Six years ago, TimeLine Theatre had a hit with Fiorello!
, the neglected 1959 musical about New York City's Depression-era mayor Fiorello LaGuardia. Now director Nick Bowling and music director Doug Peck, who shepherded that show to success, have unearthed another rarity from 1959: Juno
, by playwright Joseph Stein and composer-lyricist Marc Blitzstein, a faithful, straightforward musical adaptation of Irish playwright Sean O'Casey's 1924 tragicomedy Juno and the Paycock
—which played a scant two weeks in its original Broadway run—is more dutiful than inspired. Stein's script hews close to O'Casey's story yet lacks the original play's gritty lyricism. Still, I think TimeLine's patrons will find much to admire in Juno
. It's lovingly staged, very well acted, and beautifully sung. Hearing good, strong voices au naturel, unfiltered by amplification, is a treat that the rest of the audience seemed to enjoy as much as I did. Continue reading >>