Broome Arts Mirror

Reviewed by Lee Shepherd Listening to orchestra musicians play a work they genuinely love imparts a special freshness, enthusiasm and sense of discovery to those lucky enough to be in the audience. While Dvorak's Symphony No. 9, the New World Symphony, is programed so often that it runs the risk of sounding hackneyed, Sunday’s performance (Feb. 7) by the Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra, part of a concert titled “Dvorak and the New World,” was incredibly fresh and exciting. Fresh because Dvorak's melodic gifts, as well as his ability to...
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Reviewed by Nancy Oliveri

I came across a blurb in a 1925 edition of The New Yorker — one of the short paragraphs in the “Talk of the Town” section — that said In a Garden, a new play by Philip Barry, had “too many ideas to succeed.”

But in 1960, another show set in a garden, with a manageable set and set of ideas, absolutely succeeded -- and still does. The Fantasticks -- book and lyrics by Tom Jones, music by...

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Reviewed by George Basler On paper, Once On This Island, an unlikely marriage of Caribbean folk lore and Broadway conventions, sounds like a dubious undertaking. But any skepticism quickly goes by the boards. The SRO Productions III musical, which opened this past weekend (Jan. 22-23) at the Goodwill Theatre's Schorr Family Firehouse Stage in Johnson City, is a thoroughly captivating show. As performed by an energetic and appealing cast, it is an exuberant, if bittersweet, fairy tale marred only by a somewhat muddled ending. Created by Stephen Flaherty (music) and...
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Reviewed by Lee Shepherd The Binghamton Philharmonic Orchestra may be onto something good: a Sunday afternoon concert of upbeat Baroque music featuring Philharmonic musicians rather than imported guest artists. A program yesterday (Jan. 24) of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and music by Corelli, Geminiani and Bach played by a 25-member string orchestra (and harpsichord) drew a near-capacity crowd to The Forum in Binghamton. Maestro Jose-Luis Novo called it a “Baroque feast” of mostly Italian music from the 1650s to 1750s. Concerti Grossi, he explained, featured important solo parts against...
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By George Basler The Cider Mill Playhouse, now marking its 40th year, is making a major move. In December, the venerable Endicott theater announced it had signed a contract with Actors Equity Association, the national union for actors and stage managers, making it the first Equity theater in Broome County. To the general public, this move could seem like “inside baseball,” but it will mean big changes for the playhouse. By the 2017-18 season half the actors in a production, or the first five hired, whichever is less,...
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By George Basler George Frideric Handel wasn’t thinking about Christmas -- white, or otherwise -- when he wrote Messiah 274 years ago. He began work on the oratorio in late August and saw it performed for the first time in Dublin for Easter in April 1742. So the old boy might be surprised to come back and see how it’s become a staple during the Christmas season for choruses and orchestras across the United States and Great Britain. In Broome County, Messiah has been a tradition since 1983 thanks to...
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