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Going Off-Off Broadway for Wake-Up Marconi! and The Weird

Wake-Up Marconi! presents: The Weird
Cast: Matthew Cohn, Lucky Gretzinger, Allison Hirschlag*, Melissa Pinsly, Mark Rosenthal and Mark Stetson
*Member appears courtesy of Actors' Equity Association
Directed by Celine Rosenthal and Erin Gilmore
Produced by Celine Rosenthal

Continues nightly thru Sunday February 28th at 8pm
Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th at 2pm
At Manhattan Theatre Source
177 Macdougal St, West Village (near Washington Square Park)

On my latest venture to New York, (just got back this morning!) I went off-off Broadway to discover The Weird, a funny, well acted show at Manhattan Theatre Source, snugly ensconced in Greenwich Village. The Weird, by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, consists of a series of six short-ish scenes based on pulp fiction, mixing horror, camp, sex and pop culture and played out by a cast of six young actors who were clearly having great fun with the material. The scenes were connected by Mark Rosenthal's ghoulish M.T. Brave as a sort of emcee for the damned.

The venue is small, perhaps 50 seats or so in an upstairs room of what was once a residence by the looks of it, but the staging made clever use of the limited space and a few generic props. The appeal of the show lies entirely in the cast in any case, who attacked their roles with delightful gusto. Each brought a different quality to their various and sundry roles, like Allison Hirschlag's gleefully demented Southern belle or hapless Rosemary in The Ten Minute Play About Rosemary's Baby, or Melissa Pinsly, a chameleon who went from winsome assistant to Cohn's soulful scientist (a story of repressed desire - and bugs) to Rosemary's creepy older neighbour to that pulp fiction staple, the bored, dissatisfied housewife without skipping a beat. Without listing everyone in every role, suffice it to say that, from feckless teens on their way to Shadow Lake to overweight Southern boor to vampire/overnight appliance repairman, they maintained the overheated pulp mood without letting it drop, aided by Aguirre-Sacasa's cleverly written script.

It's cute, fun, funny, and probably the best theatre bargoon in town at a mere $18 a pop.

Both Wake Up Marconi! and Manhattan Theatre Source are on my list to keep an eye on for future productions and such - check them out at the links above.


What Else Is Hot This Week?

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From a media release:

The new season brings
Esmeralda Enrique Spanish Dance Company
to new heights and new audiences

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March 20-24, 2013 - A Night in Madrid
Company dancers Esmeralda Enrique and Paloma Cortés perform Spanish Classical dance with the celebrated Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir for A Night in Madrid featuring the Iberian flavoured music of composer Luigi Boccherini who made his home in Spain. His work is infused with the sounds of Spanish and gypsy folk music.

March 20-24 …

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From a media release:


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