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Landsdowne Street Playhouse Opening

posted Oct 23, 2010, 2:08 AM by Diana Rohini LaVigne   [ updated Oct 23, 2010, 2:09 AM ]

By Diana Rohini La Vigne


Locals may now refer to Landsdowne Street as Boston’s Little Broadway.  Why? The Lyon’s Group has opened a 200-seat theater called the Landsdowne Street Playhouse. A minimalist’s attitude was taken when creating this theater’s décor making it a unique theater environment.  Sporting industrial sized windows, stainless steel accents and exposed wooden beam ceilings; the space is raw and very relaxed in nature.


The opening premiered Howard Korder’s 1991 Broadway hit “Search and Destroy”. This production was done by The Harrison Project which is a non-profit group offering everything from acting classes to casting talent assistance.  Peter Kelley, whom is the founder of the project, has an impressive resume filled with film and casting credits to include Housesitter, Glory, A Bronx Tale, and Nova. 


The Striking crowd brought out Boston own celebrity crew.  Aerosmith’s bass player, Tom Hamilton and his wife Terry were creating quite a stir.  Eliza Dushku, young starlet featured in the movie True Lies seems natural in the celebrity environment despite the fact she is only a teenager.  Local fanfare included Dahlia Dean, Associate Editor of Women’s Wear Daily, Robert Birnbaum, Publisher of Stuff Magazine, Matt Shaffer, Entertainment Reporter for WXKS, Bruce MacCabe, Boston Globe journalist, and the infamous Oedipus, announcer for WBCN. 


“Search and Destroy” had a slow first act but it quickly picks up in the second. The script didn’t keep one’s attention but the acting was fabulous despite the script.  The Second act is visually powerful using a unique combination of lighting effects, dry ice, and color schemes.  The most interesting part of the set may have been lost on many. 


With front row seats, I could see that the back curtain was made up of actual filmstrip, complete with images.  I struggled against my curious nature to find out what was on the film.  After the performance, my curiosity got the better of me and I found completely random parts of local films that ended up on the editing room floor.  The production crew resurrected the filmstrips and gave them life in the form of a theater curtain.  I wonder if the actor’s in the strips know where their images are being stored.