Bloody Relevant

Review of Dracula at ACT.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Eleanor Cenname and edited by Teen Editor Joshua Fernandes.

ACT Dracula Khanh Doan as MINA MURRAY Photo credit Chris Bennion

“We have, all of us, a secret life.” Thunderous and gory and ominous and utterly beautiful and all at once shrouded in darkness and mystery, Dracula explored what the characters did not know about their society, each other, and themselves.

Steeped in blood, smoke, and innuendo, ACT Theatre’s production of Dracula by Steven Dietz twists the quintessential horror classic into something altogether new. In ACT’s modernized iteration of the classic, the story follows Mina, a young woman in love and infatuated with Jonathan Harker, who writes to her from his travels in Transylvania, through her plight to combat the malevolent Dracula as he leaves death and destruction in his wake. Brandon O'Neill as Count Dracula at ACT. Photo by Chris Bennion.

Read More

Under the Surface

Teen Editorial Staff November 2019 Editorial

Written by Teen Editors Lily Williamson and Tova Gaster!

Umbrella

As we transition into winter, the streets of Seattle may look grey and uninviting. It’s tempting to stay at home binge-watching shows you know you like. But look again: there’s a world of thought-provoking and entertaining art under the surface of Seattle’s November gloom, and this month, we want to highlight the events you might pass over at first glance.

Bellevue Arts Museum’s exhibition Hidden In Plain Sight explores how old materials can be made new through art. Similarly, a new exhibition at the Henry Art Gallery with the almost-identical title In Plain Sight, relates to this theme as well. Seeking to explore narratives of racial marginalization, class, and ethnicity repressed and overlooked due to systems of oppression, the Henry showcases visual art and photography to question dominant American cultural narratives.

Read More

White Guilt With A Side of Gravy

Review of The Thanksgiving Play at Seattle Public Theater.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Anna Martin and edited by Teen Editor Anya Shukla.

Thanksgiving play

The Thanksgiving Play, by Larissa Fasthorse, staged at the Seattle Public Theater, is an unexpectedly fun and thoughtful look at race and white guilt. The play stars Jonelle Jordan as the anxious and determined Logan, who’s writing a play about Thanksgiving; Martyn G. Krouse as the hippie Jaxton, her partner, who you love to hate; Andrew Shanks as the shy and passionate Caden, a history teacher; and Zenaida Rose Smith as Alicia, the gorgeous and deeply misled L.A actress.

How do four white people make a culturally sensitive Thanksgiving show for children about the horrific history of Native American treatment in the U.S.? Logan has landed herself in this pickle when her Native American actress turns out to be a white woman with “ethnicity headshots.” Paired with her hippie not-boyfriend, an enthusiastic elementary teacher with a passion for playwriting, and the previously mentioned white actress, the four of them have to create a culturally sensitive show out of their distinct lack of melanin.

Read More

The Tempest: Something Old, Something New

Review of The Tempest at Seattle Shakespeare Company.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Lucia McLaren and edited by Teen Editor Lily Williamson.

Tempest1

What makes or breaks a modern production of a classic story? Is it the acting, the setting, the interpretation? The large amount of “classics” available to us has lead to a pretty noticeable increase in remastered stories.

Seattle Shakespeare Company’s production of The Tempest is an example of one such creation. It tells the classic Shakespearean tale of Prospero (Mari Nelson), a banished Duke with strong magical abilities. The play shows Prospero coping with his past, as the King of Milan and others responsible for his exile find themselves stranded on the mystical island he now lives on. Everything gets more complicated as his daughter, Miranda (Allyson Lee Brown), gets tangled up in the drama, and Prospero finds himself forced to decide between revenge and forgiveness.

Read More

The Female Gothic and Puppetry at We Go Mad

Review of We Go Mad at 18th and Union.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Olivia Villa and edited by Teen Editor Kendall Kieras.

Wegomad

With the recent rise of box-office-breaking horror movies, it seems the genre is experiencing a renaissance of sorts. One subgenre of horror, however, that has consistently remained in pop culture’s periphery is gothic romance. For theater fans of the genre, it’s time to get excited. Here to marry gothic romance themes to those of 70s horror and ghost stories is Amy Escobar’s play We Go Mad, which had its world premiere September 20, 2019.

The play centers an unnamed woman who inherits a looming estate (and possibly much more) from her great-grandmother. Escobar draws us into a dark world of fairy royalty, intergenerational trauma, levitation, body dysphoria as a haunted house, and break-ups that break records for their awfulness. But while We Go Mad finds a saving grace in its passion for the mystery and the supernatural sublime, it faces some unavoidable issues with integrating different tones.

Read More

Everything’s Eerie!

Teen Editorial Staff October 2019 Editorial

Written by Teen Editor Joshua Fernandes!

Shapelined Z1xxfm52 Htc unsplash

Dust off the skeletons. Carve up the pumpkins. Plant the gravestones in the ground, hang the ghosts around the house, and beware the witch around the neighborhood because it’s finally the second scariest time of the year (behind finals season of course): October! The Teen Editorial Staff knows that this spooky season is kicking into full gear, so we’ve got your back with some great art to curl up to.

If you like your horror spawned from none other than the Bard of Avon, you may find Seattle Shakespeare Company's The Tempest particularly intriguing. The literal and literary magic of The Tempest makes it stand tall among Shakespeare’s many triumphs, and Seattle Shakespeare’s performances will no doubt do justice to the time-tested tragicomedy. More traditional Halloween horror might tickle your fancy instead, so look no further than Dracula at ACT, a modern take on the most iconic public domain demon. A thorough reimagining of Bram Stoker’s 1897 classic, Dracula adapts the classic monster for a 21st century audience while still managing to carve out its own niche within the villain’s long and storied evolution. If you are craving a fresh story that you might not have heard of before, check out We Go Mad at 18th & Union, a haunted house story involving a woman inheriting not just her family’s property, but their demons as well. Incorporating unique puppetry techniques including “cinematic shadow play, modified bunraku, and object manipulation,” this show is not to be missed during your month of fright-filled festivities. You might also be interested in the horrors of reality, and there’s no better place than the Powerful Grit screening of short films at NFFTY. Full of hard-hitting, depressing, and all around feel-bad films, it’s the perfect place to go to get a good dose of the feels. If you’re looking for a time at the movies that’s a little less Sour Patch Kids and a little more Haribo Goldbears, look no further than Brief Story from the Green Planet at the Three Dollar Bill Cinema's Seattle Queer Film Festival. Follow Tania, a trans performer who, after discovering an alien among her deceased grandmother’s belongings, goes on a journey with her two childhood friends to return to the extraterrestrial, face their fears, and discover themselves. And finally, for those of you who aren’t much into the Halloween spirit: no worries! We’ll fast-forward to Turkey Day and Native American Heritage Month by seeing The Thanksgiving Play at Seattle Public Theater. In this story written by Native American playwright Larissa Fasthorse, we hear a comedic take on one journey to uncover and share the true origins of the white-washed Thanksgiving holiday in our country.

Read More

Shared Tragedy at Everything Is Illuminated

Review of Everything Is Illuminated at Book-It Repertory Theatre.

Written by Teen Editor Kendall Kieras and edited by Teen Editor Lily Williamson.

Everything3

My mother didn’t want to go to college. After graduating high school, she didn’t attend, electing instead to run away to the mountains of Colorado to become a ski bum. Instead of the free skiing life she imagined, she spent a season cleaning toilets as a maid. Finally, she decided to honor her parents’ wishes and go to college. On her first day of St. Catherine’s, a sprawling and decidedly Catholic all-girls school, she wore fatigues from the army surplus store. Drawing a line down the floor of her dorm with her combat boot, she said to her new roommate (whom she later dubbed “Becky Home Ec-ky”) “this is your side, and this is mine.”

I have heard this story so many times throughout the years, more as mythology than recollection. Every rebellion I stage is due in part to my mother’s genes. Everything Is Illuminated understood this process, how our family stories stretch and shrink to accommodate corners of the everyday. Everything Is Illuminated was a story of stories. It’s part letters read aloud, part family mythology told in projector images, and part recollections of the main characters. The show celebrated the nature of our own mythology, and how it can shape us along the way.

Read More

Bulrusher: A POC Narrative about Self-Discovery

Review of Bulrusher at Intiman Theatre.

Written by Teen Editor Olivia Sun and edited by Teen Editor Joshua Fernandes.

7 Bulrusher Ishisaka 8438

At seven years old, I thought I knew everything there was to know about living a fulfilling life. For me, the path to happiness was simple: become a famous artist, adopt three dogs, and live in a mansion on the lake. However, I soon realized that life wasn’t as easy as I made it out to be. But with these fanciful dreams no longer clouding my thoughts, there were times when I no longer knew who I was, where I fit into my community, or what I wanted to do with my life. This kind of teenage existential crisis is common amongst my peers, and perhaps this is why playwright Eisa Davis wrote Bulrusher, a coming-of-age story about the pathway to self-discovery.

Bulrusher, set in the year 1955, is a production directed by Valerie Curtis-Newton at the Intiman Theatre. When we first meet Bulrusher (Ayo Tushinde), she is a young woman, living in the small logging and farming town of Boonville. The Boonville residents speak a combination of English and Boontling—an elaborate, esoteric lingo known only by the locals. As an infant, Bulrusher was abandoned in a basket set free along the Navarro River, before eventually being found and raised by an old schoolteacher named Schoolch (Charles Leggett). Eighteen years later, she spends her time running her own orange business, getting schooled by the local brothel owner Madame (Christine Pilar), and being serenaded with love songs by a local teenage boy (Adam Fontana). But as one of just two people of color in Boonville, Bulrusher is a misfit in her traditional, white, working-class rural community. She copes with her struggles of belonging by spending time besides the river that kept her alive as a baby. Reginald André Jackson, Adam Fontana, and Charles Leggett in Bulrusher. Photo by Naomi Ishisaka.

Read More

Indy Jones Is a Fresh, Fun-Filled Take on a Childhood Classic

Review of Indy Jones and the Raiders of the Last Temple of the Doomed Ark at Seattle Public Theater.

Written by Teen Editor Lily Williamson and edited by Teen Editor Kendall Kieras.

Indy 2

Although I was born a few decades too late to experience the Indiana Jones movies as they came out, the franchise was an integral part of my childhood. My dad and I have always bonded over these films, and we even made our way through the entire series. So when I heard that Seattle Public Theatre, in collaboration with theater troupe The Habit, was offering their own spin on these sentimental films, we just had to go together.

I can’t say I was expecting SPT’s Indy Jones and the Raiders of the Last Temple of the Doomed Ark to be anywhere near as great as the original films. I was anticipating a simple re-enactment of the series, with maybe a few new and cheesy jokes. But, Indy Jones exceeded my expectations: it’s a wonderfully comedic mishmash of the first three films, complete with original musical numbers. This production isn’t a simple re-enactment of the show, but a new, fresh, and dick joke-filled take on these nostalgic classics.SPT’s Indy Jones and the Raiders of the Last Temple of the Doomed Ark. Photo by Marcia Davis.

Read More

B-List is the Best List

Teen Editorial Staff September 2019 Editorial

Written by Teen Editors Anya Shukla and Tova Gaster!

Matthew t rader ohygdzg Wbr4 unsplash

As the great Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes once said, “It is now two days closer to the start of school than it was two days ago.”

We made that sentence its own paragraph, because the idea can stand alone as a bringer of pure, unadulterated panic.

Read More

Sing your heart out this summer!

Practice your craft with The 5th Avenue Theatre with this new musical theatre masterclass.

Singing

Hey TeenTix-ers: Scholarships are now available for Singing the Gospel, a masterclass from our friends at The 5th Avenue Theatre!

This energetic and uplifting vocal master class will explore the history and influence of gospel music in musical theater. In this two-part course, students will work with Seattle-based singer and actress, Shaunyce Omar, to examine how gospel music has influenced both musical theater and pop music; learn the power of ensemble singing; and discover how to adapt their own personal style to gospel singing. Join in for this fun and engaging class and get singing!

Read More

Pass Over Confronts Audiences in the Best Way Possible

Review of Pass Over at ACT.

Written by Teen Editor Anya Shukla, and edited by Teen Editor Huma Ali!

WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD

Although I had been warned by the sign at the front door—CAUTION: LOUD GUNSHOTS—I still started, pretzeled my arms into my chest, when the trigger was finally pulled. I sat, head buzzing, as the murderer monologued for the final two minutes of the play. The lights went down amidst audience mumblings, then I stood clapping with the room while the actors bowed. My chest was tight with anxiety all through the talkback, the drive home, my pre-bed face wash; even now, I can easily picture the muzzle flash. If art’s job is to affect individuals, then Pass Over deserves a raise.

Read More

Locker-Room Talk: American Manhood Unravels in Take Me Out

Review of Take Me Out at Strawberry Theatre Workshop.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Jonah de Forest, and edited by Teen Editor Lily Williamson!

Stw takemeout stills 163 copy orig

Race, masculinity, and American identity have all played a key role in making baseball the national pastime. Richard Greenberg, the playwright behind the Tony-award winning Take Me Out (now playing at 12th Avenue Arts through Strawberry Theatre Workshop), understands baseball’s all-encompassing scope, and attempts to use it as means for a spectacle of societal discourse. His results are mixed, but when performed by a capable cast, certain moments hold all the power baseball possesses.

The concept is compelling enough to make one wish it had been handled differently. There's no doubt that the highly-decorated Greenberg is a talented playwright. Whether he’s the one to pen a play of this subject matter is another question. Darren Lemming (Lamar Legend), a mixed-race pro baseball player seemingly based off Derek Jeter comes out abruptly as gay, unbeknownst to the weight of his action. Lemming must then adapt to his demoted status, going from untouchable golden boy to the patronized poster child for a community he doesn’t identify with. When screw-loose Shane Mungitt (Craig Peterson)—a red-state rogue with a habit for saying bigoted slurs—joins Lemming’s team, tensions give way to a cultural battleground. The plot has all has the makings for a fascinating dissection of baseball in all its glory and carnage, a symbol of Americana that has both unified and divided the country. With the historical context of baseball’s long-winded journey to racial integration, there is certainly potential for a truly explosive work. Unfortunately, Take Me Out doesn’t quite live up to that potential until the second act.Take Me Out at Strawberry Theatre Workshop. Photo by John Ulman.

Read More

School’s Out, But Art Never Ends

Teen Editorial Staff June Editorial

Written by Teen Editor Lily Williamson!

Ethan robertson 134952 unsplash edit

It’s June, and as the weather gets warmer and we finally get a break from Seattle rain, most TeenTixers are looking forward to one thing: liberation—from school, homework, teachers, and the dreaded SBA. So, the Teen Editorial Staff has curated June’s shows around the theme of liberation. We’ve picked art events that demonstrate the complex positivity of this theme in celebration of summer. For visual art lovers, MoPOP’s A Queen Within liberates femininity from traditionally associated beauty standards through fashion. If you’re in the mood to see a live show, ACT Theatre’s Pass Over and Whim W’Him’s This is Not the Little Prince reinvent classic pieces of literature, and Strawberry Theatre Workshop’s Take Me Out takes a swing at raising awareness of the constraints homophobia places on a community through baseball. In addition, CUDDLE: The Series at Seattle International Film Festival and later at Northwest Film Forum explores how something as simple as a hug can be liberating. This month’s lineup is incredibly diverse, so, as summer approaches, get out there and see some art!

Photo credit: Ethan Robertson from Unsplash

Read More

Bridging the Gap Between Lack of Arts Funding and Career Pathways in Technical Theatre

Feature about the STARFISH PROJECT, a program by the Intiman Theatre.

Written by Maire Kennan, during TeenTix’s Beyond the Review Press Corps Intensive.

Sfishgroup

We met Sam, Adem, and Faith along with Kyle Hartmann, around a large table on a cloudy day in April. Sam, Adem, and Faith are all students at Franklin High School in South Seattle, and members of STARFISH PROJECT and Kyle, is the STARFISH PROJECT program manager. The focus of our meeting: to learn and gain insight and information about STARFISH PROJECT.

STARFISH PROJECT, which started in 2017 in a woodshop at Franklin High School, works to provide professional access to education and career opportunities in theatre craft. The program takes place anywhere between six and nine weeks, three days a week, for three hours. Each iteration works to put on a show. The program usually starts with the school’s existing theatre program (if there is one), and works with actors from the drama club as well as students interested in carpentry, set design, lighting design, stage managing and more. Although STARFISH PROJECT works with three high schools: Chief Sealth, Franklin High School, and Rainier Beach High School, the program is not limited to students at those schools. Any 14-18 year olds (and older) in the Seattle area are welcome to join the program, although it is geared toward high school aged kids, and they hope to expand.

Read More

The Art of Backstage Storytelling

Feature about the STARFISH PROJECT, a program by the Intiman Theatre.

Written by Triona Suiter, during TeenTix’s Beyond the Review Press Corps Intensive.

Starfishinterview1

The world of theatre is slowly getting more diverse. Actors of color are finding more jobs, female directors are gradually gaining recognition, and most shows are providing more representation as a whole. But the backstage world is still ruled by straight white men. Technical theatre is an extremely important aspect of stagecraft that is often overlooked. People prefer the flashy and glamorous onstage action to the quiet and stealthy work backstage. Because of that, technical theatre training is almost nonexistent. The STARFISH PROJECT is looking to rectify that.

Through a partnership with Sawhorse Revolution, the Intiman Theatre launched the STARFISH PROJECT in 2017. The project’s goal is to provide accessible training in all aspects of technical theatre to teens in the Seattle area, especially in high schools that have underfunded or nonexistent arts programs. Already, it has had a powerful impact on students’ lives.

Read More

What is Going On in Feathers and Teeth?

Review of Feathers and Teeth presented by Washington Ensemble Theatre.

Written by Sitara Lewis during TeenTix’s Theater & Dance Press Corps Intensive.

Samie Spring Detzer as Carol in WE Ts Feathers and Teeth. Photo credit: Chris Bennion.

Something is a little off here in the Feathers and Teeth produced by Washington Ensemble Theatre. "It’s Such a Pretty World Today" by Nancy Sinatra accompanying the typical American household set certainly sets the initial mood. This 80 minute play is a unique comical horror show, illustrating grief stricken Chris (Rachel Guyer-Mafune) after losing her mom and now dealing with over enthusiastic perky step mother Carol (Samie Spring Detzer). With Chris’ anger against the world thoroughly expressed through her love of rock music and her multiple attempts of stabbing people (and the successful attempt at a strange animal in the pot that the play revolves around), Carol’s bipolar moods and manipulation over her husband Arthur (Brandon J. Simmons), and Arthur’s introduction is with him having blood on his hands and maybe just killing an animal (on accident, though), this play keeps the audience guessing on who exactly is the psychopath. Rachel Guyer-Mafune as Chris in WET's Feathers and Teeth. Photo credit: Chris Bennion

The artistic touches were great. I will not give any vital spoilers away. In one striking scene, Carol smokes at the table in the dark with the red light highlighting her, and below her in the crawl space (that is viewable to the audience) someone is maliciously being attacked in all red light. It was a great contrast, unique use of multiple levels of staging, and a scene that was ultimately wonderfully twisted. Feathers and Teeth certainly could have been scarier, though. It consisted of a few jump scares with the animal jumping in the pot or with the lighting design by Ryan Dunn, but it could have had more of a variety of scares.

Read More

Feathers And Teeth: Horror With Rotten Messages

Review of Feathers and Teeth presented by Washington Ensemble Theatre.

Written by Francesca Vinci during TeenTix’s Theater & Dance Press Corps Intensive.

Rachel Guyer Mafune as Chris in WE Ts Feathers and Teeth Credit Chris Bennion

Feathers and Teeth is a short play with a small cast delving into ideas of grief, madness, and manipulation. A delusional daughter, a manipulative stepmother, and an oblivious father take the stage around a mysterious death and supernatural beasties—but what does it mean?

Created by Charise Castro Smith and directed by Bobbin Ramsey, the play centers around thirteen year old Chris, her father Arthur, and her stepmother Carol. Chris is convinced that Carol, her deceased mother’s hospice nurse, is a demon, while Arthur sees no substance in his daughter’s accusations. The wonderfully designed set by Pete Rush and the lighting design by Ryan Dunn pull the piece together, but the overall meaning of the play is ambiguous at best.

Read More

Secrets, Betrayal, and 70's Rock

Review of Feathers and Teeth presented by Washington Ensemble Theatre.

Written by Makenna English during TeenTix’s Theater & Dance Press Corps Intensive.

James Schilling as Hugo and Rachel Guyer Mafune as Chris in WE Ts Feathers and Teeth Credit Chris Bennion

A sinister secret within a traditional family dynamic, or is it all just a paranoia-filled quest for vengeance? Feathers and Teeth, by Charise Castro Smith and directed by Bobbin Ramsey, was a 70’s-esque thriller that embodied the eerie vibes in Hamlet, Hereditary, Pet Cemetery and It Follows that both theater and horror fanatics will love.

Feathers and Teeth, a suspenseful story involving a nuclear family in the 70s, leads the audience down a twisted backstory. Events and secrets are revealed, accusations introduced and action taken by the teen protagonist Christine, who is played by Rachel Guyer-Mafune who has a grudge for her becoming spunky step-mom Carol, played by Samie Spring Detzer.

Read More

Meet the Spookiest Family in Edmonds

Review of The Addams Family - A New Musical at Edmonds Driftwood Players.

Written by TeenTix Newsroom Writer Katherine Kang, and edited by Teen Editor Huma Ali!

Gomez and Morticia dancing with Ancestors

One family full of darkness, two love birds, three “normal” people coming to visit, and four walls being broken, The Addams Family from the Edmonds Driftwood Players is a musical full of mystery, drama, and humor. In their cozy theatre, where every seat has a good view, the stage is set with all natural hues. The iconic intro comes on, and you can’t help but snap along to the familiar beat of the song.

This engaging musical captures the story of Wednesday Addams, (Megan Acuna), daughter of proud parents Morticia, (Tamara C. Davis), and Gomez Addams, (Doug Knoop), and older sister to the troublesome, but soft-hearted, Pugsley Addams, (Catherine Craig). Wednesday, the beloved princess of the family, has fallen in love with Lucas Beineke, (David Naber), who is different from her family—a more average suburban boy. No one knows about the couple except Wednesday’s father, Gomez, who has never kept a secret from his wife, Morticia. This tension only continues to grow as the polar families meet to have dinner. Wednesday has only one request for her family: one normal night. “Normal is just an illusion,” Morticia points out. The Addams Family - A New Musical by Edmonds Driftwood Players. Photo by Dale Sutton

Read More

Login

Create an account | Reset your password