Let Me Take That Back

I’ll return to my normal blogging when I’m not going home after a day of school and sleeping for at least four hours and then reading Kenneth Tynan to try to stay awake so I can take my cold medicine again.

I’m wiped out right now. And actors that turn into screaming hysterical queens when I’m not looking at my peak isn’t helping either.



I’ve had a really bad cold recently. I slept for eight hours yesterday because the cold medicine I’m on is knocking me off my feet. I’ll have a post about my travels to Chicago up probably tomorrow. Or Friday.

I also have to deal with a bad article being published in the publication I write for, my incredible smug looking photo that accompanies my columns and the fact that the website for the publication in question has not been updated since February 4.

Yes, February 4.

I think I’ll fix that since I’m technically on the online staff.

(On another note, my sister thought I said January 4. But I thought yesterday she said that David Mamet was badass.)

Post-Oscars Blogging

I’d like to thank the Academy for making the Oscars very predictable this year.

At 9:45 cst I wrote down “Slumdog Millionaire” for every award it was nominated for that hadn’t been presented yet. I was correct with every one.

The only things that might have been considered upsets would be Sean Penn winning for “Milk” (which I saw coming and hoped for, even though I was expecting Mickey Rourke when the envelope was opened.) and “Departures” winning for Best Foreign Language Film instead of “Waltz with Bashir.”

But “Slumdog” was a freaking juggernaut. As my father put it, it wouldn’t have been too shocking if “Slumdog Millionaire” won awards it wasn’t nominated for.

As much as I would have liked for “Milk” to win Best Picture, I didn’t think that this was going to happen. I tried to explain this to my sister.

“Is it because you think the Academy is homophobic?” She said.

“No,” I replied. “I think it’s because it’s up against ‘Slumdog Millionaire’.”

And, I think we all saw Heath Ledger’s win coming for the past eight months. I think if the Academy had given it to anyone else, real people, not just pissy Facebookers would have been on their back.

Sean Penn and Dustin Lance Black’s speeches were great.

But the “musical is back” number? Definately Baz, who I used to appreciate and enjoy until “Australia.” But did they have to start it off with mentioning “Mamma Mia!”, which I wish I had Netflixed instead of paying $8 at my movie theatre. It felt choppy and uneven and suddenly out of freaking nowhere came Zac Efron (May I also take the chance to say that Robert Pattinson was good, Zac Efron, no.) and I think Vanessa Hudgens. Really?

Anyway, here it is. At the start I thought it was doing better than some numbers on the most recent broadcast of the Tony Awards, but my mind changed by the end.

And you won’t here much about it, but Tina Fey and Steve Martin poked fun at Scientology.

Chicago Playworks’ “Alice in Wonderland”

I am highly recommending this production that has pretty much nothing but DePaul Theatre School people involved with this, except for the director, Sean Graney, who is the Artistic Director of The Hypocrites.

The show felt like an engrossing nightmare that had moments of being absolutely wonderful, which made the creepiness of the show even better. The lights and set (designed by BFA students Casey Diers and Stephen H. Carmody) added to this feel as did the vaudeville feeling costumes (designed by BFA student Alarie Hammock). The acting was great (again, all of the actors were DePaul students) and I personally don’t think that the show will frighten young children. (I would like to add that this is the second largest venue I’ve been in this season and also seemed to have the youngest audience.) Some of the actors in the Wonderland part came out into the theatre before the show and said hi to the audience. I would have to say that would put the children at ease.

Oh, plus, tickets are $8 and it’s in the Merle Reskin Theatre which is a beautiful facility.

But I do recommend those that are not fond of stage fog should not sit in the first few rows.

As Usual, The Courier and I Are Not Seeing Eye to Eye

In yesterday’s Waterloo Courier there was a review of “Importance of Being Earnest,” which I panned on Sunday. The title of the review, by George F. Day (what the hell ever happened to Barbara Lounsberry?), is “Oster Regent’s ‘Importance of Being Earnest’ ably performed.”

Whoa, the Oster Regent is the venue, not the company. Cedar Falls Community Theatre is the company.

Anyway, Day loved it, I’m guessing. I don’t know, he doesn’t address the actors’ performance. But here are some excerpts:

On the show:

“It is set in England and, to be convincing, the actors need to adopt a British accent.

Its humor is delightful but often so subtle that many a modern viewer may not “get it.”

It is set in Victorian times and the customs and mores depicted may well appear bizarre to today’s laid-back generation.

Those are three consecutive paragraphs, by the way.

Okay, here’s my problem. Eric Clark and the other critics at the Cedar Rapids Gazette have fewer words than this Day guy (really, what happened to Harvey Hess and Lounsberry?) and they write better reviews. I mean, the Courier writes a nice summary with the name of the actors (I would give you a link to the review, but we’re talking about the Courier and they don’t put their theater reviews on their website.) with some discussions on the set and costumes. (“But the quarters occupied by Algy Moncrieff look more like a room in a Motel 6 than the West End pad of a wealthy upper-class Londoner.” Touche, Mr. Day. I was thrilled when actors got on the set because my eyes hurt less.)

Oh, but here’s the real kicker:

“(In the interest of full disclosure: Many many years ago, I had a part in this play. I am forced to admit that the current production is probably superior to that one.)”

I know that the Courier has other critics. Why didn’t they review this? Day has an bias to the show, unless he hated it after doing this show.

I’m just, mad. I don’t even think the guys at Critic-O-Meter (which I love, thank you) could grade this review.

But hey, at least the 65-year-olds that see CFCT plays read the Courier. This will make an impression, unlike my review.

The Following Websites are Blocked by My School District

About Last Night, which is Wall Street Journal theatre critic Terry Teachout’s blog.


The Playgoer, Parabasis, The Clyde Fitch Report, Moxie the Maven, and Iowa Theatre.

Theatre Cedar Rapids’ website.

The New York Times theater page. I’m not sure if that’s because of the review for Sarah Ruhl’s new play “In the Next Room (or the Vibrator Play).

This blog.

These all suddenly became blocked either last night, or today. All I know is that I should have taken a picture my face while I was trying to find information for my article on plays in March when I couldn’t access any of the websites and I was eating my salad at the same time.