theater


V.23 No.22 | 5/29/2014
Actors Neil Faulconbridge, Benjamin Liberman and Harry Zimmerman have a word or two …

Stage Whispers

By Ian Wolff

In a Biblical sense

The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged), Sticky Rice and An Operatic Trilogy For Families present theatergoers with a slew of entertainment options.
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V.23 No.21 | 5/22/2014
CC BY Harald Groven

Crib Notes

Crib Notes: May 22, 2014

By August March
From agency scandal to teevee mythos to political contests—what do you know about last week’s New Mexico news? Test your recall with the Weekly Alibi pop quiz.

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V.23 No.20 | 5/15/2014
Shining lives from left to right: actors Katie Becker Colòn, Amelia Ampuero and Wendy Scott
Rick Galli

Arts Theater Preview

Radiant Dreams

By Elisa McGovern
These Shining Lives, by award-winning playwright Melanie Marlich, tells the story of women employed to apply radioactive paint to watch dials in 1920s Chicago.

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V.23 No.19 | 5/8/2014
Ken Ansloan as Joan Crawford
Photos by Russell Maynor

Art Theater Preview

Mommie Dearest She Ain’t

The life and times of screen legend Joan Crawford get a drag makeover

By Kristi D. Lawrence
The latest show by Albuquerque’s popular drag troupe The Dolls pays tribute to a complicated star, her fabulous wardrobe and her incredible career.
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V.23 No.17 | 4/24/2014

Culture Shock

By Lisa Barrow

Feed the pyre

A local mag for creatives, a little yellow suitcase that leads to a personal journey and commemorating the Holocaust through dance—scope a world of ABQ arts with Culture Shock.
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V.23 No.15 | 4/10/2014
Love ain’t easy—just ask Molly Bloom (Sheridan Johnson) or Leopold Bloom (Brennan Foster).
Photos by Russell Maynor

Art Theater Preview

Sometimes Poison Is the Only Cure

Gibraltar stages edgy relationship at the heart of Joyce’s Ulysses

By Christopher C. Guider
Gibraltar follows Molly and Leopold Bloom over the course of a single day in Dublin. With their marriage on the rocks, Leopold is willing to try anything to rekindle the passion, even allow Molly to hook up with her overbearing concert manager Hugh “Blazes” Boylan.
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V.23 No.13 | 3/27/2014
Ethel Mertz was hawt.
Brooks Studio, PA1978.153

Arts Feature

Loving Vivian Vance

The highs and lows of an Albuquerque legend

By Kristi D. Lawrence
Beautiful, talented and compassionate, the real Vivian Vance was more than an “I Love Lucy” sidekick. She didn’t always gel with her famous costars, and her personal life wasn’t always picture-perfect.
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V.23 No.12 | 3/20/2014
Juno and the Paycock’s Phil Shortell as Captain Jack and Shangreaux LaGrave as Joxer
Photos by Alan Mitchell Photography

Arts Feature

A Terrible State of Chaos

Laughter lands admidst tragedy at the Southwest Irish Theater Festival

By Christopher C. Guider
In Juno and the Paycock, great storytelling, social commentary and lyrical language elevate a seriocomic classic of Irish theater.
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Theater

The F-Word and the Happy Life

Rapture, Blister, Burn lays out all the options

Did feminism really change anything? Do we even want it to? Over 50 years after Betty Friedan helped spark a second wave with The Feminine Mystique, we're still arguing about the morality of birth control and telling young women to “spend far more time planning for your husband than for your career.” (Gag.) As it happens, a fiercely funny, Pulitzer-nominated play is onstage right now in Albuquerque, tackling questions like these without resorting to flimsy stereotypes or strident manifestos. Rapture, Blister, Burn at the Aux Dog Theatre isn't just clever—it's nuanced, thoughtful and uproarious. I asked Aux Dog's producing artistic director Victoria Liberatori about the play, whose run comes to a close this weekend.

Let's start off with a biggie: The Aux Dog website asks, "Are you afraid of the F word?" and insists this "is not a 'feminist' play." Why shouldn't audiences be afraid of the lady-problems in Rapture, Blister, Burn, and how soul-crushingly sad is it that you even have to explain that?

Victoria Liberatori: Feminism has always gotten a bad rep as a man-hating, humorless, strident political movement for unfulfilled upper-class women. Was any movement for civil rights a laugh riot? However untrue, that label has stuck and, if anything, Rapture, Blister, Burn seeks to dispel those misperceptions and succeeds in debunking the dreary women's libber image. The show is funny, sexy and not at all preachy. Yes, it's sad that the image was falsely created and promoted by anti-feminist forces in the media, government and business. It's also shocking that we're still fighting the same battles today for equal pay, for access to abortion and for equal representation in our government, on corporate boards and in the media.

The New York Times says Rapture, Blister, Burn contains "a joke about pornography and Google maps — believe it or not — that’s worth the ticket price alone." What do you think is the key to the humor in this play?

VL: Unflinching honesty in the eye of hypocrisy and the fact that the real wisdom comes from the mouth of the youngest character in the play, Avery, a 21-year-old. The playwright, Gina Gionfriddo, has brilliantly interwoven the perspectives of three generations of women and that of the sole man in the play. When these points-of-view clash there are great comedic explosions!

Tell me a little about what your actors bring to their roles in the Aux Dog rendition of Rapture, Blister, Burn. What would you most like Albuquerque audiences to take away?

VL: The actors all do an amazing job of inhabiting these funny, neurotic, complex characters, yet they bring their own unique personal qualities to the roles. Our Catherine, played by Sheridan Johnson, is a high-strung academic rock star; Gwen, played by Jessica Osbourne, is a dreamy stay-at-home mom who feels she deserves more; Don, played by Ryan Montenery, is an attractive, charming slacker who settles for being a dean at a fourth-rate college; Avery, played by Sara Rosenthal, is a 21-year-old prophet of sorts who wants to be a reality TV star; and Alice, played by Gail Spidle, is Catherine's mother who just wants her daughter to be happy no matter how much must be compromised. The characters in this play are so rich in nuance and depth. What a joy to work with our director, Kristine Holtvedt, on them.

The take-away, I suppose, although I hope the play touches each audience member in a way that resonates for them, is that the grass is not always greener in someone else's garden and that we simply cannot reclaim the past no matter how much we want it. Creating a life that's happy isn't easy, but we must try.

And finally, what are you most excited about on Aux Dog's horizon?

VL: Launching our new Shakespeare classes with Jerry Ferraccio and our new acting classes with Jessica Osbourne in our new space, the AUX BOX next door to the Aux Dog. Solidifying our Aux Dog Theatre Company of actors, designers and production personnel, and building on the incredible success we had in 2013! Expanding our audience base and taking on new, challenging projects that excite us and our audiences is always a goal.

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Rapture, Blister, Burn final weekend

Friday and Saturday, March 7 and 8, 8pm
Sunday, March 9, 2pm

Aux Dog Theatre
3011 Monte Vista NE
Tickets: $14
auxdog.com, 254-7716
V.22 No.49 | 12/5/2013

Arts Feature

Knowing Your Enemies ...

In the War on Christmas

By Mike Smith
This … this is war! No! No! Oh no! A Christmas war! We’re in a war! A very special Christmas war.

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V.22 No.46 | 11/14/2013
Hannah Kauffmann-Banks, Dodie Montgomery and Katy Houska
Joanna Furgal

Art Theater Preview

Frozen Loss Envisioned Afresh

Tricklock takes on Black River Falling

By Genevieve Mueller
Created and written through ensemble work by the Tricklock Company, Black River Falling is set in the home of four sisters during one of the worst snowstorms in 1890s Wisconsin.
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