Regional Roundup: Top New Features This Week Around Our BroadwayWorld 12/21 - MISS SAIGON, A CHRISTMAS CAROL and More!
BroadwayWorld presents a comprehensive weekly roundup of regional stories around our Broadway World, which include videos, editor spotlights, regional reviews and more. This week, we feature MISS SAIGON, A CHRISTMAS CAROL and More!
Central Pennsylvania: Contributor Rich Mehrenberg reviews LEND ME A TENOR at Resident Theatre Company, writing "Lend me a Tenor is an ebullient and highly professional production. The Resident Theater Company have a hit on their hands, and The Town of West Chester should be proud to own a tiny slice of Broadway."
UK / West End: Contributor Aliya Al-Hassan reviews HANSEL & GRETEL at the Rose Theatre, writing "The perfect family show at Christmas is a big ask for theatres. The pressure is on to cater for the biggest range of audiences they see all year. They expect fun, jokes, a good story, great visual effects, excellent acting, maybe some catchy songs (but not annoyingly so) and a happy ending to boot. If you are looking for all these things rolled into one glorious package of festive wonder, head down to the Rose Theatre in Kingston because they have cracked the perfect Christmas show."
Tampa: Contributor Peter Nason reviews Charles Dickens' Classic A CHRISTMAS CAROL at the Carrollwood Players, writing "A CHRISTMAS CAROL, which revolves around literature's most famous miser, Ebenezer Scrooge, is a story of redemption during hard times when it was tough to believe in anything other than misery. These were dark days in London, during the early years of the Victorian Era, and Dickens was yearning to spotlight the nostalgic goodness of the season in order to infuse some sort of joy that he feared was absent in a world that had grown far too jaded. And if a cold-blooded, heartless skinflint like Scrooge can be transformed, then isn't there hope for all of us?"
Cleveland: Contributor Roy Berko reviews LIBERACE writing "The show has been described as a "moving and highly entertaining tribute to a legendary performer famous for his charm, glitz and glamour. It relives the highs (and lows) of Liberace's prolific life, revealing the real person behind the persona. Interwoven with a rollicking piano score spanning classical and popular music from Chopin to "chopsticks" and Rachmaninoff to ragtime.""
Los Angeles: Contributor Ellen Dostal reviews LOVE ACTUALLY LIVE at The Wallis, writing "The countdown to Christmas begins and ends with an all-out love blitz this year in For the Record's latest world premiere, LOVE ACTUALLY LIVE, a hybrid entertainment that blends scenes from Richard Curtis' 2003 film Love Actually with live performances of the movie's soundtrack. Co-produced by the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, it is a celebration of love in all its messy, complicated, wonderful glory in a Las Vegas-style vision designed to impress."
Los Angeles: Contributor Gil Kaan reviews SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL writing "Rockwell Table & Stage currently houses The Fuse Project's stunning, STUNNING production of SCISSORHANDS - A MUSICAL. Co-written by Kate Pazakis and Bradley Bredeweg (who also directs), the 1990 hit film Edward Scissorhands receives the Pazakis/Bredeweg Midas touch, updating the movie with gender-bending, social issues consciousness, and, as they both are known for including - incredible vocals."
Washington, DC: Contributor Jennifer Perry reviews MISS SAIGON Offers Up Dose of High Drama at Kennedy Center, writing "The Engineer is integral to shaping Chris and Kim's story, but let's face it. You need a strong actress in the role of Kim and a strong actor in the role of Chris to make it believable. Emily Bautista embodies Kim in every way. She achieves a near perfect mix of naivety, strength and determination, and hope. Kim experiences a roller coaster of a journey in two and a half hours and Emily clearly feels every moment of it. She delivers the myriad of power ballads with ease and draws you in with every word sung. Her pure, gritty belt reaches the rafters and gives you chills. Whether it was the notoriously bad sound situation in the Opera House, a less than successful attempt at sound mixing, or a combination of factors, I did have a bit of trouble understanding and/or hearing her lyrics in the quieter moments on the night I attended. These moments often occurred at the end of phrases where her voice would more or less drop out."
Los Angeles: Contributor Shari Barrett reviews SPECIAL writing "The World Premiere comedy SPECIAL commemorates the 40th Anniversary of the worst variety show in television history with a behind-the-scenes imagined look of how The Star Wars Holiday Special came to be. And from the outrageous imagination of playwright Andrew Osborne and a hard-working multi-role cast directed by Kerr Seth Lordygan (who also appears as a Special Guest Star in the production), laughs abound from start to finish as we witness how the ridiculous nature of the script, backstage politics and out-of-control spending doomed it to go down in history as being the most horrible Holiday Special that nobody talks about, notorious known for its extremely negative reception by Star Wars fans, the general public, and critics."
Regional Editor Spotlight:
Los Angeles Contributor
Shari Barrett, a Los Angeles native, has been active in the theater world since the age of six - acting, singing, and dancing her way across the boards all over town. After teaching in secondary schools, working in marketing for several studios, writing, directing, producing, and performing in productions for several non-profit theaters, Shari now dedicates her time and focuses her skills as a theater reviewer, entertainment columnist, and publicist to "get the word out" about theaters of all sizes throughout the Los Angeles area.
As a founding member of the LA Stage Alliance Leadership Council Task Force, she and reps from theaters throughout the city worked together to articulate a vision for the theater community of Greater Los Angeles.
Shari is a member of the Board of Directors for Kentwood Players at the Westchester Playhouse, one of the thriving community theater groups in Los Angeles, and the Publicist for CRE Outreach at The Blue Door, a theater group dedicated to providing artistic expression for those with all disabilities, military veterans, and at-risk youth.
Along with being on the dedicated team of Broadway World theater reviewers in Los Angeles, Shari writes a weekly "Stage Page" column in the Culver City News featuring local theater news and reviews.
Shari has received recognition from the City of Los Angeles for her dedication of heart and hand to the needs of friends, neighbors and fellow members of society for her devotion of service to the people of Los Angeles, and is honored to serve the theater world in her hometown.
Join Team BroadwayWorld! Interested in joining our team, but not exactly sure what we do? All of your questions are answered, along with every open position from guest and student bloggers, Regional Editors, and more! Find out where we have open positions available here!