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Anton in Show Business

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This madcap comedy follows three actresses across the footlights, down the rabbit hole, and into a strangely familiar Wonderland that looks a lot like American theatre – the resemblance is uncanny! As these women pursue their dream of performing Chekhov in Texas, they’re whisked through a maelstrom of “good ideas” that offer unique solutions to the Three Sisters’ need to h This madcap comedy follows three actresses across the footlights, down the rabbit hole, and into a strangely familiar Wonderland that looks a lot like American theatre – the resemblance is uncanny! As these women pursue their dream of performing Chekhov in Texas, they’re whisked through a maelstrom of “good ideas” that offer unique solutions to the Three Sisters’ need to have life’s deeper purpose revealed. In the tradition of great backstage comedies, Anton in Show Business conveys the joys, pains, and absurdities of “putting on a play” at the turn of the century.


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This madcap comedy follows three actresses across the footlights, down the rabbit hole, and into a strangely familiar Wonderland that looks a lot like American theatre – the resemblance is uncanny! As these women pursue their dream of performing Chekhov in Texas, they’re whisked through a maelstrom of “good ideas” that offer unique solutions to the Three Sisters’ need to h This madcap comedy follows three actresses across the footlights, down the rabbit hole, and into a strangely familiar Wonderland that looks a lot like American theatre – the resemblance is uncanny! As these women pursue their dream of performing Chekhov in Texas, they’re whisked through a maelstrom of “good ideas” that offer unique solutions to the Three Sisters’ need to have life’s deeper purpose revealed. In the tradition of great backstage comedies, Anton in Show Business conveys the joys, pains, and absurdities of “putting on a play” at the turn of the century.

30 review for Anton in Show Business

  1. 4 out of 5

    Neil

    Here's a play within a play about a production of Chekhov. It's a satire of the state of modern theater and it's relationship to film and television. All of the roles go to women (in the kind of show that often features largely male casts), and the characters are diverse and funny in many different ways, so all of that is a plus. I particularly liked the rather broadly written director and the television star who turns out to have more depth than her co-stars expect. Like Vanya and Sonia and Mas Here's a play within a play about a production of Chekhov. It's a satire of the state of modern theater and it's relationship to film and television. All of the roles go to women (in the kind of show that often features largely male casts), and the characters are diverse and funny in many different ways, so all of that is a plus. I particularly liked the rather broadly written director and the television star who turns out to have more depth than her co-stars expect. Like Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, you don't really need to know the Chekhov to enjoy it. While both plays satirize different things, and can be enjoyed on their own merits, this isn't quite as good as Durang's Chekhov mash-up in my opinion. Martin gets off to a good start, but the last act here falls a little flat in comparison. Still, this deserves to be produced more often, especially by companies with strong female comedians who go underutilized in a theater world with a disproportionate number of parts written for men.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Megan Page

    Can't wait to be in this play! What a wonderfully satyrical play within a play within a play. Can't wait to be in this play! What a wonderfully satyrical play within a play within a play.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    We saw this play performed four times on four consecutive nights at Alfred University in Alfred, NY & loved it! In a nutshell, it's about the state of theater today particularly in England & America. It is multi-faceted with differing political points of view, cultural exchanges & gender issues cleverly intertwined. I loved the biting wit, irony & humor. It's a play within a play within a play & is based on "The Three Sisters" by Anton Chekov which we thoroughly enjoyed at Steppenwolf in Chicago We saw this play performed four times on four consecutive nights at Alfred University in Alfred, NY & loved it! In a nutshell, it's about the state of theater today particularly in England & America. It is multi-faceted with differing political points of view, cultural exchanges & gender issues cleverly intertwined. I loved the biting wit, irony & humor. It's a play within a play within a play & is based on "The Three Sisters" by Anton Chekov which we thoroughly enjoyed at Steppenwolf in Chicago this Summer.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    I just performed a staged reading of this play a couple weeks ago. It's a funny (but serious) commentary on the less-than-stellar state of affairs for women in theatre, all within the framework of a satiric take on Chekhov's Three Sisters. If you participate in theatre, you will be amused by the many in-jokes sprinkled throughout the script. If not, you'll still most likely be amused even if you're not sure why. Of course, one cannot ignore the irony that Jane Martin is a pseudonym widely believ I just performed a staged reading of this play a couple weeks ago. It's a funny (but serious) commentary on the less-than-stellar state of affairs for women in theatre, all within the framework of a satiric take on Chekhov's Three Sisters. If you participate in theatre, you will be amused by the many in-jokes sprinkled throughout the script. If not, you'll still most likely be amused even if you're not sure why. Of course, one cannot ignore the irony that Jane Martin is a pseudonym widely believed to be used by Jon Jory, a man. So in many way, the play ends up being the butt of its own joke.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ann

    Enjoyed the writing style and flow of Martin's words. A lot of great monologues throughout the show. I liked that it was purposefully trying too hard, however the character Joby was a tricky one and always is when there is an audience plant (with lines). Would be interested in directing it at a college level somewhere. It seems to fit the issues and excitement of that age. For some reason, reminded me of Caryl Churchill -- probably the all-female cast. Enjoyed the writing style and flow of Martin's words. A lot of great monologues throughout the show. I liked that it was purposefully trying too hard, however the character Joby was a tricky one and always is when there is an audience plant (with lines). Would be interested in directing it at a college level somewhere. It seems to fit the issues and excitement of that age. For some reason, reminded me of Caryl Churchill -- probably the all-female cast.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Kristin

    funny satire. another play about theater, but self-aware of that category as self-indulgent. 6F cast, great comic roles (especially the actresses who play more than 1 character--endless choices!) minimal set, costumes important.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Amy Lee

    Fantastic!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

  9. 4 out of 5

    Brenna

  10. 4 out of 5

    MaryBrenda

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

  12. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Simons

  13. 4 out of 5

    Phoebe Roberts

  14. 5 out of 5

    Madison

  15. 4 out of 5

    Nora

  16. 5 out of 5

    Nicole Fairbairn

  17. 5 out of 5

    Paige

  18. 5 out of 5

    Libby

  19. 5 out of 5

    Julie Glover

  20. 5 out of 5

    Amandanoel

  21. 5 out of 5

    Megan

  22. 4 out of 5

    Connie

  23. 5 out of 5

    Aaron Gould

  24. 5 out of 5

    Megan Cobb

  25. 4 out of 5

    Katie

  26. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  27. 4 out of 5

    Missy

  28. 5 out of 5

    Asho

  29. 4 out of 5

    Allison

  30. 5 out of 5

    Tamara

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