New York and Connecticut theater reviews and news

Poet's Corner

Poems about the theater scene:



The old chicken coop
In the cluttered back yard
Lists to one side
With its buckling walls
And cracked window panes
Surrounded by weeds
Strewn over with junk
But it rises like Phoenix
Out of the ashes
To become a live theater
Thanks to neighborhood kids
Who, somehow inspired,
Shape dramas and thrillers
While they deck out their actors
With dazzle and spark
Then they send forth the call
Charge one penny admission
And bring in the crowd
Keeping theater alive
Down through the ages.

- Irene Backalenick


He stands upon the stage
At a moment split by time,
In the chilly darkened hall.
“I’ll do Orlando,” he proclaims,
With an ingratiating smile
And body tensed as coiled springs.
He pauses, gazing into nothingness,
Then dives headlong into the role.
He wills himself to be Orlando,
Tumbling out the famous lines.
And for the briefest moment
He takes command, creates a world.
And Shakespeare comes alive.

- Irene Backalenick

The Salon

The evening swoops and sings.
Through wine-soaked rooms
The artists push their way,
Swapping stories of betrayal,
Sharing truths, savoring triumphs,
Until, at last, the moon drops low,
Refreshed, restored, renewed,
They stumble out into the night.

- Irene Backalenick

Our Writers’ Workshop

We step into the sea
Into shallow lapping waves
Along the playful coast
Laced with sea kelp
And stranded shells.
Treading gingerly,
But laughing gaily,
Holding hands,
We form a chain
Little knowing
As we take each step
Submerging ever deeper
Into vast and icy seas
That we've launched ourselves
Upon a grand adventure.

--Irene Backalenick



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