God of Carnage



Wednesday June 10. 2pm

Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre 242 West 45th Street


James Gandolfini makes his first performance since The Sopranos in God of Carnage.

A hiliarious play set around talks between two sets of parents this Tony award winning  play of the year provides laughs for all the family.

After their son is injured during a playground brawl wholesaler Michael (James Gandolfini) and writer Veronica (Marcia Gay Harden) invite fellow parents – lawyer Alan (Jeff Daniels) and  wealth manager Annette (Hope Davis) over for afternoon tea while they discuss what led to their son loosing two teeth.

What starts out as a friendly conversation soon turns to turmoil as the parents each take sides and insist that “their son wasn’t to blame”. Added to the tension is the fact that businessman Alan is constantly on the phone doing business and it seems like the whole ordeal has caused him a great inconvenience having to be at the meeting. 5022855.jpg

As the tensions rise the parents fight and the audience is embroiled in the drama as flowers and thrown and books are destroyed. What adds to the comedy is that these are four  experienced actors known to the audience for the performances in shows such as The Sopranos and Angel’s in America. The audience gets to see these actors outside of their usual surroundings and acting terribly out of control!

The set is basic and simly consists of a living room with a couch, a table and a book shelf all placed against a blood red background. It is the simplicity however that adds to the comedy. There are no special effects or props to take away from the real point of the show that is the conversation between the two sides.

An original work by Yasmina Reza this play provides 90 minutes of fun and laughter and a free pass for these four actors to behave badly. Throughout the play the parents take hits at eachother while all three Annette, Michael and Veronica are constantly complaining about Alan’s phone ringing this becomes as laughing point for the audience who each time the phone rings know that trouble is only seconds away.

Phone conversations between Michael and his concerned mother (greatly resembling phone conversations between Tony Sopranos and his mother in The Sopranos) also break up the tension. While his mother is simply calling for an update on their beaten son the conversations appear to be an irritant to Michael while again providing humour for the audience. agespan.jpg

After a while the rum replaces the coffee and the cast begin to strip off outer garments and it is then the audience knows that this conversation may take some time.

This work of carnage is still running on Broadway at the Bernard Jacobs Theatre until November 09. Tickets start at just $66.50


After the show Jeff Daniels and Hope Davis signed playbills and posed for photographs. Unfortunately not all the cast wait around after matinee performances and James Gandolfini and Marcia Gay Harden were not present on this occasion.


Blue man group



Sunday June 7. 8pm

Astor Place Theatre, 434 Lafayette Place


Centred around three blue men this show is purely visual. The men don’t speak or even attempt to. This leaves it up to the audience to interpret their emotions and gestures. There is no storyline to follow as the show simply consists of different sketches from the marshmallow catching to the twinky eating. They use familiar objects such as captain crunch, twinky bars and marshmallows to capture the audiences attention although I wouldn’t recommend looking too interested as they may want you to get up on stage and get involved with their games.

The show is overall very interactive and the first few rows are even expected to wear ponchos to reduce the risk of turning blue themselves or being covered in half eaten food.

At times the men pick their victims from the audience whom they then begin to subject to different experiments such as stuffing your mouth full of twinky bars (during which the poor girl looked like she was going to either cry or throw up) and covering your body with blue paint before swinging into a canvas painting.

However as the show does start off exciting promising so much it quickly goes down hill. Do people really need to see three guys regurgitating half chewed marshmallows and chewed cereal. Why they think people want to see a food fights and be covered in half chewed food is questionable. Looking at youtube videos there is a high expectation of their brilliance but those performances are not to be seen in New York instead an amateur show that requires little talent.

Overall the show is entertaining although the novelty wears off mid-way through. If these men weren’t blue it is doubtful the show would have lasted so long off broadway. A good night out for the family but in the small theatre and basic set it is easy to tell why this glorified circus show has been kept off broadway.

This may be entertaining for kids but adults save your money there is much better out there for the same cost. I for one am grateful that our tickets were 50% off.

Overall this show was overpriced and overrated. Tickets to this New York performance are no longer available as the show has been closed down. Other performances are available throughout the US including Las Vegas.


After the show the three men came out to autograph (kiss) the playbills and pose for photos.


Next to Normal

NEXT TO NORMAL             stars

Friday June 5 8pm

Booth Theatre 222 West 45 St. New York

Next to Normal - Arena Stage

Making its debut on Broadway Next to Normal brings light to the issue of mental health in society. Through the life of  wife and mother Diana (Alice Ripley) the audience gets a look inside the struggles of living with bipolar disease.

Alice Ripley who would three days later win a tony award brought brings the character alive with strong solos and emotional struggles. For 16 years she has been experimenting with contails of pills yet to find one that works. It is only after she starts making mass amounts of sandwiches on the floor that her husband  Dan (J.Robert Spencer)  decides it is time for her to go back to therapy.

As a caring husband Dan has been there for his wife since the beginning. He has stood by herself and he is the one that supports her. Throughout all the struggles he remains by her side and encourages her to accept reality while at the own time he is fighting is own demons.

Next to Normal also looks at the life of teenager Natalie (Jennifer Damiano). The daughter who feels neglected in the shadow of her dead brother. For her, freedom is just a sontata away as she throws herself into her studies and fights to be able to graduate early and escape the turmoil of her home life. Finding love for the first time she is reluctant to let her boyfriend Henry (Adam Chanler-Berat) making every excuse not to invite him home but in the end he is the support she needs to help her through.

In this performance  Kyle Dean Massey played the role of Gabe replacing Aaron Tveit who is on summer hiatus  . This may have been his first perfomrnance but the audience certainly were unaware of his naievity as he bellowed out the strong notes and played the part of the dead son. Fighting for his mother he  is determined not to let the pills destroy him as he battles to sway his mother and fight for his life.

To complete the cast Louis Hobson steps in in the role of Dr. Madden/ Dr. Fine. A self confessed rock star who is determined to find a solution to Diana’s problems. Trying the blue pills and the green pills and then the yellow pills he is not ready to give up and eventually suggests the controversial treatment of electroconvulsive therapy.

The musical is centred around the original soundtrack by composer Tom Kitt (13, Hair) and with songs such as “Superboy and the Invisible girl” and “I am the one” combines both pop and rock genres.

Set in a three story house the set provides a realistic setting for family life. Racing up and down the stairs the family make the most of the setting while providing the audience with action and variety.

Ending on a positive the play emphasizes the fact that there is light at the end of the tunnel and after years of sturrlge there will be light.

Still running at the Booth Theatre Next to Normal is a must see and tickets start at $110



After the show all cast members greeted fans outside the stage door of the theatre and discussed their excitement over the upcoming Tony awards. Unfortunately Jennifer Damiano (Natalie) was not present.


Interview with Aaron Tveit


Behind the scenes


Ideal End review

Saturday March 7, Cyprus Avenue. 


Saturday March 7, Cyprus Avenue. 

Arriving in Cyprus avenue just minutes before Ideal Ends final gig it was surprising to find such a small crowd of eight. Over the next 40 minutes the crowd built up until eventually the band decided to get on stage. After just a short sound check the band lifted off with their first song “Sleep Tonight”.

Made up of a singer, drums, guitarist and bass guitarist this four part rock band have been described as playing styles from all out alternative rock in songs “Whatever Gets You” and “Lay It Down” to a more reflective style in “Left Behind”. 

Keith Hynes stepped in as guest bass guitarist on the night, with every note in tune and on time he played as if he had been in the band for years. Being called up to the stage to fill the room the small crowd laughed and sang along with the band. Made up of close family and friends the crowd were enthusiastic and shouted requests for more.

The gig continued with songs  “Who’s to blame” and “Bruised Elbows”. One of the later songs “Left Behind” was dedicated to Kieran a fan that had made it too every single one of their gigs. Having been together for almost ten years the band members shared the good times and the bad times with fans and played a mix of songs from their latest song “The Fom” to their classics. Kieran Lynch the groups ex guitar player described by band members as “both the worst and the best guitar player” joined the group for one final song and played like he had never been away.

Singer Gavin held his note for all the songs and showed great skill and it was easy to tell that each song meant something special to him. Briefly losing his words during “The Hay” when a “crazy dancing lady” distracted him he quickly regained composure and continued on like nothing had ever happened.

Nearing the end the band thanked the McGowan parents for “putting up with the noise for all the years” and thanked their fans for making it to their final gig. After the gig the band greeted fans and talked about their hopes for their future including starting new music projects and traveling around the world. The crowd may have been small but all in all this final gig showed years of practice and skill and after ten years it was an Ideal End.


Marley and me


“A dog doesn’t care if your rich or poor, clever or dull, smart or dumb give him your heart and he will give you his”. With lessons to be learnt for all ages this film portrays a mix of emotions following the lives of Marley and his family through life.

Based on John Grogan’s novel of the same name viewers laugh and cry when troubled pup Marley is constantly causing chaos chewing briefcases, telephones and even jewellery. While the average dog would seek hours of fun out of chewing an old shoe for him shoes are just simply not exciting enough. Marley undoubtedly has a unique personality and soon fits right into the family.

Brought in as a distraction for not having a baby just yet journalists John and Jennifer played by Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston decide to add a new member to their family. Picking up Marley from the breeder all seems fine. He is a cute and cuddly golden retriever who soon becomes “the worlds worst dog”

Soon being banned from dog training school and the beach John and Jennifer discover that a dog may not always be easier than a baby.

The passing of time is dictated through clips and passages from John Grogan’s column. Dreaming of a reporter job in the New York Times John Grogan sits in a small office in Florida writing about gas leaks and politics. Bringing Marley to life in these columns the viewers live the experiences both good and bad of the Grogan family and Marley as the years go by.

Both Wilson and Aniston are both acting inside their comfort zone but bring their charm and comedy experience to the Grogan roles. With a cast of 22 two dogs acting the part of Marley it is easy to imagine the on-set nightmare of scene changes.

As Marley grows up the couple decide to enter into the scary world of parents hood. Being blessed with “the luck of the Irish” it is not long before their dreams come true and they welcome a son with more kids to follow.

Marley and Me illustrates the real lessons in life from birth to death, marriage, parenthood, working in a job you don’t like and caring for a troublesome pup.

The viewer is guided through the happy times and the sad times, a film for all ages this film will make you laugh and cry and experience a mix of feelings.

The ending of the film brings the story true to life and immerses the viewer in a pool of new emotions depicting the reality that good things don’t last forever. While being tempted to fight off the feelings it brings there are bound to be just a few dry eyes when leaving the theatre.