Friday, July 8, 2011

A Friday Finale: Tyne Daly as Maria Callas in 'MASTER CLASS'

MASTER CLASS Marquee. Courtesy of Walter McBride
Last night, the first big production of the new Broadway season opened. It was, of course, a revival of Terrence McNally's MASTER CLASS starring Tyne Daly as La Divina, Maria Callas.

Directed by Stephen Wadsworth, this production by the Manhattan Theatre Club also stars Sierra Boggess (recently of Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical Love Never Dies) as Sharon Graham, Alexandra Silber as Sophie De Palma, and Garrett Sorenson as Anthony Candolino.

Tyne Daly as "La Divina" Maria Callas (AP)
The reviews are flooding in and I thought I should bring you some highlights for today's A Friday Finale:

The New York Times' Ben Brantley says in part:
MASTER CLASS is not, by even a generous reckoning, a very good play, though it can be an entertaining one. Mr. McNally is an opera buff who here mixed a passionate fan's knowledge of myth, gossip and music into one pulpy, Broadway-ripe package. Yet Ms. Daly transforms that script into one of the most haunting portraits I've seen of life after stardom.
Jeremy Gerard of Bloomberg says:
Terrence McNally's funny, reverential and wholly engrossing MASTER CLASS brings us all too briefly into the distinctive orbit of Maria Callas...And as the play recreates a master class in singing, so Tyne Daly as the singer offers a master class in technique to inspire any acting student or colleague.
David Rooney writes for The Hollywood Reporter:
It should be no surprise that someone with six Emmys and a Tony is an accomplished actor, but Tyne Daly is doing something extraordinary in MASTER CLASS...Bottom Line: Tyne Daly's mercurial performance gives equal exposure to her character's formidable outer shell and to the corrosive solitude within.
The Philadelphia Inquirer's Howard Shapiro says:
...the revival's pensive quality gives Daly room to reflect, to stunning result. She delivers more without moving a single facial muscle than many actors say with a wide range of emotions.
Here are some highlights courtesy of

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