Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Christmas Carol - ACT

A Christmas Carol


November 28-December 27, 2008

Tickets and Information

ACT’s A Christmas Carol (adapted by Gregory A. Falls) is one of the longest-running holiday traditions in Seattle. Now in its 33rd year, this production is still as entertaining and charming as ever.

Kurt Beattie’s direction keeps the show remarkably fresh, and the actors’ indefatigable energy will make even the Scrooges of the audience crack a smile. Seán G. Griffin and Allan Fitzpatrick will be alternating the familiar role of Scrooge, and Griffin’s performance for the opening show was endearing, taking the audience along on Scrooge’s journey from crotchety to cheerful. The other actors, swirling about Scrooge in an ensemble of holiday cheer, all carried their various parts strongly.

Photo by Chris Bennion

This year’s production takes a darker turn on the story than the past few years have dared. Marley’s appearance leaps to the side of the truly ghastly and the spirits’ entrances take a much more sudden and startling potency. Michael Wellborn’s lighting design and Chris R Walker’s sound design in conjunction with Steven M Klein’s original sound design lend major hands in creating this somewhat more ghostly story.

Fear not, though; A Christmas Carol is still the beloved holiday classic we all know it to be. ACT does not disappoint with this year’s production and it will, as it always does, awe the audience old and young, cynical and spirited, Scrooge and Cratchit alike.

Review by Lia Morgan and Nigel Andrews

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

boom - Seattle Rep


Seattle Repertory Theatre

November 13 – December 14, 2008

Tickets and Information

boom by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb and directed by Jerry Manning is an odd exploration into the post-apocalypse of an ever negligent and oblivious human society. It concerns Jules (Nick Garrison), a socially inept ichthyologist recently returned from a rather revelatory biological expedition and Jo (Chealsey Rives), a contemptuous journalism major lured into Jule’s “underground lab” through an online solicitation for “intensely significant coupling.” Their story clips along nicely, with Jules’ discovery of a comet due to collide with the earth in “seven-ish” minutes and his obvious need for a female bunker-mate. As the story reaches its first major peak, it is suddenly and jarringly interrupted by Barbara (Gretchen Krich), a wildly eccentric elderly woman who has operated this museum exhibit for years, making it her baby – raising it from the fledgling show it was into the performance piece she made it. As the two stories progress through the rest of the evening, Barbara’s story, though compelling on its own, presents an unnecessary and distracting counterpoint to Jules and Jo’s more urgent tale.

Nick Garrison and Chelsey Rives. Photo by Chris Bennion.

The production itself is expertly executed from acting to direction to the calling of countless precise cues. Manning’s direction of boom takes a dangerously melodramatic situation and turns it into a fascinating human exploration of real people in extreme circumstances. A situation such as the apocalypse can turn quickly into two people annoying each other and everyone else tangentially involved, but Garrison and Rives deliver their characters with humanity and substance that provides layers aplenty for the audience to ride. Krich’s performance of Barbara’s story was masterfully handled. Though Barbara’s storyline was awkwardly injected into the play and her character was rather selfish and peeving, Krich carried her with a grace and adeptness that made Barbara endearing in a way few could.

Robert J Aguilar’s lighting design is flawless to say the least. His scalpel-sharp cues and brilliant juxtapositions of stark white with soft blues and gentle hues keeps the audience on their toes and the actors on their marks. Likewise Matt Starritt’s sound design was seemingly effortless and similarly razor-sharp. Harmony Arnold’s costume design, as always, is spot-on and brilliantly efficient. Finally, reminiscent of “Sealab 2021,” Jennifer Zeyl’s set accommodates the necessities of the script and carries them out with panache.

The production carried out its mission very well; the script however, did not live up to its end of the bargain. The two stories, though based around the same themes of survival, loss, grief etc, are on two completely different levels of urgency and leaves one story feeling discounted and the other feeling as though it must carry a weight that it can in no way bear. While Seattle Rep’s production of boom is polished, entertaining and shows of the designers’ and performers’ skills, but the script, which should be the bedrock of any production, is too confusing for the audience to get anything substantial out of it in the end.

Review by Nigel Andrews and Lia Morgan

Monday, November 17, 2008


SEATTLEIntiman Theatre will kick off its annual production of Black Nativity with a special ticket sale and holiday coat/food drive on Saturday, November 22. Patrons who donate a coat or non-perishable food item will save $10 per adult ticket for each contributed item.

This special opportunity to save on the most soul-stirring production in Seattle—and make a donation that will help our community stay warm and healthy this winter—will take place at Seattle Center’s Intiman Theatre from noon to 3 pm. Intiman will offer free apple cider and cookies in its decorated lobby.

The event is co-sponsored by the Seattle Medium, 1420 KRIZ, 1560 KZIZ and 1620 KYIZ. Contributed items will be donated through the Emergency Feeding Program of Seattle & King County.

Black Nativity, a gospel songfest for the entire family and Seattle tradition for audiences of all faiths, includes gospel favorites performed by Pastor Patrinell Wright and the Black Nativity Choir, and dance from traditional to tap.

Single tickets range in price from $15 to $45, with discounts available for groups of 15 or more. Tickets are available for purchase from or over the phone from the Ticket Office at 206.269.1900.

Black Nativity will run November 29-December 27 at the Intiman Playhouse, 201 Mercer Street at Seattle Center . The pay-what-you-can performance is Thursday, December 4 at 7:30 pm and the Opening Night Benefit Performance is Friday, December 5 at 8 pm.

Smokey Joe’s Café

6 nights!

December 16–21, 2008

FROM: The Pacific Jazz Institute at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley

2033 6th Avenue, Seattle , WA , 98121

CONTACT: Rachael Millikan, 206-441-9729,

RE: Performance at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley

COST: $26.50 – 28.50

The Pacific Jazz Institute at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley welcomes back by popular demand the Longest Running Musical Review in the History of Broadway, Smokey Joe’s Café. Cast members are Ron Lucas, Tony Perry, Sophia Fredricks, Famicia Ward, Jonathan Victorian, Toby Blackwell, and TBA. Band members are Darrius Frowner (piano), Gary Ballard (guitar), Larry Holloway (bass) and Milo Petersen (drums). Set times Tuesday through Sunday at 7:30pm and 9:30pm. Doors open at 6pm on Tuesday and 5:30pm Wednesday through Sunday.

As much as anyone, Leiber and Stoler invented Rock and Roll. Their timeless songs provide the basis for this electrifying entertainment that had critics raving and audiences stampeding the box office during its record-breaking Broadway run. Featuring nearly 40 of the greatest songs ever recorded including such hits as On Broadway, Hound Dog, Jailhouse Rock, Stand By Me, Spanish Harlem, Love Potion #9 and I’m a Woman. Each song is a trip down the corridors of American culture. Smokey Joe’s transforms classic pop music into compelling musical theater.

On November 17, 1994 Smokey Joe’s Café began it’s pre-Broadway run at the Ahmanson/Doolittle Center in Los Angeles . It opened at the Virginia Theater on Broadway to rave reviews on March 2, 1995 where it ran for five years to become the longest-running musical review in the history of Broadway and won the Grammy for “Best Musical Show Album” that same year. Between 1994 - 1995 Smokey Joe’s was honored with nominations for seven Tony Awards. Over the years there have been three major national tours, breaking box office records at numerous performing arts centers, as well as resident casts in both Las Vegas and Reno .

The success of this show is in no way limited to the America audience. It played to international audiences in Brisbane and Melbourne , Australia before beginning a two-year run in London ’s West End at the Prince of Wales Theater on October 23, 1996. In 1997 it was nominated for the Sir Laurence Olivier award for “Outstanding Musical Production”.

Since then Smokey Joe’s Café has toured extensively throughout England , Scotland , Ireland , Germany , Switzerland , Japan , South Korea , Brazil and Turkey . The show continues to tour the United States , Canada and around the world.

The Downtown Holiday Tradition Continues!

ACT’s 33rd Annual Production of A Christmas Carol

Allen Fitzpatrick and Seán Griffin Take on the Role of Scrooge

A Christmas Carol

By Charles Dickens, adapted by Gregory A. Falls

Directed by Kurt Beattie

Previews: November 28-29, 2008

Opens: November 30, 2008

Closes: December 27, 2008


$22 (for children 12 and under and seniors 65 and older) to $47

Discounts for groups of 20 or more are available by calling (253) 839-4204.

New! Holiday Tea with the Fezziwigs, show & event: $60 (child and senior) and $70 (adult). Order by calling (206) 292-7660, ext. 1331.

ACT Theatre

Ticket Office: (206) 292-7676

Open Tuesday-Sunday, 12 noon - 7 p.m.

700 Union Street, Seattle WA 98101

Seattle, WA – November 6, 2008Spreading holiday cheer and reminders of good will to all, ACT- A Contemporary Theatre presents its 33rd annual production of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, adapted by Gregory A. Falls . This year, A Christmas Carol is directed by Kurt Beattie , and features Allen Fitzpatrick and Seán Griffin alternating in the role of Scrooge.

A Seattle holiday tradition since 1976, A Christmas Carol takes audiences along on Ebenezer Scrooge’s transformational journey from selfish tightwad to enlightened soul after a restless evening filled with ghostly visitors from Christmases past, present and future.

New this year, ACT will host a special event perfect for the entire family, Holiday Tea with the Fezziwigs. Families can enjoy tea, cocoa and tasty treats, sing along with carolers and create their own holiday ornament before the 2 p.m. performance on December 6 or 13. Fun for kids from 5 to 95! To order these special tickets, call Kait Peters at (206) 292-7660, x1331.

A Christmas Carol runs November 28 through December 27, 2008. An audio described performance for the blind and visually impaired community is on December 20 at 2:00 p.m. A Christmas Carol is recommended for ages five and up.

taproot theatre features Late-night improv on the mainstage

It’s a Wonderful Improvised Life comes to the stage this December

SEATTLE – November 3, 2008 – Late-Night Improv returns to the Taproot Theatre Mainstage this December—for 3 performances only! Taproot Theatre’s improvisers will entertain audiences with a fun retelling of a Christmas classic. It’s a Wonderful Improvised Life, created by Danny Walter, takes place at Taproot Theatre on December 5, 12 and 19, after the evening performance of the Mainstage production—The Christmas Foundling by Norman Allen and inspired by the stories of Bret Hart—ends.

It’s a Wonderful Improvised Life combines the wacky and wonderful imaginations of the Taproot improvisers with the audience’s suggestions, telling this favorite Christmas story in a whole new way. Using It’s a Wonderful Life as a guide, the actors make every performance unique by soliciting key story elements from the audience’s suggestions. What will happen to Mr. Potter? How about George Bailey? Will Bailey Brothers’ Saving and Loan finally get the respect it deserves? The audience decides! Zu-zu’s petals, it’s going to be a bell-ringing good time!

About Taproot Theatre

Taproot Theatre Company is a professional, non-profit theatre company with a multi-faceted production program. Founded in 1976, Taproot Theatre serves the Pacific Northwest with Mainstage Productions, Touring Productions and Acting Studio. Taproot exists to create theatre that explores the beauty and questions of life while bringing hope to our search for meaning. Taproot Theatre Company is a member of Theatre Communications Group (TCG), Theatre Puget Sound (TPS), and the Greenwood-Phinney Chamber of Commerce.