The Oberlin Review

New Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex Offers Top-of-the-Line Performing Spaces, Needed Facilities

New Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex Offers Top-of-the-Line Performing Spaces, Needed Facilities

September 14, 2018

Hall Auditorium is getting an upgrade that will revolutionize the future of theater at Oberlin. A semester after the acclaimed success of Angels in America, the epic two-part performance that received high praise across campus last spring, the renovations and expansions of the Eric Baker Nord Performing Arts Annex are finally coming to fruition. For some, this project represents a decades-long desire to improve both the quality and quantity of performance spaces on campus. “There are some f...

Video Highlights Womyn of Color on Campus

Video Highlights Womyn of Color on Campus

September 7, 2018

Much of Oberlin student activism centers on promoting racial equality. However, no matter how much effort is put into making the school a more inclusive space, many students struggle in navigating certain aspects of Oberlin simply because they are Black at a predominantly white institution. Kiéla Nelson, OC ’18, recently addressed this issue on August 15th, when she released “Nice 4 What,” a music video soundtracked by Drake’s “Nice for What” that featured Oberlin womyn and femmes...

“Infinity War” Shatters Expectations, Box Office Records, Hearts

Christian Bolles, Editor-in-Chief

May 4, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Recent Stories, Theater & Film

Editor’s note: This review contains major spoilers for Avengers: Infinity War. You can — and really should — catch it tonight at the Apollo Theatre instead of reading ahead. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. Over the course of the previous 18 films, Marvel charted the rise of a cast of super-powered characters who all now share a pop-culture pedestal. To many, they may as well be real — in a changing world, their heroism has provided a welcome source of stability. Every year, fans rely on a handful of new stories, each invested in illustrating and protecting a shared sense of humanity. Recently, Marvel has used their considerable platform to set a new bar for representation in blockbuster filmmaking with the wildly suc...

Bollywood Film Gets “Ugly” at Apollo

Ananya Gupta, Arts & Culture Editor

April 27, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Theater & Film

Editor’s Note: This film and article contain mentions and instances of violence, third-degree torture, police brutality, suicide, rape of a minor, sex-trafficking, and molestation. This article contains spoilers for the film Ugly. Anurag Kashyap’s Ugly takes the audience past the veneer of Bollywood stereotypes, opening a window into the lives of lower middle-class India. Ugly is — what my mother says with a derisive snort — an “artsy” film. That is to say, the film is not the famed, mainstream Bollywood flick that most Indians, non-resident Indians, and non-Indians have come to love and celebrate. No characters bursting into song and dance; no colorful costumes or picturesque cinematography, and not a...

“The Book of Jessica” Showcases Refreshing Look at College Years

Kate Fishman, Staff Writer

April 27, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Theater & Film

Early this semester, College senior Jessica Toltzis and sophomore Casey Labbate reached out to the Athletics department with a perfectly normal request: a working treadmill, for a one-woman show. “I don’t know of any other show in America where there’s a person running on a treadmill,” Toltzis said. Toltzis’ senior capstone show — The Book of Jessica — is not your typical Americana. The play was heavily influenced by her desire to fuse American theater with some of the more avant-garde drama she saw during a semester abroad in Russia. “[In] one show [I] saw, they had hundreds of matchboxes falling from the ceiling,” Toltzis said. “I was like, ‘Wow, we don’t do that.’ We do kitchen-sink dra...

OMTA Musical Merrily Rolls Along with New Production

OMTA Musical Merrily Rolls Along with New Production

April 20, 2018

Oberlin Musical Theater Association is producing Stephen Sondheim’s Merrily We Roll Along as their spring semester musical — a show non-theater enthusiasts may recognize from its charming, dysfunctional portrayal in the recent film Lady Bird. The musical, which will continue into the weekend, is a story of friendship — specifically, the friendship between three creators — moving chronologically backwards. There’s Franklin Shepard, an aspiring composer turned movie producer; Charley Kri...

Season Two of Snicket Just as Grimly Humorous

Lucy Martin This Week Editor and Victoria Albacete Production Manager

April 20, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Theater & Film

Editor’s Note: This article contains spoilers for season two of the Netflix series A Series of Unfortunate Events. It has been 14 months since we left the Baudelaire orphans anxiously clustered on a bench outside the principal’s office at Prufrock Preparatory School at the end of season one of A Series of Unfortunate Events. The second season, which premiered March 30 on Netflix, opens with the three Baudelaires sitting on the same bench, equally as nervous as before — but Sunny is inexplicably at least a year older. They’re promptly installed in the latest of their temporary homes and, because it is a boarding school and presumably a safer space, we begin this season’s journey with slightly more hope than we ended...

Tony-Winning AIDS Epidemic Epic Remains Relevant

Tony-Winning AIDS Epidemic Epic Remains Relevant

April 13, 2018

Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes, Tony Kushner’s Pulitzer Prize and Tony-winning two-part play celebrates its 25th anniversary, and the first part of Oberlin’s production opened last night in Hall Auditorium. The play focuses on the interconnected stories of a number of queer characters and their loved ones living in 1980s New York, and its themes are thrown in sharp relief by the current political climate. Angels in America offers a stark, intense, and moving exploration of h...

“Sign: A Silent Film” Speaks to Experiences of Deaf Community

Kate Fishman, Staff Writer

April 13, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Theater & Film

Editor’s note: This article contains mentions of intimate partner violence. A love story without spoken dialogue, Adam Wachter’s Sign: A Silent Film follows two men named Aaron and Ben as they navigate their relationship through fights and celebrations. The film has a particular focus on their communication, since Aaron is deaf and Ben is hearing. The film is punctuated by several jarring scenes — for example, Ben sitting in a chair at a party with Aaron’s friends before he knows how to sign, watching them communicate while holding a bowl of popcorn in his lap; another, a fight during which Ben violently grabs Aaron’s hands in the middle of speech, effectively silencing him. Ultimately, the film itself se...

Vikander Falls Short as Lara Croft in “Tomb Raider”

Ananya Gupta, Arts & Culture Editor

April 6, 2018

Filed under ARTS, Theater & Film

Editor’s Note: This review may contain spoilers for the Tomb Raider series. After playing Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary and watching Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, it’s safe to say that I’m a superfan of the gun-toting, knife-wielding, acrobatic badass Lara Croft. Tomb Raider, starring Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft and directed by Roar Uthaug, unfortunately reduced this iconic, legendary woman into a one-dimensional character, with a storyline several notches below even the amateur Adobe Flash games one can excavate online today. While several versions of Lara Croft’s backstory exist, all franchises tell the story of an English woman who is trained to be an archaeolog...

“Chamber Play” Delivers Performance on Cyclical Abuse

“Chamber Play” Delivers Performance on Cyclical Abuse

March 30, 2018

Editor’s Note: This article contains mention of sexual abuse and trauma. Chamber Play, written by Amanda Faye Martin, is the dark, cryptic story of several characters, particularly Amanda (played by College first-year Sofie Rejto) and Sabina (played by College first-year Anna Aubry), and their experiences with cycles of abuse. The play examines amnesia as a result of sexual trauma, implying certain side effects of post-traumatic stress and illustrating the almost involuntary nature by which a vict...

“The Turn Of The Screw” Exemplifies Operatic Horror

“The Turn Of The Screw” Exemplifies Operatic Horror

March 9, 2018

Editor’s note: This article contains discussion of child sexual abuse. “Beware of things that go bump in the night.” According to Associate Professor of Opera Theater and Director Jonathon Field, this is the sentiment that audiences are likely to take away from Oberlin’s production of The Turn of the Screw. The chamber opera, Benjamin Britten and Myfanwy Piper’s chillingly creepy interpretation of the Henry James novella by the same name, opened Wednesday night in Hall Auditorium. T...

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