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The Observer

30 years & counting: MaDaCol

Jamie Van Doren, Staff Reporter
November 15
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

“Don’t be afraid.” That’s the advice from Beth Salemi Szpak to non-dancers. It’s advice she took herself. Szpak started her dance career as a Case Western Reserve University freshman in 1996 with one fall semester modern dance class under her belt. Her very first dance performance was that...

Footlighters merrily roll along

Ellie Rambo, Staff Reporter
November 15
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

Student actors step onto the blue stage and gather on the tiered set. The Case Footlighters are preparing to present “Merrily We Roll Along,” and will soon know it well enough to perform it backwards and forwards. Next week the Case Footlighters will perform it both ways, depending on your perspective. “Merrily...

These are not still waters

Jamie Van Doren, Contributing Reporter
November 8
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Features, Theatre & Dance

Eleven women in black dresses are on the stage. Slowly, carefully, they help one another up onto the line of chairs that flow across the stage. The dancers walk, crawl and stretch in languid, yet carefully controlled, movement of limbs and bodies. A chair tips. A dancer begins to step onto the overturned...

Violent, bloody, fun

Anne Nickoloff, Staff Reporter
October 24
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

The stage of “Sweeney Todd” inside the Hanna Theater is daunting, dark and miserable. Rafters and beams criss-cross the second floor of the set, illuminating the ground with spider web patterns ready for capture. This version, by the Great Lakes Theater Company, has the plot loom like impending...

Woody Sez… Not much actually

Joseph Verbovszky, Staff Reporter
October 5
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

This is the third time this season that I am going to write about something put on by the Cleveland Playhouse that was not a play. The first was “Devil’s Music,” a one-man musical piece about the life of Bessie Smith; the second was “Maestro,” which chronicled the story of Leonard Bernstein....

Eldred Theater offers comedic relief in upcoming season

Eldred Theater offers comedic relief in upcoming season

Joseph Verbovszky, Music Reporter
August 23
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

Betty the Yeti – directed by Jerrold Scott October 4-13, 2013 Written by Jon Klein, this eco-fable follows the story of Russ T. a logger whose wife leaves him for the smugly self-righteous and hugely successful publisher of the environmental newsletter, Timber watch, Trey Hugger. After Russ is ...

London-Based Theatre Hits the Big Screen in Cleveland

Lily Korte, Film Critic
July 16
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Features, Film and Television, Local Events, Theatre & Dance, This Week

One of the defining features of theatre has always been the immediacy of the medium. Neither film nor television enables an audience to watch actors as they perform, live on stage, night after night. Of course, there are downsides to theatre as well, and the biggest one has always been that most people...

Rich Girl: To be or Not To Be a Rom-Com

Joseph Verbovszky, Theatre Critic
May 13
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance

It seems to be a growing trend among Cleveland Playhouse Productions to tell an insightful and often heart-wrenching narrative about some fundamental truth of human nature through comedy. In March, “Good People” managed to pull it off to rousing applause. Unfortunately, “Rich Girls” chokes on i...

Ever thought an “Assassin” was sitting next to you?

Ever thought an “Assassin” was sitting next to you?

Katy Witkowski, A&E Editor
April 26
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Theatre & Dance, This Week

John Wilkes Booth walks into a bar with Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley, Sara Jane Moore, and Leon Czolgosz. What does Booth do? Being the infamous assassin that he is, he influences the others to follow his footsteps and be forever remembered as killers, even if they don’t succeed. That bar is...

Case TV: independently bringing smiles to campus

Case TV: independently bringing smiles to campus

Elaina Lin, Theatre and Dance Reporter
April 26
Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Film and Television, Theatre & Dance

It’s a typical day at Case Western Reserve University, until you start walking along Leutner Pavilion, where there seems to be some sort of spectacle. Video cameras surround the scene, and an unsuspecting individual is interviewing a student. All of the sudden, the student shrieks and jumps. This is...

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