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This Week's Off-Broadway Openings: April 4, 2011-April 10, 2011

April 4, 2011 - by CG News Desk

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Click on the show title for theater information, show times, and more.

Boom Town - Created and directed by Chris Lashua, Boom Town takes audiences back to the days of the Gold Rush only with a cirque nouveau twist thanks to its Cirque Mechanics’ (Birdhouse Factory) signature theatricality and ingenuity. The end result is a family-friendly showcase of colorful characters, outlandish contraptions and astounding acrobatics.

By the Way, Meet Vera Stark - In her new work, Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage draws upon the screwball films of the 1930s to take a funny and irreverent look at racial stereotypes in Hollywood. The story is a 70-year journey into the life of a headstrong African-American maid and budding actress (Vera), and her tangled relationship with her boss, a white Hollywood star desperately grasping to hold onto her career. When circumstances collide and both women land roles in the same Southern epic, the story behind the cameras leaves Vera with a controversial legacy scholars will debate for years to come.

The Comedy of Errors - Shakespeare's story of two sets of identical twins accidentally separated at birth is built around a cavalcade of mistaken identity mishaps that lead to wrongful attacks, a near-seduction, an arrest, and accusations of infidelity, theft, madness and demonic possession.

Love Song - Beane is an exile from life - an oddball. His well-meaning sister, Joan, and brother-in- law, Harry, try and make time for him in their busy lives, but no one can get through. Following a burglary on Beane's apartment, Joan is baffled to find her brother blissfully happy and tries to unravel the story behind his mysterious new love, Molly. Funny, enchanting and wonderfully touching, John Kolvenbach's offbeat comedy is a rhapsody to the power of love in all its forms.

Macbeth - The U.K.’s Olivier Award-winning Cheek by Jowl company presents a physical, psychologically taut, and unsettling take on this Shakespearean classic. One brilliant move follows another as the witches are distilled to haunting voices as the actors move like phantasms across a shadow-flecked stage. All the while, the madness of Lady Macbeth accelerates with fatal inexorability. Toxically enmeshed, the Macbeths inhabit a single, conflicted consciousness, one that festers in self-loathing even as it blindly seeks the destruction that will ultimately be its own.

A Minister's Wife - Based on an early 1898 version of Candida, this new production stars a cast of Broadway’s best, including Marc Kudisch and Bobby Steggert.  In it, the Reverend James Morrell and his wife, Candida, are happily married – or at leat they think – until a romantic young poet enters their life.

Nightmare Alley - Based on the darkly evocative 1946 William Lindsay Gresham novel of the same name, which became the subsequent cult-classic film noir, Nightmare Alley explores the darker side of human nature by taking us into the world of carnies, cons, and clairvoyants.

Picked - In this play by Christopher Shinn, a young actor prepares for his life to change when a legendary director casts him as the lead in a big-budget Hollywood movie. But he is not prepared for what comes next, and everything he knows about himself will be called into question as he discovers what it means to be "picked."

Potato Needs a Bath - This 30 minute show by Scottish puppeteer/storyteller Shona Reppe is the perfect entertainment for  kids two to five. In it, Eggplant shows off her glamorous new jewels, the Pears flirt and flit about, and Plum needs a potty break. But where is Potato? No one can dance the Mango Tango without Potato! Before he can celebrate with his produce pals, the muddy little spud needs a bath.

Reading Under the Influence: The “Real” Westchester Women’s Book Club - In this world-premiere comedy by Tony Glazer, the wine hits the fan as the women of the Westchester Book Club gather to discuss their current required reading, “The Homeless Dogs of Egypt.” During their chardonnay-fueled discussion, they find out that the rights to their book club have been sold to a reality TV production company. It's the "The Real Housewives" meets "Oprah." Don't judge a book club by its cover... you never know how the pages will turn!

For more Off-Broadway shows, click here. For Off-Off Broadway, click here.

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