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Portland Stage Company

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Suspend your disbelief this fall

Fall preview highlights
 Faith beckons
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  September 19, 2013
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Thoughtful laughs in Wittenberg

Much has been made of Prince Hamlet's exhausting philosophical indecision. To be or not? To kill or not? He has a hell of a time figuring it out, when he should be happily ensconced in college life back in Wittenberg.
Hamlet's salad days
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 04, 2013
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Looking for Love(1)

A man and a woman in a Walmart-type store are driven into each other's arms by their Obsessive Impulsive disorder. A man has a condition that keeps him from hearing the words "I love you" from his new lover. A woman with a wife and young child searches
In all the right vignettes of Cariani’s new play
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 30, 2013
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Black-box results show success

It's an on-stage-off-stage winter in Portland Stage Company's Studio Theater.
Test flights
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 22, 2013
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World premiere at PSC looks back, forward

Middle-aged, affluent Noel (David Adkins) and Anne (Corinna May) have arrived at the "comfortable" stage of marriage.
Wait for the boom
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  November 16, 2012
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Wasserstein’s wide range of characters

Between the three of them, the sisters Rosensweig cover quite a range of the Meyers-Briggs psychological types.
It takes all kinds
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  October 05, 2012


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A cautionary tale from 18th-century France

Though there's no hard evidence that Marie Antoinette actually uttered "Let them eat cake," she remains a larger-than-life symbol of ruling-class decadence and a culture of gaping wealth disparity.
Honoring the masses
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 18, 2012
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Portland Stage’s comedy about hope and age

In one sense, time is the most plentiful possession of World War I veterans Gustave (Edmond Genest), Henri (Munson Hicks), and Philippe (Philip Goodwin), who live together in a military retirement home in the French countryside.
Taking their time
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  April 06, 2012
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The second half of the season brings surprises

Those who missed out on LOREM IPSUM's Threepenny Opera this fall should get in line early for its spring production of Henrik Ibsen's Ghosts, at SPACE Gallery (March 22-April 1).
Comedy and danger
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  December 30, 2011
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Warming up to Portland Stage’s Snow Queen

This week, we look at another theatrical alternative to the Dickens ghosts.
Out in the cold
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  December 16, 2011
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PSC works through Reza's Carnage

The setting of God of Carnage is a sleek, upper-story apartment with a full-wall view of the 14th arrondissement, where wealthy Parisians eat delicate desserts. But it is also a playground, where spoiled brats duke out their rage.
Just bein' kids
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  November 18, 2011


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PSC’s poignant Morini Strad

At first, the snide narcissism of aged violin prodigy Erica Morini (Laura Esterman) is an insufferable drag to the 40-something violin restorer, Brian (John G. Preston), whom she's trying to hire.
Fiddle me this
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  October 07, 2011
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Portland Stage Company looks back — and forward — at working America

In 1919, a New York switchboard room of the American Bell Telephone Company is vertiginously perched between eras: The three women working the switchboards are soon to be replaced by automation, big business is getting bigger, gender and ethnicity are fl
Changing times
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  August 26, 2011

Spreading Maine ideas

"Innovation is part of Maine's legacy and DNA." So says Adam Burk, executive director of TEDxDirigo, the independent group working to create a local TED conference for Mainers.
Talking TED
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  August 26, 2011
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Maine's quirky summer stage season

Summertime and a lush arboreal landscape is an unexpected setting for Samuel Beckett's flinty Waiting for Godot , and this reviewer is already stirred.
History + mystery
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  June 17, 2011
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Stopping by a stark Genet show

When it is Claire's turn to be Madame, she paints her lips and cheeks a garish crimson. She preens, pouts, flounces, demands to be dressed in her white gown with the spangles.
Dramatis personae
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  May 27, 2011


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Review: An émigré's struggle with his baggage, in AIRE's Brendan

America, enthuses Irish émigré Brendan (Michael Dix Thomas), is the smell of coffee and gasoline.
When the pipes aren't calling
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  April 08, 2011
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Review: PSC winningly turns the Wright brothers upside-down in Center of Gravity

The set of Portland Stage Company's Center of Gravity is a spacious, elegant network of cables, a ladder, and a ramp.
Into the distance
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 18, 2011
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Review: Dramatic Repertory Company ponders deep subjects in Blue/Orange

The set is black and white — dark modern chairs and table against a pale grid of a screen, like a vertical drop-ceiling.
Inside the shrinks
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  March 11, 2011

An error, or how our time machine broke


Those of you reading this week's "8 Days A Week" column can be excused for wondering if you had time-warped into the past this week....
By Jeff Inglis  |  February 16, 2011
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Review: Actors are concert pianists too, in PSC's 2 Pianos 4 Hands

A good bout of slapstick goes on between tuxedoed pianists Ted (Tom Frey) and Richard (Jeffrey Rockwell) before they finally flip back their tails and get into Bach's Concerto in D Minor :
Two roles
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  February 11, 2011


Avner the Eccentric at Portland Stage Company


Avner the Eccentric, an internationally renowned physical comedian in the style of Charlie Chaplin or the Marx Brothers, has been described as "a clown for...
By webteam  |  December 21, 2010
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Review: John Cariani's Last Gas premieres at Portland Stage

It's hard to get anywhere from Township 15, Range 8 — it's vast, empty, and hours from even Bangor.
Pursuit of happiness
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  November 19, 2010
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Review: Portland Stage's The 39 Steps works the funny bone

The driving force of Hitchcock's 1939 film The 39 Steps is suspense, as unwitting bachelor Richard Hannay gets caught up in espionage, train escapes, weapons technology, and the future of Europe and the world.
Comedy, not suspense
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  October 08, 2010
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Fall Arts Preview: Not quite Oklahoma!

Perhaps the most anticipated Maine premiere this season is the darkly caustic family apocalypse of August: Osage County (October 14-November 7), the much-lauded 2007 tragicomedy by Tracey Letts, to be produced by the GOOD THEATER .
August: Osage County + steampunk robots
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  September 17, 2010

Beyond the State: What's reopening where

As we enter Portland's busy season, there are several comings-and-goings (we'll focus on the comings and less on the goings) to keep track of as we plan our summer outings and evenings on the town.
Venue Watch
By DEIRDRE FULTON  |  June 25, 2010


Kings of the Hill at Portland Stage Company


Act fast for tickets to the annual theatrical/comical/dragtastic extravaganza from Kings of the Hill. The drag king troupe perform "Rainbow Fried Circus" at 8:30 pm...
By webteam  |  June 16, 2010
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A new peak(1)

Only in a city as small as Portland can a move of a few blocks, like Katahdin’s recent relocation from High Street to Forest Avenue, seem like a significant change of neighborhood.
Katahdin relocates, gets even better
By BRIAN DUFF  |  June 11, 2010
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With feeling

From the darkness, a hand strikes chalk against a spot-lit blackboard: July 1981 , it writes, and then, 16 .
Mad Horse's latest show has exceptional heart
By MEGAN GRUMBLING  |  June 11, 2010

A new peak

Katahdin relocates, gets even better
Katahdin relocates, gets even better
By BRIAN DUFF  |  June 05, 2010