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Riverside’s ‘Bakersfield Mist’ as hilarious as it is discomfiting

Riverside’s Artistic Director, Sean Lewis, has selected a contemporary season ripe with social commentary and exposing parts of humanity not commonly discussed in the theatrical classics often produced in the area. Bakersfield Mist (through Oct. 1; tickets $12-30) starts this season off with a satisfying and eye-opening bang. […]

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LV Recommends: Orchard Green’s Hot & Filthy

Somewhere, in a magical land between a Bloody Mary and a martini, exists Orchard Green’s Hot and Filthy. Simply vodka with hot pepper-infused olive juice, it breathes hope and positivity, claiming with confidence and calm: You don’t have to choose, people! Have that pure, boozy, olive heat without the trusted alcoholic brunch beverage viscosity, and live. […]

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‘Lysistrata’ comes alive at Brucemore

There is an incredible adaptability inherent in theatre and I rejoice inside when I get the opportunity to explore it along with a group of artists and their audience. I was lucky enough to snag two tickets to Wednesday night’s preview performance of ‘Lysistrata’ at Brucemore, where the cast and crew put their deft adaptability skills on display. […]

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Giving Tree’s ‘Fun Home’ a celebration of the details of memories

Theater is amazing for so many reasons. You couldn’t count them on your fingers and toes, the fingers and toes of your neighbors and the fingers and toes of their neighbors, because it’s so very personal. And when theatre is done well, there might not seem enough digits in all the world to count the intricacies of the complex, unique and unforgettable reaction you’re left with. It is like this with Giving Tree Theater’s production of Fun Home, which opened Friday and runs through July 2. […]

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‘Peter and the Starcatcher’ reminds us all to smile

‘Peter and the Starcatcher’ Giving Tree Theater — through March 5 Giving Tree Theater in Marion opened Peter and the Starcatcher this past weekend. Such a small space can come alive when the magic of the stories told within it are encouraged in just the right way by their tellers. Everyone knows about the flying […]

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TCR’s ‘Next Fall’ is hard and real, unique and touching

Next Fall Theatre Cedar Rapids — through Jan. 28 Next Fall, by Geoffrey Nauffts, which opened at Theatre Cedar Rapids on Jan. 13, is set in two worlds. In one, we travel the timeline of a relationship brimming with honesty and real love. And, in another, we are stuck in an uncomfortable hospital waiting room, […]

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‘Every Brilliant Thing’ a brilliant way to stave off the winter blues

Every Brilliant Thing Riverside Theatre — opens Saturday, Nov. 26 at 7:30 p.m. The holidays often bring a cloud of gloom with them. As the world around us begins to bundle up in layer upon layer of clothes, hang sparkling lights on homes, bake cookies and pies, it can all seem a futile attempt to […]

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Theatre Cedar Rapids tells a familiar ‘tale as old as time’

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Theatre Cedar Rapids — through Sunday, Dec. 18 On opening night of Theatre Cedar Rapids’ production of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, I saw children of all ages scattered among parents and die hard Belle fans (she is the best princess, you know). Glow roses lit up illegally during the […]

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Impeccable vocals and magical effects bring audiences ‘Under the Sea’ at ‘Disney’s The Little Mermaid’

Disney’s The Little Mermaid Theatre Cedar Rapids — through June 12 Theatre Cedar Rapids was absolutely buzzing when we arrived for their production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Families everywhere. A sea of lighted tiaras, wands and children in their dress-up Disney gear. When we sat down, there was a young woman in front of […]

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City Circle’s ‘1776’ filled with excellent performances; could be streamlined

1776 at City Circle Acting Company

1776 Coralville Center for the Performing Arts — through May 8 City Circle’s 1776 opened to a mostly full house last night, rife with families, sponsors and excitement. The story of the conception of the United States is well-known, and this musical tells that tale of grumpy, sweaty delegates caught between independence and servitude, and […]

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TCR pairs impeccable vocals with smart little quirks for ‘Next to Normal’

Tracie Hodina Van Pelt as Diana in 'Next to Normal'

Next to Normal Theatre Cedar Rapids — Friday, Mar. 11 and Saturday, Mar. 12 at 7:30 p.m. Next To Normal (book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey; music by Tom Kitt) centers around a family, broken by the lingering mental state of the mother figure, Diana. The husband can’t fix her, so stands supportive. The daughter […]

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