A communications professional for 25 years, Dan Collins was a theater critic for The Baltimore Examiner daily newspaper (2006-2009), covering plays throughout the Baltimore-Columbia area including Center Stage, The Everyman, The Fells Point Corner Theater, Mobtown Players, Vagabond Theater, Cockpit in Court, Spotlighters Theater, The Strand, Single Carrot Theater and others. Mr. Collins has been a reporter, features writer, editor and columnist since 1984, including stints with The Washington Times and the Times Publishing Group (later Patuxent Publishing and now part of The Baltimore Sun) in Baltimore. His freelance writing career has included his work for the Examiner as well as other publications including Baltimore Magazine.
BWW Reviews: Life's A Joke: TOPDOG/UNDERDOG at Everyman
April 29, 2013
Two African-American brothers named Lincoln and Booth were left to live on their own with any parents, surviving as street hustlers. Now grown men, their names and histories haunt them in Suzan-Lori Parks' play, TOPDOG/UNDERDOG, now at the Everyman Theatre.
BWW Reviews: CLYBOURNE PARK - It's Not All Black and White
April 23, 2013
Center Stage announces the Baltimore premiere of Bruce Norris' 'Cylbourne Park,' the first of two plays slated to run in rotating repertory this spring as 'The Raisin Cycle,' picking up where playwright Lorraine Hansberry left off in her famed work, 'A Raisin in the Sun.'
BWW Reviews: Fly The Muddy Skies: MUD BLUE SKY at Center Stage
April 2, 2013
Put three 40something flight attendants in a motel room, add a pot-dealing geek, some cognac, and shake--you've got Marisa Wegryzyn's comedy, 'Mud Blue Sky,' now at Baltimore's Center Stage theater.
Ugly 'Beautiful Sisters' -- Les Belles Soeurs
March 18, 2013
Germaine has won a million S&H stamps. Her sisters and her neighbors rally to help her paste them into booklets...when they're not stuffing them in their purses. It's greed, hypocrisy, and a flurry of back-and-front stabbing comments in Michel Tremblay's 'Les Belles Soeurs' (The Sisters-in-Law) now at the Fells Point Corner Theatre in Baltimore City.
BWW Reviews: THE LAST FIVE YEARS - Good Times
March 11, 2013
Cathy and Jamie are happy, they're married, they're not happy, they've split up. How this happens is told through the dual-timeline musical, 'The Last Five Years,' now at the Spotlighters Theater, now celebrating its 50th anniversary.
BWW Reviews: The Hollow Family - AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY
February 4, 2013
Take a little Greek tragedy, some Shakespearean comedy, a bit of O'Neill's 'Long Day's Journey' and maybe some Tennessee Williams, bring it to the Everyman Theatre's new Fayette Street stage and you have the recipe for brilliant entertainment--Tracy Letts' 'AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY,' now at the Everyman through Feb. 17th.
BWW Reviews: Swan Song - HEROES
October 29, 2012
Three veterans of World War I contemplate their lives, their mortality and a row of poplars just off in the distance in Tom Stoppard's HEROES, now at the Everyman Theater, the last play to be performed at the theater's current Charles Street location.
BWW Reviews: Recipe for Disaster - Center Stage's AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE
October 7, 2012
A town ready for wealth, a naive scientist, men in power and men seeking power, a battle for the truth--it's all grist for playwright Arthur Miller's adaptation of Henri Ibsen's classic, AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE, now at Baltimore's Center Stage.
BWW Reviews: Taking a Stand - GOLDA'S BALCONY at Vagabond Players
September 17, 2012
It's a story of kings and presidents, grandchildren and generals. It's an evening of steely fire, inspiration and quiet grace. It's GOLDA'S BALCONY, now at the Vagabond theater in Baltimore City.
BWW Reviews: Breaking Away in FOLLOWING SARAH
August 7, 2012
Maddy, Kat and Julia are high-achieveing, super-stressed seniors on the Cross Country team at Thwaite Academy. An email from their former teammate Sarah threatens to push them over the edge. Why? Because Sarah died after winning last year's Cross Country Championship.
BWW Reviews: Justice Is Served: LETHAL INJECTION
July 30, 2012
A politically charged murder trial rocks a small Texas town when two wealthy brothers are accused of killing the stalker of a teenaged girl. A determined District Attorney jeopardizes his career in his relentless pursuit of the truth.
IN STEP WITH: THE HOLDUP's Frank Vince at Spotlighters Theater
July 25, 2012
his is the last week for director Michael Spellman's The Holdup, now at the Spotlighters Theater (www.spotlighters.org). I caught up with actor Frank Vince who portrays "The Outlaw" in this "inventive, picaresque play that mingles humor and sentiment," as noted on the Spotlighters website. I've had the opportunity to review Frank's work in the past, such as his performance as Roy Cohn in Angels in America, and have "strode the boards" with him when I played Jimmy Tomorrow to Frank's Rocky in the Fells Point Corner Theater production of "The Iceman Cometh' this past winter. In this interview, Frank discusses his love of acting, his time at the Spotlighters, and his role as "The Outlaw'
BWW Reviews: With a Bullet - HIRED GUN
July 16, 2012
Guest reviewer Mark Squirek provides his insights into local playwright Mark Scharf's HIRED GUN, a melodramatic meditation on aging, Fender guitars, delusions, the music business and marriage.
BWW Reviews: SHANA UNSETTLED - Waiting for Topaz
July 2, 2012
Shana lives in a state of constant turmoil and instability as she is visited by a number of characters, each one attempting to budge her from a place of indecision and fear. Are they successful? Is Shana? This unsettling play, 'Shana Unsettled,' is part of the 31st annual Baltimore Playwrights Festival.
BWW Reviews: Mobtown Players' BENT is an Act of Defiance
June 18, 2012
To be gay was to be a criminal in Nazi Germany. Martin Sherman's play, 'BENT,' takes on the issue of homosexuality under Hitler's rule in this 2-act, 2+ hour production now at Baltimore's Mobtown Players theater.
BWW Reviews: Time Catches Up: THE HOT L BALTIMORE
June 11, 2012
What do three prostitutes, an old man, a brother and sister on their way to Utah, a man seeking his grandfather, a faded southern belle, among others, all have in common? They're all about to be evicted from 'The Hot L Baltimore,' now at the Spotlighters Theater.
Crazy Rhythm: SOUVENIR at the Vagabond
June 4, 2012
When a can't-pay-the-rent musician meets a rich-in-coin-but-not-in-talent would-be diva named Florence Foster Jenkins, an unlikely partnership is formed that would shock the Beckstein, as the Vagabond Players present Stephen Temperley's SOUVENIR.
Love Among the RUINED
May 7, 2012
Now at the Fells Point Corner Theater, Lynn Nottage's RUINED is a haunting, probing work about the resilience of the human spirit during times of war.
Through the Wilderness: FROST/NIXON
May 7, 2012
A British talk show host takes on a former U.S. President in The Vagabond Players' production of 'Frost/Nixon.'
BWW Reviews: DARWIN IN MALIBU - An Engaging Evening
April 5, 2012
Award-winning actor/playwright/director Mark Squirek offers his insights as a Guest Reviewer into the Mobtown Theater's current production of Darwin in Malibu by Crispin Whittell, a work that's as much about faith as it is evolution.
Sweet Home California
March 5, 2012
East Coast battles West Coast with a teenage girl's home address in the balance...a man tries to conceal an unconscious lady of the evening from the lady of the house...an English actress has Oscar dreams and two couples learn you shouldn't visit too many Japanese restaurants on vacation...it's all smiles for the patrons of Neil Simon's 'California Suite.'
BWW Reviews: Spotlighter's AGNES OF GOD - Complex and Marvelous
February 28, 2012
A baby lies dead...was it murder? The mother has no knowledge of even being pregnant...and she's a nun. A virgin birth? A psychiatrist with a serious anti-Catholic streak joins forces with a Mother Superior to delve the mystery of John Pielmeier's 'Agnes of God,' now at the Spotlighters Theater in downtown Baltimore.
A Skull Set A'Pondering
February 21, 2012
Martin McDonagh's A SKULL IN CONNEMARA reflects today's attention-span-shortened audience...Concise but clever, with laughing and bashing, a playful bit of a play...but not particularly demanding of its audience...unlike, say Eugene O'Neill's THE ICEMAN COMETH. Does 'SKULL' represent a trend in modern theater? Are the days of 4-hour plays over?
READER FEEDBACK: ICEMAN COMETH at Fells Point Corner
February 1, 2012
A Mr. Mark Squirek -- a non-facebook subscriber but an individual with an evidently keen interest in theater -- sent me this response to a recently posted review of Eugene O'Neill's THE ICEMAN COMETH, now at the Fells Point Corner Theater. To post responses to BWW reviews requires facebook membership (it's a way to eliminate anonymous, hateful postings), but not everyone has joined the millions taking the facebook plunge. I was impressed enough with the detail and depth of this letter to include it as a READER FEEDBACK column. I will say that I am a member of the ICEMAN cast, so I believe it only right to note that here. In any event, here is Mr. Squirek's comments.
BWW Reviews: Pearls Before Swine - AMERICAN BUFFALO
November 14, 2011
A 1970s resale shop in Chicago is the setting for award-winning playwright David Mamet's 'American Buffalo,' now at Baltimore's Center Stage.
BWW Reviews: PRIVATE LIVES Made Public at Everyman Theatre
November 7, 2011
Amanda and Elyot loved each other, passionately. They fought, passionately. They divorced...probably passionately as well. When both find themselves remarried and enjoying their respective honeymoons at the same hotel, well, passions are soon enflamed. It's Noel Coward's PRIVATE LIVES, now at Baltimore's Everyman Theatre.
Baltimore BWW Awards Nominations Close on Monday!
October 29, 2011
The 2011 Inaugural Broadwayworld Baltimore Awards are now seeking nominations!
2011 Baltimore BWW Awards Nominations Now Open
October 11, 2011
The 2011 Inaugural Broadwayworld Baltimore Awards are now seeking nominations!
BWW Reviews: At Cross Porpoises: THE RIVALS
October 10, 2011
A young captain loves a woman who loves an ensign who doesn't exist...or does he? A hair-trigger-tempered Irishman, an over-coiffed country bumpkin, a lover who'd cut off his heart to spite his own happiness, an overbearing father, a romance-loving lady, and a bubble-headed 'she-dragon' who never met a word she didn't mangle, all join forces in 'The Rivals.'
BWW Reviews: Queer Eye - TEA & SYMPATHY
October 3, 2011
When a young man at a 1950s boarding school isn't deemed a 'regular guy' by his peers, he seeks out 'tea and sympathy' and much more than that in Robert Anderson's famed play.
BWW Reviews: FPCT's THREE TALL WOMEN Will Keep You Thinking
September 26, 2011
Three women representing three stages of life--youth, middle age, the senior years. Why do people change? When is the happiest time in our lives? These questions and more are explored in Edward Albee's award-winning drama, 'Three Tall Women,' now at the Fells Point Corner Theatre.
BWW Reviews: WAIT UNTIL DARK - More Than Meets The Eyes
September 11, 2011
A blind woman finds that the best way to defeat evil is to 'Wait Until Dark' as Frederick Knott's acclaimed play comes to Baltimore's Vagabond Players theater.
What Trumps Love? Unraveled on the Gravel
August 8, 2011
Love conquers all, right? But that was before Prozac. Kevin Kostic's 'Unraveled on the Gravel,' now at the Spotlighters, poses an intriguing question: What trumps Love?
BWW Reviews: One Bedroom Plays at The Strand Theatre
June 13, 2011
A bed, a side table, a phone. A man, a woman. Infidelity, doubt, murder, and clap-on-clap-off lighting. It's just a sampling of several original short plays part of the 3rd annual 'Friends & Neighbors Festival' at The Strand theater, now through June 19th
Lost in the Translation
June 6, 2011
It's a very-adult 'Ransom of Red Chief'...it's an indictment on the power of the media in shaping our ideas...it's a send-up of the Church...it's a madcap Italian farce...but will it play in Bawlmer, hon? It's 'Abducting Diana' now at the Vagabond Players on South Broadway.
A Play Well Done, No Doubt
May 15, 2011
It's 1964 in a small Catholic school in the Bronx. A priest has taken St. Nicholas' only black student under his wing. Is he protector or something else? This is just one of many questions posed in John Patrick Shanley's award-winning play, 'Doubt: A Parable,' now at Baltimore's Spotlighters Theatre.
A Critic Strides the Boards: A Personal Tale
May 3, 2011
Those who can, act; those who can't, review? Not necessarily. Broadwayworld reviewer Dan Collins recently put down his critic's notepad to stride the boards for the very first time in the Fells Point Corner Theater's playwrights' competition, '10x10.'
Cast Your Nets: Last Days of Judas Iscariot
April 10, 2011
Mother Theresa a bad guy? Pontius Pilate just an honorable Roman? Satan hitting people below the belt with the truth? Mary Magdalene in fishnets? It's all a bit off kilter, designed to give the audience a different perspective in Stephen Adly Guirgis' 'The Last Days of Judas Iscariot,' now at the Mobtown Players theater.