We offer 6 shows not to miss, from Actor’s Express to 7 Stages and Synchronicity. And, opening this week, are “Pais de Bicicleta (Bicycle Country)” at Aurora Theatre and “Pete the Cat” at the Center for Puppetry Arts. Plus. Much. More. Pictured, from left: Leo Thomasian, Jeremiah Parker Hobbs and Michael Stiggers as Danny Zuko in “Grease” at Serenbe Playhouse. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus.
** Indicates an Encore Atlanta winter season recommendation.
Cinderella and Fella. CLOSES SUNDAY. World premiere. At the Alliance Theatre. In this updated telling of the Cinderella story, kindness counts, friendship beats romance, and magic lies just outside your back door. The cast: Terry Burrell, S. Renee Clark, Molly Coyne, Scott DePoy, Jeremiah Parker Hobbs, Marcie Millard, India S. Tyree and Brian Walker. $18-$32. 1 + 3:30 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; and 7 p.m. April 7. Alliance mainstage, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
Grease. THROUGH APRIL 16. Will it rain on prom night? Will Danny and Sandy ever find true love? Will Frenchy flunk out of beauty school? Find out in this outdoor staging by the always inventive Serenbe Playhouse. Join the gum-chewing, hot-rod-loving boys in leather jackets and their wisecracking girls in poodle skirts in a setting that evokes a drive-in movie. VIP vintage car seating (seating for four, a special drink menu, a dedicated wait staff, car-side bottle service, and unlimited food and drink) is available. Randi Garza (Evita) plays Sandy; Michael Stiggers is Danny. $30-$35; VIP seats $500 per foursome. The Wildflower Meadow at Serenbe. 10950 Hutchesons Ferry Road, Chattahoochee Hills. Details, tickets HERE or at 770.463.1110. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
The Legend of Georgia McBride. THROUGH APRIL 16. At Actor’s Express. What do you do when your Elvis act gets the ax? With a pregnant wife, no money and eviction looming, Casey (the terrific Nick Arapoglou) swaps his jumpsuit for sequins and becomes the Florida Panhandle’s newest drag queen. The script is by Matthew Lopez, who also wrote the decidedly darker The Whipping Man (Alliance Theatre, 2013). $21-$45. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. King Plow Arts Center, 887 West Marietta St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
** The Magic Negro. THROUGH APRIL 15. The full title of this one-man show by Atlanta improv artist Mark Kendall is The Magic Negro and other Blackity Blackness, as told by an African-American Man who also happens to be Black (his capitalization). The title and the fact that Kendall does improv should be clues. Here he shines a light on the “Magic Negro” stereotype and covers everything from the race card to white flight, from Aunt Jemima to Black Jesus. He’s going for laughs, of course, and something more. An earlier version was developed and staged at Dad’s Garage Theatre Company. $15-$25. 7:30 p.m Wednesday-Thursday. 8 + 10:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday. Alliance Theatre’s Hertz Stage, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.
** Strait of Gibraltar. THROUGH APRIL 23. World premiere. At Synchronicity Theatre. In this sexy romantic thriller, a Jewish New Yorker (Maggie Birgel) and a Moroccan man (Benjamin Dewitt Sims) meet at a party and fall in love hard and fast. When she learns he’s undocumented, she offers to help him and his family. What they face is anything but happily-ever-after. This smart drama by Andrea Lepcio (Synchro’s Looking for the Pony in 2009) looks at love, truth, prejudice and civil rights in the age of the Patriot Act. Also in the cast: Suehyla El-Attar, Brian Ashton Smith and Kathleen Wattis. Rachel May directs. $15-$50. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. Synchronicity Theatre at One Peachtree Pointe, 1545 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.484.8636.
** White Woman in Progress. CLOSES SUNDAY. World premiere. At 7 Stages. Highly recommended. Tara Ochs’ one-woman crackerjack of a play comes from her work as civil rights activist Viola Liuzzo in the 2014 Oscar-nominated feature film Selma. Although she didn’t have a great deal of screen time, the story of Liuzzo — a Detroit housewife who drove South to help marchers and was murdered — wouldn’t let go. Ochs’ funny, approachable drama champions individual power and conversations about privilege, race and social justice. Don’t miss it. $22.50 and up. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. 1105 Euclid Ave. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.7647.
This weekend only
ASO Does Rachmaninoff. TONIGHT-FRIDAY. Music director Robert Spano conducts the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in Vocalise, Piano Concerto No. 1 and Symphonic Dances from the Russian pianist, composer and conductor (1873-1943). Onetime MacArthur “genius” grant recipient Stephen Hough solos on the concerto. $25-$94. 8 nightly. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.
Opening this week
** Pais de Bicicleta (Bicycle Country). APRIL 7-30. At Aurora Theatre. The Lawrenceville’s company’s Teatro Aurora program continues with this Spanish-language production for all audience. Pais de Bicicleta comes from playwright Nilo Cruz (last season’s Sotto Voce and a Pulitzer Prize winner for Anna in the Tropics). We meet three refugees (Limara Meneses Jiménez, Anthony P. Rodriguez and Juan Carlos Unzueta) with a lust for freedom trying to make a successful journey across the sea from Havana to Miami. The play mixes magical realism, whip-fast dialogue and the Latin love of music and dance. The Spanish dialogue comes with English supertitles. $20-$30. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Free, covered and attached parking in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222.
Pete the Cat. THROUGH MAY 21. Premiere. The Center for Puppetry Arts presents this all-new production based on the book series by Georgia artist James Dean. It features the imagined adventures of the scrawny black kitten he adopted in 1999 and named Pete. With marionette, rod and shadow puppets. Artistic director Jon Ludwig wrote the adaptation and directs. The cast: Luis Hernandez, Amy Sweeney, Tim Sweeney, Anna Claire Walker and puppeteer/composer Dolph Amick, who wrote the original music. $20.50 nonmembers; $10.25 members. 10 + 11:30 a.m. Tuesday-Friday; noon + 2 p.m. Saturday; and 1 + 3 p.m. Sunday. 1404 Spring St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391.
** The Bridges of Madison County. THROUGH APRIL 16. Southeastern premiere. Aurora Theatre stages the Jason Robert Brown musical (Parade, The Last Five Years) based on the 1992 best-seller and subsequent feature film. Onstage, the story opens up to include more characters and more scenes but, at its heart, is still about a lonely Iowa farm wife named Francesca (Kristin Markiton) and her unexpected love affair with a traveling photographer (Travis Smith). The show had a three-month Broadway run in 2014. $30-$65. 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Also at 10 a.m. April 12 (tickets start at $20). 28 E. Pike St., Lawrenceville. Free, covered and attached parking in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales. THROUGH APRIL 23. The Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse promises a medieval romp through boisterous and bawdy olde England. This comic adaptation reintroduces six tales in forms ranging from classical to spaghetti western. The cast: Kirstin Calvert, Laura Cole, Nicholas Faircloth, Adam King, Enoch King, Rivka Levin, Amanda Lindsey and Drew Reeves. Pub menu and festive spirits available. $15-$36. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 6:30 p.m. Sunday. No show April 7 or 16 (Easter). 499 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.874.5299.
Nobody Loves You. THROUGH APRIL 30. At Horizon Theatre. The game of love is on in this musical about cluelessly self-obsessed contestants who compete for love and adoring fans on a reality-TV show. Heidi Cline McKerley directs a cast that includes Leslie Bellair, Jeanette Illidge, Wendy Melkonian, Brooke Owens and Brad Raymond. $25-$40. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 + 8:30 p.m. Saturday; and 5 p.m. Sunday. 1083 Euclid Ave. NE (at Austin Avenue). Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450.
Simply Simone: The Music of Nina Simone. THROUGH APRIL 15. Prodigy. Superstar. Activist. Exile. Vocal powerhouse. Nina Simone, one of the true divas of the 20th century, defied classification and defined a generation. This musical revue at Theatrical Outfit shares the rich legacy of an American icon whose work encompassed jazz, gospel, blues, Broadway and rock ‘n’ roll. Four performers play Simone in a show that includes such classics as “I Loves You, Porgy,” “The Look of Love,” “My Baby Just Cares for Me,” and “Here Comes the Sun.” Patdro Harris directs. $20-$48. The Balzer Theater at Herren’s. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.528.1500. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
The Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival. APRIL 9-10. This manic mix of words, writers and performers returns for a seventh season. The plays, all a maximum of one-minute long, explore America and Atlanta in the wake of November’s presidential election. Among the nearly 60 playwrights are such names as Phillip DePoy, Johnny Drago, Suehyla El-Attar, Edith Freni, Megan Hayes, Hank Kimmel, Amina S. McIntyre, Addae Moon, Lee Nowell, Theroun Patterson, Jacob York and Steve Yockey. $20. 8 nightly. Actor’s Express in the King Plow Arts Center, 887 W. Marietta St. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469.
Firebird. APRIL 14-16. Atlanta Ballet pays homage to three of the most inventive choreographers of the 20th and 21st centuries. The bill features Firebird, with music by Stravinsky and choreography by Yuri Possokhov; Allegro Brillante by choreography George Balanchine; and Petite Mort by choreographer Jiří Kylián. $20-$128. 8 p.m. April 14; 2 + 8 p.m. April 15; and 2 p.m. April 16. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, in northwest Atlanta at Cobb Galleria Parkway and Akers Mill Road, inside I-75/I-285. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.892.3303. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.