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Go See a Play: What’s Happening This Week April 6 – 11

Let’s time travel with our imaginations, artistry provided by talented wizards. Where can we go this week? Back to 17th century New York City or a civil war-torn Uganda at Y2K or mid-1600 Amsterdam or Shakespeare’s time with those wacky kids Rosenkrantz and Guildenstern or to a swanky hotel room in 1930s Washington D.C.  Read on for this week’s selections:

“Born Yesterday”April 6 – 8
The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Loretto-Hilton Center on Webster University campus
www.repstl.org

What It’s About: Junkyard tycoon Harry Brock swaggers into Washington, D.C., determined to buy a senator or two. The monkey wrench in his schemes is Billie Dawn, his seemingly dim-witted ex-showgirl girlfriend. But when Brock hires a reporter to tutor Billie, she rapidly comes into her own as a force to be reckoned with. This sharp and snappy comedy hilariously skewers Beltway corruption.”

Director: Pamela Hunt

Starring: Ruth Pferdehirt, Andy Prosky, Aaron Bartz, Maison Kelly, Michael Cassidy Flynn, Randy Donaldson, Michelle Hand, Ted Deasy, Ryan Lawson-Maeske

“Cardboard Piano”

April 6-8, April 12-15
8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and Thursday, April 12; 2 p.m. Sundays
West End Players Guild
Union Avenue Christian Church, 733 Union Boulevard, St. Louis

What It’s About: In civil war-torn northern Uganda, a missionary’s daughter and a local girl exchange secret wedding vows and plan their escape, but they cannot evade the reach of the encroaching civil war.
Hansol Jung’s play explores the deep but tragic relationship between the two young women and a troubled child soldier they try to save. The cardboard piano is their symbol of the hope and courage needed to carry on in a hopeless world. But can anyone have the courage to forgive the unforgivable?

Director: Linda Kennedy

Starring: Frankie Ferrari, Reginald Pierre, Darrious Varner and Jazmine Wade.

Of Note: Patrons will get the first peek at West End’s upcoming 2018-19 season, their 108th.

“Church Basement Ladies”

April 6 – 15
Clinton County Showcase
Avon Theatre, 525 N. Second St., Breese, Ill.
www.ccshowcase.com

 

“Hamilton”

April 3 – 22
The Fox Theatre, 527 N. Grand
www.fabulousfox.com

What It’s About:  A story of America then, as told by America now, “Hamilton” is the story of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton, a West Indies immigrant who became George Washington’s right-hand man during the Revolutionary War, and the new nation’s first Treasury Secretary. The musical, with book, score and lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda, blends hip-hop, jazz, blues, rap, R&B and Broadway.

Director: Thomas Kail

Starring: (First National Tour, with replacements, in St. Louis) Austin Scott, Nicholas Christopher, Julia K. Harriman, Sabrina Sloan, Chris De’Sean Lee, Ruben J. Carbajal, Chaundre Broomfield-Hall, Isa Briones, Carvens Lissaint, Peter Matthew Smith, and Alexander Ferguson.

Of Note: “Hamilton” won 11 Tony Awards out of record-setting 16 nominations in 2016. It also won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, multiple Lucille Lortel and Drama Desk awards.

Yvette Lu of St. Louis is one of the swings in the ensemble.

The “Hamilton” Lottery gives away 40 orchestra tickets away a day (each $10). You can enter once a day for up to 2 tickets. Download the app or go online.

Tickets are also released daily. Check with metrotix.com

“New Jerusalem”

April 4-22
New Jewish Theatre
Marvin and Harlene Wool Studio Theatre
New Jewish Community Center
2 Millstone Campus, Creve Coeur, 63146
www.newjewishtheatre.org
314-442-3283

What It’s About: Playwright David Ives’ “New Jerusalem, the Interrogation of Baruch de Spinoza at Torah Talmud Congregation: Amsterdam, July 27, 1656” is the true story of Jewish philosopher Beruch de Spinoza, who was ex-communicated from Amsterdam’s Jewish community in the mid-1600’s in order to keep the peace of that city’s Jews.

Director: Tim Ocel

Starring: Will Bonfiglio, Jim Butz, John Flack, Greg Johnston, Karlie Pinder, Robert Riordan and Jennifer Theby-Quinn.

Ignite! Play Festival at The Rep

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis presents a staged reading of the play “Nonsense and Beauty” on Saturday, April 7, at 7:30 p.m. in the Studio Theatre. For more info, www.repstl.org.

Based on a true story about the writer E.M. Forster, who met and fell in love with a policeman that was 23 years his junior. It was 1930, and their relationship was very risky for its time. It evolved into a 40-year love triangle that was both turbulent and unique. great writers.”

 

“Judy Garland: Come Rain or Come Shine”

April 12-15
Playhouse @ Westport
635 West Port Plaza, St. Louis 63146
Tickets: 314.534.1111
www.westportplayhousestl.com

What It’s About: Award-winning dynamo Angela Ingersoll (“End of the Rainbow”) superbly captures the emotional and vocal power of Judy Garland live in concert. With her great big voice and naturally winning humor, Ingersoll soars in this loving homage. Iconic songs include “Over the Rainbow,” “Get Happy,” and “The Man That Got Away.” For more information, visit www.artistsloungelive.com.

Of Note: Chicago Tribune calls her “Magnificent. The best Judy Garland Chicago ever saw. Barring the real one.” Chicago Sun-Times exclaims, “Phenomenal. Angela Ingersoll was born to play Judy Garland. Ingersoll’s tour de force performance might well leave you believing you’ve encountered the ghost of the beloved film star.”

 

“Rosenkrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead”

April 6-8, 12-15
7:30 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday
St. Louis Shakespeare
Ivory Theatre, 7620 Michigan
www.stlshakespeare.org
314-361-5664

What It’s About: Tom Stoppard’s comedy, penned during the height of the absurdist movement, follows the two hapless friends of Hamlet, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, as they go on a journey from which they never return. On a day like any other, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern’s peaceful morning is suddenly disrupted when a messenger from Elsinore castle raps on their window informing them that they have been summoned. Thus, begins the journey for our befuddled travelers as they explore fate, their purpose and very nature of existence.

Director: Suki Peters

Starring: Robert Thibaut as Rosencrantz, Ted Drury as Guildenstern, Isaiah Di Lorenzo as The Player, Scott McDonald as Hamlet, Nick Kelly as Claudius, Wendy Renée Greenwood as Gertrude, Dan McGee as Polonius and Eileen Engel as Ophelia.

As Tragedians and others: Joe Garner, Megan Wiegert, Genevieve Collins, Cliff Turner and Michael Pierce

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Written by 

Lynn has had a continuous byline in metropolitan St. Louis publications since 1978. She talks about theater and movies on local radio, and has taught journalism at three colleges, currently at SIUE. She's been a show-tune lovin’ drama queen since age 7, when she organized neighbor kids to put on “Cinderella” in her Belleville backyard. She lives for art, team trivia, new adventures, friends, her large loud family, and her two grown sons Tim and Charlie. She resides in south St. Louis.

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