News Ticker

Richard Termine


Richard Termine is a free-lance photographer who has specialized in the performing arts for over 20 years.

http://www.richardtermine.com/

Midnight Coleslaw’s Tales from Beyond The Closet!!!

June 12, 2024

Perhaps "Midnight Coleslaw’s Tales from Beyond The Closet!!!" ’s tagline “an evening of boner-chilling terror” was not meant to be a typo. The premise of an evening of one-act plays that explore queer culture and perspective through (low) comedy and the macabre could be entertaining, if only the end result had enough macabre to fill out the evening. One act gives a truly creepy story of a young couple falling for a chair that appears to be made of human skin with a gender all its own that pleases both members of the heterosexual couple. The second act finds a lesbian couple on the eve of one of them turning her mother over to an assisted living facility. She in turn is haunted by the ghost of her long deceased father as the couple ready the mother’s house for sale. The last act is for the most part a monologue of a gay man that may or may not be celebrating his last birthday on earth. [more]

Lyrics & Lyricists Series: “Wonder of Wonders: Celebrating Sheldon Harnick”

June 7, 2024

While most of the songs presented were standards, there were some oddities and curiosities like five cuts songs, one song from a Ford Motor Company industrial show by Bock and Harnick, and two songs Harnick wrote with others, one to his own lyrics. Sperling himself sang three of the five cuts song, starting with Amalia’s song of anxiety before her date with “Dear Friend” pen pal for the unashamedly romantic "She Love Me," “Tell Me I Look Nice,” replaced by the more powerful “Will He Like Me?” (created by Barbara Cook, and sung here by Zavelson). [more]

Exagoge

May 7, 2024

As we are instructed early on, the meal and the service are divided into 15 sections. The Seder is held in the midst, or as a significant part, of the whole of the play. It is then complemented by the opera portions. Einhorn gets a big assist from composer Avner Finberg’s exotic score and musical director Mila Henry as she leads the chamber sextet from the piano. Tenor James Benjamin Rodgers as Moses, soprano Tharanga Goonetilleke as Tzippora, one of the God voices, and a messenger, and lyric bass Matthew Curran as the Pharaoh, Reuel, and the other God voice are exemplary. [more]

One Night Only: An Evening with Sutton Foster & Kelli O’Hara and The New York Pops

November 24, 2023

The pairing of Broadway legends Sutton Foster and Kelli O’Hara proved felicitous just like the previous pairing of Julie Andrews and Carol Burnett, with each lady using her special gifts: Foster was best in the comic moments and O’Hara was ravishing in the semi-operatic musical numbers, just as had been Burnett and Andrews in their three concerts. Backed by the glorious New York Pops orchestra led by Maestro Steven Reineke, Foster and O’Hara made the most of this unique concert staging directed by Dick Scanlan. The many uncredited costume changes put the singers in either stunning red, black or white outfits. Throughout the evening the singers were supported by their own music directors at the piano, Dan Lipton for Kelli O’Hara and Michael Rafter for Sutton Foster. "One Night Only: An Evening with Sutton Foster & Kelli O’Hara" proved to be a memorable evening and one that is hoped to be the first of many. [more]

The Shylock and the Shakespeareans

June 8, 2023

Einhorn has reshaped the dramatic elements of the original play to focus primarily on antisemitism. What he achieves is a show that highlights how the antisemitism of the 16th century is connected to the religious dogma of that period, with aspects of it extending to the present day. Although it is superficially faithful to the themes of the source, it is still a play that deals with the elements of prejudice, justice, love, and societal norms within the context of antisemitism. It is for an audience that enjoys a well-acted, thought-provoking story with a solid point of view. [more]

Pericles (Target Margin Theater)

March 13, 2023

Director David Herskovits must have looked at this as a true labor of love, but not all of the touches support the hard work of the actors. In some of the early ensemble scenes, the actors put on exaggerated courtly poses. The poses do nothing to further what is going on dramatically;, they appear done just for the sake of being curious. But Mr. Herskovits succeeds with the handling of deeply humane and touching scenes. [more]

Twelfth Night (The Classical Theatre of Harlem)

February 14, 2023

When the Countess Olivia played by glamorous Christina Sajous declares “How wonderful!” in the final scene of The Classical Theatre of Harlem’s return engagement of its production of William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night," she most likely has the whole audience in agreement. Director Carl Cofield has created a colorful, imaginative and humorous staging of a romantic comedy classic that usually has two melancholy leading characters and is not very funny. Add music and dance to the talented cast led by the dynamic Kara Young as well as visual stage pictures which are very cinematic and you have a top-notch revival for audiences of all ages. [more]

Ohio State Murders

December 21, 2022

McDonald is mesmerizing as she speaks Kennedy’s strong, clear, poetic and evocative prose. We never forget that McDonald’s Suzanne Alexander is giving a lecture but she changes ages in an instant as she becomes the wide-eyed and innocent college student in love with learning and new ideas, and then return to being the mature author with a shocking story to tell. McDonald shifts beautifully between idyllic scenes of college life, the ugly face of racism in the dorm and on campus, and the off-stage violence that defines the murders. While the play is not told in strict chronological order there is no problem in following the story of these few years in the early 1950’s that shape Suzanne Alexander’s life. [more]

American Buffalo

May 8, 2022

The 1975 play "American Buffalo," now onstage at the Circle in the Square Theatre in a crackling revival, remains the quintessential Mamet experience, the one that should be seen to fully appreciate what has been lost. Essentially a two-hander masquerading as a three-hander, it's a character study short on plot and long on self-delusion as a couple of small-time crooks imagine themselves as much more than they are while planning an ambitious heist. To say they're all talk gets to the satirical heart of Mamet's play. [more]

Barococo

February 14, 2022

Mandell’s costume and wig design are exquisite, perfectly defining each character in their own distinct look and style with numerous fabrics and colors and without overlap. Each of the actors’ performances are as unique as their costumes. Grastorf gets many laughs from her wide-eyed, innocently naivety (or just plain dimwittedness), and Mark Jaster’s puffy bravura and expressive face are delightfully campy. Mandell’s cantankerous bawdiness is perfectly chosen for her character, and Thomas plays the narcissistic Dauphine with laughable presumptuousness. Vernon’s pretentious, foppish roguery is spot on for his role, and Caleb Jaster as the simple musician interacts perfectly when called upon. Each actor’s facial expressions, gestures and gaits are very distinct and in line with their characters. [more]

Whisper House

January 22, 2022

The songs which are mainly sung by Alex Boniello (usually with a guitar) and Molly Hager as the ghostly narrators are folk ballads which though lovely sound like a continuation of the same song. While the theme of racism against Asians is extremely timely, the treatment is wedded to the 1940’s and seems to be many years late. There is a great deal we do not learn about the characters which leaves holes in the plot. The tale is very derivative of earlier stories with the same tropes: haunted lighthouse (Thunder Rock), boy goes to live with strange relatives (The Grass Harp), malevolent ghosts, one male, one female (The Turn of the Screw), etc. [more]

Sun & Sea

September 17, 2021

Performed by a cast of 15 singers and enacted in pantomime by numerous local volunteers all dressed in swimwear, Sun & Sea is a typical day at the beach in which we hear the thoughts of the singers, some of whom worry about the state of the world while others are entirely oblivious to it. Not only is it opera lite and a great deal of fun without being funny, it is also a very subversive way to communicate a message on as serious a subject as climate change. While the singers communicate their thoughts, the beachgoers frolic and enjoy their day oblivious to us but not to each other. The cast is a cross-section of all ages and races, including young children and two well behaved dogs – but no vendors. The totally realistic action (aside from the singing) includes reading, texting, eating, chatting, drinking, walking, cuddling, tanning, playing ball or games, while the children dig in the sand and build sandcastles. Some sit on beach chairs or chaise lounges while most lie on blankets on the sand or stand. [more]

The Artist Will Be With You in a Moment

March 12, 2020

With its eloquent nods to conceptual art, good-natured comedic tone and superior performance, "The Artist Will Be With You in a Moment" is an intelligent entertainment. [more]

Suicide Forest

March 6, 2020

This illustrates the biggest problem with "Suicide Forest":  it takes on too many issues, jumping from social to sexual to mythological to intimate family subjects.  Making the play even more difficult to understand is that it is performed in both Japanese and English.  In addition there is some confusing cross-ressing. "Suicide Forest" is alternately funny, disgusting and moving, making it too often a tiring show to sit through despite its wealth of social commentary. The director Aya Ogawa kept the show rolling along but couldn’t make all the parts gel. [more]

92Y Lyrics & Lyricists Series: Jerry Herman: You I Like

February 27, 2020

Music director Andy Einhorn who conceived the show was a genial, informed host.  Having worked as the music supervisor and music director for the most recent revival of "Hello, Dolly!,"  he was at times overcome with emotion as the show, directed by Cady Huffman, revealed all of Herman’s richness and, yes, sophistication.  Listening to and quoting Herman really got to Einhorn whose beautiful arrangements buoyed all the songs. [more]

Medea (Brooklyn Academy of Music)

February 9, 2020

While Simon Stone’s adaptation is engrossing for its surprising updates, it never captures the emotions, seeming more like a gimmick that a reworking of the Greek tragedy. With most of the actors underplaying their roles, the emotional temperature never really heats up even when the audience is confronted with various horrors. The use of the video screen and the all-white set somewhat distances the audience from the events on stage which undercuts the tragedy unfolding. Don’t blame Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale, who have given much more impassioned performances elsewhere, as they seem to be pawns of Stone’s concept. [more]

The New York Pops: “Find Your Dream: The Songs of Rodgers and Hammerstein”

January 31, 2020

The New York Pops’ latest concert, Find Your Dream, was a glorious tribute to nostalgia. Not only was it an evening of the beloved songs of Rodgers and Hammerstein with selectionsfrom all 11 of their collaborations, it also recreated a performance first presented five years ago by The Pops. The guests artists on the evening of January 24 were British musical theater star Laura Michelle Kelly (Broadway’s "Mary Poppins" and "Finding Neverland") first seen in a flaming red, off the shoulders gown and American musical theater star Max Von Essen (Broadway’s "An American in Paris" and "Anastasia") in a midnight blue jacket. Joining The Pops as usual was Judith Clurman’s Essential Voices USA who were an integral part of the show with the famous choral numbers. [more]

92Y Lyrics & Lyricists Series: E.Y. “Yip” Harburg: Follow the Fellow Who Follows a Dream

January 29, 2020

The 92nd St. Y’s Lyrics & Lyricists, one of New York’s leading propagators of the Great American Songbook, featured the witty and sardonic songs of E.Y. “Yip” Harburg in its most recent edition: "E.Y. 'Yip' Harburg:  Follow the Fellow Who Follows a Dream." Harburg, famous for writing the lyrics for "The Wizard of Oz" and "Finian’s Rainbow," wrote over 600 songs with many collaborators. The show gracefully explored his oeuvre and his life using the extraordinary talents of five fine singers and a superb band led by Paul Masse who supplied the often surprising orchestrations. They were helped by vivid projections by Dan Scully that showed New York City street scenes, theater marquees, historic programs and posters as well as photos of a genial looking Harburg who tried all his life to defy all the prejudices and inequities of his time and replace them with his complex and colorful lyrics that featured witty rhymes and references. [more]

Einstein’s Dreams

November 22, 2019

Alan Lightman’s 1992 internationally best-selling novel "Einstein’s Dreams" would seem like an unlikely choice for stage adaptation as the original book is made up of 30 variations on theories of time but includes no plot. However, as adapted by Joanne Sydney Lessner (book and lyrics) and Joshua Rosenblum (music and lyrics) it is a charming period musical that makes Einstein’s theories (at least the ten dramatized) quite accessible to audiences not made up of physicists. Its lovely score and excellent production directed by Prospect Theater Company’s Cara Reichel led by Zal Owen and Alexandra Silber are both entertaining and mind-expanding. Its deficiencies are ones that were also true of the novel. [more]

Felix Starro

September 4, 2019

The score with Ms. Hagedorn’s sharp lyrics and composer Fabian Obispo’s pointed melodies in the manner of Stephen Sondheim and John Kander is quite accomplished with its rousing group numbers and rich solos. Highlights include an eerie sequence with one sick person after another seeking rejuvenation, a Billy Flynn "Chicago"-style bit documenting Felix’s past popularity and an acidic anthem by a mercenary San Francisco female florist who deals in black market identity papers for illegal immigrants. [more]

Waiting for Johnny Depp

August 22, 2019

What’s best about "Waiting for Johnny Depp" is Vivino’s performance. My, does she ever get a workout during the play’s 100-minute running time. She has 15 or so musical numbers (some of them reprises), ranging from dizzyingly ecstatic to utterly despondent. She belts, rocks out, sings pretty during the ballads. She carries nearly all of the spoken word, too, though sometimes she has exchanges with the recorded voice of Rita’s highly disagreeable mother. The ghastly ringtone whenever Mom (or that agent with his caveats) calls is like a bugle blast at the gates of hell. (Sound designer Tom Valdez gets a bit of a workout too.) Vivino bounces around the stage, executes choreographer Juson Williams’ dance steps, goes offstage for quick costume and wig changes, and interacts with both the audience and musical director/pianist Logan Medland. [more]

92Y Lyrics & Lyricists Series: “A Beautiful Dawning: ‘Oklahoma!’ at 75”

May 13, 2019

Ted Chapin, the writer and host of the 92Y Lyrics & Lyricists Series’ "A Beautiful Dawning: Oklahoma! at 75," did an impeccable job creating one of the best editions of this important series.  Here was a program both entertaining and informative.  The information was as enjoyable as the performances of the four singers who were directed and choreographed by Parker Esse and accompanied by the incredible Andy Einhorn and his brilliant musical ensemble. [more]

Lady in the Dark

May 9, 2019

MasterVoices performed a beautifully sung and played rendition of the legendary 1941 musical "Lady in The Dark" as part of New York City Center’s 75th Anniversary Season for three sold-out performances. Conducted and directed by MasterVoices’ artistic director Ted Sperling and starring Tony Award winner Victoria Clark as heroine Liza Elliott, the production offered a world premiere of a new adaptation of the Moss Hart book by Christopher Hart (the author’s son) and Kim Kowalke, and the complete critical edition of the Kurt Weill/Ira Gershwin score. While the musical portions were excellent, this concert version only made clear the strengths and weaknesses of this rarely revived musical play. [more]

The New York Pops 36th Birthday Gala: “Hat Full Of Stars: The Songs of Cyndi Lauper”

May 2, 2019

"Kinky Boots" ’ uplifting finale "Raise You Up/Just Be" was a euphoric highlight of The New York Pops’ marvelous tribute concert "Hat Full Of Stars: The Songs Of Cyndi Lauper. " The 2013 Tony Award winner for Best Score and Best Musical’s original cast member Stark Sands was joined by Lena Hall, Alex Newell, the Camp Broadway Kids ensemble and the renowned 78-piece orchestra. Earlier, that long-running Broadway show was represented by the limber and magnetic Mr. Sands’ dazzling "The Soul of a Man" and the "Glee" star Mr. Newell’s soulful "Hold Me in Your Heart." [more]

Faust 2.0

April 3, 2019

Director Sharon Ann Fogarty’s colossal staging weaves together the many disparate technical elements into a unified mini-epic event. Actors sit at a long rectangular table and their images are on display in front of them facing the audience. Hanging monitors show Jeff Sugg’s arresting video design of stylized imagery of clouds, the sun and abstractions. Numerous characters appear on video. Paris and Helen of Troy are represented with a gorgeous Paul Taylor-style dance by choreographer Kristi Spessard. [more]

92Y’s Lyrics & Lyricists Series: “Sondheim: Wordplay”

April 2, 2019

Tony Award-winning choreographer Christopher Gattelli’s direction melded the performers with expert physical placement sprinkled with occasional dance bits that made for lively presentation. The event’s visual verve was amplified by the imaginative projection design by Dan Scully. In addition to illustrative images there were projections of Sondheim’s handwritten and typed lyrics as well as stylized photographic views. These were all continually shown on the auditorium’s back wall, beautifully complementing the performers and the speakers. [more]

Rameau, Maître à Danser (Les Arts Florissants)

March 7, 2019

Unlike the company’s 2016 luxuriously staged "Les Fêtes Vénitiennes," also at the Gilman, "Rameau" was purposely staged by Sophie Daneman as if in a village square, simply but effectively, the “effects” improvised as only peasants would: entrances to temples and heaven were curtains stretched between two poles; Jupiter appeared in a high stage box as an improvised Mount Olympus; a dancer as a god glided bare-chested undetected amongst the celebrating peasantry.  According to the program, this type of performance is called “théâtre de la foire” (theater of the fair). [more]

92Y’s Lyrics & Lyricists Series: “We’ll Have Manhattan: Rodgers & Hart in New York”

February 1, 2019

"We’ll Have Manhattan: Rodgers & Hart in New York," created and narrated by the soon-to-become Broadway’s Tootsie (in the new Broadway musical), Santino Fontana found most of its emotional heft in the sad story of the partnership of the efficient Richard Rodgers and the foot-dragging Lorenz Hart who found himself, a not handsome gay man, in the wrong time and place.  Hart had little personal happiness, it seems, but his songs were certainly full of gaiety and wit. [more]

The Hello Girls

December 12, 2018

One of the beauties of the book by Mills and Reichel is that all of the characters in the large dramatis personae are very well defined and we have no trouble knowing who is who. Reichel’s direction and staging make the characterizations clear and consistent. Fishman’s Grace is efficient, fair-minded and heroic, always coming up with good ideas to make sure that things run more smoothly and we root for her throughout the story. As the assured, ambitious Suzanne, Skyler Volpe is very feisty, witty and acerbic, in the manner of an Eve Arden role. Chanel Karimkhani’s Helen, the farm girl, is constantly getting into trouble, not least of which is her problem being late most of the time and her naïveté and lack of sophistication. As the oldest operator and a married woman, Lili Thomas’ Bertha is a rock of stability when others are falling apart. Cathryn Wake’s very French Louise is a firecracker, always speaking her mind - even if it gets her into trouble. Christine O’Grady’s choreography for the dance hall scenes for the women and the doughboys is redolent of ballroom dances of the period. The show’s one flaw is that there is not enough tension until almost the very end when the war comes a little too close for comfort. [more]

The New York Pops – Song and Dance:  The Best of Broadway

November 22, 2018

The New York Theatre Ballet performed the lovely, all-female, “Come to Me, Bend to Me” from that musical, a sweet look at pre-wedding preparations in the ancient village of Brigadoon.  That troupe began with two excerpts from de Mille’s groundbreaking “Dream Ballet” from "Oklahoma!" and her “Hornpipe” from another Rodgers and Hammerstein classic, "Carousel" (1945), its fishermen bouncing about while on the hunt for female companionship. [more]

Waiting for Godot (Druid Theatre)

November 7, 2018

Ms. Hynes has the cast at full speed emphasizing slapstick and employing stylized poses and gestures.  There’s exaggerated choreography-like movement such as extending legs and dipping down, grabbing at each other and jumping. Movement director Nick Winston’s efforts are accomplished if overdone. The plethora of gags and set up punchline recitation gets laughs at the expense of emotional resonance. A few bits are quietly played due to the nature of those specific passages and are quite lovely. Overall, there is a lack of visceral depth to this arguably superficial treatment. The ending brings benign silence rather than communal sighs. [more]

The Naturalists

September 12, 2018

Ms. McCarrick’s appealing premise of redemptive romance is in fact subsidiary to the IRA angle as in the program she states that this event is the inspiration for her play. The two threads haven’t been skillfully fused together, resulting in a disjointed experience totaling 13 scenes.  McCarrick packs in a great deal of backstory to her well-drawn characters and her effective dialogue is marvelously Irish in style with plenty of wit, eloquence and reflectiveness. [more]
1 2 3