Author: Kat Webb

RESOLVED loosens up, until the end

SALT LAKE CITY — The fun thing about the Great Salt Lake Fringe Festival is the leaps taken in performance that would not be allowable in a more conventional setting. Resolved, produced by Company of Cohorts and directed by Trayven Call and Suni Gigliotti, is such a show because it disbands the notion of the 4th wall entirely and invites the audience into the living space of its main character, Roxy. A group of friends meet to throw a wild New Year’s Eve party, and the audience is allowed into the party. (I was given a “shot” and ushered into the...

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SALT LAKE CITY — Waiting for the World to End takes an interesting look at the nuclear apocalypse, as told through the lens of two rabbits. Twinkie (played by Jared Greathouse, who also wrote the script) and Sno-Ball (played by Tiffany A. Greathouse) seem an unusual pairing: one a test lab rabbit with salacious intent, and one a pedigreed, primped out priss. The two stumble upon each other and Twinkie immediately proposes that the two copulate and replenish the earth’s rabbit population. Sno-Ball, already engaged to another (presumably dead) rabbit, refuses, though indulges his company for a little longer. The...

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Strong cast buoys Grassroots’s ANTONY & CLEOPATRA

PROVO — Antony and Cleopatra, as penned by William Shakespeare, stands as one of his lesser-performed tragedies of star-crossed lovers. As Queen of Egypt, Cleopatra distracts one of the triumvirs of Rome, Antony, from his duties. The two bask in their love, a seemingly endless parade of drunken revelries. However, without Antony present, Rome’s political state begins to suffer, prompting resentment from his wife and the people. His wife dies, but Antony still returns to Rome to resume his stately duties. There, he and Octavius Caesar (another triumvir) decide that Antony marrying Caesar’s sister will fix their shaky alliance. Antony...

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DANCING AT LUGHNASA provides an intimate family portrait

HIGHLAND — Dancing at Lughnasa, by Brian Friel, shows the events of one month in the Irish Mundy household, which consists of five impoverished, unmarried sisters living together and keeping house together in the countryside. The story is told as remembered by the bastard child of Christine Mundy, Michael. His recollections make up the vast part of their story of a group of women banding together as they try to forge a home in their community and reconcile their personality differences. I was most impressed by the co-directors’ (M. Chase and Brooke Grant) ability to foster a tight sense of...

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Orem Hale creates an intimate production of THE DIARY OF ANNE FRANK

OREM — The Diary of Anne Frank remains a staple in modern literature, the personal thoughts and feelings of a young Jewish teenager during the Holocaust striking and resounding against a backdrop of Nazi facism. I remember reading the book in high school and being impressed that a simple teenager could have recorded the world while preserving the energy of the around her. The nuances of her storytelling capture a slice of life, not necessarily honed in on the horrors of Nazism, but the day-to-day happenings of her family. A balance of personal and political, her writing manages to serve...

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  • We saw it too! Loads of fun!
    September 27, 2016 12:23 pm on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • I watched Nunsense, when is was an off Broadway play in Grenwich village. It is a cute play!
    September 25, 2016 11:23 pm on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • This production was hilarious! Such amazing talent!! YOu need to go!!
    September 24, 2016 11:23 am on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • We saw this! Those ladies are incredibly talented!!! What great voices!!! And great acting. A lot of fun!!
    September 24, 2016 11:23 am on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • Great review! Well done!
    September 23, 2016 2:23 am on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • Nice review!
    September 22, 2016 10:23 am on It makes sense to see NUNSENSE at the SCERA
  • I very much enjoyed this unique, creative production. Check it out!
  • Maybe it's just because I notice it more now, but this year at the festival has been absolutely unbelievable in terms of costume design I've never seen so many shows where the costumes help tell the storybook well.
  • I have to say, I *LOVE* this costume design. Great way to bridge the past and the present. Also, the principle behind the costume design costume for this show is incredibly faithful to the way Shakespeare's actors would have costumed themselves. Brilliant work USF!
  • Everyone go see this!
  • I totally understand that having a large and varying group writing for you would have differing opinions-and it IS a big task. I can appreciate that. I'll have to see if I can remember specific shows I read things about... I would LOVE to share information about the scholarship. Do you have a link that gives me more info?
  • I apologize if I came off insulted. I'm not. I'm trying to elevate the discussion on Utah theatre and it's never going to be awesome unless more people do it. I'm sorry if I've offended, too. Yes, UTBA's reviews are inconsistent. It's a collection of volunteer patrons (with varying degrees of experience) writing about nearly every show that requests a reviewer. It's a monumental task. I'm sorry that you've read things you've felt were cruel. I would welcome a personal message so I can take a closer look at them. I'm not involved in the day-to-day or editorial content, but I can help. And please encourage UVU students to apply for our critical writing scholarship next year. It's judged by the three SLC-based Equity houses. I would love to see a Utah County student to win sometime.
  • I didn't mean to make it a personal attack. And yes, they can absolutely use some criticism, but I've read some pretty cruel things. And although not every show is good (we've all seen our fair share of terrible theatre) every production has something positive about it-because it is people making art. I am not a reviewer-nor do I plan to be, but as a professional and a consumer of theatre, if I read even a few reviews that have nothing good to say or seem poorly written, those reviews represent the whole. UTBA isn't the only review I'm disinclined to read-but for different reasons. I know some of the reviewers for UTBA, and respect their opinions immensely-but I have found it to be inconsistent. I apologize that you took this as a personal insult.
  • I've yet to see a review in Utah that levies personal attacks on artists. As for students I think it's valuable to receive criticism. Utah's negative reviews are pale when compared to the biting commentary on the national and international scenes. UTBA always welcomes readers that feel they would do better to apply and write for the site. And if they don't want to write for ours, then please start their own. More public discussion of theatre in Utah can only help.
  • Yes and no. You must be able to back up your opinion of a production with thought. You can't just hate it for no reason. I also really dislike when reviewer aggressively attack performers, particularly students, who are learning their craft for their performance. And sometimes they completely neglect to even mention design. All poor quality reviews in my humble opinion.
  • Oh, La. Every review/article out there is hit or miss for quality and bias. Take them as one patron's perspective. I believe every patron's opinion in my audience is worth hearing and receiving. I just have to remember to take praise with as many grains of salt that I do criticism.
  • :) I'll read it after Friday then...
  • It's very fair. But it might spoil the show for you if you haven't seen it yet ;)
  • Is it fair review? Their reviews are hit & miss for quality & bias so I usually won't read them.
  • I appreciate what you're trying to accomplish with The Fringe. And we received such great feedback from women who had suffered that I feel good about out attempts to shine the light. It's a revelation that the issues relating to women were ignored in a production that works so hard to bring them to light. Especially by a woman. It's also disconcerting to be seen as racially insensitive in our attempts to look at other issues in the text. Perhaps we took on too much for a one hour production. Hopefully, there will be women strengthened by our production though.