Stray Dog Theatre's New Works Laboratory presents an opportunity to participate in the development of new plays, and its free performances offer St. Louisan's a unique look at the creative process. The collaboration between playwright, actors and audience serves the company and the theater community well and I applaud Stray Dog Theatre for its commitment.
Torture, trust and the unknown are deep subjects to cover in an evening that combines modern dance and a short play. The Slightly Askew Theatre Ensemble has chosen to take a bold path with its presentation of "Nine," a provocative and brutal short play, and "Sketch," a dance by the Leverage Dance Theatre. The evening presents powerful questions but offers no easy answers, which only increases the impact of the show.
If Joan Crawford had lived long enough to see Nicky Silver’s outrageous dysfunctional family matriarch, Rita Lyons (Judi Mann), poor Joan would have felt more like Mother of the Year than “Mommie Dearest.”
St. Louis Shakespeare is now performing The Two Noble Kinsmen because scholars have by and large agreed that Shakespeare wrote about half of it, probably when John Fletcher asked him to help give the Globe Theatre's audience something fresh. So The Two Noble Kinsmen is now considered part of the canon, and St. Louis Shakespeare is determined to do every play in the canon.
Union Avenue Opera is nothing if not fearless, often taking on works that strain the company’s space at the Union Avenue Christian Church to the limit. Through next Saturday Union Avenue is presenting the second installment of its most ambitious project yet—Wagner's mammoth operatic cycle “Der Ring des Nibelungen” (“The Ring of the Nibelung”). And it's pretty darned impressive.
In "Time Stands Still," Donald Margulies takes a deceptively simple premise, examines it from four different perspectives (one per character), and how you feel about the play may well depend on which character you find espouses your particular belief.
The actor-focused Theatre Lab makes a bold statement with its inaugural production, "The Sunset Limited," directed by Ryan Foizey. Focused on character and intellect, the show benefits from strong performances by Robert Alan Mitchell as Black and Zachary Allen Farmer as White.
The Muny in Forest Park closes out the 2013 season with "West Side Story," the much-loved musical that's still an audience favorite. Featuring music and lyrics by Leonard Bernstein and a young Steven Sondheim, and a book by Arthur Laurents, this modern retelling of Shakespeare's classic Romeo and Juliet still feels fresh and exciting, even though it has been more than 50 years since its debut.
The Hawthorne Players, now in their 68th year, are currently staging a somewhat uneven production of "The Secret Garden" at the Florissant Civic Center Theatre.