A still from the play Far Away by Caryl Churchill at Gamm Theatre.
At the recent prompting of a friend, we decided to buy season subscriptions to the Sandra-Feinstein Gamm Theatre. Last weekend we attended the first of five shows, and the theatre immediately reminded us of the Lyric Stage in Boston — an intimate space with modest, but cleverly designed sets.
The first show of the season features two short plays by Caryl Churchill, The Number and Far Away. I preferred the first, and Geoff the second, but honestly both presented an eerie story about the decreasing value of humanity and individuality in a post-modern world. Ok, that makes them sound a bit depressing, which was only partially true. They were also funny, and the actors handled the shift between tragedy and comedy seamlessly.
Although this show ends October 13, there are still four more in the season to attend (and you can get a reduced-price subscription for just those four). The rest of their 29th season includes Good People by David Lindsay-Abaire (November 7-December 8, 2013); The Big Meal by Dan LeFranc (January 9-February 9, 2014); Macbeth by William Shakespeare (March 6-April 13, 2014); Blackbird by David Harrower (May 1-June 1, 2014).
The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theatre
172 Exchange St.
Festival Ballet’s most recent performance included an amended version of Little Red Riding Hood. Photo By Matt Francis. Design by Fatoumata Camara. In this Photo: FBP Company Apprentice Mady Issa.
“The seats are in the fourth row, is that all right?” the woman over the phone inquired when I bought my tickets for Festival Ballet’s production of Little Red Riding Hood. As it turns out, there are only four rows in the theater, and as such, there’s not a bad seat in the house. Located at their studio space (where they also offer classes for adults and children of all levels), this small theater offers a perfect venue for an intimate show where children especially can feel close enough to the action to remain engaged.
Mushroom Costume. Design by Brianne Benack. Photo by Matt Francis. In this photo: FBP Company Trainee Eugenia Zinovieva
You won’t be wowed with fancy sets here, but you will be impressed by skillful performances by a dozen talented ballet dancers. For Little Red Riding Hood, the theater partnered with RISD’s Junior Cut & Sew Studio to produce some wonderfully intricate costumes. To make the show less fearsome, they amended the story–the hooded dancing wolf escapes from Central Park Zoo and wants to eat Little Red Riding Hood’s cookies, not the girl herself.
As if that’s not enough to convince you, the show concludes with milk and cookies from Seven Stars Bakery, along with a chance to meet and talk with the dancers.
Although the performances of Little Red Riding Hood are already sold out, the Festival Ballet line-up includes several other upcoming shows for both children and adults.
825 Hope Street