Tag Archives: Reviews

Tonight is Your Last Chance to see “4000 Miles” (Review)

4000 miles banner copySaturday, Oct. 11 is your last chance to check out Actors’ Theatre’s first show of the season, 4000 Miles by Amy Herzog. If you missed it, here is an excerpt from Terry DeBoer’s review of the show (Click the links to read the full article.)

Review: ‘4000 Miles’ captures relationship dynamic of love and loss

By Terry DeBoer | grentertainment@mlive.com

An intriguing premise poignantly comes to life in a wonderful character study of a grandmother and grandson in the Actors Theatre production “4000 Miles,” which opened Thursday at Spectrum Theatre.

Questions of love and loss, aging and death and the complexities of family relationships are all explored in the one act play by Amy Herzog.

The play’s multiple angles are revealed through the prism of its two major characters – 91 year-old Vera Joseph (portrayed with a remarkable and engaging consistency by Marti Childs) and her 21 year-old grandson Leo (whose confident yet vulnerable Owen McIntee was also a highlight). []

Go to mlive to read the rest of the article (note: 4000 Miles got 3.5 out of 4 stars!), and then head over to the Actors’ Theatre website to make your reservations for tonight’s show!

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BroadwayWorld.com reviews Grey Gardens at Actors’ Theatre

Check out this review by Cassandra Sandros from BroadwayWorld.com:

BWW Reviews: From Everything to Nothing: GREY GARDENS the Musical (Actors’ Theatre)

Grey Gardens Logo

The offbeat and somewhat perplexing musical Grey Gardensacts as a pseudo-documentary of the rise and fall of the reclusive mother/daughter duo of “Big” Edith Bouvier Beale and “Little” Edith Bouvier Beale. Aunt and cousin, respectively, of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, the story follows their lives from high society to abject poverty, living in a decomposing mansion overrun with flea-infested cats.

Grey Gardens the Musical is based upon the 1976 documentary of the same name, by Albert and David Maysles. Footage from this documentary is played as a prologue, accompanied, ironically, by the song ‘The Girl Who Has Everything’.

This introduction transitions into the luxurious Grey Gardens mansion of 1941 on the eve of Little Edie’s engagement party, wherein the play takes on the camp qualities of other pre-World War II musicals. This portion of the show is the product of fantasy, as the writers imagined what it would have been like for the family at the peak of their fame. The songs are upbeat and Porter-esque and the Bouvier family is at the height of its influence and grandeur. Big Edie (Kathy Gibson) is portrayed as a self-involved socialite whose time is spent preparing musical works with her charming, ivory-tickling “soulmate”, George Gould Strong (Neil Trevisan), while Little Edie (Allyson Paris) longs for the freedom to pursue her own dreams of stage and screen. After expressing her sincere desire to have things remain the same and not to lose her daughter, Big Edie sabotages her daughter’s engagement to the White House-seeking Joe Kennedy and Act One draws to its conclusion as Little Edie makes her escape to New York City, leaving Big Edie to entertain the party guests (the audience) with the heart-breaking “Will You”.

[Click over and read the rest of the review on www.BroadwayWorld.com]

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“Venus in Fur” Review on mlive.com

3 1/2 out of 4 stars review

Have you seen the review for Venus in Fur ? 3.5 out of 4 stars! We at Actors’ Theatre are incredibly proud of this show. Here’s an excerpt from the article on www.mlive.com:

Review: Actors’ Theatre ‘Venus in Fur’ a sexy, scintillating look at gender dynamics

Tricia Woolfenden | grentertainment@mlive.comBy Tricia Woolfenden | grentertainment@mlive.com 

Some battles are fought with heavy artillery and firepower. The power play at the core of “Venus in Fur” is waged with a far less predictable, some might say more potent, weapon: Human sexuality.

Actors’ Theatre launched the opening performance Thursday, Dec. 12, in the wake of a two-day winter storm system that left downtown side streets buried in nearly as much snow as there is subtext to playwright David Ives’ work. Presented with a single sparse set and one intermission-free act, the play relies entirely upon the interchange between its two performers: Vanda Jordan (Ellie Frances) and Thomas Novachek (Kyle Los). []

First go over to www.mlive.com and read the rest of the article, then jump over to www.atgr.org and reserve your seats! There are performances tonight and tomorrow, and next week Thurs. – Sat., December 19-21. All shows are at 8:00PM.

Don’t forget – there is a talkback after tonight’s performance! Be sure and join us!

Kyle Los plays Thomas and Ellie Frances plays Vanda during the dress rehearsal of the Actors' Theatre production of 'Venus in Fur' Wednesday night. (Katy Batdorff | MLive.com)

Kyle Los plays Thomas and Ellie Frances plays Vanda during the dress rehearsal of the Actors’ Theatre production of ‘Venus in Fur’ Wednesday night. (Katy Batdorff | MLive.com)

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Tonight’s Production of “Beauty Queen of Leenane” is SOLD OUT

We are pleased to announce that Friday night’s production of Beauty Queen of Leenane is SOLD OUT!

There are few more seats available for Saturday and Sunday’s performances. If you are interested in seeing this amazing, much talked about production, we recommend you reserve your tickets online immediately. Go to http://actorstheatregrandrapids.org/beauty-queen-of-leenane to reserve tickets.

Remember, this production is being hosted by Dog Story Theatre, so there are a smaller number of seats available than at our usual home of Spectrum Theatre. Ordering in advance is highly recommended.

See what others are saying about Beauty Queen of Leenane:

The Beauty Queen of Leenane receives three and a half stars out of four in the review on mlive.com

Sue Merrell also wrote a personal piece on her blog, Laughing for a Living: Grand Canyon of Leenane

Hear an interview with Fred Sebulske and cast members on GVSU with Shelley Irwin

Beauty Queen of Leenane at Actors' Theatre

“Beauty Queen of Leenane” by Martin McDonagh by Actors’ Theatre, hosted at Dog Story Theatre, 7 Jefferson Ave. SE

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Last Weekend for [title of show]!

There is one more weekend to see [title of show] at Actors’ Theatre! Hurry over to www.actorstheatregrandrapids.org and order your tickets – they are going fast!

Photo from the Actors' Theatre production of [title of show], playing from March 28th through April 6, 2013 at GRCC Spectrum Theater. Photo Credit: Dave Kagan, Sensitography — with Ellie Frances, George Toles, Rob Karel and Jolene Frankey at Actors' Theatre Grand Rapids.

Photo from the Actors’ Theatre production of [title of show], playing from March 28th through April 6, 2013 at GRCC Spectrum Theater.
Photo Credit: Dave Kagan, Sensitography — with Ellie Frances, George Toles, Rob Karel and Jolene Frankey at Actors’ Theatre Grand Rapids.

Want to learn more? Check out this excerpt from a 3 star review by Lorilee Cracker from mlive.com:

“Untitled Opening Number” opens a show like none other — a show within a show, and then within another show. “{title of show}” makes one’s head spin with all the zigzagging from reality to alternate reality and back, but the Actor’s Theatre production, which opened Thursday night in Spectrum Theater, is such brash, bracing fun, the audience rolls with it.

(Read the full review on www.mlive.com)

Or, check out what Tommy Allen had to say on Rapid Growth Media about [title of show]:

TOS has not only touched the nerve of the creative process in a beautifully rich and original way, but it is a light-hearted musical with snappy tunes that explores the depths of how we create and why.

In the end, TOS reminds the viewer that, yes, you can dream and create a life you love. These characters do struggle, but they affirm that while life might give us the pits, we are left with a lovely bowl of cherries.

(Read the full article on Rapid Growth Media.)

And of course, you already like us on Facebook, right? Did you see the great production stills by Dave Kagan?

So what are you waiting for? Reserve your seats today!!

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