It's not everyday I get to photograph one of Off Broadway’s hottest companies. BEDLAM is here in Houston with its new vision of the George Bernard Shaw’s classic SAINT JOAN – Presented by Stark Naked Theatre Company. Here are some of my photos from SAINT JOAN plus quotes from reviews and more below.
I love working with Kim Tobin-Lehl and Philip Lehl, co-artistic directors of Stark Naked Theatre. They are inspiring to work with and their productions keep raising the bar for quality theater in Houston. Inviting Bedlam to perform here was a stroke of genius.
You can see more of my photos for Stark Naked Theatre by clicking here.
Reviews for Saint Joan:
"It's a rare and happy occurrence in the theater when an actor literally glows onstage . . . the iridescence from actress Samantha Steinmetz as Joan of Arc in George Bernard Shaw's Saint Joan (1923) is unmistakable.
Joan is the iconic 2012 inaugural production from the acclaimed New York City theater company Bedlam. This young, innovative company takes classics (like Hamlet or Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility – two other hit shows in Bedlam's rep) and deftly slaps them awake with plenty of attitude and deconstruction. It adds grunge and zing, tossing in bucketfuls of metatheater.
. . . everything builds inexorably to a stirring finale. In this company's exquisite hands, Joan is mighty powerful."
– D. L. Groover, Houston Press
"Director Eric Tucker, who was Wall Street Journal Director of the Year in 2014, manages to have only four actors in the entire production, with Spencer Aste, John Russell and Stephan Wolfert playing multiple roles ranging from French kings to English clergy to military leaders—all with aplomb.
This contemporary treatment of a 15th-century figure reminds us that rebellion is never time-bound, and always extracts a price, even if there is a reward at the end. The trial itself is a lesson in the slipperiness of justice, and a timely reminder that the voices of commoners are threatening to the powers that be, no matter what century you live in."
– Doni Wilson, Houstonia
"Artistic director Kim Tobin-Lehl explains that in bringing Bedlam to Houston, Stark Naked seeks to tangibly demonstrate the vision she and her husband have for the company: “We’ve always been interested in quadrupling roles while keeping to original circumstances of authors like Shakespeare that have minimal sets and put storytelling first. Also, given that an important part of our mission is to pay artists, this aesthetic of acting works.” Indeed, Houston audiences would be hard-pressed to find a production where their money and time could be better spent. Stark Naked is Houston’s own metaphorical Saint Joan, fighting for theater and artistry that, in following its own voices, inspires and deserves to be numbered among the elect."
– Ray Brooks, OutSmart
What: Stark Naked Theatre in association with Bedlam present Saint Joan by George Bernard Shaw
When: June 2–18, 7:30 p.m., Sunday matinees at 3:30 p.m.
Where: Spring Street Studios, 1824 Spring St.
Details: Tickets $29 (senior and student rates available) may be purchased online at starknakedtheatre.com or by calling the box office at 832.786.1849.
More information about Bedlam at bedlam.org