THEATER REVIEW: Lowbrow at times, ‘Housewives’ still prepares tasty treat

The Real (Desperate) Housewives of Columbia County/ By Carl Ritchie and Wayne Moore/ Taconic Stage Company/ Copake Lake

CARL RITCHIE, WHO DIRECTS as well as authors, has gathered five great-looking broads (the cream of the singing actresses around here) and created a broadly sassy musical revue. He pumps up and affectionately satirizes their individual proclivities. If reality flags, he just piles on some outrageous fictional stuff.

These characters are all climbing up the hill but are not yet over it; and they probably won’t be until they have each reached 110. To audience-happy eyes, they all seem DNA- and/or surgeon-blessed. Read more…

THEATER REVIEW: By remaining true to Bard, ‘Romeo’ production connects

Romeo and Juliet/ Shakespeare & Company/ Lenox, MA

IF, FROM HEAVEN, Shakespeare has been observing all the jerking around his scripts endure, he must now be smiling, sighing, and wafting hand-smooches toward his Mistress, director Daniela Varon.

Her invention is everywhere in Shakespeare & Company’s 2011 Romeo and Juliet; and all of it serves the word. Her direction is fresh with a kind of knowing modesty. Read more…

Two stories of fans view last Potter flick

CHATHAM — Witches and wizards lined up in front of the Crandell Theater at midnight on July 14. With wands and round glasses, adults and children waited for the premiere of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.” The movie is the final film adaption of British author J.K Rowling’s bestselling series. Harry Potter books have sold over 400 million copies worldwide.

The second midnight showing of Harry Potter since the Crandell’s reopening in 2010 went off without a hitch. Tickets had been on sale for a week prior, in expectation of the large crowd the film would draw. Read more…

SEASON PREVIEW: Thoughts on Bard’s spa for the mind

MAGICAL MUSIC, STROBE LIGHTING and handsome Finnish dancers opened the 2011 SummerScape at Bard College last week.

The Fisher Center for the Performing Arts, where much of SummerScape takes place, is tucked into the woods like a dinosaur at rest. As we arrived, its wide glass front, three stories high, welcomed early theatergoers, while across the road others delayed going indoors on a perfect summer evening. They sat at picnic tables or checked out The Parliament of Reality. This permanent outdoor installation, which features a pond and a bridge covered with wire mesh, is the creation of Olafur Eliasson. Read more…

THEATER REVIEW: As myth retold, spare Eurydice yields performance full of surprises

Eurydice/Walking the Dog Theater with PS/21

IF PLAYWRIGHT SARAH RUHL has not met director David Anderson in person, it is past time she did. She will seldom be better understood. At PS/21, all directorial ego and actor-narcissism has been carved away, and there is nothing left but text and movement and breathtaking connections. It is director as sculptor, releasing the play from where it lives in the marble script.

You remember the basic Orpheus/Eurydice story: A brilliant musician, Orpheus, loves and marries the dryad, Eurydice. Soon thereafter she is bitten by a snake, dies from the poison and descends to the underworld. He employs his magical music to convince the gods that he should go there and retrieve her. Erebus, king of the underworld, allows him to lead her back to life on the condition that, during the journey, he not look back. He looks back. She dies again. He is so grief-stricken that he can never engage with women again. This rejection so enrages the Bacchae (priestesses of Bacchus) that they tear him limb from limb. Read more…