Fantastic venue for theatre. Beautiful facility with free parking right in front of the theatre and Midtown Productions ALWAYS puts on a quality production. Do yourself and your guests a favor and go see their current production of "End of the Rainbow."
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Right on reviewer-exactly what I thought but in addition it also felt like a deliberate assault on art, music, theatre, the audience, and a waste of a darned good orchestra. I felt like I was being conditioned as The Manchurian Candidate.
It's wonderful that PURE is finally working regularly with a set designer. I know their mantra was kamikaze theatre and actor only oriented, but a good set design is so visually stimulating and adds so very much to a production.
If you want to see a truly wonderful Piccolo performance, go see the musical Tell Me On a Sunday, a Midtown Productions show at Footlight. Also, The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity is a really enjoyable play - saw it earlier this year during PURE's regular season. And if you want to see some young people really showing their acting, singing, and dancing chops, check out the last performance of Children of Eden at Footlight on Thursday.
You shouldn't just avoid local productions because of past issues. After all, you are acting as a critic and Piccolo is a huge part of Spoleto and needs to be acknowledged and reviewed.
The problem with Piccolo is that the city crams too many events into too short a time period. The restrictions are archaic, especially in the light that rental of spaces is exhorbitant and the competition is fierce, especially for theatrical performances. It's no longer really feasible to do black box, minimalist productions, and yet the city expects everyone to function as though it is.
Production companies get very little time to do technical rehearsals because in the old days, everything was simple - lights on - lights off, boxes as furniture. It's no longer like that. There are elaborate sets, lighting requirements, and all kinds of technology. Pinocchio will have surtitles for example. That takes time to prepare and make sure it works properly, along with lighting and sets. Shows that aren't used to moving around and don't have a professional technical crew can be shaky because they get so little time to work in the venues beforehand and everyone expects professional level output.
You should go to Piccolo shows too -- they deserve it for all the intensely hard work that goes into them.
Going to see it soon. Critiques should always start with the good if the critic liked the show and is recommending it, because most people don't read past the first two paragraphs. When one of the first things you read is a criticism of the set from a previous show and then the unevenness of the acting, it's hard to keep reading even though the critic tells you to...just sayin'....
I agree with the assessment of the actors' abilities to nail their characters and create a humorous but increasingly more tense and emotionally charged drama. And more could have been said about their ability to engage us for what seemed like minutes but was a couple of hours, even with the bare minimum of set and lighting. A note to the critic - please - we don't need so many spoilers in a review. You practically tells us the whole story. Use the space to talk about the production values more. Reviews shouldn't be just a summary of what a play is about and a few lines spent on the actors.
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