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By Winifred Walsh and Winifred Walsh,Contributing Writer | April 16, 1992
The awful truth about what happened one torrid summer to a cruel member of a prominent New Orleans family is the crux of Tennessee Williams' disturbing work, "Suddenly Last Summer," being staged by the Vagabond Players through May 3.As directed by Susan Kramer, who also designed the busy set and plays a major role, the Vagabond production is a disappointing one. The actors' interpretations, with a few exceptions, are superficial, and there is little dramatic...
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By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | May 6, 2014
In the canon of stage comedies, Larry Shue's "The Foreigner" may not rank in the uppermost percentile, but there sure is something awfully likable about it. The work has been widely and frequently performed since its off-Broadway premiere in 1984, a year before the playwright's death in a plane crash at the age of 39. It offers abundant opportunities for actors -- there really is no small part -- and a plot that manages to combine wacky humor with...
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ENTERTAINMENT
By RASHOD D. OLLISON | November 10, 2005
We loved that song. While Mama was at work, my younger sister Reagan and I used to blast Arrested Development's "People Everyday." The hit was on the radio, like, every 10 minutes during the summer of '92. As I cranked up the volume, I'd call out to Reagan, who was always in the bathroom mirror experimenting with her hair: "Girl, the jam's on!" She'd fly into the living room - one side of her head done, the other side looking like she had been in a fight. And we'd hurriedly move the coffee table out of the way for our own Soul Train.
NEWS
July 5, 2013
The media constantly reminds us of what is wrong with Baltimore. There is the pervasive crime problem, stories of political corruption and educational and environmental issues. But there is something very right about Baltimore that gets very little press and certainly not enough attention from the populace at large. We have several outstanding small theaters in our city. They include but are not limited to Everyman, Spotlighters, Vagabond and Fells Point Corner Theatre. There are others such as Single Carrot, Mobtown and Performance Workshop.
ENTERTAINMENT
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,Theater Critic | January 24, 1992
In the title role of Moliere's "The Miser," Vincent Kimball isn't so much a nasty skinflint as he is a man obsessed. Like a young swain staring goo-goo eyed at his sweetheart, he is totally, helplessly and happily in love with money.Mr. Kimball's jolly Harpagon -- in his most madcap moments he's reminiscent of the late Zero Mostel -- sets the giddy tone for this Vagabonds production; if all of the performances were this assured, it would be a jewel. Instead, it's more like an elaborate brooch in which a gemstone is surrounded by semi-precious stones -- and occasionally paste.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,SUN THEATER CRITIC | September 9, 2004
The Vagabond Players' new season focuses primarily on modern American masters, from Arthur Miller and Tennessee Williams to Lerner and Loewe. But as its season opener, the theater has taken a risk on a relative newcomer - a cartoonist/screenwriter/playwright named Doug Stone. It's not a risk that pays off. An account of a suburban Tupperware party in 1968, Stone's Sealed for Freshness is a pretty stale affair. The play begins with a housewife named Bonnie (Debra Tracey) being told by her husband (Steven Michael Kovalic)
SPORTS
By Vito Stellino and Vito Stellino,SUN STAFF | October 9, 1999
"Have Arm, Will Travel."That could be the calling card for Neil O'Donnell, the former University of Maryland quarterback who has become a vagabond in the NFL.O'Donnell, who will quarterback the Tennessee Titans tomorrow against the Ravens, is playing for his fifth head coach and fourth team in the past five years.O'Donnell has become a symbol of the perils of free agency -- players who leave a good situation for a lucrative one that may not be a good fit for them.In just more than three years, O'Donnell has gone from Super Bowl starter, a quarterback who got a $25 million deal, to one who has been cut in successive years by the Jets and Bengals.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,sun theater critic | January 25, 2007
As enjoyable as an evening of music by a favorite songwriter can be, it's even more fun to discover the talents of someone new. To be honest, David Friedman isn't a newcomer. His songs have been recorded by Barry Manilow and Diana Ross, and I am a fan of the late cabaret singer Nancy LaMott's recordings of his music. So, I had some familiarity with Friedman before the Vagabond Players' engaging, current production of his musical revue, Listen to My Heart. Judging from the two dozen songs in this revue, certain themes recur in Friedman's work - the notion that opposites attract; the importance of getting the most out of life; and a stalwart belief that it is possible to find a soulmate.
FEATURES
By J. Wynn Rousuck and J. Wynn Rousuck,sun theater critic | September 21, 2006
Almost exactly a year after August Wilson's untimely death at age 60, the Vagabond Players is honoring the playwright's memory with a moving production of one of his most magnificent works - Joe Turner's Come and Gone. Chronologically the second play in Wilson's decade-by-decade chronicle of 20th century African-American life, Joe Turner is set in a Pittsburgh boarding house in 1911. The Vagabonds production is directed by Amini Johari-Courts, who also staged this play at Arena Players in 1993, five years after it was seen on Broadway.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly and Jacques Kelly,Sun Reporter | July 31, 2008
John Bruce Johnson, a retired teacher whom friends called the "patriarch of community theater in Baltimore," died of dementia Sunday at Seasons Hospice and Palliative Care. The Canton resident was 77. "The Vagabond [Players] claim to be the oldest continuously running little theater in the country, and Johnson is really only the second long-term leader it has had in its 82 years," said a 1998 Sun profile of him. The paper's story went on to describe him as "an oddly typical old-time amiable Baltimorean with old-time Baltimore idiosyncrasies.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | June 12, 2013
In terms of enthusiasm for the art form, there is really no difference between community theater groups, with their mostly volunteer corps, and professional companies, with their Actors' Equity card-carrying cast members. It's the matter of artistic quality that tends to separate the waters. But, as many a what-I-do-for-love actor will tell you, there isn't an automatic correlation between a pay check and a good performance. And when the fates allow, a community theater can deliver remarkably satisfying work.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | April 18, 2013
According to an old song, there's a broken heart for every light on Broadway. There's also a lot of humor to be mined from all that disappointment, all those shattered dreams littering the theater industry, where producers scramble for backers, playwrights dream way too big, and aspiring actors will leap at any opportunity. Whether “Room Service,” the 1937 farce by John Murray and Allen Boretz, is the best comedy to be inspired by this volatile milieu can be debated. The work, which has been given a welcome, if spotty, revival by Vagabond Players, certainly creaks in places.
EXPLORE
By Mike Giuliano | January 10, 2013
Agatha Christie's "The Mousetrap" opened in London in 1952 and continues to run there. The world's longest running play also remains popular with community theaters around the globe. As the Vagabond Players production demonstrates, this murder mystery remains entertaining. Considered from a sternly logical standpoint, Christie's play suffers from stereotypical characters, a formulaic story and preposterous plot twists. Sternly logical people should avoid this play and the rest of us should avoid them by going to see it. Christie's simple formula involves placing a group of quirky guests in an isolated country inn, stranding them there when heavy snow closes local roads, making them nervous upon learning about a recent unsolved murder, bringing in a policeman to investigate, and consequently having the guests and the audience alike realize that everybody at the inn seems mighty suspicious.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith | January 9, 2013
By now, 60 long years after Agatha Christie's “The Mousetrap” opened in London, the whodunit is more of a fixture than a stage show. It apparently cannot ever be stopped on that side of The Pond, where it has surpassed the 25,000th performance mark and still holds firmly onto the record as the world's longest-running play. On our shores, the work never became such an institution, but it still continues to attract attention now and then, particularly from community theater groups.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | January 9, 2013
By now, 60 long years after Agatha Christie's “The Mousetrap” opened in London, the whodunit is more of a fixture than a stage show. It apparently cannot ever be stopped on that side of The Pond, where it has surpassed the 25,000th performance mark and still holds firmly onto the record as the world's longest-running play. On our shores, the work never became such an institution, but it still continues to attract attention now and then, particularly from community theater groups.
NEWS
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | December 29, 2012
Sixty years ago, an extraordinary reign began in England, one that would provide the nation with a comforting measure of stability and continuity during some of the most tumultuous decades of the 20th century and right on into the far-from-placid 21st. The Diamond Jubilee attracted notice all around the globe, especially since it was a milestone few would have predicted back in 1952, when the curtain first rose on Agatha Christie's theatrical murder mystery "The Mousetrap" in London's West End. Even Christie figured the play would last no more than eight months.
ENTERTAINMENT
By J. Wynn Rousuck | May 25, 2000
Last call for `Elephant Man' This is the last weekend to see the Vagabond Players' production of Bernard Pomerance's 1988 Tony Award-winning play, "The Elephant Man." Based on the real-life story of John Merrick, a deformed man who lived in England during the Victorian era, the play presents Merrick without any graphic representation of deformity. Instead, an able-bodied actor portrays the character, indicating Merrick's misshapen form through posture alone, and thus allowing the audience to see the healthy, normal soul trapped inside.
NEWS
October 12, 1996
The Live section listed an incorrect number and time for "Educating Rita" at the Vagabond Theatre. The correct time for tomorrow's performance is 7 p.m. Call (410) 563-9135 for more information.The Sun regrets the error.Pub Date: 10/12/96
EXPLORE
By Mike Giuliano | October 25, 2011
Prepare ye the way of another revival of "Godspell," whose hippie-era aura makes it a cultural relic from early 1970s pop culture. It would not be reasonable to expect this perky musical to seem as fresh now as it did way back when, but the production at Vagabond Players serves as a lively reminder that this show still knows how to lift the spirits. Baby-boomers who first saw this musical at a tender age probably have had its score stored away in their subconscious ever since then.
EXPLORE
By Mike Giuliano | September 15, 2011
Vagabond Players may save money on its utility bill this month, because much of "Wait Until Dark" actually takes place in the dark. Although Frederick Knott's 1966 Broadway thriller tends to be slow and creaky, it's still capable of making you nervous. The Vagabond production likewise knows how to make you feel uneasy. Knott's play is best-remembered for its 1967 movie version starring Audrey Hepburn. It would be unreasonable to expect any actor to match up to Hepburn's delicately beautiful aura, but April Rejman is persuasive as a blind woman, Susy Hendrix, who is terrorized by thugs in a Greenwich Village apartment.
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