school of rock
directed by laurence connor
"Andrew Lloyd Webber has entered his second childhood, and it turns out to be a good career move. For his latest offering, “School of Rock the Musical,” which opened with a deafening electric twang at the Winter Garden Theater on Sunday night, this lordly British composer has been hanging out with fifth graders. Youth, it would seem, is rejuvenating.
Adapted from the popular 2003 Richard Linklater movie, “School of Rock” is unlikely to restore Mr. Lloyd Webber to the throne from which he ruled Broadway four decades ago, when he led the conquering forces of the British poperetta with works like “Evita” and the unkillable “Phantom of the Opera.” But this show, starring a bouncing Super Ball of energy named Alex Brightman, is his friskiest in decades." -- Ben Brantley, The New York Times
Directed by Bill Condon
**5 Drama Desk Nominations including Best Revival and Best Director
"Being a freak is virtually the new normal, so the timing couldn’t be better for the thrilling Broadway revival of Side Show that blazed open Monday night at the St. James Theater. The musical by Bill Russell and Henry Krieger, about conjoined twins searching for love and fame, or maybe just a half-measure of happiness, seems eerily appropriate for an era in which oddballs, outliers and anybody with a desperate need for the spotlight — and a way with a webcam — can achieve celebrity of some kind.
But Side Show, based on the lives of the real-life twins Daisy and Violet Hilton, who became vaudeville stars in the 1930s, invites us to do much more than come look at the freaks, as the electrifying opening number beckons. This beautiful and wrenching musical, lovingly directed by Bill Condon, asks us to step inside their skins and feel what it’s like to be celebrated one moment, rejected the next, and to have the strange consolation of a companion who shares it all: the pain, the joy, the hope, the frustration." -- Charles Isherwood, The New York Times
Directed by Andy Sandberg
**2015 Drama Desk nominee (Best Solo Performance)
Application Pending is a new Off-Broadway comedy about the hilariously cutthroat world of kindergarten admissions at a New York private school. Christina Bianco portrays rookie admissions officer Christine and over forty other roles, including all the wild personalities that she has to deal with on her first day on the job.
Christine Evans is a kindergarten assistant at Edgely Prep, an elite Manhattan private school with an acceptance rate that puts Harvard’s to shame. On the day applications are due, Edgely’s head of admissions is ousted in a scandal, and Christine is unexpectedly thrust into the job. With phones ringing off the hook, Christine must balance beleaguered applicants, venal administrators, and an army of parents who will stop at nothing to get their kids in.
A timely and incisive comedy, Application Pending pokes loving fun at America’s obsession with getting our children into the school that will not only teach finger-painting but also determine the rest of their natural lives. This play, now at the Westside Theatre, sends up our perceptions about opportunity, how we attain it, and what it ultimately means to be a good parent.