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jsctheatricals@gmail.com | Manhattan | 646.530.0937

© 2017 by JSCTheatricals LLC.

CRITIC'S QUOTES

The Boys from Syracuse

Legs Diamond

30th Anniversary Reunion Concert

A second show worth revisiting, the Broadway musical Legs Diamond, with music and lyrics by Peter Allen, was the subject of an anniversary concert last night. Allen also starred in the original show nearly 30 years ago, with book by Harvey Fierstein and Charles Suppon.

Twenties gangster Legs Diamond would have appreciated the venue, the swanky nightclub Feinstein’s/54 Below, for the one-night-only celebration.

Original cast members, including Christine Andreas, Ruth Gottschall, Bob Stillman and Jim Fyfe, shared stories about Allen’s generosity, as well as personal reminiscences, and performed accomplished ballads, such as “The Man Nobody Could Love,” “Cut the Cards” and “The Music Went Out Of My Life.”

In fact, Allen’s beautiful melodies and cheeky lyrics were a loving reminder that talent and artistry never die. Almost 30 years later, the Legs Diamond score still clicks. Maybe it’s time for a revival.

WHAT THE CRITICS SAID ABOUT

CHANCE: A Musical Play About Love, Risk & Getting It Right

OUTER-STAGE

journal of independent stage and film reviews

Posted on July 27, 2016    by jaymichaelsae

Review by Evan Meena

“Chances” are this is a winner

WHAT THE CRITICSAID ABOUT

UNDER FIRE

WLS REVIEW OF “UNDER FIRE”

“… exciting and ambitious new musical …   The music is quite catchy… The dancing is electric, sexy… What it lacks in expensive production values it more than makes up for in the vibrant dance of an energetic ensemble… you won’t get a more exciting and entertaining bang for your buck in Manhattan."

Posted by Damon L. Jacobs

—  Name, Title

7WOMEN, 7HEAVENS: 

PORTRAITS OF MUSLIM WOMEN

YOU’VE READ THE HEADLINES,

NOW HEAR THEIR STORIES

“Ripped straight from the headlines, CNN meets off Broadway… This brief but intrigue-filled play is packed with intense dialogue, imagery, sound, and music from start to finish… 7Women 7Heavens’(directed by Jonathan Cerullo) unique storytelling illuminates a past, present and future effect giving audiences the impression these women are walking out of the darkness and into the light. Transitional scenes add to its already unpredictable quality such as in “Silent Thoughts Strung Along” or “Forward Motion” about a young woman struggling with wearing the hijab, which utilizes supplementary theatrical elements such as alternative dance movements and wind-like sound effects.”

 

Aysha Hussain

Reprinted by Permission

STAGE BUZZ

WHAT THE CRITICS SAID ABOUT

PICTURESQUE

PICTURESQUE—BIG APPLE CIRCUS - ARTISTIC FUN UNDER THE BIG TOP

“However, this year's production, titled "Picturesque," thoughtfully applies the World of Art to each of the acts as well as the transitions. Whether it's the ballerinas of Degas or the bowler headed gentleman of Magritte, the imagery adds just the right touch. It maintains a nice focus throughout the evening without overwhelming the individual talents of the performers.”

R. J. Donovan / OnStage Boston

BIG APPLE CIRCUS LIVES UP TO REPUTATION

“Enhanced by a jaunty score that incorporates occasional strains of Gershwin and Offenbach, the show's staging is swift and festive, tying everything into one happy vaudeville of circus artistry for the littlest of kids and their lucky escorts. “Picturesque” lives up to its name -- and then some.”

Michael Sommers / The Star-Ledge

SAY GOODNIGHT, GRACIE
The Love, Laughter and

Life of George Burns

Theatre Review by Matthew Murray - October 10, 2002

 

“Watching their vaudeville act at the Palace Theatre, performing "Tea for Two" interspersed with comic bits is like a history course in the essence of stage comedy.”

EVENING AT POPS

WGBH BOSTON

“The Big Apple Circus’s Grandma (Barry Lubin) joined two terrific Can-Can dancers for the rousing finale. In one delirious moment, it looked as if Grandma were doing high kicks with four legs – none of them her own. No one has better timing than Grandma.”

Richard Dyer / Boston Globe

WHAT THE CRITICS SAID ABOUT

CARNEVALE!

CARNEVALE! - BIG APPLE CIRCUS

VILLAGE VOICE 

CARNAVALE!  MEETS COMMEDIA DELL’ ARTE UNDER THE BIG TOP

“The latest edition of the city’s homegrown circus Carnevale! has a Latin theme and a stunning commedia dell’ arte aspect choreographed by Jonathan Stuart Cerullo, and acts from Cuba, Russia, Ukraine, Columbia, Latvia, Denmark and more, including horses, trained dogs, and a quartet of camels.”

 

Elizabeth Zimmer / Village Voice

AUTUMN MOON REVIEW

"… a sly and dead-on homage to the horror films of the 1980s… Director Jonathan Stuart Cerullo kept the pacing quick, the blocking interesting, and generally did a very good job with the production.

BIG RIVER

NORTHERN STAGE

“It is not hard to appreciate moments when the artistic staff takes chances with their production. The choreography, for example, is at times daringly stylized -- and beautiful. The scenes depicting the anguish of bondage and the inhumanity of the slave trade are especially good in this respect; the dancers move gently, but purposefully, among each other that you can feel in your bones. This interesting choreography helps make this production … a southern - fried treat.”

Jodie Tillman / Valley News

“Choreographer, Jonathan Cerullo provide us with many opportunities to celebrate community, family, and life itself with creative staging and deserves enormous credit for bring to life a musical tour de force.”

Charlie McMeekin / Randolph Herald

 

“Choreography and musical staging by Jonathan Cerullo was particularly effective in making 'Big River' a really joyful spectacle. Particularly soulful and touching was “The Crossing” and “Waitin' For The Light To Shine.” Not only were they executed with a deep passion, they successfully conveyed the tragedy of the plight of the slaves.”

Jim Lowe / The Times Argus

 

WONDERFUL TOWN

EQUITY LIBRARY THEATER

“Somewhat more assured is the witty “Ballet at the Village Vortex” in which Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo and the company poke fun at the more tarnished clichés of slinky seductive nightclub dance.”

Stephen Holden / New York Times

 

THE ROTHSCHILDS

BRISTOL RIVERSIDE THEATER

“The shows strength, musical staging by Jonathan Cerullo, is presented with verve.”

Douglas Keating / Philadelphia Inquirer

 

“The musical numbers have retained their effectiveness. Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has fit the show beautifully.”

John Buettler / Bristol Pilot

STAGE REVIEW

BRISTOL’S RIVERSIDE’S ROTHSCHILDS IS WORTH A FORTUNE

“The Fairground scene, “He Tossed A Coin,” as stage by choreographer, Jonathan Stuart Cerullo, is a cross cultural feast of street peddlers, German aristocracy, and the milieu of bustling Frankfort fair-goers... The show starts with a smartly staged 17th Century Minuet, and progresses nicely to traditional Jewish folk dances.”

Stuart Duncan / Stage Review / May 7, 1993

 

ONE SINGULAR SENSATION

 

ALTERNATE NEWS -- SEPTEMBER 25

reviewed by steve walker

““One Singular Sensation, A Tribute to Michael Bennett” was not a show you want to review with a typewriter; only day-glow paints and a billboard would do it justice... The show itself was one singular sensation after another and it was in no way a spontaneous “let’s put on a show” kind of evening; these singers and dancers had obviously worked very hard in putting together what could tour as a separate entity. It would be inappropriate to talk about flaws in a labor of love as successful as this besides, there weren’t any... Given the lack of anything to criticize, let’s talk about highlights, and there were many... At times, the audience kept the cast’s voices from carrying beyond the footlights so loud and long was its applause. The conviviality in the theatre passed back and forth from the company to the audience so often, you could almost feel it breezing past your head.”

 

MIDSUMMER NIGHTS

MUSICAL THEATER WORKS

“Jonathan Cerullo's outstanding choreography also mirrors the carefree times. His carefully modulated dances have a keen sense of period and enough spirit and spontaneity to elevate potential lackluster moments.”

Backstage

 

“Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has staged the musical deftly and come up with some exciting show stoppers.”

Michael Sander / Drama Logue

 

“Cast members move briskly between a couple of rousing musical numbers to keep your foot tapping.”

Wilborn Hampton / New York Times

“Midsummer Nights has professional touches, each act ends with a rousing production number, a device that contributes in no small way to the success of more costly shows such as Les Miserables.”

Drew Fetherston / New York Newsday

MAN OF LA MANCHA

BRISTOL RIVERSIDE THEATER

“Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has been given moments not always given to dance. Quixote’s horse and Sancho’s burro are prominent in several numbers; the tilting at the windmills, usually accomplished off stage, is here choreographed nicely... Aldonza adds a semi-gypsy like dance movement, and earlier she and Pedro have done a pas-de-deux that is a mating dance of the hood.”

Stuart Duncan / Stage Review

“Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has devised some explosive even terrifying action.”

Peter Spenser / Bucks County Courier Times

PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER

“The choreography and musical staging blends easily and exquisitely with the action... Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has done a miracle with the space.”

Douglas Keating / Philadelphia Inquirer

 

“A special nod must be made in the direction of the dances.”

John Buettler / Bristol Pilot

 

CAMELOT

BERKSHIRE THEATRE FESTIVAL

“He has saved his most dynamic staging for “Guenevere” the big act II battle scene. This is where his penchant for masks comes into play as several actors are transformed into horses. This is when the old Camelot is transformed into the new Camelot.”

Elyse Sommer / Curtain Up 

“Jonathan Stuart Cerullo’s choreography moves from Broadway glitz and hoopla to kabuki elegance with style and ease.”

Genie Zust / WAMC

“The song “Lusty Month Of May” finally lives up to it's title in a good-naturedly ribald sequence, choreographed by Jonathan Cerullo and guaranteed to cause laughter. And with resourceful staging, the relatively small ensemble creates more excitement than many a realistically performed battle scene involving scores of extras. The rescue of Guenevere and the fall of Camelot, while never graphically detailed, is a brilliantly conceived sequence that raises goose bumps.”

Ralph Hammann / The Advocate / Chief Theatre Critic Williamstown MA

UNION NEWS

“The multi-faceted Berkshire theatre festival production featuring gratifying performances and Jonathan Cerullo's specific choreography evidences an understanding of the value of character.”

Fred Sokol / Union News / Stockbridge

“On the other end is the group number the “Lusty Month Of May,” which usually comes across as a costume parade by Camelot’s eunuchs. Choreographer Jonathan Cerullo has restored the penises and cleavage to the number and indeed, it is lusty. There is a moment when the ensemble interlocks in a chorus line of entwined limbs and fingers that making the singing of “tra la la” look, sound and feel as libidinous as any display of ripped bodices and sweaty bosoms could. Such combustible delights should not be missed.”

James Yeara / Metroland / Albany NY

COMPASS

“The choreography by Jonathan Cerullo is joyous in “Lusty Month Of May,” and theatrically striking in “Guenevere.”

Macey Levin / Compass

BRAVO NEWSPAPER

“More than other “Camelot” productions the humor was funnier the “Lusty Month Of May,” usually a boring song, was “lustier.”

Shera Cohen / Bravo Newspaper / Stockbridge

 

CAMELOT

FORESTBURGH PLAYHOUSE

WITH POWER OF EMOTION CAMELOT BRINGS CONFLICT TO LIFE

“Under Jonathan Cerullo’s direction Arthur’s battle royal between his anger and his sense of justice at the end of act one is a tremendous success; one literally watches the performance grow before ones’ eyes”

Robert W. Bethune / Times Herald Record

 

CAMELOT STRIKES PASSIONATE CHORD

“Remember when Camelot first came out, and you were swept away in the passion of what you thought had to be the most romantic love story of all times? Well you can re-awaken some of those feelings if you go see the live production at the Forestburgh Playhouse.”

Lori McKean / River Reporter