with their winsomeness, and reminded listeners - with a nostalgic sense of loss - of the age in which Berlin wrote the lyrics and music for most of his greatest hits.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 23, 2015 | By Sally Friedman, For The Inquirer
On one of last winter's snowy nights, playgoers arrived at the door of a Bala Cynwyd home, shed their jackets and boots, and took their seats - in this case, bridge chairs scattered around a living room. At "curtain time" - although the only curtains were on the windows - Deborah Baer Mozes, a petite woman with a megawatt smile, greeted those assembled, and gave a brief orientation. It was showtime at Salon Ariel - a theater troupe that makes house calls, if you will - and at the front of the room were the actors who would be performing a reading of a full-length play called Hungry Heart . The latest iteration of intimate, in-home performances - think home concerts - Salon Ariel hopes to fill a void in the theater world.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 22, 2015 | By Toby Zinman, For The Inquirer
Reprise alert! Philadelphia Artists' Collective's stunning production of The Rape of Lucrece , Dan Hodge's one-man, many-character presentation of Shakespeare's epic poem, returns to Philadelphia this week for four performances only at the Wilma Theater. The piece, which was a runaway hit at the 2014 Fringe Festival, is a quick follow-up to PAC's The Fair Maid of the West . The combination of those shows - one an obscure tragic work by Shakespeare, the other a rambunctious big-cast 1631 comedy by Thomas Heywood - perfectly represents PAC's mission: the rediscovery of scripts undeservedly forgotten and neglected.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 4, 2015 | By Monica Peters, For The Inquirer
Children are invited to join the Continental Army, see what it was like to be a continental soldier, and learn army essentials Saturday at Valley Forge National Historical Park. First, kids will receive enlistment papers and old-time continental-style cash. They will then learn how to load, fire, and carry a dummy musket just as soldiers did in George Washington's day. Park rangers in full continental uniform will train the young recruits. Join the Continental Army Junior Ranger Program, 11 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Visitor Center at Valley Forge National Historical Park, 1400 N. Outer Line Dr., King of Prussia.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 1, 2015 | By Jim Rutter, For The Inquirer
Remember Liberace? The Wisconsin-born piano prodigy who for decades reigned as an American superstar by building an entertainment empire of TV and a mainstay Vegas act that paid him up to $300,000 a week? If you don't, the Walnut's Independence Studio on 3 production of Liberace! contains plenty of historical information to fill you in. Writer/director Brent Hazelton's 2010 show winks at the idea that many may not remember the pop icon. After Jack Forbes Wilson's Liberace announces a drawling "I'm ba-ack!
NEWS
March 27, 2015 | By A.D. Amorosi, For The Inquirer
Say the name "Liberace" and a dozen smiling images - each campier than the one before - pop into view, all fabulous, rhinestone-encrusted, fur-lined, and sprinkled with stardust. When he was part of the entertainment landscape from the 1950s through the 1980s on television or stage, Liberace's keyboard repertoire was one of showy pop/classical sides and willowy, winking conversational asides. And he was beloved, particularly by women, his sexuality rarely questioned (he won libel suits against Britain's Daily Mirror and Confidential magazine in the mid-'50s when they implied he was homosexual)
ENTERTAINMENT
March 21, 2015 | By Toby Zinman, For The Inquirer
Agatha Christie's old chestnut of a novel, Ten Little Indians , was a best-seller in 1939 and was adapted for the stage in 1943. It creaks along under its politically correct title, And Then There Were None , on the Walnut Street Theatre's main stage, providing a mildly amusing evening and a mildly puzzling whodunit. As a murder mystery, it has more in common with the board game Clue than with Law and Order . The premise: 10 people, strangers to one another, have been invited to an isolated manor house in the middle of an island for a weekend.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 12, 2015 | By Jenny DeHuff
THANK GOD for the Philadelphia Film Society! On Monday, it officially announced the acquisition of the historic Prince Music Theater, on Chestnut Street near Broad. The beloved theater had been shuttered since October, when the theatrical organization that occupied the building - the American Music Theater Festival - failed to find new leadership after its board chairman died. Prince reps tell me that the beleaguered theater had been in a constant state of bankruptcy but was being floated by its board chairman.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 7, 2015 | By Monica Peters, For The Inquirer
What's that smell? It's The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fair(l)y (stoopid) Tales at Walnut Street Theatre through Sunday. The hour-long musical comedy is based on the immensely popular 1992 book by Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith. Jack tries to save himself from being eaten by the Giant by regaling him with fairy tales, frequently fractured (Cinderumplestiltskin, anyone? Goldilocks and the Three Elephants?). Fairy-tale worlds converge and come to life as the audience goes on a journey into Jack's crazy world.
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