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Preview-The Government Inspector-Shadow Players20-6-14

Many of you may remember last year’s production of The Learned Ladies of Midlevels by Shadow Players that was widely praised by fans and our critic, Leeann Bennett. The show even walked away with a Heckler last year for Best Supporting Actress. Shadow Players is back with their next production, Gogol’s The Government Inspector. This is easily his most prolific work, conquering topics like government corruption, bureaucracy and bribery with brilliant satire and wit. Government corruption is a hot button topic in Hong Kong now but director Julian Lamb was careful not to be too heavy handed with the parallels between Gogol’s work and what’s currently happening in Hong Kong.

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Review-Ari Shaffir-Comedy.HK19-6-14

What do you get when you put three male comedians on stage? Lots of penis jokes, it seems. Yes, penis jokes are funny, but I wouldn’t chose penis humour as a theme for an entire show. Whether Ari Shaffir mandated it, or it was just a coincidence, three acts heavy on penis content became tiring by the end of the night. Looking back now at a note on Shaffir’s website, I see he warns people not to come to the show if they “don’t like hearing Jews telling awful jokes about sexual misconduct”, so I suppose I was warned.

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Review-Butterfly Lovers-Hong Kong Dance Company14-6-14

I had seen Yang Yuntao’s work with the Hong Kong Dance Company when he choreographed Smiling, Proud Wanderer in 2006 and Border Town in 2007, and they had both been performances that made a lasting impression on me, not only with how well the skillfulness of the dancers came across in the pieces, but also with the dance moves’ powerful abilities to tell a great story. This time, he works with HKDC again to put on The Butterfly Lovers as director and choreographer. The Butterfly Lovers features not only the piece of its namesake but also the other three stories that, together, have been known as the four great myths/love stories in Chinese literature.

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Preview-Don Yuan-Aurora Theatre29-5-14

Don Juan has been a popular story for centuries and has been adapted many, many times. And of course, everyone has met someone like Don Juan, or at least someone who would like to be like him. So, the play is drawing on something everyone knows. Our version is meant to be light -- it's primarily a comedy; plus it draws on a lot of local material. I expect audiences will go away thinking "I know someone exactly like Don Yuan."- Peter Gordon

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Preview-Footloose-Face Productions14-5-14

Hot off of last year’s smash hit, Hairspray, Face Productions is back with another high-octane, fun filled musical that’s out to please the whole family. Footloose, the musical, is a stage adaptation of the 80’s classic film starring Kevin Bacon. The story follows a teenage boy called Ren from Chicago who moves to Bomont, Georgia, with his mother, only to find the religious town prohibits dancing. The boy finds romance with the town pastor’s daughter Ariel and together the couple challenge the town’s small-mindedness in the hope of a rock’n’roll themed prom night. Ren comes swinging into town to prove that if you “Kick Off Your Sunday Shoes” and “Cut Loose” everything will be a-ok.

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Preview-The Tragedy of Miss Julius Caesar-Shakespeare in the Port17-4-14

When you think of Julius Caesar you typically think of old men in togas with laurels on their heads. But director Hannah Lochhead thought of something very different. She loves Shakespeare and she loves burlesque and wanted to marry them in one project - and Julius Caesar seemed the perfect vessel for combining the two genres. "During my research for the show I had seen several other versions of this story using burlesque. This story of ambition and power is perfectly suited for this world."

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Preview-The Taming of the Shrew-Shakespeare in the Port16-4-14

A cast of local actors have come together to perform Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew for Hong Kong’s inaugural Shakespeare outdoor festival ‘Shakespeare in the Port’. The famous comedy is one that has had many adaptations (including much loved Hollywood teen flick 10 Things I Hate About You) but is also a play that’s met with plenty of controversy over the years, mainly due to the fact that by today’s standards it appears to be terribly chauvinistic.

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Review-The Colorado Catechism-TSR Productions10-4-14

Struggling painter Ty Wain attempting to deal with his rampant alcoholism finally meets his artistic muse at an alcoholic treatment center. She’s a high school economics teacher, been in and out of the same facility three times, and sometimes lies because she can (but never cheats). The first time they meet, Ty shows up drunk and she slaps him under mistaken identity. From these auspicious beginnings, they stumble – though not drunkenly – into a moonlit forbidden friendship.

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Review-Miracle Fun, Funny Puppetry-Omar Alvarez Titeres Puppetry Arts Company5-4-14

I'm basically a big kid. So when I got invited to come and review a puppetry show I got pretty excited. I love puppets and feeding my inner child. Miracle Fun, Funny Puppetry is a one man touring puppet show by founder and one man band, Omar Alvarez Titeres. The company was founded in Argentina in 1987. The company aims to develop puppetry arts in Argentina, spread the love of puppetry around the world and to pursue the highest level of aesthetic in puppetry.

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Shows We're Reviewing in April31-3-14

We're exhausted from reviewing all the fabulous shows in this years' Hong Kong Arts festival. Did you have a chance to check out our reviews?

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