Barbara Haas

Aug. 2 NTLive: Everyman

NT Live’s ‘Everyman’ gives a 15th century morality play a 21st century facelift

Britain’s poet laureate turns one of the oldest English dramas into a timeless argument against materialism

By Barbara Haas

Rufus Norris began his reign as Artistic Director of London’s National Theatre with a brilliant updating of the medieval morality play, Everyman. If this is any indication of what lies ahead, we’re in for some great theater…

July 16 NT Live: A View from the Bridge

NL Live broadcast of ‘A View From the Bridge’ a persuasive, character-driven drama

Belgian-Dutch director Ivo van Hove discards Arthur Miller’s Italian-American trimmings and focuses squarely on the characters

By Barbara Haas

This year is the centennial of Arthur Miller’s birth, and a stunning production by London’s The Young Vic of his 1955 drama, A View from the Bridge — broadcast to grateful theater-lovers in movie theaters world-wide by NT Live — proves this play to be timeless…

April 18 CNY Playhouse: Glengarry Glen Ross

CNY Playhouse closes the deal in ‘Glengarry Glen Ross’

A fine ensemble of actors all but ooze oil in David Mamet’s look at the unctuous business of the hard sell

By Barbara Haas

The Central New York Playhouse isn’t afraid to tackle the important American plays. Last spring the company staged a fine Death of a Salesman, directed by Kasey Marie McHale. Now they’ve put on an equally creditable production of David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross, again under McHale’s direction…

Apr. 10 Syracuse Stage: Other Desert Cities

Syracuse Stage’s ‘Other Desert Cities’ unfolds at a furious pace

Better not sneeze during this Timothy Bond production ― you may miss something important

By Barbara Haas

At last, a play about a family that is not dysfunctional. Syracuse Stage is closing its current season with a rarity among dramas: a play about family members who really do care about each another. Not that the five members of the Wyeth household in Jon Robin Baitz’s Other Desert Cities don’t have their differences. Truth is, they couldn’t be more unlike one another…

Jan. 30 Syracuse Stage: In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play

Syracuse Stage’s ‘In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play’ hits the spot

Sarah Ruhl’s amusing play about treating ‘female hysteria’ during the Victorian Era is just what the doctor ordered

By Barbara Haas

It’s fascinating to see what a truly creative mind can do with original source material. That’s one of the many pleasures of seeing Sarah Ruhl’s very funny, sweetly tender play, In the Next Room, or the Vibrator Play…

Oct. 29 NT Live: Frankenstein

NT Live’s ‘Frankenstein’ a monster in need of some tender loving care

It’s alive! That is to say, National Theatre Live

By Barbara Haas

The National Theatre’s sell-out hit Frankenstein is one of those productions that leaves a reviewer searching for fresh superlatives. “Brilliant,” “amazing,” “memorable” — it is all these things. If you missed the 2011 NT Live performances, you have another chance. It’s back, as they say, by popular demand…

Sep. 28 Syracuse Stage: Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Syracuse Stage’s ‘Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike’ keeps the laughs coming

Christopher Durang takes the audience on a wild romp in this Tony Award-winning Chekhov mash-up

By Barbara Haas

At one point in Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, the Christopher Durang comedy that opened Syracuse Stage’s 2014-15 season, the audience broke into spontaneous applause.

September 15 Syracuse Stage: Cry for Peace: Voices from the Congo

Syracuse Stage’s ‘Cry for Peace’ a declamatory chorus of horrific tales too easily ignored

No actors to be found here — just real people recounting real atrocities in a real world far from the comfort of our own

By Barbara Haas

Timothy Bond, artistic director of Syracuse Stage, has often expressed his belief in the community-building power of theater…