Roza was memorable as a tightly wound professional woman in Manhattan being stalked by a would-be suitor. Her emotional range and willingness to explore the character's ugly sides helped turn Rebecca Gilman's issue-driven potboiler into a dark, troubling character study. We've seen Roza before in other psychological dramas, such as Extremities, where she played a rape victim who turns the tables on the perpetrator, literally and emotionally trapping her tormentor; and in her disturbing performance in Medea Redux (the title tells you something), one of three plays in Bash by Neil Labute, where she revealed a simultaneous vulnerability and hardness that made us remember why watching live performances by talented actors is a riveting experience.

You don't see Bill Cruz around very much anymore. In fact, the last time we spotted him (November 2001), he opened a Little Havana concert for difficult ingénue Cat Power, who suffered an on-stage breakdown that created a most uncomfortable evening for performer and audience alike. But her rather unglamorous self-implosion served to illuminate Cruz's polish and effortlessness. His 1998 release, Three Shades, still stands among South Florida's best indie-folk albums of all time; it's studded with Cruz's poignant, pin-prick guitar work and introspective but never self-obsessive lyrics. The guy can make himself sound like Mark Eitzel or Jeff Buckley, but he's best when he just sounds like himself. If only the cheerfully obscure Cruz would come out of hiding more often.
You don't see Bill Cruz around very much anymore. In fact, the last time we spotted him (November 2001), he opened a Little Havana concert for difficult ingénue Cat Power, who suffered an on-stage breakdown that created a most uncomfortable evening for performer and audience alike. But her rather unglamorous self-implosion served to illuminate Cruz's polish and effortlessness. His 1998 release, Three Shades, still stands among South Florida's best indie-folk albums of all time; it's studded with Cruz's poignant, pin-prick guitar work and introspective but never self-obsessive lyrics. The guy can make himself sound like Mark Eitzel or Jeff Buckley, but he's best when he just sounds like himself. If only the cheerfully obscure Cruz would come out of hiding more often.
Thomas was outstanding as Libby Price, a world-weary black woman adrift in the Southern racial struggles of the 1960s in this interesting production. ("Bee-luther-hatchee" is early 20th-century African-American slang for a faraway, damnable place, the next station after the stop for hell.) This was the New York City-based actress's first stop in South Florida, and her emotionally compelling work was a model of simplicity and clarity and left an indelible mark on the memory. With more such roles, maybe we'll be fortunate enough to see more of Thomas on our stages.
Thomas was outstanding as Libby Price, a world-weary black woman adrift in the Southern racial struggles of the 1960s in this interesting production. ("Bee-luther-hatchee" is early 20th-century African-American slang for a faraway, damnable place, the next station after the stop for hell.) This was the New York City-based actress's first stop in South Florida, and her emotionally compelling work was a model of simplicity and clarity and left an indelible mark on the memory. With more such roles, maybe we'll be fortunate enough to see more of Thomas on our stages.
And the winner is.... Once again, the award goes to Adler for his range of work and the professionalism with which it is produced. From gritty naturalism in the creepy and mind-bending Boy Gets Girl to lyrical musical drama in The Dead to the brilliant absurdism of Edward Albee's The Play About the Baby, Adler moves all over the stylistic map and handles each stop with assurance. His direction is marked by clarity, energy, and a palpable love for the actor's craft. It's no coincidence that many actors shine in his productions. Until someone else manages all this in one season, the crown remains firmly planted on his head.

And the winner is.... Once again, the award goes to Adler for his range of work and the professionalism with which it is produced. From gritty naturalism in the creepy and mind-bending Boy Gets Girl to lyrical musical drama in The Dead to the brilliant absurdism of Edward Albee's The Play About the Baby, Adler moves all over the stylistic map and handles each stop with assurance. His direction is marked by clarity, energy, and a palpable love for the actor's craft. It's no coincidence that many actors shine in his productions. Until someone else manages all this in one season, the crown remains firmly planted on his head.

Who's afraid of putting on Edward Albee? Not GableStage. And this production of the playwright's mind-bending verbal labyrinth was a dizzying, enigmatic tour de force. Strong all around, from Joseph Adler's crisp staging through the tight and engrossing performances (including some nifty work from John Felix and Cynthia Caquelin). Add to the mix the excellent work of Jeff Quinn, Daniela Schwimmer, and Nate Rauch -- for sets/lighting, costumes, and sound, respectively -- and what you get is hard to beat, even if it were competing in a theatrical capital.
Who's afraid of putting on Edward Albee? Not GableStage. And this production of the playwright's mind-bending verbal labyrinth was a dizzying, enigmatic tour de force. Strong all around, from Joseph Adler's crisp staging through the tight and engrossing performances (including some nifty work from John Felix and Cynthia Caquelin). Add to the mix the excellent work of Jeff Quinn, Daniela Schwimmer, and Nate Rauch -- for sets/lighting, costumes, and sound, respectively -- and what you get is hard to beat, even if it were competing in a theatrical capital.
Somogyi gets the nod for her droll, inventive 1950s design scheme, in itself a hilarious social critique. From nightmarish polka dots and pony skirts to her big-shouldered suits for men, the New York City designer brought Red Herring an added level of comedy and social commentary. Somogyi has tailored her craft to this era before. She was the one who dressed up Kathleen Turner as Tallulah Bankhead at the Coconut Grove Playhouse and sent us back, through ball gowns, to 1940s post-war America.

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