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Saturday - June 12, 2021
Quad Cities USA - Guide to Davenport & Bettendorf Iowa and Rock Island & Moline Illinois
 

‘Two Distant Strangers’ Is A Masterpiece

May 20th, 2021
'Two Distant Strangers' Is A Masterpiece

Art is a powerful tool. It can make us laugh. It can make us cry. It can make us think. It can be used to fictionalize harsh real-life circumstances in order to enhance our acceptance and understanding of actual reality. That’s the power behind the Netflix short (and Oscar nominee and front runner) Two Distant Strangers. Sharply written by Travon Free and directed by Free and Martin Desmond Roe, this 32 minute masterpiece centers around Carter James (an nuanced and solid Joey Bada$$), a clean cut black dude reliving the same day of waking up next to his new fling (an absurdly authentic Zaria... Read More

Moline’s Black Box Offers Up A Supremely Cool ‘Dick Tracy’

March 19th, 2021
Moline's Black Box Offers Up A Supremely Cool 'Dick Tracy'

Former Quad City Times David Burke reporter once referred to the cast of my production of Company as being “the cool kids lunch table” and if he were still reviewing shows in this area, he’d say the same and MORE about this cast. This is the new “cool kids lunch table.” James Driscoll. Jenny Winn. Sara Wegener. Tom Vaccaro. Matt Walsh. Mark Ruebling. Doug Kutzli. It’s like producers Lora Adams and David Miller broke into my brain and picked one of my dream team casts and put them on stage for the new Black Box Theater production of “Dick Tracy.” Unfortunately, they... Read More

Don ‘Hep’ Hepner Was An Original Who Will Be Missed On The Local Comedy And Theater Scene

October 6th, 2020
Don 'Hep' Hepner Was An Original Who Will Be Missed On The Local Comedy And Theater Scene

“Scrooge was dead.” That’s how Donald C. Hepner started off a production of A Christmas Carol one night. And that one moment perfectly captures than man we all knew as “Hep.” You were never certain whether you were in on the joke or part of it. A standup comedian, gifted actor, personal friend  and mentor to many on the local theater and comedy scene, Hepner died of a massive heart attack Sunday night in his Moline residence. He was 79. He was an original dude, a great writer (his book “Reggie! Ringling’s First Black Clown” is FANTASTIC), and a fine performer... Read More

Love Is Blind: Tiger King Edition Roaring In!

June 28th, 2020
Love Is Blind: Tiger King Edition Roaring In!

What if “Love Is Blind” met “Tiger King?” It’s Netflix and maybe not so chill, as Tristan Tapscott takes another swipe at the “Tiger King” phenomenon in the latest episode in his new comedy series of short videos, “Oh Geez, It’s Tristan Again…” for QuadCities.com. Watch and enjoy, as Tristan proves himself a multiple-threat, taking on the roles of Joe, Carole, and, yes, MORE, in this hilarious video, and stay tuned for more episodes of “Oh Geez, It’s Tristan Again…” on your site for fun, free, local entertainment and features, QuadCities.com!  Read More

Tristan Tapscott Tackles Joe Exotic. Also, He Makes A Video About Him. Click Here For More…

June 19th, 2020
Tristan Tapscott Tackles Joe Exotic. Also, He Makes A Video About Him. Click Here For More...

Actor, director, writer, raconteur, mojito enthusiast and general man-about-town Tristan Tapscott has tackled the “Tiger King” phenomenon in the latest episode in his new comedy series of short videos, “Oh Geez, It’s Tristan Again…” for QuadCities.com. Watch and enjoy, as Tristan proves himself a multiple-threat, taking on the roles of Joe, Carole, and, yes, MORE, in this hilarious video, and stay tuned for more episodes of “Oh Geez, It’s Tristan Again…” on your site for fun, free, local entertainment and features, QuadCities.com! Oh,... Read More

New ‘Lovebirds’ Rom-Com Flies High For Netflix

June 11th, 2020
New 'Lovebirds' Rom-Com Flies High For Netflix

The hook is bomb. And the payoff is huge. Netflix hit the jackpot with their latest romcom. You know how some movies are ideal to watch on a plane? You know how that’s usually an insult? Given the times we see living in it’s welcome. Some films are pure escapism and entertainment and that’s what you will find with Netflix’s latest, The Lovebirds. With Michael Showalter at the helm, it was no surprise I really dug this Netflix original. After all, Showalter directed 2 of my favorite films from the last 10 years with Hello, My Name is Doris and The Big Sick. He has a real... Read More

Quad-Cities’ Peaceful Protest Provides Powerful Lesson

May 30th, 2020
Quad-Cities' Peaceful Protest Provides Powerful Lesson

It was baby’s first protest. My daughter,  Harper, is 6, and didn’t quite understand why we were there but she knew it was important and it was for some guy who died. Kids have empathy so she was on board. It was really something to see. And her reaction to it was awesome. She somehow got it. And it wasn’t hard to grasp the importance and grace of the event. Downtown Davenport. A beautiful Saturday evening. The streets filled with people. It could’ve been any other Saturday night, pre-covid, in the summer, during a festival, or even just a nice evening with the streets... Read More

Well, Quad-Cities, What’s It REALLY Like To Be The Easter Bunny?

April 12th, 2020
Well, Quad-Cities, What's It REALLY Like To Be The Easter Bunny?

Three African American children grilled me about why the Bunny was white. One of the children, no more than 8 years old, said, “This Bunny is out of touch with what’s going out there.” But I can’t talk; I can only animate. And that was my first day as the Easter Bunny. Yes, I was one of THOSE people. And by THOSE people, I mean I was one of the few, the underpaid, the sorta proud, who has donned the costume of the Easter Bunny for public appearances at everywhere from shopping malls to car dealerships to libraries and more. Where was I? Well, everywhere and nowhere,... Read More

‘Dearly Beloved,’ Gather At Richmond Hill For A Good Show

June 4th, 2018
‘Dearly Beloved,’ Gather At Richmond Hill For A Good Show

There’s a moment in Richmond Hill’s “Dearly Beloved” where you get Heidi Pedersen, Valeree Pieper AND Diane Greenwood on stage sparring and spewing some southern “hospitality” and for a moment you forget you are watching three local theatre icons and instead feel as if you are accidentally witnessing a real family feud.  Ultimately, that’s the goal of theatre: “to pretend with authority,” as actor Willem Dafoe says, and in most productions – amateur and professional – that is fleeting and is not a notion played on repeat. Lucky for Richmond Hill and Director John VanDeWoestyne,... Read More

Ever see 50 mics drop at once? Watch ‘The Shape of Water’

January 28th, 2018
Ever see 50 mics drop at once? Watch 'The Shape of Water'

Ever see 50 mics drop at once? Watch “The Shape of Water” and you will. Guillermo del Toro drops them all and probably secures his Oscar win. The man is genius. Period. I’ve always know that. You’ve always known that. After all, Pan’s Labryinth is one of the beautiful and important films of all time. But this is different. Very different… in every way. On paper, this Amazon monster-romance-horror-fantasy-heist (yes, it’s all those and more) seems an unlikely smash hit but on the screen it sizzles and inspires. “The Shape of Water” is the year’s... Read More