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Numbed by Numbers

Children of the Dnipro  should show, not tell
Such a difficult task, bringing horrific historical events to theatrical life. Ironically, the more vast the horror, the more difficult the challenge. Imagine the full sweep of something as enormous as the Holocaust reduced to stage scale.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  June 09, 2009

Champlin's Seafood

Clam shack bragging rights
There are clam shacks and there are clam shacks. Champlin's is more of a clam duplex, hot meals upstairs and fish market below. If you have friends visiting from the coast of Maine, where they take this sort of place seriously, bring them down and show them how things should be done.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  June 03, 2009

sinatra list

Frank's way

Simply Sinatra at Theatre by the Sea
Musical revues can be like videos of old golf tournaments — endless, amiable tedium interspersed with opportunities to wake up and smile nostalgically. Not so with My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra , at least not with this terrific production opening the season at Theatre by the Sea (through June 14).
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  June 02, 2009

menopause list

Hot ticket

Menopause the Musical  summers at Trinity 
Here's a hot flash for you: dying is easy (in the theatrical sense of bombing onstage); producing a successful show is hard.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  June 02, 2009

racing list

Best in show

Making the picks at the Newport Film Festival
Tom Hall, the new artistic director of the Newport International Film Festival (June 3-7), had the usual hard time culling more than 600 submissions — some invited but most over the transom — down to 90 films — 17 narrative features (plus five Hollywood classics), 17 feature-length documentaries, and 56 shorts.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 27, 2009

Los Andes

Back in delicious style
It makes sense that the people who run Los Andes are the ones who had a popular place further up Chalkstone for nine years. It was named simply the Bolivian Restaurant and was, in fact, pretty definitive. At a recent visit to the new restaurant, a fellow diner enthused that the baked saltinas (potato, yucca, and cheese), an indulgence-encouraging two-buck impulse purchase "at the Bolivian," were "worth driving across town for." Indeed.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 20, 2009

judas list

Judgment day

Taking stock of Judas Iscariot
Interesting premise. The Last Days of Judas Iscariot , by Stephen Adly Guirgis, suggests what could happen if Judas, the most despised of the New Testament villains, were put on trial in purgatory.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 20, 2009

scarlet list

An awkward adaptation

Times change, but the frailties of the human heart . . . not so much.
Times change, but the frailties of the human heart . . . not so much. That overworked muscle can be haplessly generous or slammed-door shut. Nathaniel Hawthorne's mid-19th century novel The Scarlet Letter still stands as a perceptive examination of the eternal internal battle between love and hate.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 13, 2009

China Inn

Out of the Oriental ordinary
Finding a Chinese restaurant worth your loyalty is like dating. You look and you look and you yawn and you look, but when you find the right one, your eyes widen and you stick around.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 13, 2009

Streetcar List


2nd Story strips Streetcar  of its angry soul
If A Streetcar Named Desire were a person, it wouldn't be able to sleep at night, tossing and turning in a fever sweat, aching for basic human connection.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 05, 2009

Charlie List

Life lessons

Coming of age in Education of Charlie Banks
There are schoolyard bullies and there are schoolyard bullies. Likewise, some stories about them rise above the predictable. The title character of The Education of Charlie Banks  isn't even given a noogie — confrontation is not his route to coming of age.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 06, 2009

Hide Seek list

Let's talk about sex

Truth and Consequences in  Hide and Seek
It's not that Eve's religious but sisterly mother wouldn't understand, it's that Eve is apprehensive about her not  understanding.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  May 06, 2009


Myth understanding

Searching for self in Trinity's Shapeshifter
Trinity Repertory Company has been developing and is staging Shapeshifter , by Laura Schellhardt, which will have its world premiere May 1-31.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 28, 2009


Living thing

Amy Lynn Budd tackles a tumor in My Brain
Some people feel uncomfortable dealing with those, even friends, who look and act normal but are among the walking wounded with some deadly disease or another.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 29, 2009

The Barking Crab

A clam shack with extras
The Barking Crab's second location in Newport is the ideal spot for strolling summer tourists, right in the downtown harborfront
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 22, 2009


As young lovers do

Spring Awakening's musical bruises
The rock extravaganza Spring Awakening promotes the cliché of adolescent pain to serious grown-up status.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 22, 2009


Trivial pursuit

Trinity Rep's winning Earnest
It's difficult to put on an awful performance of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest .
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 22, 2009

Slice of Heaven

All this and bagels, too
Like mama used to say, don't fix what's not broken. In the kitchen, after requisite recipe fine-tuning and repair, after you have it tasting wonderful, slowly step away from that mixing bowl.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 08, 2009


Old horse, new saddle

Trinity Rep finds importance in Earnest
But what about this matter of throwing a saddle on an old warhorse again? Well, the rider this time around thinks that the play is still as frisky as a colt. She hasn't directed this before, but she has seen it five or six times.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 07, 2009

Life and how we live it

The Other Shore searches for meaning
We're far too close to life to see it accurately, aren't we? With noses pressed up against our problems and delights, we need our perceptive artists — such as Chinese playwright Gao Xingjian — to remind us of what's really going on.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 07, 2009


The show's the thing

A Chorus Line lifts spirits at PPAC
Admittedly, other musicals had to come before it for A Chorus Line to make any sense. But apart from that, the essence of musical theater is all there in this frisky colt of a theatrical warhorse.
By: BILL RODRIGUEZ  |  April 01, 2009

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