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Archive for October, 2010

‘Tis the season for talk of scary movies. Everyone has their favorites, or course. New or old? Bloody or creepy?

I was at a Halloween party over the weekend where the subject came up (“The Dead Zone” and “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” were mentioned), other titles were mentioned at work (“The Innocents” and “The Orphanage”), and I did a post last year (“Post #13”) where I listed some of my favorites.

Since I’m always in search of a new scary movie, I went and saw “Let Me In” over the weekend. It’s the remake of the great Swedish horror film, “Let the Right One In.” Capably directed and adapted by Matt Reeves, and reset in the American southwest, it has two great performances by the young leads (Kodi Smit-McPhee and Chloe Moretz). The visual effects were a little too much (“Hey, look what we can do”), more needed to be left to the imagination. I still liked it, though.

Chloe Moretz in "Let Me In"

"Let the Right One In"

 

 

Hope you all have a great Halloween!

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I know I mentioned it already, but I’m playing Amos Hart (“Mr. Cellophane”) in an upcoming production of “Chicago” at Seattle Musical Theatre. It’s a role I’ve played before (almost 25 years ago at a small theater in Gig Harbor) and it is great to be delving into this character again.

Rehearsals are chugging along just fine. I got to watch some of our oh-so-talented cast run-through both the “I Know a Girl” and “Me and My Baby” numbers last night. Our choreographer, Crystal Dawn-Munkers, is doing amazing work.

We open Nov. 12th (that’s three weeks from today). Call 206-363-2809 for ticket information.

Danielle Barnum as Roxie, Troy Johnson as Billy and Lindsey Larson as Velma

 

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Whew! I’ve  finished my three week stint at Stone Soup Theater. Initially, I’d planned on doing a full production of Conor McPherson’s “The Weir,” but I ended up producing two staged readings of the show instead that first weekend, followed by performances of the historical drama, “May’s Vote” (with the wonderful Barbara Callander and Toni Douglass) the second weekend, and finally the great cabaret, “Winsome” with friends Bradetta and Sara. Thanks to all who helped out and supported my first venture in producing.

Julie Drummond

Somehow over this past weekend, I managed to get down to Tacoma to see Tacoma Musical Playhouse‘s production of “Hairspray.” Yes, I have seen John Waters’ 1988 original non-musical film, the first staging in 2002 by the 5th Avenue Theatre of the Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman musical adaptation, and of course, the 2007 movie musical. I really do love this show and think I’d go see it just about anywhere.

TMP’s staging was a two-hour celebration of 60’s kitch, fabulous costumes and the joy of dance. The cast was amazing and full of energy. My favorites included Julie Drummond as Tracy, Frank Kohel as Edna, John Huddleston as Corny (LOVE the suit coat for the final scene) and ensemble members Jeremy Adams and Brynne Geiszler. Bravos all around.

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Are you in the mood for something different? This strange, but enthralling documentary from Gideon Koppel concerns life in a rural Welsh farming community. Check out my full review, and if it sounds like something you’d enjoy, head over to the Northwest Film Forum this week (the film runs through Oct. 14).

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As I begin rehearsals for my next project (“Chicago” at Seattle Musical Theatre), I wanted to take a quick look back at some of the great stuff I’ve seen over the past few weeks.

First off there was “Sleuth” at Tacoma Little Theatre featuring my friend Alan Wilkie (and Christian Doyle, pictured).  Great set by Blake R. York. Both actors did nice work in a show where the twisty plot is best left to be discovered than analyzed.

The very next week I went over to Seattle Musical Theatre to see their production of “Camelot.” I have to admit here that this is not my favorite of musicals, but the cast and crew at SMT did a very capable job.  Director Ward Scott Brown made some efficient cuts in the script that kept the evening at just over two hours. I’ve seen productions of “Camelot” that went on and on and on. Tops among the cast for me were Jared Michael Brown as King Arthur and Spencer Fairbanks as Squire Dap.

Then there was “Judy Sings Judy,” starring my friend Judy Ann Moulton singing the songs of Judy Garland backed by a great band. A lovely evening (I especially enjoyed “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” and “The Man That Got Away”). Additional shout outs to director David Koch and the always lovely D.J. Gommels at the piano.

The last of the group was “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” at Renton Civic Theatre. I’ve seen a tour of he show before and it is pretty darn adorable. One of the actors was actually absent the night I went and the rest of the cast had to delay the start time for the show, regroup and work around her. Delightful work all around. Standouts for me were Nancy Fisher as Rona Lisa Perretti and Heather Edwards McRobbie as Olive Ostrovsky. And the always capable Kim Douglass and Jim Fisher did great work as the onstage band. I also got to be one of the spellers chosen from the audience. It was fun, but I went out on the word “mizzle.”

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