Thursday, February 2, 2012

Show reviews for the week of Jan. 30

The reviews for this week consists of two firsts: The first show by a new local company, Parade Productions, and the world premiere of a new show, Divorce Party: The Muscial!

Divorce Party: The Musical is being performed for the first time at the Kravis Center’s Rinker Playhouse. Jan Sjostrom, reviewing for The Palm Beach Daily News, says 'Divorce Party’ performers deserve better from script.

Granted, Divorce Party: The Musical is being performed for the first time at the Kravis Center’s Rinker Playhouse. There are bound to be wrinkles that need to be ironed out. The first thing this show needs is a significant trim. It’s as though creators Mark Schwartz, Amy Botwinick and Jay Falzone, who’s also the show’s lyricist, director and choreographer, couldn’t figure out what to cut, so they left everything in.
Hap Erstein, reviewing for The Palm Beach Arts Paper compaires Love, Loss, and What I Wore to Divorce Party and comes to the conclusion that "Love, Loss" is Shakespeare when compared to "Divorce Party".
The show stems from a book by Boca Raton divorce coach Amy Botwinick, titled Congratulations on Your Divorce -- The Road to Finding Your Happily Ever After. Whatever the message of that self-help book may be, it is reduced here to bonding with your female friends, have a makeover and start living again.

Brooklyn Boy is the first production by Parade Productions performing at Mizner Park.  Bill Hirschman at Florida Theater On Stage has reviwed the show and said that it was a mildly funny, mildly moving but flawed evening.
(Avi) Hoffman’s performance is one of the virtues in the promising but flawed inaugural offering from Parade Productions, a professional company performing in Mizner Park under the aegis of Artistic Director Kim St. Leon and Executive Producer Candace Caplin. There’s a lot of talent here working very hard, but not a lot of electricity emanating from the elegiac, mildly funny, mildly moving tale.
Reviewing for The Miami Herald, Christine Dolan says that in Brooklyn Boy a novelist glows and founders.
Brooklyn Boy, which could benefit from some judicious trimming, isn’t the greatest play from a man whose work also includes Sight Unseen, Collected Stories and Time Stands Still, a play that will be produced at GableStage in May. But it certainly contains resonant, sobering truths, and is a promising debut for Parade Productions.

Here is one last write up that snuck in just as I was about to hit publish.  Elizabeth Amore, a community contributer at has a review of the Actor's Playhouse production Next To Normal.

Next to Normal is an emotional musical rollercoaster about a family trying to cope with the past, while muddling through the present.  It is a glimpse into depression and the toll it can take on a family.  It is powerful.  Next to Normal features an impressive cast with strong ties to the South Florida theater community.


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