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Organic farce

PSC’s fugue-ish Bach at Leipzig
The Thomaskirche church, in Leipzig, is a hub of musical influence in Germany’s booming Baroque arts scene.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 12, 2010


An Irish classic

The strong ensemble of Juno and the Paycock
Matriarch Juno is the only one of the Boyles who brings in any coin: Her husband Jack is a drunken boor who, to avoid working, feigns aches in his legs.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 12, 2010


The race is on

Running through Acorn’s 24-Hour Play Festival
Around 7 pm last Saturday at the St. Lawrence, a sealed envelope was sliced open and its contents, handwritten on three slips of paper, were revealed to a full house: “Are you sure you want to go through with this?”
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 05, 2010


In search of light

USM’s dreamlike Inuit storytelling
Many of us here in Maine are guilty of having at one time or another harangued the forces of spring to hurry it up already, are guilty of cold-month mopery or worse. Imagine, then, living in the Arctic, where the winter is far darker for far longer, and the sun that much more precious.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  April 28, 2010


New voices

Acorn’s latest Maine Playwrights Festival
For nearly a decade now, Maine playwrights have had a fine friend and benefactor in Acorn Productions.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  April 21, 2010


Cooking the books

How long until Love, Sex & the IRS collide?
Tax season got you feeling screwed? How about a little schadenfreude: Chances are Jon (Christian F. Luening) has it a lot worse and more embarrassing than you in Love, Sex & the IRS , the 1979 comedy by William Van Zandt and Jane Milmore.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  April 14, 2010


Love Potion #3

The Maiden’s Prayer at Mad Horse
More people love Taylor than is good for harmony.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 24, 2010


Lovely luxury

Good Theater's rich, colorful Earnest
"In matters of great importance," observes young Gwendolyn, "style, not sincerity, is the vital thing."
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 17, 2010


Sins of the father

Visiting the son in 'Master Harold'
On a rainy afternoon, Hally, short for Harold, (Michael Littig) comes home from school as usual to his wealthy parents' tea room in apartheid-era South Africa.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 10, 2010


Seeing is believing

The Emperor visits the Children's Theatre
Emperor Fredrick has a wardrobe problem.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 03, 2010


Planting seeds

Acorn tries out four new local plays
For nearly a decade, spring in Portland has heralded the emergence not just of all of us from hibernation, but of playwrights, en masse, from quiet writing rooms.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 24, 2010


Ending violence

It's much more of a struggle than we might think
V-Day is once more upon us, and for those not partial to Hallmark-driven capitalism, the V now also popularly stands for "Vagina" or "Victory," thanks to Eve Ensler's famous monologues about violence against women.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 10, 2010


Campy send-up

Irma Vep mocks show biz
The Mystery of Irma Vep . Portland Stage Company's excellent, giddy production, directed by Christopher Grabowski, stars Tom Ford (who portrayed some dozens of characters in PSC's superlative I Am My Own Wife ) and Steven Strafford.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 03, 2010


Ordinary people

Pontine's latest Jewett adaptation
Born and raised in South Berwick, the writer Sarah Orne Jewett spent her life noticing the lives of ordinary Maine people. Her esteemed 1896 The Country of the Pointed Firs is a series of wise, gentle sketches of the aging folks of several small maritime villages.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 03, 2010


Finding her voice

An ex-con, a village, an opera
"There is a balm in Gilead," an old African-American spiritual has it, and sure enough, Percy Talbott (Kelly Caufield) finds that balm.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  January 27, 2010


Hedonism at its best

Absurdist mirth and wonder in Ubu Roi
In 1888, a 15-year-old French kid and a couple of his buddies wrote a script, modeling its gross and laughable anti-hero on a school teacher whom they had it in for.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  January 27, 2010


Open lines

What if the dead could talk?
In our hyper-connected day and age, a woman laments in Dead Man's Cell Phone , there exist only three sanctuaries from the ringing: the theater, the church, and the toilet — and even these havens are ring-less only in principle.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  January 20, 2010


Greater Tuna in the Texas two-step

Greater Tuna parodies the Lone Star State
Our first introductions to Tuna come over the airwaves on the Wheelis Struvis Report , as hosts Wheelis (Barrasso) and Struvis (Donovan) announce the winning student-essay contest entry ("Human Rights: Why Bother?") and weatherman Harold Dean (Donovan) forecasts the weather (rain, dust, and locusts).
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  January 13, 2010


Food on stage

Locavores + thespians = understanding
Maine is home to a nationally renowned locavore culinary scene, the oldest organic farming association in the nation (MOFGA), and a plenitude of farms that has increased by nearly 1000 in the past five years — and yet economic pressure to develop acreage remains.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  January 06, 2010


Into new worlds

Theatrical journeys for the year ahead
The New Year opens with a duo of two-man, many-character comedies.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  December 30, 2009


Big starts

2009 was full of newness + energy
I kick off my highlights of 2009 with praise for a theater company that has just finished its inaugural season: The Legacy Theater Company, founded by former City Theater artistic director Steve Burnette.
By: MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  December 22, 2009

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