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New Dracula in LA

October contains Halloween, and as a result theatre-goers with a taste for the gothic can look forward to productions of Dracula.  These vary from the Balderson-Deane classic (which made Bela Lugosi famous) to such fresh takes as last year’s “feminist” version or an adaptation on roller skates or for that matter more than a few…Continue readingNew Dracula in LA

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The Secret Life of Abraham Van Helsing

Last year I was discussing possible casting choices in “Dracula” with a friend. My choice for Professor Van Helsing caused her to do a take. Michael Gambon, she said, was too old. Then I did a take. Van Helsing of course is indeed an elderly man. She didn’t realize that, and was shocked at the…Continue readingThe Secret Life of Abraham Van Helsing

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The Very Many Faces of Mina Murray

Adaptations of Bram Stoker’s most famous novel often reveal more about the adapters — and about their times — than they do about Stoker or his work. Case in point: Mina Harker, nee Murray. Looking at the novel itself, we find a character who seems very much a yin to her best friend Lucy Westenra‘s…Continue readingThe Very Many Faces of Mina Murray