Reviews for Penfold Theatre Company Performances

Review: Nevermore, The Imaginary Life and Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe by Penfold Theatre Company

Review: Nevermore, The Imaginary Life and Mysterious Death of Edgar Allan Poe by Penfold Theatre Company

by David Glen Robinson
Published on October 29, 2018

The performance of this work must instantly go over the top and stay there for the duration of the show if it is to work at all. And this it does. Brilliantly.

 Nevermore, the musical is an imaginary biography of America’s famous nineteenth century writer. The treatment, authored by Jonathan Christensen, is brilliant for wisely and succinctly relating the facts of Edgar Allan Poe’s life—what we know of them—to some of the major works of Poe’s fantastic flights. Christenson's imagination cuts through what remains obscure about Poe to create plausible scenarios, and then he wraps it all up in music and song to make a musical ...

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Review: An Iliad by Penfold Theatre Company

Review: An Iliad by Penfold Theatre Company

by Michael Meigs
Published on February 23, 2017

Cami Alys as the poet and narrator of AN ILIAD is transcendent, and the staging at the historic Scottish Rite Theatre is exactly right for this superb venture into the howling heart of mankind.

 

We walked away afterwards stunned and wordless.

 

My wife was moved to tears.

 

From the interpretation of an epic poem written nearly three thousand years ago.

 

This is the power of theatre and this is a performance and interpretation that must not be missed. Essential if you want to understand why the art form refuses to die; essential if you're not frightened by huge themes of life, death, love and ...

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Review: Clybourne Park by Penfold Theatre Company

Review: Clybourne Park by Penfold Theatre Company

by Michael Meigs
Published on May 30, 2016

Penfold Theatre's staging is superlative, off the top of any scale you might use to rate this important and fiercely relevant work of theatre art.

Plays and performances are complex works of art, and the impact upon those watching even the same staging may be wildly different. That's why I chose very early on -- eight years ago -- not to resort to inevitably misleading numerical rating scales in these reviews. One man's meat is another man's poison, of course, but more importantly, a reductive number is just as misleading as a dutiful standing ovation delivered by friends of ...

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Review: The Last Five Years, by Penfold Theatre

Review: The Last Five Years, by Penfold Theatre

by David Glen Robinson
Published on March 29, 2015

David Gallagher’s songs drew applause while Burke’s songs, presented superbly, stimulated thoughtful reflection. But Burke brought down the house in one line in a song declaiming the woes of auditioners.

 

The Last Five Years is the story of a relationship that proceeds through attraction, dating, marriage and beyond, all in the span of less than two hours in stage time and five years in narrative time. The elapsed time is unimportant to the relationship and the production. The show seems like about thirty minutes and gone too soon. Attribute this to the deft and efficient direction of Michael McKelvey, surefooted and fresh from numerous ...

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Review: Miracle on 34th Street by Penfold Theatre Company

Review: Miracle on 34th Street by Penfold Theatre Company

by Michael Meigs
Published on December 10, 2014

Christmas and the holidays are a time for comfort. Jingle bells, tinsel on the tree, Santa Claus everywhere as image, in real life and in our imagination. We were far from the United States when our children were growing up, but we shared the joy and comfort of the season with VHS tapes of It's A Wonderful Life (1946) andMiracle on 34th Street (1947), both in glorious living black and white. I hadn't ...

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Review: Now Then Again by Penfold Theatre Company

Review: Now Then Again by Penfold Theatre Company

by Michael Meigs
Published on September 23, 2014

We all like ‘What if?

That’s really the essence of theatrical art, isn’t it?  In simplest terms, we gather to witness the presentation of a story. No, it’s not real. . . but what if it were?

A romantic comedy, say — where the protagonist is a brilliant theoretical physicist who’s incredibly shy and socially inept, and he meets this incredibly gifted woman, an undergraduate intern who somehow has gotten a summer assignment to this ...

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