All stories by Charles McNulty on BroadwayStars

Monday, February 11, 2019

Review: 'Ragtime' at Pasadena Playhouse proves it's a ripe time for this stunning revival by Charles McNulty

With a gorgeous staging and glorious singing, the musical based on the E.L. Doctorow novel captures the momentous turn of the 20th century — the song of a nation stepping toward its future.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 05:08PM
Saturday, February 9, 2019

Review: 4 girls and 1 hidden camera add up to a captivatingly creepy comedy at East West Players by Charles McNulty

Anna Moench's "Man of God," having its world premiere, centers on young Korean Americans on a religious mission to Bangkok, their pastor and a discovery that upends their world.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 12:59PM
Tuesday, February 5, 2019

At Actors' Gang, a timely return of the political madness of Dario Fo's 'Anarchist' by Charles McNulty

As part of its politically incisive season, Tim Robbins' company takes on the Nobel Prize winner's wild play about corrupt authority, "Accidental Death oh an Anarchist."

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:14AM
Friday, February 1, 2019

Review: Wooster Group turns Texas inmates’ songs into the stirring theater of ‘The B-Side’ by Charles McNulty

The celebrated company turns "Negro Folklore From Texas State Prisons" into a stereophonic seance linking generations of African American experience.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:22AM
Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Struck by the power of a story well told by Charles McNulty

Two South Africans, desperate to escape the impoverished futility of their lives, break into the home of an aging academic who walks in on them as they're ransacking the place for money. A p…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:39AM

'All's Well' at last by Charles McNulty

Consider this a friendly public service announcement from a concerned theater critic: Please, unless there's a truly compelling reason, let's agree to a moratorium on revivals of "Hamlet," "…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:39AM

There is a good point, sir by Charles McNulty

As I was leaving the theater the other night, an older gentleman with a lapel-grabbing voice and a friendly jack-in-the-box manner stopped me dead in my tracks. "What was the point of that?…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:39AM

More misadventure in the screen trade by Charles McNulty

It might be heresy for a theater critic to admit, but Hollywood has done a better job of skewering the theater than the theater has done skewering Hollywood. Give me "All About Eve" over "On…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:33AM

Review: Sweeney Todd, Sondheim's throat-cutting barber, sets up shop in South Coast Rep's entertaining revival by Charles McNulty

An emphasis on storytelling rather than star performances or staging pyrotechnics drives a crisp production of the macabre musical "Sweeney Todd" at South Coast Repertory.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:00AM
Friday, January 25, 2019

Review: How well does Stephen Daldry’s landmark ‘An Inspector Calls’ hold up? by Charles McNulty

Director Stephen Daldry made his name with the National Theatre whodunit "An Inspector Calls." Now the London revival comes to Beverly Hills, seeping with commentary about class divisions.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:00AM
Thursday, January 24, 2019

Hello, Betty Buckley! A new Dolly hits town, and she’s ready to add to her legend by Charles McNulty

Time catches everyone by surprise. For Betty Buckley, the rude awakening happened when director Michael Wilson called to say he was planning a revival of the musical “Grey Gardens.”

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:52AM
Thursday, January 17, 2019

Review: In Tracy Letts' 'Linda Vista,' a loser in love and the collateral damage he leaves behind by Charles McNulty

The sensationally acted Steppenwolf Theatre production at the Mark Taper Forum delivers compelling characters and funny dialogue, but at times the pacing sluggishly shifts into cable TV terr…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 06:07PM
Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Why Carol Channing was a Dolly for all seasons: Our critic's take by Charles McNulty

Bette Midler, Barbra Streisand, Ethel Merman, Mary Martin: They all starred in "Hello, Dolly!" but no one had the same kind of giddy, goofy charm as the beloved Carol Channing.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 03:48PM
Thursday, December 20, 2018

How Bryan Cranston’s towering performance in ‘Network’ packs new potency into Paddy Chayefsky’s 1976 tale of media mind control by Charles McNulty

The stage adaptation of the '70s film, directed with bold flourishes by European auteur Ivo van Hove at Broadway's Belasco Theatre and co-starring Tony Goldwyn and Tatiana Maslany, has somet…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:00AM
Sunday, December 16, 2018

Review: Taylor Mac's 'Holiday Sauce,' a madcap brew of Christmas spirit, extra spicy by Charles McNulty

The cabaret drag star who staged his 24-hour music and social history marathon earlier this year, returns with an L.A. holiday show that takes on this, the most materialistic time of the yea…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 05:25PM
Friday, December 14, 2018

Review: 'The Cher Show,' a Broadway musical that hardcore fans can 'Believe' in by Charles McNulty

Does anyone really expect genuine drama from this kind of commercial jukebox musical? Get past the lackluster writing, and this production directed by Jason Moore and choreographed by Christ…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 08:30PM

In 'To Kill a Mockingbird' on Broadway, the words of Harper Lee but the voice of Aaron Sorkin by Charles McNulty

Aaron Sorkin's production of 'To Kill A Mockingbird,' which opened Thursday on Broadway, is a top-flight interpretation of the Harper Lee novel under the rustically elegant direction of Bart…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 05:40PM

Review: At this 'Prom,' the campy comedy comes with an LGBTQ beat by Charles McNulty

How much campiness can a theater audience take? This new musical tests the limits with its tale of Broadway actors who set out to champion an Indiana high school student banned from bringing…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 05:19PM
Thursday, December 13, 2018

Review: In 'To Kill a Mockingbird' on Broadway, the words of Harper Lee but the voice of Aaron Sorkin by Charles McNulty

All it takes is a few minutes of slingshot dialogue to reveal that this blockbuster Broadway adaptation belongs to Sorkin, who with director Bartlett Sher and star Jeff Daniels has created a…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 09:00PM
Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Best theater 2018: A brave ‘Cost of Living,’ a radical ‘Fairview’ and a new star in ‘Evan Hansen’ by Charles McNulty

The Times' theater critic names his top productions of 2018, including Jefferson Mays' take on "A Christmas Carol," a daring "Streetcar," Branden Jacobs-Jenkins' ingenious "Gloria" and the s…

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 08:00AM
Thursday, November 29, 2018

Review: 'Come From Away' national tour keeps singing its ode to the better side of human nature by Charles McNulty

The surprise Broadway hit about a tiny Canadian town's embrace of air passengers diverted on 9/11 arrives at L.A.'s Ahmanson Theatre a little less polished but ultimately still satisfying.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 05:12PM
Friday, November 16, 2018

Review: In a Geffen Playhouse double bill, actor Brian Dennehy soars in O'Neill, survives in Beckett by Charles McNulty

Tony-winner Brian Dennehy stars in a double-bill of short works by Eugene O'Neill and Samuel Beckett

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 02:47PM
Monday, November 12, 2018

Review: Martyna Majok's Pulitzer-winning drama 'Cost of Living' has found an ideal home at Fountain Theatre by Charles McNulty

Review: 'Cost of Living': Martyna Majok's 2018 Pulitzer Prize-winning drama brings an unflinching realism about the disabled and their caregivers to the Fountain Theatre.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 04:37PM
Saturday, November 10, 2018

Review: Tony-winner Jefferson Mays, a virtuoso working solo, brings ‘A Christmas Carol’ back from the dead by Charles McNulty

Tony-winner Jefferson Mays single-handedly populates "Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol" at the Geffen Playhouse

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 11:00AM
Friday, November 9, 2018

Review: Luis Valdez's 'Valley of the Heart' shares an immigrant story from California's past by Charles McNulty

Luis Valdez's new play explores immigration and the reality of the American dream in a story set during World War II about two families, one of Japanese heritage, the other of Mexican.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 09:00AM
Thursday, November 8, 2018

Review: 'King Kong,' a giant animatronic ape with soulful eyes, crashes down on Broadway by Charles McNulty

"King Kong,” the stage animal first seen wreaking havoc in Australia, has arrived on Broadway with a seismic thud and a thundering roar.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:00PM
Sunday, November 4, 2018

Review: 'American Son,' with Kerry Washington, is a painfully topical, if imperfect, Broadway drama by Charles McNulty

In 'American Son,' a raw Kerry Washington returns to Broadway as an anguished mother seeking answers from the police about her missing son . It's a painfully topical, if imperfect, drama

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 07:00PM
Thursday, November 1, 2018
Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Obie-winning playwright María Irene Fornés, a transformative off-Broadway figure, dies at 88 by Charles McNulty

María Irene Fornés, a pivotal figure in the off-off Broadway movement, wrote diverse and profoundly humane plays that should be part of the American canon.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 04:15PM
Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Review: Eliza Clark's new comedy 'Quack' takes the temperature of the feverish wellness industry by Charles McNulty

'Quack,' Eliza Clark's comedy having its world premiere at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, takes the temperature of the feverish wellness industry.

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 04:43PM
Saturday, October 27, 2018

Review: In 'Vietgone,' East West Players takes audiences on the wild ride of Qui Nguyen's rambunctious drama about refugees in love by Charles McNulty

Qui Nguyen's touted drama about refugees who fall in love in 1970s America after fleeing the Vietnam war, arrives in Los Angeles in an East West Players production

Linked From Los Angeles Times at 10:00AM

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