Author: Peter Hall

Peter Hall

Peter Hall continues trying to figure out how "it" all works. For over 20 years, as a producer and program host on WNED Classical (94.5 FM), he's conducted over 1,000 interviews with artists as he asks them to explain, in layman's terms, "what's the big picture here?" These days Peter can be heard regularly on Sunday afternoons from 1 to 5. On “Theater Talk” (heard Friday mornings at 6:45 and 8:45 a.m. on WBFO 88.7 FM) his favorite question of co-host Anthony Chase is simply "What's goin' on?" As mentioned recently in Buffalo Spree magazine, Peter's "Buffalo Rising reviews are the no-holds barred 'everyman's' take." A member of Buffalo's Artie Awards Committee, Peter holds a B.A. in Comparative Literature from Columbia University and an M.B.A. from SUNY at Buffalo. For over twenty-five years he was an adjunct professor for Canisius College’s Richard J. Wehle School of Business.

THE BASICS:  SPUNK, a musical, by George C. Wolfe, adapted for the stage from Zora Neale Hurston stories, directed by Sarah Norat-Phillips, runs through May 29, Fridays-Saturdays at 7:30, Sundays at 4 pm, presented by Ujima Theatre, 429 Plymouth Avenue, Buffalo, NY, 14213 716-281-0092   boxoffice@ujimacoinc.org. NOTE: On Thursday 5/26, at 7:30 opm, Ujima invites everyone to join them for a special performance and talkback with Professor Nicole M. Morris-Johnson, Scholar of Zora Neale Hurston and Black performance, Director Sarah Norat-Phillips, and the cast of Spunk! THUMBNAIL SKETCH:  Using the blues, choral narrative, dialog, some narration, and dance, this musical tells three…

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THE BASICS:  MODERN ORTHODOX by Daniel Goldfarb, directed by Steve Vaughan, runs until May 29, Thursdays at 7:30, Saturdays at 3:30 and 7:30, Sundays at 2, presented by Jewish Repertory in the Maxine and Robert Seller Theater, 2640 N Forest Rd, Buffalo, NY 14228. 716.688.4114 ext. 309  jccbuffalo.org/jrt/  Note: a handgun appears on stage twice.  Runtime: 75 minutes with no intermission THUMBNAIL SKETCH:  Ben Jacobson is a thoroughly modern secular Jew who’s ready to propose to his girlfriend Hannah, but he needs a diamond.  Enter Hershel, an Orthodox Jewish 47th Street diamond merchant with his trademark briefcase and Tzitzit fringes on…

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THE BASICS: LITTLE WOMEN…NOW, a world-premiere adaptation by Donna Hoke, directed by Doug Weyand, starring Lisa Vitrano, Brittany Bassett, Alexandria Watts, Heather Gervasi, Sabrina Kahwaty, Jake Hayes, and Ricky Needham opened last month after a two-year Covid delay and runs through May 22, Thursday-Saturday at 7:30, Sunday at 2. Presented by Road Less Traveled Productions (716) 629-3069 roadlesstraveled.org View (paperless) playbill here, view a 90-second trailer chock full of clips here: https://youtu.be/DA93Hs0EgUA and read more from Buffalo Rising here. https://www.buffalorising.com/2022/04/road-less-traveled-presents-little-women-now/ Runtime: Over two hours THUMBNAIL SKETCH:  Meet the March sisters, the familiar characters of serious writer Jo, party girl Meg (who…

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THE BASICS: PEOPLE, PLACES, AND THINGS, a play by Duncan MacMillan, directed by Katie Mallinson, runs through May 22, with the final week of shows Wednesday (new) through Saturday at 7:30, also Saturday at 3:30, closing Sunday, May 22 at 2:00, presented by D’Youville’s Kavinoky Theatre, 320 Porter Ave, Buffalo, NY 14201. 716.829.7668 kavinokytheatre.com The added shows include Wednesday, May 18th at 7:30 pm. Thursday will be alcohol-free and will have a talkback with the cast and representatives from Save The Michaels of the World. Runtime: 2hours 45 minutes including one intermission THUMBNAIL SKETCH: Emma is an actor and seemed…

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This merry month of May has seen a resurgence of theater offerings in Western New York which was very exciting but has turned the reviewing process into a mad dash to be everywhere.  I finally got out to the suburbs for two venerable production companies’ offerings, both revivals of famous musicals, both of which close this Sunday, May 15.  So, apologies, because they’re both very. very good and, if you can, you might want to venture out to 3200 Elmwood Avenue in Kenmore to see O’Connell and Company’s DAMN YANKEES or, a little farther afield, to the Lancaster Opera House…

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A Sunday of smaller concerts around town featuring BPO players, singers, and Shakespearian actors Friday morning, repeating this Saturday evening May 14 at 7:30 pm at Kleinhans, the program is called “Reflections on Rachmaninoff” featuring that composer’s “Symphonic Dances” (a high-energy work completed right here in Buffalo). The special guest star is violinist Bella Hristova and her 1655 Nicoló Amati violin playing a contemporary work by her husband, composer David Ludwig. I’ve heard some great violinists in my life, and even recently was wowed by the BPO’s concertmaster Nikki Chooi and this season Augustin Hadelich, and the list goes on with…

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THE BASICS: AIN’T TOO PROUD – The Life and Times of the Temptations, Broadway musical tour, book by Dominique Morriseau, music by The Temptations, opened May 10 and runs through May 15, Tuesday – Friday at 7:30 pm, Saturday at 2 and 8, Sunday at 1 and 6:30 at Shea’s Buffalo Theatre, 646 Main Street, sheas.org 716 847-0850. Recommended ages 12+ (some language, and adult content) Runtime: 2 hours, 35 minutes THUMBNAIL SKETCH: AIN’T TOO PROUD – The Life and Times of the Temptations, follows the quintet’s journey from the streets of Detroit to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Winner…

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THE BASICS: Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, the Broadway musical, by Alan Menken, music and lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, with book by Linda Woolverton, directed by Lisa Ludwig, runs through May 22, presented by Theatre of Youth, Saturdays at 2 pm and 7 pm, Sundays at 2 pm, also Friday, May 13 at 7, at the Allendale Theatre, 203 Allen Street, Buffalo, NY 14210. 716.884.4400 theatreofyouth.org Masks are required. Runtime: 2-1/2 hours including one intermission THUMBNAIL SKETCH: (adapted from TOY) Taken from a French fable, this classic story tells of Belle, an independent-minded young woman “trapped” in a…

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THE BASICS:  ANTON IN SHOW BUSINESS, a play by Jane Martin, directed by Lara D. Haberberger, starring Rachael Buchanan, Heather Fangsrud, Corey Gorski, Kaeli McGinnis, Davida Tolbert, Alyssa Walsh, and Stefanie Warnick, runs through May 22, Fridays-Saturdays at 7:30, with one Sunday show May 22 at 2 pm, at the Alleyway Cabaret (part of the Alleyway Theatre) 1 Curtain Up Alley between Pearl and Main behind Shea’s Buffalo.  716-598-1586 or visit brazenfacedvarlets.org or go on Facebook or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/5425950  Runtime 2 hours, 15 minutes including one intermission (bar is also open before and after the show). (And bring a little extra cash to donate…

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Next weekend features BPO both at Kleinhans and around town (see below) While COVID continues to vex smaller theatrical groups, the BPO has been able to perform as scheduled and audiences seem to be growing week by week. Last night’s concert, billed as “Elgar Impressions,” which encores this Mother’s Day at 2:30 pm, was extremely well received by a large, enthusiastic audience. Spirits were lifted right off the bat when BPO Board Chair John R. Yurtchuk announced that the concert in early April, when the musicians of the BPO volunteered for a Sunday benefit performance, had raised $45,000 for humanitarian…

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