Arts/Culture

The WBFO Arts & Culture News Desk is co-funded by Arts Services Initiative of Western New York and the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site.

Jim and Tony review the Tony award nominations, and speculate on local Arties.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony review this year's Tony Award nominations, including a Buffalo-themed musical selection from the revival of Assassins. Also, some speculation on next week's nominations for the Arties, Buffalo's theater awards. (There are Tony awards, but what about Jimmys?)

A couple of entertaining plays are featured this week.

Jim and Tony slick back their hair (or what's left of it) for Grease at Shea's

Buffalo, NY – The road show of Grease stops in Buffalo, and Jim and Tony offer their comments. Also reviewed, the music of Louis Prima is highlighted in Zooma Zooma at Musicalfaire, Visiting Mr. Green is a collaboration of the Jewish Repertory Theatre and Buffalo United Artists, and Jim and Tony discuss whether Private Lives at the Irish Classical Theatre really an "old chestnut."

It's the most favorite musical Jim and Tony have never seen!

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the Jason Robert Brown musical The Last Five Years, which opens in Toronto. They also feature a musical selection from the show. In addition, they review the Alleyway's production of A Night in November, and the Jewish Repertory Theater's collaboration with Buffalo United Artists, Visiting Mr. Green.

(Photo: T. Charles Erickson)

Jim and Tony discuss A. R. Gurney's new play, Big Bill.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the difference between on- and off-Broadway, before reviewing Buffalo playwright A. R. Gurney's new show Big Bill. Tony also reviews the Stratford production of King Lear, which he saw in New York, and there are discussions of several Buffalo productions that are coming and going.

Remembering a Stephen Sondheim musical that only ran for six days on Broadway.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony note the 40th anniversary week of the opening (and closing) of Stephen Sondheim's Anyone Can Whistle. Tony also shares a story of a Buffalo connection to the original Funny Girl 40 years ago. Jet-setting Tony also tells about another visit to L-A, and the guys discuss local theater collaborations.

While We Were Bowling gets a strike, despite some technical gutter balls.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony review the O'Connell and Company production of Stephen Sondheim's Passion, with its great production and beautiful set. Also, a discussion about the 13th anniversary of Quickies at the Alleyway, and at Studio Arena, Tony enjoyed While We Were Bowling despite some tech problems. Tony also talks about his trip to Los Angeles.

Jim and Tony observe the 40th anniversary of a famous Broadway musical.

Buffalo, NY – After a quick musical sample from Passion, which opened this week at O'Connell and Company, Jim and Tony note that today is the 40th anniversary of the premiere of Funny Girl. They also talk about Communicating Doors at the Kavinoky, and tip us off on a couple of local shows that have extended their runs.

Jim and Tony offer a theatrical bouquet this week.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony had a busy week, with discussions of A Day in the Death of Joe Egg, a dark comedy at the New Phoenix Theatre. Also, Jim's take on Renewing Wright at Musicalfaire, and Tony's reaction to the Irish Classical Theatre performance of Translations at the Andrews Theatre. In addition, they discuss Not Now Darling and Communicating Doors on local stages.

Tony tells of seeing an opera about Jerry Springer, and we hear an excerpt.

Buffalo, NY – Top o' the mornin' from Jim Santella, as he notes the arrival of Saint Patrick's Day next week. Then, Jim and Tony discuss local productions of Flanagan's Wake, Translations, and Renewing Wright, a musical about Frank Lloyd Wright's work in Buffalo with Darwin D. Martin. Tony also reviews the New York production of Jerry Springer the Opera.

Anthony Chase recaps his recent trip to London, New York and Miami.

Buffalo, NY – After two weeks off, Jim and Tony extend their thanks for your support during the WBFO Fundraiser. Tony also recaps his recent trip to London, featuring a trip to see Bombay Dreams.

Are Jim and Tony more like the new play "Wicked", or one of its songs "Popular"?

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony promise no wardrobe malfunctions, then talk about the new Stephen Schwartz musical Wicked, and feature its popular song, "Popular." Also, reviews of Tagged at the Alleyway Theatre, and the one-person show Paul Robeson Speaks Out with Willie Judson Jr., a presentation of Subversive Theater and Buffalo Entertainment Theater.

A review of Ujima Theatre's updated presentation of a classic Mark Twain story.

The Sad Sacks are back (but aren't Jim and Tony here every week?)

A great review for the latest Studio Arena production, as well as a birthday song for Chita!

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony sing(!) happy birthday to Chita Rivera, then talk about the Studio Arena production of A Raisin in the Sun. They also discuss Fully Commited at the Kavinoky, the great language in the Irish Classical Theater's presentation of Misanthrope, and Musicalfaire's Song and Dance. Also, updates on what's opening around town.

Beat the cold snap in a warm theater!

Buffalo, NY – Baby, it's c-c-c-cold outside, so Jim and Tony suggest stopping in a nice warm theater to heat up. They discuss Andrew Lloyd Webber's Song and Dance at Musicalfare, a series of short plays called Escaping the Box at Pandora's Box in the Alleyway Theatre, and the one-man show Fully Committed at the Kavinoky. Also, what's new at Studio Arena, the Irish Classical Theatre, the Theater of Youth, and the Sphere.

Jim missed the brief run of a two-days-only Buffalo appearance of an off-Broadway play, but he has the CD.

Music from The Last Five Years and a preview of upcoming shows.

Buffalo, NY – Theatre Critics Jim Santella and Anthony Chase feature selections from the musical, The Last Five Year, which made a brief appearance in Buffalo for two shows in the past week. They also preview the opening of several new shows at area theatres.

Jim and Tony start 2004 with a trip to Oz.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the 2003 theater productions held over into the new year, and they feature Hugh Jackman's performance in The Boy From Oz. Also, a quick look at the Theatre of Youth's production of Pinocchio.

Watch out for the fruitcake!

Buffalo, NY – Naughty or nice? Will you get some of Jim's stale fruitcake, or fresh fruitcake? And what's the difference? Jim and Tony offer and exchange holiday greetings, discuss Buffalo talent on various theater road shows, and review Buffalo openings (the annual presentation of A Christmas Carol at the Alleyway), and Christmas week closings.

Some different interpretations of A Christmas Carol.

'Tis the Season for Holiday Plays

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony review some local holiday plays, including Plaid Tidings, Starlight Express, and Guys on Ice. Also, they discuss a Broadway revival of Wonderful Town and the off-Broadway show Caroline, or Change.

Jim and Tony are away for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, so we have two special guests this week.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony took the holiday weekend off, so Weekend Edition theater critic Grant Golden and WBFO News Director Mark Scott take their place to review The Lion in Winter at the Kavinoky Theatre.

A sweet, loving, murderous royal couple takes the stage at the Kavinoky.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony enjoyed the historical comedy The Lion in Winter, especially the sharp dialogue. Also, the story of coming of age in Buffalo in 1945, in A. R. Gurney's What I Did Last Summer, plus discussions of Guys on Ice, Plaid Tidings, and a new Tom Fontana offering being presented at Buffalo State College.

Some new plays open, some with new performance companies.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the opening of The Lion in Winter at the Kavinoky Theatre, and the BUA's production of Buffalonian A. R. Gurney's What I Did Last Summer. In Snyder, you can see Guys On Ice, which is not about ice skating or hockey. Jim and Tony also talk about the richness of Buffalo theater, especially with four new production companies in town.

The hills are alive, with the sound of a great review.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony really enjoyed this week's traveling performance of The Sound of Music at Shea's, so much so that Jim almost gets in trouble with his wife. Also, conversation about Alleyway's Lines in the Sand, Musicalfaire's presentation of Guys on Ice, Twelfth Night at Nichols School, and more.

A Kander and Ebb tribute becomes a Liza Minnelli showcase.

Buffalo, NY – Tony talks about his trip to Los Angeles, where he says Liza Minnelli stole the show in a tribute to composers Kander and Ebb. Closer to home, the guys discuss Proof at the Studio Arena, Lines in the Sand at the Alleyway. Also, a mention of the upcoming week-long Sound of Music performance at Shea's, and the MusicalFaire presentation of Guys On Ice.

Jim and Tony say thanks for your fundraiser support.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony say thanks for your support during the recent WBFO Fundraiser. Also, they discuss the Buffalo United Artists presentation of Looking for Normal, and Copenhagen at the Irish Classical Theatre. Also, did Tony say he saw Hugh Jackman in The Boy From Ouch on Broadway?

What do Jim and Tony think of the local theater scene?

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony tell us how they would recommend local theater productions. Among the plays discussed: The Foreigner at the Kavinoky, Bitten By a Fly at the Alleyway, and the Buffalo United Artists production of Looking For Normal. Also, the guys rave about the number of live musicals that play in Buffalo.

Jim is running out of time to see Thoroughly Modern Millie, which closes this weekend.

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