The Pattern at Pendarvis at HERE Arts Center

So what’s a Pendarvis, and what sort of pattern does it contain? Behind Dean Gray’s somewhat cryptic title is a sweet, sincere, but very small exploration of Midwestern mid-20th century life, and how varying small-town factions got along together, or didn’t. Its source material, Will Fellows’ 2004 book A Passion to Preserve: Gay Men as Keepers of Culture, probably tells us more. What’s onstage at HERE, a production of the New Dog Theatre Company, amounts to a snapshot—an intriguing snapshot, but one with a frustratingly blurry focus. Dean Gray’s three-character drama of gay life in homophobic 20th century Wisconsin is sweet

Theatre: HERE’s Dream Music Puppertry Program presents ‘American Weather’

  A steel hula hoop spins.  When if falls it becomes a container.  Then the container's soft outer lining forms, depending on one's point of view, a bed, boat or coffin.  Deliberate randomness forms the strong visual story told by Chris Green's American Weather at HERE's Dorothy B.Williams Theatre. Thanks to Green and his collaborator's masterful multidisciplinary combination of puppetry, video, song, verse and live action, American Weather's barometer reads division.  This self-contained stage storm is played out across a picket fence with sharp edges.  Katie Melby is the slow-moving soul in front of the fence/screen and a puppet costumed as a fencer in back of it. The

Theatre: What Will the Neighbors Say presents ‘The Diana Tapes’ at HERE

During Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's touching marriage ceremony, cable hosts and invited "experts" still called his parents' nuptials "the wedding of the (20th) century."  Among the embarrassing lack of research (identifying celebrity guests but not most of Harry's extended family or cellist Sheku Kanneh-Maso and the music he played), the worst was insisting that the July 1981 wedding was romantic.  Both then and now, the event watched by millions reveals a very nervous teenager who on that day became so famous that she would be known by her first name.  A defining chapter of Diana's life is the subject

Music: Exploring the Sights and Sounds of ‘Symphonie Fantastique’

Recently, two opportunities arose to hear Hector Berlioz's "Symphonie Fanstatique" within days of each other.  This isn't surprising - it's been a crowd pleaser since its 1830 premiere .  With that also comes with a lot of  "over"s" as in over-programmed and overwrought.  Happily, both Bard College's Orchestra Now (TŌN ) conducted by Music Director/College President Leon Botstein at Lincoln Center's Frederick P Rose Hall and Basil Twist's landmark abstract puppet ballet at HERE encouraged audiences to forget everything they thought they knew about this music to discover it for themselves.  Their thoughtful invitations to do so succeeded. Limited program notes made

Top