REVIEW: “Fall Springs” at Barrington Stage

by Barbara Waldinger   A musical about fracking?  Is it doomed to share the fate suffered by entertainments on such unlikely subjects as Anne Frank or Anna Karenina, the Musicals:  obscurity and a critical chorus of “What could they have been thinking?” Decidedly not! Fall Springs by Niko Tsakalakos (music and lyrics) and Peter Sinn…

REVIEW: Topdog/Underdog” at Shakespeare & Company

by Roseann Cane   I lived in Manhattan for many years, and, particularly downtown and in other neighborhoods heavily populated with tourists, fast-talking young men enticing naive people to bet on a game of three-card monte were a familiar sight. Standing behind makeshift tables made of a few crates and topped with a large piece…

REVIEW: “Gertrude and Claudius” at Barrington Stage Company

by Barbara Waldinger Gertrude and Claudius, Barrington Stage Company’s newest offering by Mark St. Germain, based on John Updike’s 2000 novel by the same name, might well have been called simply Gertrude, for this is her story.  A prequel to Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the play traces thirty years in the life of Hamlet’s mother. The action…

REVIEW: “Twelfth Night” at Shakespeare & Company

by Jenny Hansell   Cross-dressing, mistaken identity, unrequited love, bawdy humor, and a few heart-stopping moments of darkness and deep emotion:  Shakespeare & Company’s hugely talented and appealing company works hard to make every word of Twelfth Night breathe as if freshly written.   Sticking with the play pretty much as written (recent productions in…

REVIEW: “America 2.1:  The Sad Demise & Eventual Extinction of the American Negro” at Barrington Stage

by Barbara Waldinger The Berkshires as a summer destination attracts visitors who want to escape the heat, seek cultural enrichment, and bask in outdoor activities in beautiful surroundings.  One might assume that theatrical offerings would cater to the wishes and expectations of this part-time audience.  But Artistic Director Julianne Boyd, in her 25th year as…

REVIEW: “Heisenberg” at Shakespeare & Company

by Roseann Cane In 1927 the German physicist Werner Heisenberg posited what is often referred to as the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle: it is not possible to measure simultaneously the position and the velocity of an object, even in theory. Playwright Simon Stephens has said that this quantum theory seems to define the way in which…