The inhuman experiences of the 20,000 children orphaned and traumatized by civil war that began in the late 1980s known as the Lost Boys of Sudan have been documented by journalists, documentarians and novelists, among others; yet their incredibly harrowing journeys and often triumphant stories deserve greater attention.

Review: ‘The Lion King’ is an extraordinary, incomparable visual display

Written by Marin Heinritz | Saturday, 07 April 2018 15:33 |

Disney’s The Lion King, billed as the world’s number one musical, is credited with having launched the new Broadway, the one that’s emerged over the past 20 years from a tourist- and family-friendly Times Square, cleaned up of grit, and some may argue, heart.

Review: ‘Queen of Bingo’ is more than a game

Written by Marin Heinritz | Saturday, 31 March 2018 17:40 |

In the original iteration of “The Queen of Bingo,” known as “the play you play along with” by Jeanne Michels and Phyllis Murphy, its central characters, two middle-aged, bingo-obsessed sisters, were played by men in drag. This is but one way the audience played along, as intermission also included a bingo game for which the winner received a 10-pound turkey.

Imagine you are brought to a mysterious room by someone you don’t know. You don’t know where you are, and there are two other people with you.

In 2001, the United States resettled 3,600 “lost boys” in cities across the country. Ten years earlier, these boys had walked 800 miles from Sudan to escape civil war, landing in Kenya. There, many of the boys ate nothing but grain every day.

Aquinas College’s free reading of Columbinus is, of course, a direct response to the recent school shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

Review: Diversity II is just as bold, surprising and moving as its predecessor

Written by Marin Heinritz | Sunday, 25 March 2018 11:31 |

Dance has the power to interpret and recreate worlds of experience without explaining or intellectualizing. Without words, it invites us into an experience through the universal language of the body, of movement. When done well, that experience is transcendent, and elicits an emotional response born of communal creation as well as private connection.

Review: ‘Building the Wall’ starts a powerful, captivating conversation

Written by Kayla Tucker | Saturday, 24 March 2018 14:13 |

A conversation was sparked after the first production of “Building the Wall” by playwright Robert Schenkkan premiered in Michigan last night. The 70-minute-play, directed by Carrie McNulty, has already sparked controversy and confusion in the city with its artwork of an angry Donald Trump on the poster. What’s important to be pointed out though, is that the Actors’ Theatre Grand Rapids production is less about Trump and more about the messages and ideologies that existed long before the last election.

Spring break theater camp teaches kids about theater, self-expression

Written by Kayla Tucker | Friday, 16 March 2018 11:03 |

For the first week of April, kids from all over Grand Rapids will indulge in all things writing and theater for the Ebony Road Players’ Spring Break Theater Camp.

Review: ‘Something Rotten!’ is something special, delightful and hilarious

Written by Dana Casadei | Wednesday, 14 March 2018 17:02 |

Playwrights today are probably grateful they don't have to actively compete with someone of William Shakespeare's caliber. It goes without saying that he is considered one of the greatest playwrights of all time. He wrote everything from comedies like Merchant of Venice to tragedies like Hamlet, King Lear, and Macbeth. To this day, centuries after they were first performed, theaters across the world are still performing his work. 

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