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Bruce G. Bradley

Stiltsville is a real place, a tiny huddle of homes built on platforms and spindly legs sunk into the hurricane-threatened waters of Biscayne Bay, off the coast of Miami. "Stiltsville" the novel is equally precarious, an insubstantial structure of largely inconsequential events that creak and groan on a flimsy foundation. more

Aug 5, 2010 2:00 PM Books

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Brent Nicastro

Whether you're looking to catch the latest Broadway blockbuster or witness the world premiere of a local novice's creation, Madison's many theater companies have it all. From the retro to the risqué, the sheer volume and diversity of productions in the 2010-2011 theater season is staggering. You're bound to find something that appeals to you and gives you good return for your entertainment dollar. more

Aug 5, 2010 2:00 PM Stage

A popular bumper sticker says that history is rarely made by well-behaved women. "Meg", a historical drama about the daughter of Sir Thomas More, should take that aphorism a little more ardently to heart. Some misbehavior would have been welcome in Madison Theatre Guild's disappointingly bland production at the Bartell Theatre. more

Feb 26, 2010 8:17 PM Stage

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Marie Schulte

The Madison Theatre Guild presentation of "Two Rooms", now playing at the Bartell Theatre, revolves around a flimsy striped mattress in the middle of a bare black stage. The mattress represents, alternately, a home and a prison cell, and it's a powerful symbol in a minimalist production that leaves plenty of room for the actors to tell a harrowing tale with skill and conviction. more

Feb 20, 2010 5:23 PM Stage

That old devil (or, to be more precise, that old goddess) love gets quite the workout in StageQ's production of "Sappho in Love", now playing at the Bartell Theatre. Featuring an all-female cast of 20 performers, the play tries to untangle the amorous skeins that entwine us poor mortals, even as it makes delicious fun of how silly we get when we submit to the most powerful emotion we have. more

Feb 13, 2010 3:58 PM Stage

New companies have sprung up in the Rep's wake, the Playhouse is booked with productions from local and out-of-town troupes, and Madison theater groups are pressing forward, expanding their offerings, trying out new ideas. Not only is Madison theater in general surviving, it is thriving in ways that have confounded the naysayers of less than a year ago. more

Jan 29, 2010 3:00 PM Stage

It's hard to know how to characterize Richard Willett's play "Random Harvest", now playing at the Bartell Theatre. It's described in the playbill as "a ghost story about living without fear," but it's also about the elusive butterfly called memory, as well as being a discourse on success and a meditation on that whole "Meaning of Life" thing. more

Jan 1, 2010 3:00 PM Stage

It's a fairly good bet that when Charles Schulz created his beloved "Peanuts" cartoon strip, he never foresaw the futures that his characters live into in "Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead", a decidedly adult spoof that is the debut production of the OUT!Cast Theatre company. more

Nov 7, 2009 6:00 PM Stage

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Marie Schulte

Madison Theatre Guild's production of "Forever Plaid" wraps audience and performers alike in its fuzzy comfort. more

Oct 10, 2009 3:14 PM Stage

Jacquelyn Mitchard's latest book, "No Time to Wave Goodbye", exhibits all the traits that have made her so successful and well loved: brisk, journalistic prose, a group of readily identifiable characters and a tale that tugs at the emotions with the insistence of a wayward child. more

Sep 18, 2009 2:00 PM Books

Douglas Carter Beane's caustic comedy "The Little Dog Laughed" lifts its leg on the fire hydrant that is Hollywood, dousing that narcissistic never-never land with a well-deserved dose of reality. Sadly, Strollers Theatre's production, currently playing at the Bartell, has turned a comical canine into a hapless hound that is barking up the wrong tree. more

May 18, 2009 4:03 PM Stage

In Vilas Hall's Mitchell Theatre Saturday night, the passion and energy of the beautiful young cast of "Hair" had a remarkable effect on a packed audience, fully half of whom could remember the events from the first time around. more

Apr 20, 2009 3:44 PM Stage

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John A. Smith

One of the characters in Caryl Churchill's blistering satire "Cloud 9" says, "What we spent our adolescence thinking was an animal urge we had to suppress is, in fact, a fine art we have to acquire." He's talking about sex, but he could just as easily be describing the conflicts at the root of all human behavior. more

Mar 9, 2009 8:00 PM Stage

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Colm McCarthy

An apartment is a good symbol of the transient nature of existence: People pass through, each leaving their mark, each experiencing their own sense of belonging or loneliness, each providing a single link in the much longer chain of life. In the Strollers Theatre production of "Apartment 3A", we have an opportunity to examine one such link whose present appears to be inextricably forged with the past. more

Jan 13, 2009 9:00 PM Stage

What is not in doubt is the impact that the myths that grew out of the Trojan legacy have had on succeeding generations. more

Nov 18, 2008 5:13 PM Stage

Centuries after its creation, Greek legend still has a remarkable power to affect us. The dreams and desires, fears and follies of those long-ago people in faraway places have stood the test of time astonishingly well, not least because, while circumstances may change, human nature does not. more

Oct 21, 2008 9:00 PM Stage

The first act of Mercury Players' production of The Full Monty is so limp it appears to be suffering from a bad case of erectile dysfunction. Fortunately there seems to be some Viagra backstage, and the second act springs to life before achieving a boisterous climax. more

Sep 12, 2008 2:00 PM Stage

If you know the seven different kinds of pickle to serve at a funeral, and the difference between Andersen and Anderson is of vital importance to you, then hurry along to Overture Center and get a big green Jell-O scoop of Church Basement Ladies before it's all gobbled up. You'll be glad you did. more

Aug 15, 2008 2:00 PM Stage

The title of Broom Street Theater's current offering, For What It's Worth, is taken from the old Buffalo Springfield song, which has, as its opening stanza: "There's something happening here, What it is ain't exactly clear." Unfortunately, those words turn out to be somewhat prescient of playwright Cassi Harris' attempt to explore the cultural mayhem that was the '60s. more

Jul 4, 2008 2:00 PM Stage

The third edition of Queer Shorts, presented by StageQ, is subtitled All You Need Is Love, a fitting epithet for the 11 brief comedies and dramas that constitute a most enjoyable evening's entertainment. more

Jun 20, 2008 2:00 PM Stage