All stories by Joel Benjamin on BroadwayStars

Monday, September 26, 2022

Fall for Dance Festival 2022: Program 1 by Joel Benjamin

Perhaps the supreme dance festival in New York City, maybe even in the world, New York City Center’s Fall for Dance 2022 is celebrating its 19th year of presenting a panoply of domestic an…

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Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Four Saints in Three Acts by Joel Benjamin

Greenspan isn’t always totally clear when switching points of view, but made up for this by turning the entire, long script into a wonderland of gestures, vocalizations, postures and movem…

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Sunday, September 18, 2022

Love, Sex and Real Estate by Joel Benjamin

"Love, Sex & Real Estate" moves swiftly, thanks to John D. McNally’s direction.  He skillfully manages the quick shifts between romantic liaisons, real estate discussions, Ugo’s you…

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Monday, September 12, 2022

Strings Attached by Joel Benjamin

From the clever double entendre title to its fantastical involvement of three famous long dead physicists, Carole Buggé’s "Strings Attached" tries very hard to rise out of the morass what…

SOURCE: at 05:50PM
Monday, August 29, 2022

Two Jews, Talking by Joel Benjamin

If Samuel Beckett had been a Jew, his "Waiting for Godot"’s Estragon and Vladimir could have emerged as the equally quirky "Two Jews, Talking," in the appealing new two-hander by Ed. Weinb…

SOURCE: at 08:17PM
Friday, August 26, 2022

Randy’s Dandy Coaster Castle by Joel Benjamin

Part of Ramón’s game plan to increase attendance is to create a Randy’s Dandy Coaster Castle mascot.  In a move that changes his life, Arlo is drafted to don a hilarious, smelly rat co…

SOURCE: at 10:45PM
Friday, August 19, 2022

The Sarasota Ballet 2022 by Joel Benjamin

The second Ashton ballet was "Varii Capricci," his clever take on Bronislava Nijinska’s "Les Biches" from 1924.  Her ballet was a tongue-in-cheek comment on the sexually liberated, chic y…

SOURCE: at 04:45PM
Friday, August 12, 2022

BAAND Together Dance Festival 2022 at Lincoln Center by Joel Benjamin

The dancers were attired in puffy white tutus and black tights, the men bare-chested—chic costumes by the choreographer.  They pranced, undulated their torsos, tossed each other around an…

SOURCE: at 11:56PM
Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Adventures in Vegas by Joel Benjamin

A tiny dynamo, Bell Wolff, early in her career, found the perfect role as Ermengarde in several productions of "Hello, Dolly!". She yearned to perform the bigger part of Minnie Faye and near…

SOURCE: at 09:22PM
Friday, July 29, 2022

Happy Life by Joel Benjamin

Ng has a far-reaching imagination and spins the many stories and characters of her "Happy Life" with admiral skill and abandon.  But it is just too heavy-handedly, head-scratchingly abstrus…

SOURCE: at 11:34AM
Tuesday, July 19, 2022

A Black and White Cookie by Joel Benjamin

The chips fall into place by the end of A Black and White Cookie, perhaps a bit too smoothly, but the path to the ending is well constructed and fascinating. Morgenstein has caught the nuanc…

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Sunday, July 17, 2022

Notre Dame de Paris by Joel Benjamin

It may be a bit unfair, but there’s no escaping comparing "Notre Dame De Paris," currently exploding on the stage of the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, with its immensely popular…

SOURCE: at 05:17PM
Monday, July 11, 2022

Momix’s Alice by Joel Benjamin

Pendleton, in a program note, assures us that "Alice" is not a retelling of Carroll’s book.  Rather, he used some of the events and characters from the book, dividing the evening-length w…

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Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Prince Charming, You’re Late by Joel Benjamin

If you ever lived through the angst of an unrequited love, a romance impossible for one reason or another, then Billy Hipkins’ "Prince Charming, You’re Late" will hit the spot.  Directe…

SOURCE: at 10:00PM
Friday, July 1, 2022

The Rise and Fall, Then Brief and Modest Rise Followed by a Relative Fall of…Jean Claude Van Damme as Gleaned by a Single Reading of His Wikipedia P by Joel Benjamin

"The Rise and Fall, then Brief and Modest Rise Followed by a Relative Fall of…Jean Claude Van Damme as Gleaned by a Single Reading of His Wikipedia Page Months Earlier" is the brobdinagian…

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Saturday, June 25, 2022

Pacific Northwest Ballet 2022 by Joel Benjamin

For the company’s director, Peter Boal, this short season was a homecoming of sorts.  He was a principal dancer in the New York City Ballet which calls the David H. Koch its artistic home…

SOURCE: at 04:46PM
Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Garden of Alla: The Alla Nazimova Story by Joel Benjamin

Romy Nordlinger has written and is performing the monodrama, "Garden of Alla: The Alla Nazimova Story," at the TheaterLab.  Directed by Lorca Peress, "Garden of Alla" gives us this eccentri…

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Friday, June 17, 2022

Paul Taylor Dance Company 2022 by Joel Benjamin

The new work on the program, a world premiere, was “Hope Is the Thing with Feathers” by Michelle Manzanales, choreographed to John Lennon & Paul McCartney, Bob Marley, Harry Woods an…

SOURCE: at 05:13PM
Monday, June 13, 2022

The Refugees by Joel Benjamin

Kaliski attempts a clever conceit marrying "The Oresteia" characters to the modern tragic story of the homeless hordes. Does "The Oresteia" provide an effective jumping off point to explore …

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Tuesday, June 7, 2022

A Healthy House by Joel Benjamin

Diriwachter is particularly skilled in writing working class vernacular.  The Father and Tim speak the same language and he catches all the subtleties of decades of ups and downs.  He also…

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Saturday, June 4, 2022

A Kid Like Rishi by Joel Benjamin

Origin Theatre Company’s stark production of Kees Roorda’s A Kid Like Rishi is a totally involving Rashomon-like take on a real-life tragedy:  In November of 2012, 17-year-old Rishi Cha…

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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Jews, God, and History (Not Necessarily in That Order) by Joel Benjamin

Takiff is a skilled performer who never loses the audience no matter how angry or sardonic he gets.  He is helped by the mood setting lighting of Elizabeth M. Stewart and the sound and vide…

SOURCE: at 11:14AM
Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Oh God, A Show About Abortion by Joel Benjamin

Alison Leiby’s "Oh God, A Show About Abortion" is probably the most level-headed work about that much debated subject, perhaps too level-headed.  While the United States is going through …

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Thursday, May 5, 2022

A Strange Loop by Joel Benjamin

Deliriously and explicitly profane, Michael R. Jackson’s Pulitzer Prize winning musical, "A Strange Loop" has—unbelievably—made it to Broadway, produced by Playwrights Horizons, Page 7…

SOURCE: at 10:36PM
Saturday, April 30, 2022

for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf by Joel Benjamin

This Broadway production, a godchild of a recent 2019 production at The Public Theater (directed by Leah C. Gardiner), is directed and choreographed by modern dance luminary Camille A. Brown…

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Monday, April 25, 2022

The Limón Dance Company (Spring 2022) by Joel Benjamin

The final work was the world premiere of “Only One Will Rise,” a work by a new choreographer Olivier Tarpaga to a colorful score he co-wrote with Tim Motzer who was one of the three on s…

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Tuesday, April 12, 2022

The Life by Joel Benjamin

The ubiquitous Billy Porter was given command of the most recent New York City Center Encores! presentation, the 1997 musical "The Life."  His direction and re-interpretation of this tawdry…

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Confederates by Joel Benjamin

Dominique Morisseau’s "Confederates," her second play of her Signature Theatre Residency 5, is a clever, but overly talky dissertation on race, power and family.  She offers the audience …

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Tuesday, March 22, 2022

The Medium by Joel Benjamin

Who knew that Marshall McLuhan was such a nut?  "The Medium," a dance-theater work conceived and directed by Anne Bogart puts McLuhan through her particular way of combining dance and words…

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Friday, March 18, 2022

Coal Country by Joel Benjamin

Songwriter Steve Earle, a three-time Grammy Award winner, returns providing homey, twangy music and acting as an understanding host/narrator.  With charm that belies the depth of Coal Count…

SOURCE: at 11:57PM
Sunday, March 13, 2022

Hart Island by Joel Benjamin

Whether or not Tracy Weller’s "Hart Island" directly harkens back to Masters, it certainly has similarities, most particularly in its poetically rendered revelations of the underbelly of l…

SOURCE: at 11:48PM

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