Monday, April 7, 2014

Poetic simile inspired title for A Raisin in the Sun


What happens to a dream deferred? 
Does it dry up
like a raisin in the sun?



The  above  raisin simile  in Langston Hughes' poem  "Harlem [2]"  inspired the title and theme of Lorraine Hansberry's  groundbreaking play A Raisin in the Sun.  Sadly  Hansberry died too young,  but fortunately she didn't  defer her dream  before writing  this wonderful play that currently being given a wonderful  Broadway revival


Her  script  includes   this  potent simile  from the Younger family's matriarch:
"He finally came into his manhood today, didn't he. . . Kind of like a rainbow after the rain .
like a raisin in the sun?


Below a link to my review

www.curtainup.com/raisinbway14.html

Thursday, April 3, 2014

A song full of similes from If/Then

The  recently opened new musical, What/Then   is  a triumph for Indina Menzel,  though  reviews of the show overall have been mixed.  Though Menzel  is the  ticket selling draw,  she's  well  supported and  one of  the show's  best  songs, "It's a Sign"  is sung  by  LaCanze's  characte .  It  also  features some  nice   some  nice similes.

NOW THOSE ARE SIGNS THAT YOU CAN’T IGNORE!
IT’S PERFECT AND IT’S PLAIN,
LIKE RAINBOWS IN THE RAIN—
ONE MORE CLUE
THERE FOR YOU
DO I HAVE TO EXPLAIN
THAT IT’S A SIGN?
OH, IT’S A SIGN...
LIKE THE LEAVES IN YOUR TEA
OR THE CORK IN YOUR WINE!
IT’S A LADY’S WINK, A POET’S RHYME,

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A play about a woman "like a wounded bird in a wood"

 A World War I  widow  in David Grimm's new play about  the plight  of  women   during that difficult  women raised only to  be wives and mothers,  without  self-supporting  skills.
Yet,  the   impoverished woman    whose  friend   uses  the  following  trope  to  describe her  vulnerability.    "She's  the fragile sort. Wasn't raised to survive on her own. Like a wounded bird lost in a wood."
  
Helena, the woman thus described, is played by Nina  Arianda.  Though suffering the loss of her husband as well as  financial security, Helena   is  strong enough  to  survive  and  heal those  "lost bird" wounds.  The play-- Tales From Red Vienna-- is a world premiere at Manhattan Theatere Club. Here's a link to my review:
www.curtainup.com/talesfromredvienna14.html

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


  Simile of the day: Every play is launched like a squid in an obscuring cloud of spectacular publicity (originally  about  films by Dudley Nichols

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Guess who's interesting as a wire hanger without a glamourous gown?



Charles Busch's  latest play, The Tribute Artist has had mostly mixed reviews.  While  it's always fun to see him in wig and gowns the plot  is too convoluted and   as  my friend and colleague Michael Sommers of the New Jersey Newsroom said, he's  not written himself  an ideal main character.  He  trumped this opinion with  an apt simile.  

Curiously, the title figure is rather a dim bulb: Jimmy only comes alive when he depicts vintage movie dames. Otherwise the poor guy is as interesting as a wire hanger without its glamorous gown.
 For  Curtainup's  take on the play:  www.curtainup.com/tributeartist.html

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

To comma or not to comma, that is the question

Will We Use Commas in the Future?

Maybe.
By Matthew J.X. Malady
http://www.slate.com/articles/life/the_good_word/2014/01/comma_usage_rules_are_unclear_could_the_punctuation_mark_die_out_completely.html


In his amusing article "Will We Use Commas in the Future? Maybe"  Matthew J. X. Malady explores the question . about the comma as an endangered species, ( http://www.slate.com/articles/life/the_good_word/2014/01). 

 Mallady used this food metaphor  to  explain the dilemma. . .

In some ways commas are like ketchup and mustard. We’re glad those things exist. They surely make our french fries and hamburgers taste better. But we’d all survive without them. Some assert that the same is true of commas.
The article  includes  Linguist and Columbia University professor John McWhorter suggestion   that we “could take [the commas out of] a great deal of modern American texts and you would probably suffer so little loss of clarity that there could even be a case made for not using commas at all.”

As for me,  I'm all for the comma but would add my own metaphoric take. . . adding a comma to a sentence is like stopping to catch your breath. But to avoid comma excess,  use the comma  when you need to take a deep breath,  take a pass if all you need is a  quick pause.