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Marin Theatre Company

Reviews

  • "As fresh as it is oh, so familiar... five versatile actors play not only all the movie's principals and townspeople but also all the music and sound effects. In Jon Tracy's clever staging, the nostalgic [radio play] frame for a nostalgic story yields a counterintuitive impact: the result vindicates Capra's sentimental excess and makes more immediate his tale of simple, honest George Bailey... It's heartwarming and it's good for the soul."

    Clapping Man
    — San Francisco Chronicle
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  • "The cast is terrific, capturing dozens of distinct characters with dazzling deftness through the cheery but unknowable 1940s broadcast actors they embody onstage... The versatility of voice work on display is nothing short of virtuosic... The Bedford Falls the talented ensemble conjures in your imagination gives that same old story fresh — and indeed, wonderful — life."

    Four Stars
    — Marin IJ
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  • "Enough already with A Christmas Carol... This year, if you’re searching for an alternative to Ebenezer and his ghosts, I recommend you head to Marin Theatre Company and spend some time with George Bailey and Clarence, his Angel Second Class... Like any good piece of holiday entertainment, this show is warm and entertaining for its first two-thirds and then gets profound and truly emotional in its last section. This Wonderful Life can stand on its own apart from the movie, which is no small feat, and stake a claim for being wonderful in its own right.

    — Theater Dogs
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  • "It has plenty of high-energy motion, well-honed characterizations and exquisite audio quality... The ersatz radio re-creation was so engaging on opening night that the theater audience quickly became involved, yanked into the studio fantasy... It’s fun, jammed with humor and holiday sentimentality that has nearly as much emotional punch as the original film... Said one patron upon exiting, “I was exhausted when I entered the theater. Now I’m exhilarated.” Several others were smiling as they used hankies to flick at their tears. What do I call the old chestnut that’s been restructured and revitalized? A wonderful 'It’s a Wonderful Life.""

    — Marinscope
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  • "The talent assembled at Marin Theatre Company for “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” dazzles... is memorable. MTC’s five-member ensemble, most of whom play multiple roles, is terrific. Director Jon Tracy keeps the action buoyant."

    — San Francisco Examiner
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  • "Watching this excellent production brought back memories of the 1950s "radio plays" in the Los Angeles area that used contract players from major movie studios to present radio adaptation of movies. Director Jon Tracy has faithfully produced an exact replica of this type of play... The story is as familiar and comfortable as a pair of old pajamas. The heartwarming entertainment features five very gifted Bay area actors who put a new twist on the Capra classic, placing the behind-the-scenes happenings at center stage. Scenic designer Eric Sinkkonen, lighting designer Michael Palumbo, and composer and sound designer Chris Houston have done a fantastic job of creating this fictional world of Studio A at station WMTC, Manhattan, on Christmas Eve of 1946... The fourth wall is disregarded and a certain intimacy between the actors and the audience is inevitably forged."

    — Talkin' Broadway
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  • "Charming... Rekindle your holiday spirit with this delightful, family-friendly celebration with this special holiday gift from Marin Theatre Company."

    — For All Events
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  • "I'll be damned if in Act II, as George Bailey's fortunes started to sink, I didn't feel a melodramatic lump forming in my throat and find myself touched by the humanity of It's A Wonderful Life."

    — My Cultural Landscape
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  • "If you’re like many people, watching “It’s a Wonderful Life” on TV is probably one of your favorite holiday traditions. Even if you’ve seen it umpteen times, you never get tired of this story about the triumph of good over evil, the emphasis on what’s truly important and the far-reaching impact that one person’s actions can have... Marin Theatre Company dramatizes these simple truths in its production of “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” ... well-directed by Jon Tracy. A great way to see a holiday favorite in a new light and to enjoy watching some of the Bay Area’s best actors."

    — For All Events
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