The Crucible at The Stratford Festival – A Review

The Crucible at The Stratford Festival Powered by three amazing star performances, Arthur Miller’s searing drama, The Crucible, is receiving a towering production in the Stratford Festival’s Avon Theatre under the direction of actor Jonathan Goad. The Crucible is set during the Salem, Massachusetts, witch trials of the late seventeenth century and the plot hews […]

The Front Page at The Stratford Festival – A Review

The Front Page at The Stratford Festival In 1928, The Front Page was a huge Broadway hit for the legendary writing team of Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur. Set in the Press Room of a Chicago courthouse, it tells the story of how rapacious newspaper editor Walter Burns tries to retain the services of his […]

Birds of a Kind at the Stratford Festival – A Review

Birds of a Kind at the Stratford Festival This season, the Stratford Festival’s Studio Theatre is home to two plays set in the Holy Land, both of them dealing with issues if identity and religious tolerance. They also share most of the same actors, so seeing them both makes for an instructive exercise. Nathan the […]

Private Lives at The Stratford Festival – A Review

private lives program

Private Lives at the Stratford Festival Vodka and vermouth, brandy and Bénédictine, champagne and kyr, none of them are more intoxicating or will make you giddier than the combination of Lucy Peacock and Geraint Wyn Davies in the right comic roles. Elyot and Amanda Chase, the not so gay divorcés of Noel Coward’s 1931 confection […]

Othello at The Stratford Festival – A Review

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Othello at The Stratford Festival William Shakespeare’s Othello is, of course, a tragedy. The tragedy in the current modern dress production of the play at the Festival Theatre is that some fine actors suffer under the misdirection of director Nigel Shawn Williams. Williams seemingly has never seen a dramatic moment he didn’t want to underline, […]

Merry Wives of Windsor at The Stratford Festival – A Review

Merry Wives of Windsor at The Stratford Festival William Shakespeare‘s The Merry Wives of Windsor owes its existence, according to tradition, to Queen Elizabeth the First’s desire to see more of Falstaff, who had become an audience favorite in Shakespeare’s histories. Thank you, Queen Bess! The play shows us Sir John Falstaff well past his […]

Henry VIII at The Stratford Festival – A Review

Henry VIII at The Stratford Festival Henry VIII is one of William Shakespeare’s last plays and one of the oddest. It would seem that the play was designed to compete with the growing popularity among the Globe’s monied clientele of court masques, elaborately staged pageants that featured rich costumes and ingenious special effects. Ironically, the […]

Billy Elliot The Musical at The Stratford Festival – A Review

billy elliot program

Billy Elliot The Musical at The Stratford Festival In Billy Elliot The Musical the Stratford Festival has another smash hit musical on its hands. The whoops of joy from young girls, the thunderous applause after every number, and the outpouring of love that accompanies the curtain calls are proof enough of that. And yet . […]

The Neverending Story at The Stratford Festival – A Review

The Neverending Story at The Stratford Festival Hats off to the Schulich family, whose obviously generous donations fund the production of children’s theatre at the Stratford Festival! In the 2019 season their largesse is bringing us The Neverending Story, adapted by David S. Craig from German writer Michael Ende’s popular book, at the downtown Avon […]

Nathan The Wise at The Stratford Festival – A Review

Nathan The Wise at The Stratford Festival Gotthold Ephraim Lessing’s 1779 play Nathan The Wise (translated and adapted by Edward Kemp), now playing in the Festival’s Studio Theatre, is one of the literary gems of the early Enlightenment. Lessing applied humanist logic, as opposed to blind superstition, to the problem (still with us today) of […]