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A Clevelander’s views on some Broadway, Fall, 2014 productions

Roy Berko

(Member, Cleveland Critics Circle, American Theatre Critics Association)

New York City is approximately 500 miles from Cleveland.  People from the North Coast often make the trek there to partake in the shopping, dining, but most often, the theatre.  In order to keep the locals abreast of the Great White Ways offerings, I review some of the  shows.  Here is a sampling of what’s new on Broadway.

To read the entire review of each of the shows go to:

Mind-chilling “Disgraced,” which has a Cleveland connection, compels on Broadway

“Disgraced” has a Cleveland connection.  The show’s major producer is The Araca Group, founded in 1997 by three west side Clevelanders,  Hank Unger, Mathew Rego and Michael Rego, who also produced “Wicked,” “Urinetown,” “Cinderella,” “Lend Me A Tenor” and “Rock Of Ages.”

Capsule judgement:  The Pulitzer Prize winning “Disgraced” is an exceptional script which gets a gripping production under the keen direction of Kimberly Senior.  The writing, acting and the technical aspects should earn the show a number of Tony nominations.  It is a must see show for anyone who appreciates though-provoking theater.

“Disgraced” is playing in an open ended run at The Lyceum Theatre, 149 West 45th Street, New York, New Yor

Mesmerizing “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” is a must see!

Capsule judgement:  The production of “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” is outstanding on every level.  Well written, creatively staged and exceptionally acted, it is a highlight of the Fall, 2014 season.  It well-deserved the screaming standing ovation it received.  To add to the excitement, Alex Sharp gives a Tony Award winning performance!

“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” is in an open-ended run at The Ethel Barrymore Theatre, 243 West 47th Street, New York, New York

“The Country House,” humorous, thought-provoking dramedy

Capsule judgement:   With its fine cast, including two potential Tony best supporting actor performances (Sarah Steele and Eric Lange), a Broadway legend (Blythe Danner), and a nicely textured story line, “The Country House” is a play well worth seeing. And, with its interesting story, single set, small cast, and good roles, it will get lots of productions at community theatres. 

“The Country House,” is playing at The Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, 131 West 55th St (between 6th & 7th Avenues), through November 23, 2014.

Sting’s music launches a compelling “The Last Ship” on Broadway

Capsule judgement:  Those willing to put aside preconceived ideas of the role of musical theatre to be escapist, not confronting dark and real issues, should find “The Last Ship” to be an emotional experience, as it probes the need to escape from certain realities of life, and the angst that flight can cause.  The powerful music, meaningful lyrics, emphatic dancing, and the sheer grandeur of the visual effects of “The Last Ship,” makes the production an exciting addition of the Broadway musical theatre lexicon.

“The Last Ship” is in an open-ended run at the Neil Simon Theatre, 250 West 52nd Street, New York.