Six Windows Presents A Hero of Our Time (Theater Review)

The cast of the Calliope Theatre Company playing the cast of Six Windows–Photo courtesy of Mike ZurkhulenSONY DSC

Calliope Theatre Company
presents
Six Windows presents
A Hero of Our Time
Written by Will Arbery
Directed by Will Dagger
Medicine Show Theater, NYC
Friday, July 26th, 2013

What a pleasant return to the theater for me to come to a show like Six Windows presents A Hero of Our Time performed by the Calliope Theatre Company. Directed by Will Dagger and written by Will Arbery, who also happens to be one of the actors playing characters named after themselves, the play, a comedy, is basically the play that happens after the play that we were “supposed to have seen”, which would have been the group’s final performance of an adaptation of Lermontov’s A Hero of Our Time with a paper-littered set (which is what we walked into the theater seeing), but as the play begins, instead of the Lermontov story, we are treated to the fictional cast of this production doing a roundtable talk-back session with the audience, and even though I knew this was the actual play starting, I thought that they really wanted questions from us–I shyly lowered my hand after being ignored (The acting bug in me was aching to come out again). Continue reading

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Blue Monday ~ A One-act Opera by George Gershwin (A Preview)

Alyson Cambridge as Vi (Photo courtesy of On Site Opera)Alyson_Cambridge_photo_by_Richard_Termine_Cropped

Courtesy of Bucklesweet Media

This 30-minute jazz opera tells the story of a love triangle gone wrong against the backdrop of a 1920s Harlem jazz club. On Site Opera & Harlem Opera Theater take up residence at the historic Cotton Club on Tuesday, June 18, Wednesday, June 19, AND Thursday, June 20, 2013. Each evening, the doors will open at 7pm with an hour of cocktails and dancing before the opera at 8pm. The dance floor will be open and cocktails will flow as a prelude to Gershwin’s jazz-infused murder romance.

Blue Monday will be conducted by Gregory Hopkins (Harlem Opera Theater) and directed by Eric Einhorn (On Site Opera) with choreography by Tony Award-winner George Faison and costumes by Candida K. Nichols. The talented African-American cast stars soprano Alyson Cambridge as Vi, an object of many men’s affections. Cambridge recently debuted the role of Julie in Show Boat at Chicago Lyric Opera, where critics noted that her “sensual, smoky readings were revelatory” (Opera News). Young American tenor Chase Taylor, a recent Metropolitan Opera National Council regional finalist, plays Joe, Vi’s gambling boyfriend. Baritone Lawrence Craig reprises the role of Tom, the club headliner, which he recorded in 1998 with Erich Kunzel and the Cincinnati Pops. Versatile bass Alvin Crawford (last seen on Broadway in The Lion King) and bass-baritone Clayton Mathews round out the cast as club employees Sam and Mike, respectively. Accompanied by a full orchestra featuring the Cotton Club All Stars and members of the Harlem Chamber Players.

Blue Monday ~ A one-act opera by George Gershwin
Conducted by Gregory Hopkins
Directed by Eric Einhorn
Choreographed by George Faison
Featuring Alyson Cambridge, Chase Taylor, Lawrence Craig, Clayton Mathews and Alvin Crawford with the Harlem Chamber Players and the Cotton Club All Stars

Tuesday, June 18; Wednesday, June 19; AND Thursday, June 20, 2013
7pm: Cocktails & Dancing | 8pm: Blue Monday
The Cotton Club | 656 W 125th St | New York, NY
Tickets: $20 (cocktails not included) at http://onsitebluemonday.eventbrite.com
for more information: http://www.osopera.org

UPDATE: All General Admission tickets for June 18th and 19th are SOLD OUT. A limited amount of standing room tickets for both performances will be available at a later date. To join the standing room waiting list, please email your name, number of tickets, and phone number to info@osopera.org

The Loom Ensemble ~ On Erosion: A Fable and the Release Party

The Loom Ensemble performing Erosion: A Fable. From L to R: Raphael Sacks, Michael Bauer, Zoe Anastassiou, Neva Cockrell and Sasha Bogdanowitsch.loomensemble

The Loom Ensemble, a multi-tiered collective of dancers and musicians, both of whom have been doing both of those activities in full force, are about to release a recorded version on CD of their opera titled Erosion: A Fable. Though this is based on the staged version where the entire ensemble sings, this is a bit more representative of the suite they performed at the Vital Vox Festival as the paired-down Loom Trio. That same trio made up of composer and Loom co-founder Sasha Bogdanowitsch, and singer-dancers Raphael Sacks and Kate Hamilton had a few minutes to speak to The Glass about Thursday’s CD-release party for the Erosion CD (at Theaterlab, 357 West 36th, bet. 8th and 9th Aves.) as well as other cool things. BTW, you are invited to come down for this concert, and you can buy tickets for the CD release party by clicking here or on the link at the bottom.

CM: Can you talk about this CD release concert on Thursday?

Raphael: Loom’s big performance event of the Spring at Theaterlab is our album release party. We combine music from the album with new contemporary modern choreography and narrative excerpts from the Erosion show that some the music originally came from, as well as snippets from the piece you saw at the Vital Vox Festival. Continue reading

We Sing For Wishes ~ A Preview

make a wish poster 11-17 final

Article produced through the courtesy of We Sing For The World

The Make-A-Wish® Hudson Valley Foundation is an organization which grants the wishes of children with life threatening conditions. We Sing For The World became inspired by this organization and in the power of a wish and took on the task of creating the benefit concert We Sing For Wishes on December 10th at 8 PM at the White Plains Performing Arts Center in White Plains, NY.

“Music is a powerful force that can bring people together and can make others heal”, founder Daniele Hager thought as she created We Sing For The World back in 2011 after the devastating tsunami that hit Japan back in March. Focusing on lesser know charities, disaster relief and even personal tragedies, the organization’s mission is to raise funds and awareness for those in need. We Sing For The World presents numerous benefit concerts in conjunction with various non-profit organizations featuring renown singers and musicians.

Proud to present our fourth concert, We Sing For Wishes will be an event of Broadway favorites with Westchester’s own John Treacy Egan. John was last seen on the Broadway stage as Joey in Sister Act. John is an active performer both on the Broadway stage as well as with benefit concerts and cabarets. Other performers include: Founder Daniele Hager, Broadway performers Robi Hager, Gabby Garza, Julia Harkey and opera vocalists Scottie Roché, and Johnny Hager. Continue reading

Maya Beiser’s Elsewhere at BAM (A Review)

Maya Beiser and Helga Davis performing in Elsewhere at BAM (Photo courtesy of Rebecca Greenfield)

Beth Morrison Projects
presents
ELSEWHERE
A Cello Opera conceived by Maya Beiser and Robert Woodruff
Maya Beiser, cello
Helga Davis, vocals
Music by Missy Mazzoli, Eve Beglarian, and Michael Gordon
Words by Henri Michaux and Erin Cressida Wilson
Choreography by Brook Notary
Film by Peter Nigrini
Brooklyn Academy of Music, NYC

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Written by Jeremy Shatan

The “story” of Lot’s wife – no more than a sentence in Genesis – is like a tea bag. Add the boiling water of imagination and emotion and it can expand into a fascinating and complex brew. This is precisely what Maya Beiser and her collaborators have done in “Salt”, the stunning third section of her “CelloOpera,” Elsewhere, which finished its four-night run at the Brooklyn Academy of Music last Saturday. With music by Missy Mazzoli and words by Erin Cressida Wilson, the unnamed wife of Lot, who was turned into a pillar of salt in punishment for looking back on Sodom, becomes a stand-in for the suffering of women across centuries and cultures – painful torments that often seem to take place “elsewhere.”

Wilson’s lyrics turn Lot’s wife into a three-dimensional character, a woman locked in a brutal marriage (and by the end of the piece, in jail) who is forced to give up her home and looks back, not in anger or curiosity, but because she recalled “The first painting our girl ever drew – forgotten and still-taped above the kitchen sink.” In performance, Lot’s wife is embodied by the astonishing Helga Davis, a pure theater artist with a gorgeous voice and true commitment to her craft. Using precise movements and a diverse array of voices, Davis is riveting. At one point the lights behind the stage went to full brightness and I took a quick look around the nearly sold-out theater. Not one person was anything but rapt and completely focused on the performance. Continue reading

At The Other Side of The Earth ~ A Preview of a Riot Girl Opera

Composer Marie Incontrera had a few minutes to speak about her new opera titled At The Other Side of The Earth. Subtitled “A Riot Girl Opera” (also nicknamed that), the piece has already been previewed this past May 18 at the LGBT Community Center (Read David Pearson’s review of it here: Marie Incontrera’s Riot Girl Opera (A First); ICIYL, 6/2/12)

The opera stars Jasmine Presson (who both stars in the production and directed it), Ilana Zarankin, Hillary Esqueda, Tabes Bridges and Katherine Cardin. It gets its first extended run at WOW Cafe Theater, opening on National Coming Out Day, October 11th (8 PM), and running until October 14th (3 PM).

Marie spoke to me via skype. Continue reading

At The Other Side of The Earth ~ A Preview of a Riot Girl Opera

Composer Marie Incontrera had a few minutes to speak about her new opera titled At The Other Side of The Earth. Subtitled “A Riot Girl Opera” (also nicknamed that), the piece has already been previewed this past May 18 at the LGBT Community Center (Read David Pearson’s review of it here: Marie Incontrera’s Riot Girl Opera (A First); ICIYL, 6/2/12)

The opera gets its first extended run at WOW Cafe Theater, opening on National Coming Out Day, October 11th (8 PM), and running until October 14th (3 PM), but before that, there is a fundraiser event being held on Wednesday, September 26th at Ginger’s Bar in Park Slope at 6 PM. Continue reading