by Miryam Gordon -
SGN A&E Writer
A Midsummer Night's Dream, Seattle Shakespeare Co. , 5/3-5/21 (at Cornish Playhouse)
This version of the classic 'who loves who' comedy is placed in the realm of 1930s movie musicals about show business. George Mount says, 'They're called backstage musicals. They're movies about people on Broadway putting on plays. So we're going to do a play, based on the movie genre.' A band of local tradespeople get mixed into the madness when one member is transformed into a donkey. The fairy Puck, who initiated the foolery, sorts it all out in time for a nutty comic skit and a grand wedding.
Skin, Deaf Spotlight, 5/4-7 & 5/12-13 (at 12th Avenue Arts)
Deaf Spotlight is pleased to present this story, which follows four Deaf Queer women who are struggling to make sense of violence, sex, love and friendship amidst a changing landscape, Seattle's Capitol Hill. This will be performed in ASL and spoken English.
...And Starring Claire from Hollywood, Macha Monkey Prods., 5/5-6/3 (at 18th & Union) (World Premiere)
A new play by local writer Jim Moran focuses on a serene town on the Oregon coast. Formerly famous Hollywood actress, Claire Zimmer returns home for personal reasons, agreeing to star in a local production of Noel Coward's Private Lives. Not everyone is delighted with this turn of events. Chaos ensues when Hollywood and community theatre egos clash in this farcical tale of coming home and starting again.
Private Lives, Reboot Theatre Company, 5/5-20 (at Slate Theater)
Amanda and Elyot are divorced from each other. They've coincidentally booked honeymoon suites with their new (and wholly unsuitable) spouses next to each other. Hilarity and passion ensue when Amanda and Elyot rekindle both their romance and ire, with their new spouses in hot pursuit. Gender swaps here may make an old chestnut seem new again!
Macbeth, Fern Shakespeare Co. , 5/5-21 (at Theatre 4, Armory)
New to Seattle, The Fern is in its fifth season of production. The Fern specializes in Original Practice Shakespeare, which breaks down the 'fourth wall' and presents Shakespeare as it was presented in Shakespeare's time: directly to the audience. Tempted by prophecies of three witches, Macbeth grapples with power, greed and his ambitious wife. Can they spurn fate to make their own future, or are they merely pawns in a much more sinister and powerful plan?
A gender neutral cast of eight actors portrays a total of twenty-six characters.
Money and Run, Theatre Schmeater, 5/10-6/10
Wayne Rawley wrote several plays in a series - a trailer trash epic series, as it was billed. Now The Schmee is reprising all three in repertory (all in the same run) all directed by Rawley! Straight from the small town of Creekbottom, smack dab in the center of Cudrup County and not too far from the world famous Captain Picklebug's Caves of Mystery. Saturdays, you can binge on all three at once.
Dreamgirls, Village Theatre, Issaquah: 5/11-7/2, Everett: 7/7-30
This is the first time Village has produced this powerhouse musical. Motown-inspired score, dynamic performances, and a moving look behind-the-scenes of the entertainment business punctuate this story of an up-and-coming girl group. Their transformation into a pop music phenomenon causes hard lessons along the way about love, greed, adversity, and what it takes to get to the top. We are already excited about the all-local cast hard at work in rehearsals!
Gutenberg the Musical, Kate, Matt, Julia, and Pauls Presents, 5/12-22 (at the Jewel Box/Rendezvous)
If you haven't seen this two-person musical spoof about printing press inventor Johann Gutenberg, prepare to have fun! A pair of aspiring playwrights perform a backers' audition for a big, splashy musical. With an unending supply of enthusiasm, Bud and Doug sing all the songs and play all the parts in their crass historical epic, with the hope that one of the producers in attendance will give them a Broadway contract - fulfilling their ill-advised dreams.
Cardinal Sins, Centerstage Theatre, 5/13-6/4 (World Premiere)
A tale of unrequited love told against the story of the birth of freedom - the creation of the Magna Carta! A tragic love affair is woven into the story of the Archbishop of Canterbury, who in 1215, led rebellious barons against the tyrannical King John and who formulated the Magna Carta, the western world's foundation document that has been the inspiration for, and the cornerstone of, constitutional government.
Grand Concourse, Seattle Public Theater, 5/18-6/11
Having dedicated her life to religious service, Shelley runs a Bronx soup kitchen where even the staff is needy, but lately her heart's not quite in it. When Emma - an idealistic but confused college dropout - arrives to volunteer, her reckless mix of generosity and self-involvement pushes Shelley to the breaking point.
The Realistic Joneses, New Century Theatre Co. , 5/31-7/1
We meet Bob and Jennifer and their new neighbors, John and Pony, two suburban couples who have even more in common than their identical homes and their shared last names. As their relationships begin to irrevocably intertwine, the Joneses must decide between their idyllic fantasies and their imperfect realities. A Will Eno play.
Barbecue, Intiman Theatre, 5/31-6/25 (at Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute)
Robert O'Hara, the talented playwright of Bootycandy, takes on the classic American family story. Set in a park in Middle America, the play features the O'Mallerys who are gathering to share some barbecue and straight talk with their sister Barbara, whose spiral of drugs and recklessness has forced her siblings to stage an open-air intervention. With the whiskey flowing, family dysfunction and stereotypes collide as the play poses the question: Is family worse than addiction?
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