Theatre Mirror Reviews - "A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline" & "Trad"

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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

Reviews of Current Productions

note: entire contents copyright 2009 by Beverly Creasey


FROM THE OLD COUNTRY TO COUNTRY WESTERN

Reviews by Beverly Creasey

Fiddlehead Comes Back Singing

Bridget Bierne is one versatile performer. Last summer she played a wisecracking Fanny Brice in Fiddlehead’s FUNNY GIRL. Now she’s raising the rafters as Patsy Cline in Fiddlehead’s tribute to the c&w superstar. A CLOSER WALK WITH PATSY CLINE (at John Hancock Hall through April 17th) is set in a little country radio station in Virginia where Tom Frey as the DJ reminisces about Cline’s much too short career.

The set-up is really an excuse to hear those fabulous songs---and Bierne is spot on, from that luxurious, heartbreaking slide into a sad phrase to the glottal click that makes “Cra—azy” so sorrowful. Bierne soft-yodels “Ba-a-by” just like Cline. So remarkable is her legerdemain that jaws were dropping all over the house when she began the glorious “I Fall to Pieces. Frey is mighty amusing in the commercial and news department but it’s Bierne and the classy band (with sensational pedal steel from Mike Ihde) who deliver the goods. If you’re a Patsy Cline fan, this show is for you.

Traditional Irish Hilarity

We crave Irish theater here in Boston. Luckily The Tir Na Company is filling the void left by the loss of the Sugan Theatre. In fact, Tir Na’s current production of Mark Doherty’s delightfully daffy TRAD (at the BCA through April 24th) reunites a passel of Sugan alums.

I suspect Carmel O’Reilly directed this outrageous father &son odyssey with her funny bone--- and I can’t imagine a better duo than Billy Meleady and Colin Hamel to stumble their way from pillar to post. The two are older than Methuselah but that doesn’t stop them for searching for an heir. Along the way they encounter Nancy E. Carroll in a couple of show stopping guises: First, as a batty town elder and then, as the parched parish priest. Think Beckett on hallucinogens. You’ll laugh yourself silly. Then just when you think it can’t get any nuttier, a nifty ending will touch your heart. What’s not to love?

"A Closer Walk with Patsy Cline" (7 - 17 April)
FIDDLEHEAD THEATRE COMPANY
@ John Hancock Hall, 180 Berkeley Street, BOSTON MA
1(???)???-????

"Trad" (8 - 24 April)
TIR NA THEATRE COMPANY
@ Boston Center for The Arts, 539 Tremont Street, BOSTON MA
1(617)308-6075


THE THEATER MIRROR, New England's LIVE Theater Guide

| MARQUEE | USHER | SEATS | INTERMISSION | CURTAIN |