Before she won us over with her Tony Award-winning score on Fun Home, Lisa Kron rolled into our hearts with her stirring solo show, 2.5 Minute Ride. Returning to San Diego since its celebrated world premiere, 2.5 Minute Ride is an emotional and humorous adventure that dives right into the playwright's relationship with her father, a Holocaust survivor. Alternating between her brother's Brooklyn wedding to his internet bride, an annual outing to an Ohio amusement park and a trip to Auschwitz, Kron weaves together a beautiful story about family at Diversionary Theatre.
The outrageously entertaining and timely 9 to 5: The Musical follows the hilarious adventures of three female office workers who turn the tables on their sexist boss. When his abusive behavior becomes too much for them, the women kidnap him and run the office themselves. It turns out that even in a man's world, there's nothing they can't do. The crowd-pleasing musical comedy -- based on the hit 1980 film starring Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin and Dolly Parton -- boasts music and lyrics by Parton and a book by Patricia Resnick, who also wrote the film. Parton's score was nominated for a Tony, and the titular theme song won two Grammys and was nominated for an Oscar. Now you can see the madcap show at the Spreckels Theatre in San Diego.
Get ready to sing the praises of this off-Broadway musical comedy sensation about a fictitious Christian boy band that sets out to save the world one screaming fan at a time. Filled with angelic voices, sinfully spectacular dancing and plenty of pointed parody, Altar Boyz finds the five-member group finally hitting the big time with their latest concert. But the boys are worried that their pious pop act -- filled with songs like "Girl You Make Me Wanna Wait" and "Jesus Called Me On My Cell Phone" -- might not go over as well with sophisticated city folk. Returning to the Coronado Playhouse after last season's acclaimed, sell-out concert version, you're bound to fall in love with this full-length, all-singing, all-dancing production of Altar Boyz.
Newlyweds Paul and Corie are beginning their new life together in a tiny Manhattan walk-up. They couldn't be more different -- he's a straight-laced lawyer, and she's a free spirit who's always looking for the latest adventure. Paul doesn't understand Corie's relaxed ways, and she'd like him to be just a bit more spontaneous. Even something as simple as running "barefoot in the park" would be a start. Throw in a New York brownstone in constant disrepair, an eccentric neighbor and a surprise visit from Corie's mother, and watching the ups and downs of married life has never been so enjoyable. Catch this Tony-nominated comedy, filled with Neil Simon's trademark witty repartee and hilarious characters, at The Star Theatre in Oceanside.
James Sherman's heartwarming comedy Beau Jest tells the story of Sarah Goldman, who doesn't think her traditional Jewish parents will respond favorably to her boyfriend, a WASP executive named Chris Cringle. So what's a nice girl to do but create a fictional Jewish doctor as her imaginary beau and hire a male escort to play him in front of the family? Complications ensue when her charade is a little too successful and Sarah starts falling for the fake. This sweet romantic comedy was an off-Broadway success and also spawned a 2008 movie version starring My Big Fat Greek Wedding's Lainie Kazan. See Beau Jest when it comes to Escondido's Patio Playhouse.
Blue Door is a beautiful musical drama that follows Lewis, a noted mathematician who never met a problem he couldn't solve. Beneath all the success, however, lies a soul anguished by questions of personal and cultural identity as an African-American man. During a fit of disorienting insomnia after his wife leaves him, Lewis involuntarily envisions three generations of ancestors who show him that he must consider the entirety of his own history in order to truly face the life he's leading. Featuring stirring songs, humor and haunting imagery, this Pulitzer-nominated play is sure to impact anyone who's ever struggled with their past while trying to remain in the present. Step through the Blue Door at San Diego's MOXIE Theatre.
John Ford Noonan's lively comedy about friendship demonstrates that fulfillment can come from the most unlikely people and places. A Coupla White Chicks Sitting Around Talking centers on Maude, a prim New York housewife living in an upscale suburban neighborhood. Her quiet, organized life is upended by new neighbor Hannah Mae, a raucous and free-spirited transplant from Texas. Hannah Mae's insistence that the two become friends because "my back door faces your back door" seems absurd given their vast differences -- but they nevertheless find themselves learning from each other as their bond is forged over coffee. Check out White Chicks at Point Loma Playhouse.
Sarah Ruhl, one of the most innovative and celebrated playwrights in theatre today, takes us on a magical, Alice in Wonderland-esque journey through this retelling of the classic Greek myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. As we visit the land of the living and the depths of the underworld, we meet characters like the Three Stones (a nod to the classic Greek chorus), the Lord of the Underworld, and the two men who are pulling Eurydice's heart in different directions: Orpheus and her Father. With heartfelt themes of love, loss, and discovering your own truth, Eurydice will make you leave the theatre feeling emotionally moved and imaginatively nourished. The beauty of this play must be experienced!
An original sci-fi thriller from Talent to aMuse Theatre Company, Hope follows a six-member crew aboard a derelict ship. With one month left on their year-long space expedition, tensions increase as greed, paranoia and fear take over the crew. Can they fight this evil influence? Find out when Hope makes its world premiere at Tenth Avenue Arts Center in San Diego.
Long before it was a book, even before it was a poem, The Iliad was one heck of a story, a rollicking, raunchy and altogether enthralling tale that people couldn't get out of their heads. Now co-creators Lisa Peterson (Obie-winning director) and Denis O'Hare (Tony-winning actor) have recaptured the spirit of the early epic in An Iliad. In this celebration of storytelling, Linda Libby plays the Poet, who speaks directly to the audience, bringing to life the struggle between Achilles and Hector over the beautiful Helen, and the resulting battle and fall of Troy. Also starring Gunnar Biggs as the Muse, this personal, funny, deeply relevant play comes to the New Village Arts Theatre in Carlsbad.
You could probably spot a magician's tricks up close, right? Get ready for Sebastian's Intimate Miracles to prove you wrong. No matter how closely you look, you won't believe your eyes as the renowned sleight-of-hand artist makes the impossible happen right in front of your face. Presented in the classic parlor style, Intimate Miracles features Sebastian engaging the audience through both volunteer participation and his comedy-laced patter, while demonstrating jaw-dropping up-close card tricks. Prepare to be both impressed and entertained at the Red Spade Theater in San Diego's famed Old Town.
On Golden Pond is a humorous and heartwarming play about a long-married elderly couple, Norman and Ethel, spending yet another summer at their beloved lake cottage in Maine. When their estranged daughter arrives with her fiance and his son in tow, Norman and Ethel agree to host the young boy for the duration of the summer. As they come to terms with the realities of life's twilight years, reexamining the past and worrying over the fleeting future, they discover how precious time really is. On Golden Pond won three Tony Awards in its original Broadway run, and the 1981 film adaptation received 10 Oscar nominations, with wins for its stars Henry Fonda and Katharine Hepburn, as well as writer Ernest Thompson. Now you can enjoy On Golden Pond in the San Diego area at Vista's Broadway Theatre.
This raucous satire is set in 1950s Washington, D.C., where a State Department official and his secretary -- both gay and both locked firmly in the closet -- have been tasked with ferreting out homosexuals in the department. To avoid detection, they've come up with what seems like the Perfect Arrangement: they've married each others' partners. But their sitcom-like situation may come crashing down around them when an employee discovers their deception. Catch the West Coast premiere of this madcap comedy with this Intrepid Theatre Company production at San Diego's Horton Grand Theatre.
When a terrible water shortage leads to a government ban on private toilets, a greedy company profits by charging admission for one of humanity's most basic needs -- until a hero decides he's had enough and rises up against the system. Urinetown is a musical, satirical tale of corruption, love and revolution in a time when water is worth its weight in gold. The show's irreverent score gives a nod to musicals from Broadway to Brecht and Weill, and parodies musicals such as The Cradle Will Rock and Les Miserables. The winner of three Tonys and two Obie Awards during its original Broadway run, Urinetown comes to San Diego's Ocean Beach Playhouse and Arts Center.
"This play is not about my mother and me." So begins this autobiographical play by Lisa Kron, the Tony Award-winning writer and lyricist best known for her Broadway hit Fun Home. Despite Kron's claim at the beginning of the play, Well delves deep into the relationship between Kron and her chronically ill, semi-invalid mother. As Kron tries to share stories from her upbringing with the audience, her mother and other characters from her past routinely break character to correct Lisa's version of events and chat with her mother about her life. This tragicomic, self-referential journey is coming to the Diversionary Theatre in San Diego.
Wild, bawdy and ferociously playful, Joe Orton's outrageous farce What the Butler Saw is one of the seminal works of modern comedy. When a psychiatrist tries to seduce an aspiring secretary, his botched efforts lead to comic bedlam involving his insatiable wife, a randy bellhop, a befuddled police officer and Sir Winston Churchill. Psychiatry, religion, marriage, government, definitions of gender and even language are all targets of British playwright Orton's poison pen. His sly jokes and hilarious shenanigans will have you shaking with laughter from start to finish. Catch What the Butler Saw when it comes to Lamplighters Theatre in La Mesa.