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Reviews for Current Shows

Book by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan Music & Lyrics by Mel Brooks
Presented by Greater Lewisville Community Theatre
Runs through 8/2/2015

Reviewed by Jeremy William Osborne,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

A lot of fun is what you expect when you hear about Mel Brook's “The Producers.” Stemming from Brook's association with an unscrupulous producer in his earlier years The Producers became his first film starring Zero Mostel and Gene Wilder. Thirty-something years later and Brooks adapted his zany movie into the most successful Broadway show of all time, winning 12 Tony awards including Best New Musical. The cast included the incomparable Nathan Lane as Max Bialystock and Matthew Broderick as Leo Bloom. Greater Lewisville Community Theatre captures the silliness and fun of the original and compresses it to fit their space with only 16 cast members for a show that can easily use 30.

The set for The Producers is simple. Sometimes a flat set of walls represent ...

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by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II
Presented by Firehouse Theatre
Runs through 8/2/2015

Reviewed by Elaine Plybon,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

Oklahoma! has been a favorite of audiences since it first appeared on Broadway in 1943. The first collaboration between award-winning duo, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Oklahoma! has a quality about its script and accompanying music that entertains and pleases its audiences. Popular among community theater, schools, and professional companies, it can have varying qualities of delivery. Firehouse Theatre’s production is satisfactory in both the quality of the entertainment and the energy of the delivery.

The venue for the Firehouse Theatre is a city-owned building that once housed a fire station. A small, proscenium stage graces the front of the intimate theater. Theater seating is abundant, although not on risers, so occasionally it is difficult to see all of the action on stage. At this time, the theater is awaiting installation of adequate air-conditioning, ...

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Music and Lyrics by William Finn Book by Rachel Sheinkin Conceived by Rebecca Feldman Additional Material by Jay Reiss
Presented by Runway Theatre
Runs through 8/9/2015

Reviewed by Rachel Elizabeth Khoriander,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

When The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee appeared on Broadway in April of 2005, it was quickly nominated for six Tony awards. It won two, including Best Book. A slightly quirky, offbeat look at the lives of precocious spelling bee contestants as seen during a county competition, this is not your traditional musical. Its writers and script are highly encouraging of improvisation, and the play itself is audience-interactive, character-driven, and slightly irreverent.

When the opportunity to review the show presented itself, I was immediately intrigued. Besides my obvious interest due to a love of the theater (and musicals especially), this particular play was appealing because of the memories it evoked from my distant past. Because the truth is... I am a spelling N-E-R-D. If you were to rifle thoroughly enough through ...

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Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim Book by James Lapine
Presented by Garland Civic Theatre
Runs through 8/15/2015

Reviewed by Chris Jackson,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

“Careful the wish you make, / Wishes are children. Careful the path they take- / Wishes come true, / Not free.” Stephen Sondheim

“Everybody gets a chance to shine in Into the Woods,” says Stephen Sondheim in a Masterworks Broadway interview, “that’s what makes it perfect for community theater and schools.” Indeed, this musical has become perhaps the most popular of Sondheim’s works not only for its twists on familiar fairy tales, but also because each beloved character DOES get a chance to shine. Garland Civic Theatre has put together a production that gives their cast a chance to do just that!

Into the Woods debuted in San Diego at the Old globe Theatre in 1986 and premiered on Broadway on November 5,1987 wining several Tony Awards, including Best Score, ...

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Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison Book by Bob Martin and Dan McKellar
Presented by Granbury Theatre Company
Runs through 8/16/2015

Reviewed by Genevieve Croft ,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

As someone who has never seen the Historic 1886 Granbury Opera House, my visit to Granbury, Texas on Saturday afternoon was a real treat. Not only did I have the pleasure of taking a short road trip from Waxahachie to Granbury, but also, I was able to see a production in a theater that originally featured Vaudeville Acts, Dramatic Productions, and Musical Programs. According to the Texas Historical Commission plaque, “after years of rapid deterioration,” the building originally named Kerr’s Opera House, was re-opened in 1975 by the Granbury Opera Association. It was impressive to see the interior the theater, kept with the integrity and design that was very representative of the original state. Now that the history of the theater building has been uncovered…let’s get on with the show-and to ...

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Book by Neil Simon/Music by Cy Coleman/Lyrics by Dorothy Fields
Presented by WaterTower Theatre
Runs through 8/16/2015

Reviewed by Juliana Adame ,
Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

Sweet Charity, along with the original productions of Pippin and Chicago, also starring his wife and muse Gwen Verdon, is one of Bob Fosse’s most famous projects: he directed and choreographed the original Broadway production in 1966. The show was nominated for nine Tony awards, and has a number of revivals, West End productions, and international productions. The stage production was adapted for the big screen three years later, also directed by Fosse, and starring Shirley MacLaine. Some famous faces taking on the role of Charity include Debbie Allen, Ann Reinking, Charlotte d’Amboise, Christina Applegate, Molly Ringwald, and Paige Davis, not to mention supporting appearances by Bebe Neuwirth, Dennis O’Hare, Chita Rivera, Donna McKechnie, and many more throughout the years.

Open on young, high-spirited, and undeniably likable Charity, a taxi dancer at ...

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Music & Lyrics by George and Ira Gershwin, Book by Craig Lucas
Presented by Palace Theater, New York
Runs through 11/22/2015

Reviewed by John Garcia,
Senior Chief Critic/Editor/Founder for John Garcia's THE COLUMN

The 1951 MGM classic film An American in Paris (AAIP) is one of the very few movie musicals to take home the Academy Award for Best Picture, with a final tally of six golden statuettes.

It was originally a 1928 symphonic tone poem composed by Gershwin, He was inspired when he visited Paris in the 1920s.

The musical version of AAIP has a very (and I mean VERY) strong chance of taking back to the Palace Theater in June the Tony for Best Musical, and if it does, it will be the first musical that relies primarily on choreography to win since 2000 when Susan Stroman’s Contact took the prize.

All musicals have some semblance of dance, but a mere handful are mainly dance, such as Fosse, Jerome Robbins’ Broadway, and the aforementioned Contact. ...

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