A Singer’s Notes by Keith Kibler
It was excellent to go to the venerable Mac-Haydn Theatre last night. One comes upon it like a secret location, hidden in the landscape. It is a company full of real people; pretension is not allowed. It has a round stage, and has seen a succession of musicals performed on it for forty-five years. I went there to see one of my favorite shows, Harvey Schmidt’s and Tom Jones’ The Fantasticks.
It was splendid to enter the new Oldcastle Theatre. It was splendid to enter the new home of the Oldcastle Theatre Company in Bennington a few days ago. It is better in terms of sight lines, technical capability, and resonance, than their former space at the Bennington Arts Center. Here is a classic example ...
I wish I could like this production more. Clearly well-intentioned and sincerely played, it still did not touch the center of the fearsome verse. Betsy Holt as Lady Macbeth was eloquent, but did not convince me she would kill a baby. The charismatic Gino Costabile as Macbeth fell into shouting too often and not only in the last moments of the play. The witches just were not scary, with the exception of Myka Plunkett whose steady intensity showed the real way into the play.
The Acting Company’s As You Like It in Troy Savings Bank Music Hall on Wednesday, March 13th, was quite the gentlest performance of the play I have seen. The wrestling scene was mercifully brief, the songs sweet and soft, the relationships clear as a bell without exaggeration. For me, the center of this approach was the excellent Orlando, played by Joseph Midyett. He was neither bewildered nor positive. His participation in the feigning, which is the middle of the play, had a knowingness to it which never quite went over the edge, even though there was that one kiss which came across, to me, as utterly spontaneous—a young man kissing the boy Ganymede who is really a girl, wooing him for herself by playing another.
More in this category
- A Singer’s Notes 66: Corneille’s The Liar at Shakespeare & Company, Lenox, Massachusetts
- A Singer’s Notes 65: Hubbard Hall Opera Theater’s La Traviata at Proctor’s, Schenectady
- A Singer’s Notes 64: The Sound of Bach
- A Singer’s Notes 63: Shakespeare Loud and Chekhov Soft