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Posts Tagged ‘An Iliad’

Potter Returns, Amy Adams Bakes & More Theater News

April 5th, 2012 Comments off

Daniel Clarkson & Jefferson Turner in "Potted Potter". Image via David Gersten & Associates.

The stars, as in big name stars, are aligning on Broadway and we’ve got the scoop in a bite-sized theater news round-up:

  • Harry Potter is coming back to the New York. Well, not exactly THE Harry Potter but the 2012 Olivier Award nominee Potted Potter: The Unauthorized Harry Experience. The family friendly parody will play a limited engagment at the Little Shubert Theater starting May 19, promising to squeeze all seven books into seventy minutes…which basically makes the guy from One Man Star Wars Trilogy look like a total slacker.
  • Oscar-nominee Amy Adams will be The Baker’s Wife in this summer’s Shakespeare in the Park production of Into the Woods. No word yet on the rest of the leads but if this is the first announcement (and it’s pretty great casting, even if she strikes me more as a Cinderella), one has to imagine there are even bigger names to come. The mind boggles…Meryl as the Witch?
  • "Through a Glass Darkly". Photo by Ari Mintz.

    The first award nominations are out for the 2011-2012 season!  The Lucille Lortel Awards, given to excellence in Off-Broadway theater, and they feature a strong line-up of worthy works including Broadway Blog favorites director/choreographer Oscar-nominee Carey Mulligan (Through a Glass Darkly), Christopher Gattelli (Silence), An Iliad and Marin Mazzie (Carrie). Of particular note, the musical Once–now on Broadway–received a number of nominations which are likely to be matched at the Tonys.

  • If the Tony Awards committee could bestow sainthood, you know that the second name on the list (after Audra McDonald, of course) would be Neil Patrick Harris for his telecast-saving turns as host. Look for him to add another miracle to his resume when he returns to lead the 2012 Tony Awards show in June.
  • And finally, the biggest star of them all (at least in his/her fantasy world of retro-fabulousness) Charles Busch has another hit on his hands even before it opens. His latest vehicle, Judith of Bethulia, has already sold out all tickets for its limited run at Theater for the New City. That’s epic, indeed.

“Death” Opens, Creel Streams & More Theater News

March 15th, 2012 Comments off

Andrew Garfield & Finn Wittrock in "Death of a Salesman". Photo by Brigitte Lacombe.

It’s raining men in a drenched round-up of the week’s theater headlines:

  • Gavin Creel. Photo by Monica Simoes.

    Supporting the March 20 release of his new album Get Out, my imaginary boyfriend and double Tony-nominee Gavin Creel will perform two sold out concerts at Joe’s Pub March 19. For those of us who don’t have tickets (or who are barred from attending because of restraining orders), the wonders of modern technology will allow us to watch it all via livestream on the web, Monday night at 9:30.

  • Remember the Ricky Martin video where everyone is dancing around in a sexy deluge? Well, it was like that (except not so sexy, I assume) on the stage of Martin’s revival of Evita when a fire safety mechanism misfired and drenched the stage after the first preview Monday night. The Tuesday night and Wednesday matinee performances were canceled for clean-up and a rehearsal.


SHOW FOLK: Denis O’Hare on Gods, Warriors & Other Crush-Worthy Co-Stars

March 14th, 2012 Comments off

Once a month, a member of the theater community will pull up a chair to our cyber table and join us for a little conversation. I’ll edit the transcripts (removing the truly libelous parts) and post the results here every second Wednesday. For March, things are getting epic…

Denis O'Hare in "An Iliad". Photo by Joan Marcus.

Tony-winner Denis O’Hare has entered the pantheon. Literally. In his tour de force (and very well-reviewedAn Iliad, he may be alone on stage but, with a turn of the head or a sly vocal inflection, we see Hermes and Athena–not to mention all of the warriors and women of the Trojan War. As both an actor and co-author of this modern adaptation of Homer’s classic tale, his work is an act of virtuosic storytelling that is passionate, at times funny and always deeply engrossing. Of course, television viewers know that O’Hare is no stranger to larger than life characters, although from more contemporary mythology like his haunted Larry Harvey on American Horror Story or the villainous (and perhaps rising again) Vampire King Russell on True Blood

Currently alternating performances with Stephen Spinella through March 25 at New York Theatre Workshop, O’Hare took a breather from the battle cries to give us some insight into the challenges of performing a one-man show, rehearsing in traffic–and focusing on work when surrounded by hunky co-stars.

An Iliad is incredibly enveloping and moving as an audience member but what is the experience like for you to live those stories both physically and emotionally as a performer? Is your preparation for this show different from other shows because of those demands?

It is a massive burden this show – the thought of doing it begins to descend on me about 4 hours before hand and I find myself unable to really concentrate on other things. I tend to get to the theatre about 2 hours before curtain. I need to settle into the theatre – say hi to everyone backstage, have a little tea and then I go out on stage and do 30 minutes of Yoga and then about 10-15 minutes of vocal warmup. I usually run through at least one chapter onstage and I always run the List of Wars. Because I ride my bike everywhere, I find myself rehearsing while I’m riding. No one really notices when you talk to yourself on a bike.

Each show has its own requirements. Because of the massive text here, one of the requirements is constantly looking at the lines – I make around 200 errors a night in lines alone. I get a lot of notes from Stage Management and from the director and I’m always thinking about ways to improve and get cleaner.

Which of the mortals and gods was the easiest for you to embody, the one you thought immediately “I know this character”? Who was the hardest for you to “find” as an actor?

I had a tough time with all the characters -there wasn’t one which came to me easily – well, except for Hermes – he’s sort of Cali surf boy (not my usual niche but it was fun). I came to love doing Achilles best–Achilles and Agamemnon. And actually, if I’m honest, I’d say Agamemnon came fairly easily to me – from my years living in Chicago. I still struggle nightly finding Helen. Go figure.

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TO SEE OR NOT TO SEE: “An Iliad”

March 8th, 2012 Comments off

Get caught up with what’s on stage with our review round-up. And that vaguely hollow, clinking sound you hear at the end of each segment? That’s me tossing in my two cents. This month, it’s all Greek to me…

Denis O'Hare in "An Iliad". Photo by Joan Marcus.

AN ILIAD

Acclaimed actors Denis O’Hare (Take Me Out, True Blood) and Stephen Spinella (Angels in America) alternate in a one-man retelling of Homer’s epic tale of Gods, mortals and violence in ancient Troy.

“The strength of An Iliad resides in the combination of a naturally exciting narrative and the engaged, virtuosic performances of both Mr. O’Hare and Mr. Spinella.” New York Times

“No matter who’s at the helm, the show is too formless, and is as well-meaning as it is heavy-handed…” New York Post

“An Iliad is pure theater: shocking, glorious, primal and deeply satisfying.“ Time Out New York

An Iliad is more than a perfect night out at the theater for classics majors, of course. It’s a showcase for the acting skills of two accomplished stage veterans.“ Entertainment Weekly

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