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Tag: Burning Coal

Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart Indicts Individual and Institutional Hypocrisy During the Early Days of the AIDS Epidemic

Imagine that the people that you know and love are falling victim to a contagion that no one will acknowledge exists. You don’t know what is causing it, or how it is spread, or when or who it will strike next. But people keep getting diagnosed and are dying of this mysterious disease at an… Read More ›

Burning Coal’s Devised Peter Pan & Wendy Is Beautiful, But Lacks Cohesion

“Devised Theatre” is, simply, the process by which a group of collaborators build a work from the ground up without script-in-hand. As improvisations and conversations progress, a script and concept are formed, with input from the entire company during the rehearsal process. In the case of Burning Coal Theatre Company’s devised adaptation of J.M. Barrie’s… Read More ›

Lillian White’s New Play Peter Pan & Wendy Is a Captivating Show for Children of All Ages

J.M. Barrie’s classic story of Peter Pan, the boy who wouldn’t grow up, began life as a play in 1904, went under several different names, and has morphed into a novel and a Broadway stage musical and a few movies. Peter Pan & Wendy, a world premiere adapted by Lillian White and Burning Coal Theatre… Read More ›

Davitta Singletary and Cody Hill (left) star in Burning Coal Theatre Company's production of Darkside (photo by Mina von Feilitzsch Photography)

Burning Coal Stages Tom Stoppard & Pink Floyd’s Challenging, Stimulating Darkside

In 2013, to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Pink Floyd’s 1973 progressive rock album The Dark Side of the Moon, the BBC enlisted British playwright Tom Stoppard to adapt the work for radio. Pink Floyd gave Tom Stoppard, known for philosophical plays such as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead and Arcadia, and the mind-bending 1985… Read More ›

Tom Stoppard & Pink Floyd’s Darkside Is Thought-Provoking Entertainment

“What’s the good?” asks Czech-born British playwright and screenwriter Tom Stoppard in his play, Darkside, inspired by the rock group Pink Floyd, who in turn may well have been offering the same huge question in their album The Dark Side of the Moon. In America, the idiom is more often “What’s the use?” Burning Coal… Read More ›

Ian L. Finley’s The Greeks Explores the Oedipus Trilogy on June 9-25 at CAM Raleigh

You might already know how Oedipus Rex is going to end. If you do not, but you know what the Freud’s “Oedipus complex” is, you can likely predict the play’s climactic realization. In the mid-Fifth Century BCE, Sophocles — arguably the most celebrated Greek tragedian in history — wrote a trilogy collectively known as the… Read More ›

Tom McCleister and Sarah Hankins star as Alex and Georgie (photo by Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Simon Stephens’ Heisenberg at Burning Coal Is an Intelligent Antidote to Love Story Cliché

A monolithic black wall. In silver, a slender, curving integral sign (∫) reaches from floor to ceiling. Its twin is on the floor of the playing space. The integral sign is a calculus operation that determines the characteristics of a variable as it changes over time. It features heavily in the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, which… Read More ›

Sarah Hankins and Tom McCleister star as Georgie and Alex (photo by Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Burning Coal’s Heisenberg Has Promise but Lacks Passion

Simon Stephens’ Heisenberg, onstage now at Burning Coal Theatre Company under the direction of Emily Ranii, is a sort of poor man’s Harold and Maude. It is a story of what happens when a woman in her 40s, Georgie Burns (Sarah Hankins), forcefully wheedles herself into the life of a much older man, Alex Priest… Read More ›

Sarah Hankins and Tom McCleister star as Georgie and Alex (photo by Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Emily Ranii’s Staging of Heisenberg at Burning Coal Couldn’t Be Better

Introduced first in 1927 by the German physicist Werner Heisenberg (1901-76), the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle states that the more precisely the position of some particle is determined, the less precisely its momentum can be known, and vice versa. Or to put it another way, the more one focuses on an object, the less you know… Read More ›

Burning Coal’s American Premiere of David Edgar’s Written on the Heart Is Just Superb

Tonight through Dec. 18th, Burning Coal Theatre Company is staging the American premier production of Written on the Heart, British playwright David Edgar’s 2011 dramatization of the writing of the King James Version of The Bible. It is a reminder that during a period of almost a hundred years prior to that book’s composition, the… Read More ›

Skylight stars Emily Barrett Rieder and Jerome Davis (photo by Right Image Photography, Inc.)

David Hare’s Skylight Is an Excellent Show with Great Performances, a Conversation Starter

The play Skylight by British playwright David Hare, running at Burning Coal Theatre Company through Oct. 23rd, does not carry the social and political import that Burning Coal artistic director Jerome Davis attributes to it in his program notes, in our opinion. Beautifully performed by Davis himself and Emily Barrett Rieder, with the support of… Read More ›

A Challenging and Captivating Script and Compelling Performances Make Burning Coal Theatre Company’s Skylight a Must-See Show

Skylight by British playwright David Hare, which is playing now through Oct. 23rd in Burning Coal Theatre Company’s Murphey School Auditorium in Raleigh, premiered in 1995 in the West End of London. In 1996, it moved to Broadway, where it received a Tony Award® nomination for Best Play. In 2014, both productions received a revival… Read More ›

12 Community Members Play the Title Role in Burning Coal’s Spoonface Steinberg

First heard 19 years ago on BBC 4, Spoonface Steinberg is a fictional one-hour monologue, written by Tony Award®-winning playwright Lee Hall, who is probably best known for penning Billy Elliot. It has undergone a couple of transitions since 1997, passing through TV, especially on YouTube, and is now a dramatic reading, which premieres in… Read More ›

Carly Jones stars as Dorothy in The Wiz (photo by the Right Image Photography, Inc.)

The Wiz at Burning Coal: Kazowie! What a Show!

A funny thing happened to us last weekend on our way to review The Wiz, Charlie Smalls and William F. Brown’s adaptation of L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, in Burning Coal Theatre Company’s Murphey School Auditorium, near the Historic Oakwood Section of Raleigh. Illness prevented us from going. Several nights later, we… Read More ›

Burning Coal Theatre Company and Only Child Aerial Theatre of Brooklyn, NY, will stage Asylum on Oct. 15-18 and 22-25 and Oct. 29-Nov. 1 in the Murphey School Auditorium in Raleigh

Asylum at Burning Coal Theatre Combines Writhing, Sensuous, and Undulating Acrobatics with Dance

Asylum is an aerial show, the collaboration of Raleigh’s Burning Coal Theatre Company Only Child Aerial Theatre of Brooklyn, NY. Credit for the story is given to Kendall Rileigh and Nicki Miller, both of whom are also performers. (On a personal note, Chuck feels it necessary to state that having been locked in an institution… Read More ›

“Sunday in the Park with George” Makes a Good Impression (Get the Point?) at Burning Coal

Stephen Sondheim became discouraged with musical theater upon the failure of Merrily We Roll Along in 1981. He began his collaboration with James Lapine after seeing Lapine’s Twelve Dreams (1981), which rekindled Sondheim’s spirit. Burning Coal Theatre Company’s production of Sunday in the Park with George, which is now playing in Murphey School Auditorium, near… Read More ›

“Sunday in the Park with George” Shows Its Age, But Still Entertains

Sunday in the Park with George, onstage now at Burning Coal Theatre and directed by Jerome Davis, is a quirky little musical, one inspired by Seurat’s famed painting, A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. In his script, author James Lapine imagines what Seurat’s life must have been like and who each… Read More ›

Burning Coal Theatre Company announces its 2014-15 Mainstage Season

It’s mainstage season includes the world premiere of David Edgar’s Iron Curtain Trilogy directed by Jerome Davis, three plays about the fall of communism in Europe presented to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall

Carter (left) manipulates the doll Trinculo and the bottle Stephano, while Randolph Curtis Rand as Prospero secretly spies on the drunk conspirators (photo by the Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Burning Coal’s “(Three Man) Tempest” Is Ingenious and Audacious, But Only Partially Successful

The current Burning Coal Theatre Company presentation of (Three Man) Tempest — adapted and directed by Brooklyn, NY actor, director, and playwright Randolph Curtis Rand, is an ingenious and audacious, but only partially successful 90-minute condensation of legendary English poet and playwright William Shakespeare’s valedictory 1610-11 play. The main problem is, how a cast of… Read More ›

“Kindertransport” Plays Emotional Hardball With Viewers

During the nine month period before the start of World War II, nearly 10,000 children residing in Nazi countries were sent to live in the United Kingdom as part of a rescue mission known as the Kindertransport. In her 1993 play, aptly named “Kindertransport,” Diane Samuels relates the fictional account of one such child—precocious Eva… Read More ›

Burning Coal’s “Ruined” Offers a Dose of Harsh Reality

  In a time when shows, such as “The Client List” and “Secret Diary of a Call Girl” glamorize prostitution and the objectification of women, Lynn Nottage’s “Ruined” is  a much-needed dose of harsh reality.  The play, set in war-ravaged Africa, takes a look at the lives of three young women who work in a… Read More ›

Up-and-coming British folk and alternative-country singer/songwriter Callaghan will perform Sunday in Raleigh's Murphey School Auditorium (photo by Scott Lowden)

Burning Coal Will Bring British Singer/Songwriter Callaghan to Raleigh at 7 p.m. on March 24th

Burning Coal Theatre Company will bring drop-dead gorgeous 30-year-old British folk and alternative-country singer/songwriter Callaghan to Murphey School Auditorium for one performance only — at 7 p.m. on Sunday, March 24th, as part of the Raleigh, NC-based theater’s fourth annual spring and summer MusiCoal Series, showcasing what Burning Coal calls “new music that is exhilarating, fresh, and unlike anything you’ve heard before!”

“Nocturne” Paints a Painstakingly Vivid Picture of Grief

When viewers walk into Mortall Coile Theatre Company’s production of Nocturne, a one-man play written by Adam Rapp and part of Burning Coal Theatre Company’s “Wait ‘Til You See This Series, the set is the first thing that catches their attention. Beautifully designed by Jon Haas and director Dana Marks, the set features hundreds (possibly… Read More ›

Burning Coal Adds Another Laurel to Its Crown with an Uproarious Rendition of “As You Like It”

The ever-adventurous Burning Coal Theatre Company, whose “Henry V on Trapeze” was by far the best local production of 2011, works its theatrical magic once again with a high-spirited presentation of William Shakespeare’s early pastoral comedy “As You Like It,” performed with brio by a stellar seven-member cast, under the direction of Davidson College professor Mark Sutch. The inspired contributions of set designer Natalie Hart of Elon University, lighting designer Chris Popowich of Pittsburgh, costume designer Jane Stein of Virginia Tech University, and properties creator Elizabeth Newton of Raleigh also contribute to the merriment.

Burning Coal Theatre Company's cast for "As You Like It" includes (from left) Lori Mahl, Rebecca Bossen, Steph Scribner, and Jade Arnold (photo by the Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Burning Coal Will Present William Shakespeare’s Pastoral Comedy “As You Like It” Nov. 29-Dec. 16

Burning Coal Theatre Company will present “As You Like It,” a delightful early pastoral comedy by English poet and playwright William Shakespeare (1564-1616), written approximately 1599 to 1600, on Nov. 29-Dec. 2 and Dec. 6-9 and 13-16 in the Murphey School Auditorium, near the Historic Oakwood Section in downtown Raleigh, NC.

All the Lonely People: Burning Coal’s Rendition of “Shining City” Is Riveting But Ultimately Unsatisfying

The Beatles’ famously reclusive song subject Eleanor Rigby has nothing on the motley quartet of characters that people Burning Coal Theatre Company‘s often riveting but ultimately unsatisfying production of Conor McPherson’s Irish ghost story, “Shining City,” which is set in a psychiatrist’s office in a newly gentrified section of modern-day Dublin, Ireland.

Laura Tratnik as Neasa and James Anderson as Ian (photo by Right Image Photography, Inc.)

Conor McPherson’s Irish Ghost Story, “Shining City,” Will Scare the Daylights Out of Burning Coal Patrons

On Nov. 1-4, 8-11, and 15-18, Burning Coal Theatre Company‘s will present a professional production of “Shining City,” a nail-biting Irish ghost story written in 2004 by Conor McPherson (“St. Nicholas,” “The Weir,” “The Seafarer”), in the Burning Coal Theatre at the Murphey School Auditorium, near the Historic Oakwood Section of downtown Raleigh, NC. Burning Coal artistic director Jerome Davis claims, “[“Shining City”] will scare the daylights out of you!”

“Jailbait” Is a Darkly Comic Success

What happens when two high school girls pretend to be adults, sneak into a club, and flirt with a couple of clueless older men? That is the question that Burning Coal Theatre’s Second Stage production of Jailbait attempts to answer, and the result is a thoughtful, well acted exploration of the lies and facades that… Read More ›

Tara Polhemus and Brian Yandle play Claire and Robert in Burning Coal Theatre Company's presentation of "Jailbait" as part of the Burning Coal's "Wait ‘Til You See This Series"

Two High School Girls Pretend to Be College Coeds, and Go Clubbing in Deirdre O’Connor’s “Jailbait”

Burning Coal Theatre Company will present “Jailbait,” a PG-13 rated coming-of-age story written by Deirdre O’Connor and produced and directed by Christine Zagrobelny, on Sept. 26-30 and Oct. 4-7 in the Murphey School Auditorium, near the Historic Oakwood Section of downtown Raleigh, NC. Jailbait is the second show of Burning Coal’s 2012-13 second-stage “Wait ‘Til You See This Series.”

Burning Coal Theatre Company will perform "Brigadoon" on Sept. 6-9, 13-16, and 20-23 in the Murphey School Auditorium in Raleigh, NC

Lerner and Loewe’s Classic Musical “Brigadoon” Opens Burning Coal’s 16th Season on Sept. 6th

Burning Coal Theatre Company will open its 16th season on Sept. 6th with Lerner and Loewe’s magnificent musical fantasy “Brigadoon” on Sept. 6-9, 13-16, and 20-23 in the Murphey School Auditorium, adjacent to the Historic Oakwood Section of downtown Raleigh, NC. This classic Broadway musical, which features the music by Frederick Loewe (1901-88) and book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner (1918-86), added “Almost Like Being in Love” to the show-tune repertoire.