Monday, July 30, 2007

Cigarettes and Crean

Oh, how far we've come in just a century. When Tom Crean, Robert Scott and Ernest Shackleton were exploring Antarctica a hundred years ago, expeditions were multi-yeared and communication with the outside world practically nonexistent. You can learn more at Aidan Dooley's one-hander, Tom Crean -- Antarctic Explorer, which I reviewed for Time Out New York.

And I don't think I ever posted my last TONY review, of the Flea's Smoke and Mirrors. The program insert warned of "continuous smoking of herbal cigarettes," and of course my sinuses were already mass-producing phlegm when I took my seat, but I lived to write the review

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The Luckiest Actor?

Without a doubt, it has to be Neil Patrick Harris. Of course it doesn't hurt that he's extremely talented as well. He's only 34, yet he's survived life as a child star, worked with Sondheim, played himself as a horny womanizer with ironic glee in Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, and now he gets to be a guest riffer with Mike Nelson on the RiffTrax sendup of Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory .

And he has an adorable boyfriend in David Burtka, whom I spoke to briefly when he was appearing in The Opposite of Sex at the Williamstown Theatre Festival last year. At the time -- NPH had yet to officially out himself but it was pretty well known that they were a couple -- he mentioned that after the play ended he was heading out to L.A. to do a couple of episodes of How I Met Your Mother. I still pride myself on resisting the urge to say, "Who do you have to sleep with to get on that show?"

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Black and Gold

Contrary to what some might think, Betty Shamieh's The Black Eyed isn't New York Theatre Workshop's apology for last summer's Rachel Cory debacle. But it is a much more thorough look at the lives of Palestinians through their own eyes. I only had a chance to read the play before interviewing her, but I look forward to seeing what director Sam Gold does in staging it.