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Black Tie International:
On The Town With Aubrey Reuben - June 29, 2013


Aubrey Reuben

On the Town With Aubrey Reuben
Where All the Stars Shine Brightly!
June 29, 2013

06-24-13 (L-R) 2013 Kleban Prize Winners Daniel Mate. Alan Gordon at a receptiom and presentation at ASCAP. 1 Lincoln Square. Monday afternoon 06-24-13
06-24-13 (L-R) 2013 Kleban Prize Winners Daniel Mate. Alan Gordon at a receptiom and presentation at ASCAP. 1 Lincoln Square. Monday afternoon 06-24-13

Off -Broadway, The Explorers Club, by Nell Benjamin, takes place in London in1879. A woman explorer is proposed for membership in an all male club, causing an uproar among the executive committee. There are lots of laughs in this mildly amusing comedy, that is noteworthy for its excellent cast.

The Banana Monologues, by John R. Brennan, Jason C. Cooper, and Mary Cimino, is a one man show about the frustrated love life of  a young man, well acted by John C. Brennan. The opening night party took place at the Hudson Bond.

Buyer & Cellar, by Jonathan Tolins, reopened with Michael Urie giving a marvelous performance as a young unemployed actor working for Barbra Streisand, and the reopening night party took place at Perilla with guests like Richard Kind, Shalita Grant and Kristine Nielsen

























It's Just Sex, by Jeff Gould, takes place in a typical suburban home at a gathering of three couples, which explores married life seriously. It is well acted by an attractive cast. As the liquor flows, the problems and frustrations surface. It is an intelligent, engrossing play.
The Unavoidable Disappearance of Tom Durnin, by Steven Levenson, is a depressing play about a father, who returns home after five years in jail, and attempts to reunite with his family. The ex-wife and children have created new lives for themselves, and do not welcome his return. It is well acted.
A Meet & Greet was held for the upcoming Broadway musical Soul Doctor. I saw it in an Off-Broadway production, and I am looking forward to its return. It is the story of a "Rock Star Rabbi" and his friendship with Nina Simone.
American Ballet Theatre (ABT) presented Swan Lake, by Tchaikovsky, which is one of the sure crowd pleasers in its repertoire. A superb Paloma Herrera was the Odette-Odile, and she won tremendous applause for her performance, ably supported by Cory Steans as her ardent Prince Siegfried. The entire cast, especially the Corps de Ballet as swans in the second act, danced on a high level, and Ivan Vasiliev was outstanding in Act III  as the evil von Rothbart. David LeMarche led the orchestra in a rousing performance of the melodious score.
Daniel Mate (lyricist) and Alan Gordon (libretto) received the 2013 Kleban Prizes at a reception and presentation at ASCAP. Among the guests were Sheldon Harnick, Henry Krieger and Maury Yesto
Film Society of Lincoln Center presented press screenings for Latinbeat 2013 July 12-21. La Paz, by Santiago Loza, Argentina, 2012, is about a young man released from a mental hospital, who lives with a caring middle class family, and his gradual growth to being able to take care of his own life without their support. It is a quiet, interesting film, beautifully acted by the entire cast. Two films byMatias PineiroThe Stolen Man (El Hombre Robado), Argentina, 2007 and They All Lie (Todos Mienten), Argentina, 2009, feature many of the same cast of unattractive, unlikeable young people in two boring, pretentious films. In the first B & W film, the leading character steals for no discernible reason and her actions are just plainly annoying. Unfortunately, she appears in the second color film, where she is equally irritating. There are constant references to Sarmiento, Rosas and other historical figures, which will be of little interest to non Argentinians. Impenetrable (El impenetrable), byDaniele Incalaterra and Fausta Quattrini, Argentina/France, 2012, is a documentary about an unattractive, overweight filmmaker, who visits Paraguay to sell property his father had bought years ago in the Gran Chaco. We watch him smoking cigarettes constantly, while driving on unpaved roads through uninteresting landscapes. Although it details the lack of justice and obvious corruption in the country in his particular case, one wonders why anyone would enjoy seeing this film.

MoMA is presenting Allan Dwan and the Rise and Decline of the Hollywood Studios June 5-July 8. Rendezvous With Annie, by Dwan, USA, 1946, is a comedy about a soldier (Eddie Albert) stationed in England during WWII, who manages to return home secretly to New Jersey on a three day pass. When he's discharged as the war ends nine months later, his wife gives birth to a baby boy. To prove he is the father, gives way to hilarious complications. It is a very entertaining film. Brewster's Millions, by Dwan, USA, 1945, is a madcap comedy, which has Dennis O'Keefeforced by a will to spend one million dollars within two months in order to receive an additional seven million. He must not tell anyone about why he is doing this. To his fiancee and friends, he seems to have gone mad. Again, it is a very funny and entertaining film. The Inside Story, by Dwan, USA, 1948, is clever story about the depression concerning hard economic times in a small town in Vermont. The way one thousand dollars is passed around, and saves the lives of the people involved is quite amusing and provocative. It is a most enjoyable film. Suez, by Dwan, USA, 1938, is a film about the construction of the Suez Canal by Ferdinand de Lesseps (played by Tyrone Power). It is a fictional historical costume drama with a good cast, and pleasantly entertaining. Driftwood, by Dwan, USA, 1937, is another small town gem. It features a remarkable performance by a very young Natalie Wood as an orphan, being aided by an unmarried doctor with a happy ending. The River's Edge, by Dwan, USA, 1957, is in color in Cinemascope, and three fine actors, Ray Milland, Anthony Quinn and a pretty Debra Paget star in a rather vicious story of a man hiring a guide to help him cross the border into Mexico with lots of illegal cash. Murder and mayhem follow. MoMA also presented Pickpocket, by Robert Bresson, France, 1959, a gloomy, slow moving film about a French young man, who makes a living stealing wallets and watches from unsuspecting victims in the subway, train stations and at racetracks. It's an unpleasant film. 

Opera in Cinema  from Emerging Films presented Don Giovanni, by Mozart, by Teatro alla Scala in a live performance from the opening night of the La Scala's 2012 season, filmed December 7, 2011. They could not have found a better cast. Each singer was excellent. Peter Mattei was Don Giovanni, with Bryn Terfel as Leporello, Anna Neterbko (Donna Anna),Barbara Frittoli (Donna Elvira), Anna Prohaska (Zerlina), Giuseppe Filanoti (Don Ottavio) and Stefan Kocan (Masetto), with Daniel Barenboim leading the orchestra. As usual these days, it was an updated version, with minimal sets in modern clothes, except when the sopranos spent much of the opera in slips, and Elvira's maid (usually not seen) made an appearance in the nude. Fortunately, the cast was so magnificent, that whatever nonsense transpired on stage made little difference to the viewer's enjoyment.



06-26-13 (L-R) Cast members Molly Fahey. Elaine Hendrix. Gina LaPiana. Jackie Debatin at the opening night party for "It's Just Sex" at Playwright's Celtic Pub. 732 Eighth Ave. Tuesday night 06-25-13

06-26-13 (L-R) Cast members Molly Fahey. Elaine Hendrix. Gina LaPiana. Jackie Debatin at the opening night party for "It's Just Sex" at Playwright's Celtic Pub. 732 Eighth Ave. Tuesday night 06-25-13


joyce brooks, gerard mckeon.  photo by:  rose billings

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