Orange County Theatre Reviews

World Premiere: Strong Arm @ Grand Central Art Center in Santa Ana – Review

Allie (Autumn Paramore)

photo courtesy: Jordan Kubat

Written by Patrick Chavis 

As the old saying goes — what was once old becomes new again.  I’ve heard this before, but I don’t remember who said it. The basic idea, though, is ideas from the past are always recycled.  When something is recycled or not original, you start noticing how that idea, that style seems to reverberate more. Sometimes there are good explanations for why these thoughts reverberate so much. Sometimes, there’s no explanation.  Still, as a theatre critic seeing these thoughts reverberate and become trends, it informs me of how storytelling has changed over the years.  These trends influence how I judge new material. This fact is a factor in everything I review.  Some shows make this more apparent than others. Continue Reading

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One Slight Hitch @ STAGEStheatre – Review

Written by Alina Mae Wilson

STAGEStheatre is putting on a play by Lewis Black called One Slight Hitch, and I saw it. What started out as a boring show about the preparation of a wedding ended as a boring show ending with an unsatisfactory wedding.  The jokes are not funny.  The characters are not likable.  In fact, they are rather loathsome and the conflict is uninteresting and nonsensical. Continue Reading

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Fiddler on the Roof @ Segerstrom Center for the Arts – Review

(Photo by Joan Marcus)

Written by Patrick Chavis 

When it comes to storytelling there is often overlap with certain themes.  Storytelling doesn’t happen in a bubble. Stories are told by humans, and because of similar life experiences, similar themes pop up in different stories. It’s the nature of the beast.  While watching Fiddler on the Roof at Segerstrom Center for the Performing Arts one of these themes pops up.  The philosophical struggle between tradition and an ever-changing world and how do we cope with it? Fiddler may have one of the most nuanced solutions.

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