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Bust (Portland Center Stage)

Lauren Weedman gets the jailhouse blues.

On any given day, the Los Angeles County jail system holds over 18,000 men and women in custody—160,000, all told, in 2010. Seven or more men share cells built for four in buildings so foul that,   More
Wednesday, May 4, 2011 BEN WATERHOUSE

The Cherry Orchard (Artists Rep)

Dragging Chekhov from the grave, for laughs.

All done: With the premiere of Richard Kramer’s commissioned adaptation of The Cherry Orchard, Chekhov’s classic about a family of penniless aristocrats who must sell their useless orchard, Arti   More
Wednesday, April 27, 2011 NATALIE BAKER

Present Laughter

How Bridgetown Comedy Festival made Portland funny.

As someone who slept with, and was subsequently electrocuted by, Carrie Brownstein on national television in January, Ian Karmel can attest that the past year has been a big one for Portland comedy   More
Wednesday, April 20, 2011 MATTHEW SINGER

Opus (Portland Center Stage)

Scandalous sex and violins!

This is a story of four men and a fiddle. And a woman and a viola, too, but let’s not complicate matters overly. Michael Hollinger’s very funny chamber-music drama is all about the experience o   More
Wednesday, April 20, 2011 BEN WATERHOUSE

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Portland Playhouse)

Don’t step on Levee’s shoes.

Having enjoyed great success with Brian Weaver’s 2010 production of August Wilson’s final play, Radio Golf, Portland Playhouse now returns to the playwright’s work to end its season with his fir   More
Wednesday, April 13, 2011 BEN WATERHOUSE

You Don’t Know Jack (The Carpetbag Brigade)

As thick and overgrown as the beanstalk.

For the past three weeks, San Francisco-based avant-garde theater troupe the Carpetbag Brigade has rehearsed and led workshops out of North Portland venue the Headwaters. It concludes its residency   More
Wednesday, April 6, 2011 RACHAEL DEWITT

“The Spanish Hour” and “The Bewitched Child” (Portland Opera)

The Opera breaks out with two less-performed one-acts.

Maurice Ravel was a childless French bachelor whose greatest inspirations were, paradoxically, children and Spain. The innovative composer’s affection   More
Wednesday, March 30, 2011 BRETT CAMPBELL

Jack Goes Boating (Artists Rep)

Less creepy; more lovable.

Let’s hear it for likable losers. Not the self-pitying sad sacks and creepy men-children that populate the résumés of Seth Rogen and Paul Giamatti, but the pleasant dope who for some reason   More
Wednesday, March 23, 2011 BEN WATERHOUSE

Morten Lauridsen (Portland State Choirs)

A Northwest homecoming.

When Morten Lauridsen was growing up in Beaverton in the 1950s, students commonly headed out to the Tillamook Burn to plant trees. A few years ago, the composer returned to the once-barren site to see it now covered by towering firs.   More
Wednesday, February 23, 2011 BRETT CAMPBELL

The Scene (Portland Playhouse)

How to succeed in show business without really trying.

“It’s fantastic!” Says the fallen man to the means of his ruination. “You look like that, you screw like a bunny and you have no soul! Seriously. It is    More
Wednesday, February 23, 2011 BEN WATERHOUSE
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