Pershing Square Signature Center

Off-Broadway Review: “Be More Chill” at The Irene Diamond Stage at The Pershing Square Signature Center

It is difficult to separate “Be More Chill,” currently running The Irene Diamond Stage at The Pershing Square Signature Center, from the hype surrounding what has become a teenage cult musical since its 2015 run at the Two River Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey. This hype has been heightened by a cast recording and an extensive marketing campaign. What…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Peace for Mary Frances” at the New Group at Pershing Square Center’s Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theatre

There are many victims in the new family drama penned by Lily Thorne, but perhaps the audience is the most unfortunate casualty, having to suffer through this slow, protracted, insipid production for over two-and-a-half hours and wishing that “Peace for Mary Frances” would have come much sooner. The structure of the play is problematic: the series of short scenes ranging…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Jerry Springer – The Opera” at The Pershing Square Signature Center’s Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre

When one thinks of the Jerry Springer Show (past and present), one might not think of ‘opera.’ However, in 2000, the seeds of that exact concept were planted by Richard Thomas at London’s Battersea Arts Centre with his “Tourette’s Diva” and in 2001 with his “How to Write an Opera About Jerry Springer” at the same venue. The success of…

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Off-Broadway Review: “At Home at the Zoo” at the Pershing Square Signature Center’s The Irene Diamond Stage

“Hey, I got news for you, as they say. I’m on your precious bench, and you’re never going to have it for yourself again.” – Jerry to Peter Was anyone putting the disparity between “the one percent” and the remaining “ninety-nine percent” under the cultural microscope in the late 1950s? The Baby Boomers were booming and most believed the middle-class…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Downtown Race Riot” at the New Group at Pershing Square Signature Center’s Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre

The 1970s was a decade of unrest across the United States. Racial divides were exacerbated by socio-economic disparities and rising tensions between members of minority communities and the systemic racism inherent in the majority white population. This unrest was particularly evident in urban areas like New York City and, more specifically, in the West Village of Manhattan. One such riot…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train at The Pershing Square Signature Center’s Irene Diamond Stage

The value of enduring questions is that they are not specific to a time or place or event. Theatre should be raising enduring questions and conflicts that playwrights (and their cultures) grappled with hundreds of years ago and remain relevant today. Stephen Adly Guirgis raises several such questions in the revival of his play “Jesus Hopped the ‘A’ Train,” currently…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Georama: An American Panorama on 3 Miles of Canvas” at the New York Musical Festival at the Peter Jay Sharp Theatre

The Authors’ Note in the program for “Georama: An American Panorama on 3 Miles of Canvas,” currently running at the New York Musical Festival at the Peter Jay Sharp Theater, claims that John Banvard the subject of their musical “[has] been entirely obliterated by history.” Although that premise is not entirely accurate – articles about Banvard exist in numerous scholarly…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Matthew McConaughey Vs. The Devil” at the New York Musical Festival at the Acorn Theatre at Theatre Row

“Matthew McConaughey vs The Devil: An American Myth” is yet another version of the story based on the fictional character “Faust” here set in Hollywood and dealing with an unsuccessful actor who makes a deal with Satan’s agent to sell his soul in return for winning an Oscar. It is assumed that this musical was created as a parody, lampooning…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Spoon River” at the Pershing Square Signature Center’s Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre

Upon entering Pershing Square Signature Center’s Romulus Linney Courtyard Theatre to view a new musical adaptation of Edgar Lee Masters’ 1915 “Spoon River Anthology,” we became a bit leery about the execution of this undertaking (no pun intended) as we walked down a dark hallway past Bertie Hume lying at rest in a casket. Continuing in the dark, we turned…

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Off-Broadway Review: “Of Human Bondage” at the Pershing Square Signature Center’s Irene Diamond Stage

Soulpepper Theatre Company brings its Toronto production of “Of Human Bondage” to the Soulpepper on 42nd Festival. Vern Thiessen adapted W. Somerset Maugham’s novel for the stage – the first stage adaptation of the iconic novel. Soulpepper is to be commended for taking on this formidable challenge. The results are both blazoned with success and tempered by the temptation of…

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