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Jason Sherwood

The Chase Brock Experience: The Girl with the Alkaline Eyes

December 31, 2018

Brock’s work once prized effect over substance, but years of choreographing situation and character-based musicals ("Be More Chill," "Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark") have sharpened his artistic vision; or, perhaps, he has matured as he’s gained experience—and years. [more]

This Ain’t No Disco

August 7, 2018

"This Ain’t No Disco" is a compressed, zany look at the years in the 1970s that Studio 54 ruled the social whirl of New York City, complete with debauchery, drugs, loud music, semi-nudity and dancing (brilliantly evocative choreography by Camille A. Brown—herself no slouch with "Once on This Island" under her belt.) The libretto hews closely to the facts about the rise and fall of this mecca of A-list celebrities, including real people—Steve Rubell, Andy Warhol (here called The Artist)—and a host of fictional characters who represent a cross-section of the clientele, from pretty boy bartenders/drug dealers to undercover government agents looking for a chink in Rubell’s armor.  The Mudd Club also makes a guest appearance as well as the homes of several of the characters whose mixing and matching drive the play. [more]

Sojourners & Her Portmanteau

May 31, 2017

Expect great things from Udofia in the future. Both plays demonstrate that she writes full-bodied, three-dimensional characters, while "Her Portmanteau" reveals that she can also write a play from the heart whose emotions will pull you in and stay with you long after the final curtain. Also keep your eye on Chinasa Ogbuagu: playing two different women 36 years apart she is totally unrecognizable, you have to read the program to discover that it is the same actress, an extraordinary feat. [more]

The View UpStairs

May 15, 2017

On the fourth anniversary of the Stonewall uprising in 1973, an arsonist set fire to a gay bar in New Orleans, killing 32 people. This tragic yet forgotten episode in gay history is not only part of a Harvey Fierstein monologue in "Gently Down the Stream"—currently playing at the Public Theater--but also the subject of "The View UpStairs," a new Off Broadway musical that has a lot of spark, but ultimately not enough fire. [more]

Two Class Acts: Squash & Ajax

November 5, 2016

Whether you see one or both of Gurney’s "Two Class Acts," these are provocative plays of ideas on topics of the day. The playwright continues to demonstrate that he has a wise and discerning view of the human condition. Director Stafford Arima has done a beautiful job of obtaining all of the nuances and humor out of the two sharp and intelligent situations. The casting for both plays could not be improved as the actors make their roles their own. The Flea Theater leaves White Street on a high note with two entertaining and superior productions that will close the space with honor and distinction. [more]

Sojourners

February 3, 2016

Ms. Udofia’s dialogue is richly expressive and she renders the four characters with depth and detail. The relationships between the characters are fully explored and their interactions where they voice their hopes and desires are often poignant. This is most particularly felt in the growing camaraderie between Abasiama and Moxie. [more]

Gluten!

November 25, 2015

From offstage we hear the hyperbolic exclamations of a young man, Copious Fairchild, as he masturbates mixed with the soundtrack of a television cooking show. He enters the living room with a jar containing his semen and places it on the coffee table. After favorably commenting on its magnitude his young wife Hibiscus Van Der Waal, takes it and goes offstage. We soon hear her orgasmic sounds as she inseminates herself during this anti-sexual reproductive process called “coagulating.” It’s a pivotal sequence in Stephen Kaliski’s excruciating futuristic spoof "Gluten!" [more]

Songbird

November 10, 2015

Kate Baldwin (John & Jen, Giant, Big Fish, Finian’s Rainbow) as self-absorbed country western star Tammy Tripp gives a big bravura performance as a mother who resents her adult son as he gives away her real age. Adam Cochran as the young songwriter Dean (Konstantin in Chekhov) has just the right combination of confusion and frustration. As Mia (Nina), his girlfriend who wants to be a singer, Ephie Aardema is quite sweet as the impressionable young woman starting out who chooses to go on her own journey. Eric William Morris as successful songwriter now producer Beck Michaels (Boris Trigorin) offers rueful regret for the career he might have had. [more]

SeaWife

July 9, 2015

The six members of the Lobbyists make up the cast along with Raymond Sicam III (on cello) who perform all of the characters as well as play all the instruments. The Melville Gallery has been decorated by set designer Jason Sherwood as a 19th century inn that seems to encircle the audience. Samantha Shoffner’s props (suggestive of both an inn and a schooner) include netting, ropes, glass jars, baskets, paintings and a ship’s wheel. After the band plays an introduction, Caldi (played by Tony Vo) offers to tell us the story of Gravesight, “the greatest harpooner who ever lived.” [more]