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Richard Topol

First Nighter: James McManus's "Cherry Smoke," Oni Faida Lampley's "Tough Titty"

David Finkle | Posted 07.01.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

It's not too often that great passion doomed--make that Great Passion Doomed--hits the boards. There's Romeo and Juliet and Antony and Cleopatra and Cyrano de Bergerac and West Side Story with its Romeo and Juliet bow. Add to the list, though maybe not quite on that lofty level but nothing to turn a nose up at, either--James McManus's Cherry Smoke.

First Nighter: Bikeman, Thomas F. Flynn's Captivating 9/11 Memoir

David Finkle | Posted 04.20.2014 | Arts
David Finkle

Because of the hell into which he was thrown with thousands, Flynn conjures moments reminiscent of Dante's Inferno. There are even echoes in his lines of T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land. And what could be more understandable?