David Fox and Cameron Kelsall

Stray ‘Cats’ Stray ‘Cats’

I think that Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is the Williams play I have seen most often, on stage and through film. So, shall we share some observations on some of these experiences?

on May 09, 2020 at 1:53 PM
‘Cat’ people ‘Cat’ people

Gorgeousness is, of course, its own reward—and the movie of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof has many other pluses as well—but I do think Elizabeth Taylor‘s and Paul Newman‘s good looks pose an ongoing distraction.

on May 06, 2020 at 1:25 PM
The Cat’s meow The Cat’s meow

This Cat seems more together than most. Unlike many of the teleplays we’ve considered so far, this one is actually directed by a Tony-winning theater director, and I’d venture that accounts for its relative success.

on May 04, 2020 at 9:00 AM
What the ‘Cat’ dragged in What the ‘Cat’ dragged in

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is sometimes called the American King Lear, which nods to themes of a father and his disappointing children… but I think it’s also Shakespearean in its sprawl and grandeur.

on April 30, 2020 at 1:34 PM
‘Glass’ dismissed ‘Glass’ dismissed

Yet there remain some memories and impressions I know we’d both like to share—on a few stage performances, memorable in various ways, so how about one more roundup?

on April 27, 2020 at 12:42 PM
Heart of ‘Glass’ Heart of ‘Glass’

Shirley Booth‘s Amanda reminds us again of her astonishing range, and truly unique (yes, a word I hate, but I mean it here) ability to mix heartbreak and humor in the same breath.

on April 23, 2020 at 9:00 AM
A ‘Glass’ half empty A ‘Glass’ half empty

More than any actor I’ve seen on stage or screen, John Malkovich communicates the essential ambiguity of the character.

on April 22, 2020 at 1:34 PM
Walking on broken ‘Glass’ Walking on broken ‘Glass’

The 1950 movie seems intent to turn the story into a screen romance, eliding or ignoring the play’s mournful tenor.

on April 20, 2020 at 11:30 AM
TV diner TV diner

Bus Stop deals with uncomfortable questions of sex and longing, and it also examines a desire for human connection that often comes up short.

on April 15, 2020 at 10:00 AM
Cruel summer Cruel summer

It is interesting to consider how strongly Inge focuses on women (mostly single or widowed) and sex, particularly from his position as a (closeted) gay man.

on April 13, 2020 at 2:36 PM
Midwest side story Midwest side story

A theater-critic friend of my father once said that Laurence Olivier played American like it was a character choice.

on April 11, 2020 at 12:39 PM
Praying for rain Praying for rain

Like many artistic homosexuals, I’ve been through an Altman phase, a Cher phase, a Sandy Dennis phase and a Karen Black phase, so you needn’t explain yourself to me.

on April 04, 2020 at 1:45 PM
This was Sebastian’s garden This was Sebastian’s garden

There’s no way for any production of Suddenly Last Summer to completely avoid at least a whiff of camp.

on April 01, 2020 at 10:00 AM
Sexy and sinewy Sexy and sinewy

Having just watched and written about the famous Actors Studio Three Sisters, it also feels right to turn now to The Cherry Orchard—Chekhov’s final play—in a production from the BBC.

on March 30, 2020 at 10:00 AM
A problem like Maria A problem like Maria

To opera denizens, Terrence McNally is probably best known for Master Class, a fictionalized account of Maria Callas’s 1970s Juilliard master classes, which was a surprise hit on Broadway in the 1990s.

on March 28, 2020 at 12:42 PM
Sisters were doing it for themselves Sisters were doing it for themselves

What we see here from Strasberg is frustratingly literal and drably conventional—it looks to me like he’s channeling a lot of received wisdom about how Chekhov should be staged and bringing almost nothing of his own to the process.

on March 23, 2020 at 9:00 AM
Ghost “Story” Ghost “Story”

Time to stop being coy, I think. You and I had quite different takeaways on the show, didn’t we?

on March 18, 2020 at 4:45 PM
Photographic memory Photographic memory

For a show set during the hardscrabble 1930s, very few of the performances give off an air of downtroddedness.

on March 13, 2020 at 9:00 AM
Unfinished sympathy Unfinished sympathy

It’s difficult to discuss Unknown Soldier without considering the impact of legacy.

on March 09, 2020 at 8:47 PM
She ain’t down yet She ain’t down yet

The fabulous Beth Malone is the Molly Brown of my dreams—forthright, bold, and a superbly gifted singer with just the right touch of country twang.

on February 26, 2020 at 10:00 PM
Litter box office poison Litter box office poison

Upon its commercial release three weeks ago, Tom Hooper’s film adaptation of Cats garnered instant, near-universal scorn from audiences and critics alike.

on January 14, 2020 at 5:03 PM
“Jagged” —  with sophistication “Jagged” —  with sophistication

Jagged Little Pill is as manicured as the kind of Stepfordian society the material supposedly rails against.

on December 14, 2019 at 9:00 AM
Howards, endless Howards, endless

It’s not difficult to make an audience weep uncontrollably. But because it’s so easy, I think artists have a responsibility to not overuse that power.

on December 04, 2019 at 9:00 AM
Pink flamingos Pink flamingos

Like any good gay theatergoers, we seek out Tennessee Williams revivals with the fervor of truffle-sniffing pigs.

on October 24, 2019 at 3:05 PM
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