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.

Grant Golden reviews the Shaw Festival's "You Never Can Tell."

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario – WBFO Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Shaw Festival Theatre presentation of "You Never Can Tell," by George Bernard Shaw. Golden gives this production his highest rating, adding an "A" to his top rating of "KO," for an "A-KO." Click the "listen" icon to hear his review.

A discussion on the history of Gypsy, appearing on two area stages.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the revivals of Gypsy, which is featured at two different area locales. Also, Tony recommends Vanessa Redgrave in Hecuba at the Kennedy Center in Washington, and the guys remind you not to miss the Tony awards on Sunday.

Nominations for this year's "Artie Awards" are released.

Buffalo, NY – The nominations for this year's Buffalo's "Artie" Awards have been announced. The annual awards honor the best of Buffalo's theatre scene. Theatre Critics Jim Santella and Anthony Chase preview the list of potential award winners. Click the "listen" icon to hear this week's Theatre Talk

Jim and Tony agree, Chicago is their kind of musical.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony rave about Chicago...the Musical (with All That Jazz), at Shea's. Also, differing views of the same presentation of Crossing Delancey at the Jewish Repertory Theater, Jim's take on The Nerd, and a quick discussion on She Stoops to Conquer.

A Salamanca songwriter is feted in Buffalo.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss why songwriter and Salamanca native Ray Evans was in town this week, and they tell us what songs he's famous for. Also, Jim offers a review of Flora the Red Menace, and the guys also talk about The Nerd, She Stoops to Conquer, and Kilt.

Jim and Tony talk about community and college productions.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss a couple of smaller presentations in the region, including Flora the Red Menace at Niagara University, and the South Buffalo Theater production of Hot L Baltimore. Also, they run down a list of several other local theater productions.

Jim and Tony review That '70s Revue.

Buffalo, NY – Jim explains that he enjoyed That '70s Revue at the MusicalFare Theatre... at least half of it. Also, Tony discusses Two To the Head by The Road Less Traveled Productions at the New Phoenix Theatre.

Jim and Tony talk about local authoring talent featured on stage.

Buffalo, NY – The spotlight is on two local playwrights this week. Sharon Eberhardt is the author of Becca and Heidi at the Alleyway Theatre and Gary Earl Ross, occasional commentator on WBFO, has penned the TheaterLoft presentation A Matter of Intent.

Jim and Tony review A... My Name is Alice at Buffalo United Artists.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss A... My Name is Alice, playing at Buffalo United Artists. It's the same play that the group debuted with in 1992.

Reviews of Quartet and Listen to My Heart

Buffalo, NY – Jim didn't get to the opera, but he did see Quartet at the Studio Arena, while Tony discusses the O'Connell and Company presentation of Listen to My Heart. Also, a look at The Miracle Worker at Theater of Youth, and a summary of area openings and closings.

Some exciting productions will be featured at Shea's Performing Arts Center next season.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss the just unveiled 2005-2006 season at Shea's, including My Fair Lady, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Dame Edna, and Hairspray. They also discuss The Business of Murder at the Kavinoky, and The Cobbler at the Irish Classical Theatre.

Now, WHO would want to make fun of Jim and Tony?!?

Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo United Artists presentation of Deleted Scenes reportedly includes a parody of Theatre Talk. Jim and Tony also talk about The Spitfire Grill at Musicalfaire, and Tony highly recommends Dirty Rotten Scoundrels which he saw in New York. Tony also tells about the Buffalo connection in the New York presentation of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot.

The Spitfire Grill is on stage at Musicalfare, 4380 Main St., 839-8540, through April 20th.

Buffalo, NY – The Spitfire Grill is on stage at Musicalfare, 4380 Main St., 839-8540, through April 20th.

Plot: Based on the movie of the same name, The Spitfire Grill is a musical exploration of the loss of small town American values that have been in decline since the decade of the great depression.

WBFO Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Studio Arena Theatre production of Tuesdays with Morrie.

Buffalo, NY – WBFO Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the Studio Arena Theatre production of Tuesdays with Morrie. Written by Jeffrey Hatcher and Mitch Albom, Gavin Cameron-Webb directs. Tuesdays continues through March 6th.

Theatre Critic Jim Santella reviews some of the area's major theatre offerings.

Buffalo, NY – Tuesdays with Morrie by Jeffery Hatcher and Mitch Albom is directed by Gavin Cameron-Webb. It runs at the Studio Arena, 710 Main St., 856-5650, through March 6th.

Plot: Mitch Albom (David Rzeszutek) is a success driven sports journalist who is challenged by his college sociology professor Morrie Schwartz (Imanuel Fried) to slow down and take some time to smell the roses.

Jim and Tony remember a giant, and discuss the wealth of theater talent in the region.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony remember playwright Arthur Miller, who died this week. Also, they celebrate local talent in the Studio Arena production of Tuesdays with Morrie and Private Viewing at the New Phoenix Theatre. Also, Tony reviews On The Mountain, on stage in New York City.

Which one is the Topdog, and which one is the Underdog?

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony say Topdog/Underdog is a great production to introduce yourself to the Ujima Theatre Company. Jim also reviews Making Gay History, there's a discussion of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf by the Irish Classical Theatre, and Tony tells of Harold and Maude...The Musical on stage in New Jersey.

The new Alleyway show is a lot of fun!

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony find comparisons between the Alleyway's presentation of The Big Happy and Acme Products and the Road Runner. Also, reviews of Private Viewing, the three Pinter plays at the Polish theater, and Making Gay History.

Jim visits Buffalo's oldest theater space, while Tony galavants in New York City.

Buffalo, NY – Jim is impressed with one of Buffalo's newest theater companies, performing in what they say is Buffalo's oldest theater space, on Fillmore Avenue. Also, Tony likes just about everything (except Amy) in Little Women and Gem of the Ocean in New York. Also, conversation about the public television presentation of Candide, and some new openings on local stages.

Jim and Tony discuss three area presentations, and preview some others.

Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the MusicalFare presentation of "The Girl in the Frame," now on stage at the Daemen Theatre in Snyder.

Buffalo, NY – Theatre Critic Grant Golden reviews the MusicalFare presentation of "The Girl in the Frame," now on stage at the Daemen Theatre in Snyder.

Click the "listen" icon above to hear Grant's review.

Jim Santella reviews The Girl in the Frame at Musicalfare, Crowns at Studio Arena and Lobby Hero at the Kavinoky.

Buffalo, NY – The Girl in the Frame with book, words and music by Jeremy Desmon, now on stage at MusicalFare, 4380 Main St., Snyder, through February 6th. Telephone: 839-8540

So far, it's a great year for Buffalo theater!

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony note the high quality of local stage presentations so far in the new year. They include the rarely-performed Stephen Sondheim music Assassins, plus the Studio Arena's show Crowns. They also talk about Girl in the Frame by local playwright Jeremy Desmond, plus Lobby Hero at the Kavinoky.

Jim and Tony return from their two week holiday break.

Buffalo, NY – Theatre Talk starts 2005, after a two-week holiday hiatus, with a look at several new production on area stages, including the Shea's presentation of The Producers.

Jim and Tony offer raves for two area plays.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony think highly of two local productions, The Last Five Years on the TheaterLoft stage, and the Jewish Repertory Theatre's presentation of The Price. Also, a recap of holiday shows, and some closings and extensions.

Jim Santella Claus offers his favorite varieties of coal to Anthony Chase.

Buffalo, NY – Jim Santella Claus shares some Christmas cookies with Anthony Chase (but he didn't bring any for any other WBFO staffers!), and Tony talks about the Sondheim revival Pacific Overtures now playing in New York. Also, a discussion about Country Girl at the New Phoenix Theatre, and a plethora of Christmas productions.

Jim tries to recover his voice, while Tony travels again.

Buffalo, NY – Jim's voice is a bit strained thanks to a bout with the flu, but he and Tony manage to talk about the Studio Arena's production of A Thousand Clowns. Jim also enjoyed the recent performance of the Rockettes at Shea's, while Tony talks about his busy week attending plays. They also talk about what's new on local stages, including holiday productions.

Jim and Tony pay tribute to composer Cy Coleman, who died this week.

Buffalo, NY – Noted Broadway composer Cy Coleman died this week. Jim and Tony present a brief retrospective of his work. Also, what's closing and opening on area stages.

Jim and Tony share some laughs offered up on local stages.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony discuss some local comedy productions, including I Hate Hamlet and Southern Baptist Sissies. Also, a second look at Sophie... Last of the Red Hot Mamas and Jesus Hopped the A-Train.

WBFO's Kelli Bocock-Natale shines in her performance as Sophie Tucker.

Buffalo, NY – Jim and Tony offer rave reviews of Kelli Bocock-Natale's performance in the one-woman show Sophie: Last of the Red Hot Mamas at MusicalFaire. Tony talks about the New York City production of Dracula, including its connection with the University at Buffalo. And, Jim discusses the gritty New Phoenix Theatre presentation of Jesus Hopped the A Train.

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