REVIEW: Avon Players’ ‘It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play’ is a Bright Beacon of Blessings for the Holidays

Every Christmas, millions of viewers take a trip to fictional Bedford Falls to follow the trials and triumphs of George Bailey. This season, Avon Players offers a twist on the classic film with Joe Landry’s adaptation of It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, running now through December 11 in Rochester Hills, Mich. Jonathan Farrell waits his turn while Kim Bertolini and Chloe Schultz man the special effects. Photo courtesy of Avon Players Theatre FB page As a radio play, this … [Read more...]

REVIEW: Meadow Brook Theatre Brings Hope and Joy Back to the Stage with ‘A Christmas Carol’

As the air grows bitterly colder and the temperatures fall, inside Meadow Brook Theatre (MBT) there is a warmth of hope rekindled as audiences are welcomed back for their long-running and beloved production of A Christmas Carol. With original adaptation and staging by Charles Nolte, this Charles Dickens’ Christmas classic runs at MBT on the campus of Oakland University in Rochester, MI now through December 23. Illustration by Chet Johnson For 39 years, A Christmas Carol has greeted … [Read more...]

Get into the Holiday Spirit with Avon Players’ ‘It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play’

Gather the whole family for a fresh take on an old favorite    Avon Players’ 75th season continues with Joe Landry’s adaptation of the classic uplifting film, It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, running November 26-December 11.  It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play is based on the classic holiday movie presented with a twist: the story is staged as a live radio broadcast for an added layer of nostalgia. Actors portray numerous characters, and sound effects are created live … [Read more...]

Musical theatre returns to OU stage with ‘The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee’

Performances are November 11-14, 18-21 in the Varner Studio Theatre Musical theatre at Oakland University makes a triumphant return to live performances this November in the Varner Studio Theatre with The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee!Winner of the Tony and Drama Desk Awards for Best Book, this musical takes audiences back to that awkward stage of life as six of the most eccentric kids in the school district vie for the coveted title in the sixth-grade spelling bee.“With the audience … [Read more...]

Rochester University Presents ‘Mary’s Wedding’

Rochester University’s theatre department presents Mary’s Wedding, written by Stephen Massicotte and directed by Robert Arbaugh, MFA. RU students Brendan Martin and Rebekah Graham perform in 'Mary’s Wedding' On the night before her wedding, Mary dreams of a thunderstorm, during which she unexpectedly meets Charlie sheltering in a barn beside his horse. With innocence and humor, the two discover a charming first love. But the year is 1914, and the world is collapsing into a brutal war. … [Read more...]

Meadow Brook Theatre celebrates the return of ‘A Christmas Carol’

Running November 19 through December 23, 2021, on the campus of Oakland University in Rochester One of southeast Michigan’s favorite holiday traditions returns for the 39th year when Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and a handful of ghosts raise your spirits in A Christmas Carol at Meadow Brook Theatre this November and December. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, original adaptation and staging by Charles Nolte, runs at Meadow Brook Theatre (MBT) on the campus of Oakland University in … [Read more...]

REVIEW: Armed with Wit, ‘Clue: On Stage’ is a Killer Good Time at Meadow Brook Theatre

Meadow Brook Theatre (MBT) officially kicked off its 2021-2022 season with the riotously funny Clue: On Stage, playing through November 7, 2021, on the campus of Oakland University in Rochester, MI. Based on the 1985 cult classic film by Paramount Pictures and the beloved Hasbro board game, Clue: On Stage was written by Sandy Rustin, based on the screenplay by Jonathan Lynn, with additional material by Hunter Foster and Eric Price, and original music by Michael Holland. This is one of my … [Read more...]

Taste & Tunes, an Evening of Music and Food, Features Vocalist and Musician Dave Bennett

Audiences won’t find many musicians who are equally conversant with the music of Benny Goodman (the “King of Swing”) and Roy Orbison (“The Soul of Rock and Roll”). An annual fixture at several American music festivals, Dave Bennett is a clarinet virtuoso who plays electric guitar, piano, drums, and vocalizes. He will be featured at “Taste & Tunes,” the Rochester Symphony Guild’s benefit for the Rochester Symphony Orchestra, on Saturday, November 13. Plan now for an evening of fun and … [Read more...]

REVIEW: Insightful and Intriguing, Oakland University’s ‘Passage’ is a Powerful Journey Worth Taking

An attentive and appreciative crowd welcomed back live theatre to Oakland University (OU) for the opening night of Passage. Written by Chinese-American playwright Christopher Chen, this gripping and enigmatic play runs until Oct. 17 in the Varner Studio Theatre on the OU campus in Rochester, MI. The last time I sat inside Varner Studio Theatre was to review Macbeth on February 6, 2020, and it was a little sad thinking about those seniors who I never got to see take their final bow before … [Read more...]

Who did it? Where? And with what? Find out in the ‘Clue: On Stage’ at Meadow Brook Theater

Running October 13 through November 7, 2021 Six strangers, all with aliases – Colonel Mustard, Mrs. White, Mrs. Peacock, Mr. Green, Professor Plum, and Miss Scarlet – gather for a mysterious dinner party at a remote mansion. When their host winds up dead, they race to find the killer. Led by the butler, Wadsworth, they must band together to solve the mystery in a hysterical fashion. But can they find out who did it, where, and with what before more bodies show up? Based on the cult classic … [Read more...]