By Richard Schultz, Aug. 28, 2014.
Local theater often reflects the issues impacting those who live in that community. Although they may be small in scale, local theater companies often garner a loyal audience who looks to them for entertainment as well as enlightenment.
Feb. 12-March 1
In this drama by Victor Hugo Rascon Banda, one of Mexico’s most prolific and widely produced playwrights, three generations of a Mexico City-based family endure the absence of a son, husband and father who has left for the United States in search of work. As the family’s situation deteriorates, a sighting of their absent loved one catapults the play to its surprising ending. Performances alternate between English and Spanish.
This world premiere of a new play by Diana Grisanti delves into a family’s history of secrets. Shaken by her father’s death, Mary sets off to uncover three generations worth of mysteries buried in the West End of Louisville, Ky. River City charts Mary’s discoveries, which span four decades, and investigates race, memory and the ghosts that haunt one American family.
Handle with Care
This hilarious and heartwarming romantic comedy by Jason Odell Williams tells the story of a young Israeli woman who reluctantly travels with her grandmother to America. The young woman, who has little command of English, meets a man who has little command of romance. This southwest premiere asks the question: Is their inevitable love an accident, or destiny generations in the making?
Stella and Lou
Jan. 21-Feb. 1
Is a second chance at love still possible even for two people with a lot of miles on them? Lou’s Bar, in South Philadelphia, has seen happier days. So has Lou himself. However, a nurse named Stella sees the possibility of a new life for both of them. As the two deal with the difficult decisions they now face, they reflect on their pasts and look ahead to the future in this southwest premiere production.
Live Theatre Workshop
9 Parts of Desire
Oct. 16-Nov. 15
This off-Broadway hit was inspired by playwright Heather Raffo’s trip to a modern art museum in Baghdad in August 1993, and details the lives of nine Iraqi women that span the decade between the first and second Gulf Wars and occupation. It is a portrait of the extraordinary (and ordinary) lives of a cross-section of Iraqi women and what it means to be in a country overshadowed by war.
May 14 – June 13
At the height of the Cold War, Joe Alsop is the nation’s most influential journalist, beloved, feared and courted by the Washington world. But as the ‘60s dawn and America undergoes dizzying change, the intense political dramas Joe is embroiled in become deeply personal as well. Best known for his Pulitzer Prize-winning play Proof, David Auburn wrote this 2012 play.
Theatrikos Theatre Company
God of Carnage
The 2009 Tony Award-winner for Best Play is an explosive comedic drama exploring the dynamics of two couples that meet over drinks to discuss an episode of bullying perpetrated by the child of one set of beleaguered parents. As with her previous plays, such as Art and Life X 3, Yasmina Reza examines the explosive underbelly of a seemingly ‘civilized’ strata of modern society. Reza’s tale is a study in the tension between civilized surface and savage instinct.
Prescott Center for the Arts
Pump Boys and Dinettes
Aug. 28-Sept. 15
The ‘Pump Boys’ sell high octane on Highway 57 in Grand Ole Opry country and the ‘Dinettes,’ Prudie and Rhetta Cupp, run the Double Cupp diner next door. Together they fashion an evening of country western songs that received unanimous raves on and off-Broadway. With heartbreak and hilarity, they perform on guitars, piano, bass and, yes, kitchen utensils.
In this most sophisticated and entertaining play written by Noel Coward, Elyot and Amanda, once married and now honeymooning with new spouses at the same hotel, meet by chance, reignite the old spark and impulsively elope. After days of being reunited, they again find their fiery romance alternating between passions of love and anger. Their aggrieved spouses appear and a roundelay of affiliations ensues as the women first stick together, then fall apart, and new partnerships are formed.