CT Critics Give “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “42nd Street” Top Honors at 31st Awards Ceremony

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HARTFORD — A powerful production of “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” at the Yale Repertory Theatre and an exuberant production of “42nd Street” at Goodspeed Musicals took top honors at the 31st annual Connecticut Critics Circle Awards (ctcritics.org) held on Monday, June 26. The event, which celebrates the work from the state’s professional theaters during the 2022 – 2023 season, was held at TheaterWorks Hartford in downtown Hartford. This year the awards were spread out to many productions throughout the state, though Goodspeed Musicals’ “42nd Street” earned the most taking five for best musical, outstanding choreography, best featured actor, costumes… read more

9 to 5 – the Musical – Review by Tom Holehan

The movie-to-stage-musical phenomena hasn’t experienced unbridled success. For every hit like “Hairspray” or “The Producers”, you have losers like “Rocky”, “Ghost”, “Almost Famous” and “Mrs. Doubtfire”. Add to that motley crew of titles “9 to 5”, the 1980 film comedy starring Jane Fonda, Lilly Tomlin and Dolly Parton that became a Broadway musical in 2008. With book by Patricia Resnick (slavishly following the film script she co-wrote with Collin Higgins) and music/lyrics by Parton, this is truly a musical that never had to be. But there it is now at Bridgeport’s Downtown Cabaret Theatre where the crowd on opening night… read more

Webster’s Bitch – Review by Tom Holehan

By some theatrical twist of fate I’ve seen no less than three world premiere plays in less than a month. One we won’t discuss further (looking at you Legacy Theatre!), one was a real find (Barrington Stage Company’s “The Happiest Man on Earth”) and the latest is Jacqueline Bircher’s provocative “Webster’s Bitch”, currently finishing out its debut at Playhouse on Park in West Hartford. While far from a perfect work, this workplace dramedy has something on its mind and doesn’t mind saying it. Set in the Stamford, Connecticut offices of Webster’s Dictionary, a pair of diligent lexicographers, Gwen (Mia Wurgaft)… read more

“Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “42nd Street” Top 2023 Connecticut Critics Circle Nominations

Click here on the READ MORE link below to RSVP to the CT Critics Award Ceremony. It is open and free to the public. Yale Repertory Theatre’s staging of the Edward Albee classic, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and Goodspeed Opera House’s spirited production of “42nd Street” lead the shows nominated for the 31st annual Connecticut Critics Circle Awards. The awards event, which celebrates the best in professional theater in the state, will be held Monday, June 26 at 7:30 p.m. at TheaterWorks Hartford in downtown Hartford. “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” earned six nominations, including outstanding play production, director,… read more

William Berloni Named 2023 Killen Award Honoree by CT Critics

William “Bill” Berloni will be the 2023 recipient of the Connecticut Critics Circle’s annual Tom Killen Award. This special award recognizes Berloni’s long service and achievement to theater in the state and on Broadway. The award will be presented on Monday, June 26 at the 31st Connecticut Critics Circle Awards Ceremony at Theaterworks Hartford, 233 Pearl St. in Hartford. The annual event celebrates and honors the state’s outstanding professional theater. The event is scheduled for 7:30-9:00 p.m. and is free and open to the public. Berloni’s career began as a 20-year-old apprentice at the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam.… read more

2023 International Festival of Arts & Ideas – Karen Isaacs

The 2023 International Festival of Arts & Ideas returns to pre-pandemic levels of talks, concerts, theater, dance, and family activities emphasizing connections, creativity, exploration, and involvement. The majority of the festival runs from Friday, June 9 to Sunday, June 25. Exceptions include the neighborhood days that began in early May and will conclude with West Hills/West Rock Festival (Sunday, May 28) and the Dixwell Festival (Saturday, June 3). Also, the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica will perform Friday, June 2 and Saturday, June 3 at the Shubert Theatre. There will be events geared towards adults, teens, and kids; talks… read more

The Rembrandt – Review by Bonnie Goldberg

We’ve all been raised with the admonition “Don’t touch that.” Whether it is the hot stove, an expensive vase or a downed electrical wire, we know the inherent danger of disobeying. If you are a security guard at an art museum, your job is to protect the paintings or sculptures or artifacts from inquisitive children and thieves bent on destruction or financial mischief. Might you, the guarder of the masterpieces, ever be tempted to reach out and touch one yourself? Such is the premise of Jessica Dickey’s intriguing play “The Rembrandt” currently center stage at TheaterWorks Hartford until Sunday, May… read more

31st Annual CT Critics Circle Awards

The 31st Annual Connecticut Critics Circle Awards Ceremony will take place on Monday, June 26, 2023 at Theaterworks Hartford from 7:30 – 9:00PM. The event is open to the public. CLICK ON THE “READ MORE” BUTTON for the link – To RSVP to the event. We hope you will join us in helping the Connecticut Critics Circle, a not-for-profit organization, celebrate theater in Connecticut, honor the artists who make it happen and help us create opportunities for a new generation of theater enthusiasts. CLICK ON THE “READ MORE” BUTTON for the link – for information on how you can help… read more

The Phantom of the Opera – A Remembrance by Stuart Brown

Thirty-six years ago (1987), I was the Associate Director of Student Activities at Barnard College in New York City. I ran a ticket booth, purchasing discount tickets from the Theater Development Fund and reselling them to students, faculty, and staff at a slight mark-up. As a certified musical theater geek (I currently operate the 24/7 online Broadway radio station, SoundsofBroadway.com, and the weekly podcast ‘On Broadway‘), I was always keeping up with the latest shows currently on Broadway, playing out-of-town engagements and residing on the London stage. In Fall 1986 I had read about (remember, there was no Internet back… read more

The Fatherhood Manologues – Review by Howard Frydman

The beautiful Hamlet of Bloomfield has certainly had a treasure-trove of talent walk the halls of its schools – everyone from Tony Award Winner Actress/Singer Anika Noni Rose to Pro Football player and Super Bowl Champ Dwight Freeney (both originally from Bloomfield)– today we add to these illustrious BHS alumni – their current BHS Principal and Bloomfield resident- Jesse White III. Mr. White along with the following fellow cast of fathers – Abdul-Rahmann I. Muhammad, Demetrius Chamblee, and Malik S. Champlain will be on stage participating in a four-performance engagement of the “Fatherhood Manologues,” a storytelling event featuring four fathers… read more