"Assassins" at Yale Rep -- Sondheim's Best Musical?
By Karen Isaacs
Assassins, the Stephen Sondheim & John Weidman musical that opens at the Yale Rep on Friday, March 17, may not be familiar to the casual theater goer. But for director James Bundy, it is a show that he has wanted to direct for many years.
One reason, Bundy said, is that he felt it would resonate with the audience.
Assassins is staged as a revue; the characters are the men and women who made successful and unsuccessful attempts on the lives of US Presidents.
“I was particularly drawn to it when we were planning this season because of the tenor of national politics, which are driven in part by the kind of anger and resentment, as well as the pursuit of fame and celebrity, that is so prevalent in our contemporary political culture,” Bundy explained. He added that when he scheduled the piece last spring, he had no idea who would be the Presidential nominees or who would be the winner of the election, but he felt the idea of the show would still be relevant.
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The Consummate Artist
Originally published on Pillow Talking Blog (Stephanie Lyons-Keeley and Wayne Keeley)
Paul Mullins is a consummate artist. His list of both acting and directorial credits reads like a “Who’s Who” of the Theatre Hall of Fame. He has acted and/or directed in everything from Shakespeare to The Whore and Mr. Moore. Just a sampling of his sterling credentials, Mr. Mullins played the title role to rave reviews in Shakespeare’s Richard III at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey and then returned a decade later to direct a production of Richard III which was lauded as “Powerful and enthralling.”
Paul took time out of his busy schedule to chat with Pillow Talking about acting, directing, regional theatre, and his latest endeavor, directing Georges Feydeau’s farce An Absolute Turkey at the Connecticut Repertory Theatre (CRT).
PT: Thank you for granting us this interview. We are looking forward to seeing your play at CRT (Connecticut Repertory Theatre). So let’s start with the standard type of opening question. How did you initially get involved with theatre?
PM: Wow. No one has asked me that in a long time. I’ll make it brief. I’m from Houston, Texas. From the time I was ten I knew I was going to be a doctor. I graduated high school and went to college and I was in the middle of a biology/chemistry degree. I found it unfulfilling. Someone said, “Why don’t you audition for this play they are doing here at school?” (laughs). And I said, “That would be silly since I’ve never done anything like that.” But I did. I auditioned for the play and they cast me in it and I sort of never looked back. Well, I looked back for a while and actually got the degree. But I didn’t look back much further than that. I went to drama school at SMU [Southern Methodist University] and then I went to New York and made my living as an actor for the first half of this career and still do. I fell into directing because I was working at a theatre in Florida. The artistic director said, “You’re not coming back anymore because I was getting jobs that paid me better.” I said, “I’d love to come back but maybe you would let me direct a play,” and she did. And then I started doing that. And that’s how I ended up in this spot.
Articles of Interest:
Local writer publishes book of plays
Blogs and Websites of Interest
Blogs about Connecticut theater, movie reviews, and the arts.
OnStage - Theater Opinion & Discussion
Pillow Talking Blog
Joe's Views -- Joe Meyers' Blog
Artes Magazine -- fine art, architecture, design and theater
Back Stage Buzz - current and archived interviews with CT artists
susangranger.com -- movie reviews
CT Arts Connection
WMNR Fine Arts Radio (Rosalind Friedman's Review)
www.courant.com/curtain (Frank Rizzo reviews)
www.reflectionsinthelight (Lauren Yarger reviews)
www.nytheaterscene.com (Irene Backalenick/David Rosenberg reviews)
Stu On Broadway -- Reviws and comments
Two on the Aisle -- NYC and Connecticut Theater News and Reviews