part-five-theatre

Whether we’re on the Great White Way or sunbathing in the great state of California, we always like to catch a good show.  Here’s the short list of some upcoming productions that have caught our attention.  From the Shakespeare to Bono, there’s plenty of talent on (and off) stage this season.

American Idiot

AI

Berkeley Repertory Theatre / Berkelry, CA
4 September – 11 October
http://www.berkeleyrep.org/tickets/

The much-anticipated new musical from Green Day and director Michael Mayer (“Spring Awakening”) opens this weekend in Berkeley.  It’s story “follows working-class characters from the suburbs to the city to the Middle East, as they seek redemption in a world filled with frustration. This high-octane show features every track from the album, plus several new tunes from Green Day’s newest release, 21st Century Breakdown.”

Bye Bye Birdie

bye-bye-birdie

Broadway / NYC
Previews begin: 10 September
Opening: 15 October
http://www.byebyebirdieonbroadway.com/

Nearly 50 years since it was last on Broadway, John Stamos, Gina Gershon and Bill Irwin.  Mr. Stamos has done “Cabaret” and “Nine” for the Roundabout Theatre Company (who is producing the show) in the past.  For those of you who haven’t seen him onstage, we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Medea

madea

UCLA Live / Los Angeles
23 September – 18 October
http://www.uclalive.org/

Lamposts all over L.A. are announcing this UCLA-live production of the Euripides classic starring Annette Bening.  There’s a 12-woman chorus to guide audiences through this classic tale that, well, doesn’t have the happiest of endings.  Unfortunately the show is at the campus’ less-than stellar Freud Playhouse venue.  Why not Royce Hall, we ask?  Doesn’t Ms. Bening deserve it?

High Holidays

high-holiday

The Goodman Theatre / Chicago
31 October  – 29 November
http://www.goodmantheatre.org/

A dark comedy about growing up in Chicago in the ’60s as manhood (Bar Mitzvah) approaches.  We’ll see if another dinner table family comedy can make it from Chi-Town to Broadway…

Parade


Mark Taper Forum / Los Angeles
24 September – 15 November
http://www.centertheatregroup.org/

T.R. Knight’s moved from the set of ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ to the stage here in Los Angeles, where he is taking on the role of Leo Frank in the musical by Jason Robert Brown with a book by Alfred Uhry. Coming to us from the Donmar Warehouse, the show tells Frank’s story; a man who was convicted of murdering 13 year-old Mary Phagan in Atlanta in 1913.  We told you before…DARK.

The New York Musical Theatre Festival

nycmf

NYC
28 September – 18 October
http://www.nymf.org/

The festival that can take credit for introducing audiences to “Altar Boyz” “[title of show]” and Broadway’s “Next to Normal” has returned for it’s 6th season. If you can’t make it to Manhattan to check out new shows in venues you’ve never heard of, then at least have a listen to samples on the fest’s website.

Hamlet

ophelia_and_hamlet_wrap

Broadway / NYC
6 October – 6 December
http://www.hamletbroadway.com/

More tragedy!  The Donmar’s production of “Hamlet” hits the Great White Way this season.  On the show’s site you can have a sneak peak at some scenes interspersed with bits from leading man, Jude Law and director, Michael Grandage.  It’s already enjoyed sold-out runs in the West End and Elsinore Castle in Denmark.

…and in 2010, get ready for these showstoppers…

Spider-Man: Turn off the Dark

spider-man-broadway

Broadway / NYC
Previews Begin: 25 February 2010
http://spidermanonbroadway.marvel.com/

Here it is, kids.  The long-awaited (and slightly delayed) Spider-Man musicale directed by “The Lion King”‘s Julie Taymor with music from Bono & The Edge. Look for Evan Rachel Wood and Alan Cumming in this one. In a recent interview (http://joyhog.com/?s=spider-man) in the UK, Bono hinted at a certain operatic quality to the music. Juicy.

The Addams Family: A New Musical

addams-family

Broadway / NYC
Previews Begin: 4 March 2010
Opening: 8 April 2010
http://www.theaddamsfamilymusical.com/

Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth take the reigns with music by Andrew Lippa (“The Wild Party”) and book & lyrics from the creators of “The Jersey Boys,” Marshall Brickman & Rick Elice.  Nice.

The Great Fall Preview Continues:

Part 1: Books
Part 2: Television
Part 3: DVDs and CDs
Part 4: Film