David Fox

Did I mention there’s a mime? Did I mention there’s a mime?

In terms of wild applause, it was Donna Murphy as Aurelia who was front and center, exciting the audience to a fervor with each re-emergence on the stage.

on March 24, 2023 at 9:00 AM
Monsters, no-neck and otherwise Monsters, no-neck and otherwise

Through a lucky coincidence of timing, I was able to catch up with Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, a play I adore, in two productions playing at the same time.

on March 09, 2023 at 10:00 AM
Coast to coast Coast to coast

Non-observant Jew that I am, my recent immersion into not one by two new plays—Pictures from Home on Broadway, and The Wanderers at the Roundabout—that very much live in that world was something of a double-whammy.

on March 03, 2023 at 9:33 AM
So a fool returns to his Philly So a fool returns to his Philly

Updating opera settings is, of course, expected; I’d wager in most houses more often than not it’s now the norm. Still, few in my experience have the specificity and local immediacy of Don Pasquale at the Academy of Vocal Arts.

on February 24, 2023 at 9:08 AM
The sense of dramatic thrust The sense of dramatic thrust

Soprano Lydia Grindatto confirmed the fine impression she had made at Giargiari vocal competition with a charismatic, thoroughly inhabited performance that showed careful preparation in every aspect.

on November 25, 2022 at 11:27 AM
They are the champions They are the champions

This is likely the best Giargiari Bel Canto competition year in my experience, evidenced in several important ways.

on October 12, 2022 at 9:46 AM
A divided duty A divided duty

Rodrigo is a ball-breaking role, but Lawrence Brownlee makes the demands sound easy—tossing in additional high notes and audaciously decorating cabalettas as if it were the easiest thing in the world.

on September 24, 2022 at 2:42 PM
As ‘The Raven’ flies As ‘The Raven’ flies

Festival O is back, and the sense of joy and expectation was palpable among the audience and Opera Philadelphia staff, who chatted together as we awaited the start of The Raven.

on September 22, 2022 at 2:15 PM
Two characters in search of anagnorisis Two characters in search of anagnorisis

Philadelphia’s memorably if quirkily named Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium deserves to be better known.

on September 11, 2022 at 11:07 AM
My blue ‘Evan’ My blue ‘Evan’

No uneasy stock market or rickety roller coaster has generated more stomach-churning highs and lows than the musical Dear Evan Hansen.

on August 19, 2022 at 12:41 PM
Silent treatment Silent treatment

It is perhaps a misperception to suggest that Die Schweigsame Frau is stronger in the uncut version.

on July 29, 2022 at 10:00 AM
Either less or more Either less or more

An elegantly streamlined production of Into the Woods now on stage at Philadelphia’s Arden Theatre makes the best case for the show I’ve yet seen

on June 10, 2022 at 7:48 AM
Grand passion Grand passion

Reunited and it feels so good!

on May 01, 2022 at 8:27 AM
The end of this play isn’t written The end of this play isn’t written

“We came through the Depression by the skin of our teeth! One more tight squeeze like that and where will we be?”

on April 26, 2022 at 11:15 AM
Stained class Stained class

With no disrespect to Nadine Sierra, who as Lucia acquits herself honorably if not magically in vocal terms, the undisputed cause célèbre here is director Simon Stone.

on April 24, 2022 at 11:38 AM
Shining ‘Hours’ Shining ‘Hours’

Dramaturgically, The Hours is a mixed bag: I wouldn’t discard it, but I would want to fix it. But simply as an evening of gorgeous music and singing, it’s cordon bleu. 

on March 19, 2022 at 2:05 PM
Worth the wait Worth the wait

Ana Maria Martinez is an artist of the first caliber, which was richly evident throughout this imaginative, substantial (nearly two hours!) program, which was (thank you!) offered without a music stand.

on March 18, 2022 at 1:06 PM
A Philly that is ready for the race A Philly that is ready for the race

As we continue to watch the world of live performance come cautiously back to post-COVID levels, I felt the greatest surge of joy so far when I saw Opera Philadelphia’s announcement of their 2022-23 season—and most especially, the reboot of Festival O.

on March 16, 2022 at 9:43 AM
Doing something right Doing something right

There was something very Russian—indeed, Chekhovian—about the mix of joy and tears, as the Academy of Vocal Arts performed Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin

on March 01, 2022 at 2:31 PM
When you wish upon a scar When you wish upon a scar

So that there’s no confusion: the Long Day’s Journey into Night seen here is contemporary, political, brutal, and universal.

on January 25, 2022 at 9:00 PM
I want your Rex I want your Rex

Opera Philadelphia’s return to the stage after two years was greeted by a cheering crowd who clearly would have been happy to stay longer, but as director David Devan acknowledged, this was a step in a continuing trajectory.

on January 24, 2022 at 9:30 AM
Learning how to laugh Learning how to laugh

When I think of Stephen Sondheim, so many of my memories are not simply about shows of his I loved and learned from—they are experiences that literally shaped my life.

on November 29, 2021 at 12:00 PM
Lehman’s terms Lehman’s terms

The Lehman Trilogy had me in its thrall from the moment the lights went up. It’s absolutely spellbinding. That’s not to say I endorse it wholeheartedly, though.

on October 14, 2021 at 9:45 PM
Widow’s talk Widow’s talk

Call me Mary Quite Contrary if you want, but as we finally see live performances coming back, I’m reflecting with gratitude and even some nostalgia on the way COVID quarantine forged a path for entrepreneurial performance companies to recalibrate and deliver their work through streaming platforms.

on September 24, 2021 at 9:53 AM
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