Our top picks: Lauren Gunderson’s one-woman-ish “The Heath,” this weekend only at Synchronicity, and “Split in Three” by Atlanta playwright Daryl Lisa Fazio, at Aurora. Pictured (from left): Rhyn McLemore Saver, Falashay Pearson and Courtney Patterson in “Split in Three.” Photo by Chris Bartelski.
** Indicates an Encore Atlanta spring/summer season recommendation.
** The Heath. THURSDAY + FRIDAY ONLY. At Synchronicity Theatre. Decatur-born, San Francisco-based playwright Lauren Gunderson performs her one-woman-ish piece, describing it as “kinda like a Shakespeare hoedown that might make you cry.” In this new, deeply personal bluegrass musical, Gunderson weaves family lore and Shakespeare’s King Lear into a piece about mortality, madness and regret while celebrating life, music and the power of a good story. Part of Synchronicity’s new Spark Series. $25-$40. 8 nightly. One Peachtree Pointe building, 1545 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.992.3272.
** Split in Three. OPENS TONIGHT. This new comic-drama from Atlanta playwright Daryl Lisa Fazio is set in 1969 Mississippi as the Supreme Court forces the last segregated school system to integrate. Two sisters are caught in the national crossfire, especially when a long-lost Northern half-sister hits town. Split in Three had its world premiere in spring 2015 at Florida Repertory Theatre. “The results,” the Fort Myers News-Press said, “are haunting, funny, heartbreaking and deeply satisfying.” Aurora’s associate artistic director Justin Anderson again directs. The cast is led by Courtney Patterson, Falashay Pearson and Rhyn McLemore Saver. $20-$55. Through May 28. 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. 128 E. Pike St. in Lawrenceville. Free, covered, attached parking in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
This weekend only
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. TONIGHT-SATURDAY. Frequent guest conductor Nicholas McGegan returns to lead a program celebrating three music capitals — Vienna, Paris and London. The lineup: Mozart’s A Little Night Music; Rameau’s Suite from Les Indes galantes; and Haydn’s Symphony No. 104, London. McGegan, a Brit, has been called “one of the finest baroque conductors of his generation” (The Independent) and “an expert in 18th-century style” (The New Yorker). $20-$89. 8 nightly. Note: A shorter Casual Fridays concert begins at 6:30 p.m. ($25). Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.
Turandot. FRIDAY + SUNDAY. Puccini’s epic opera centers around the Princess Turandot, who decapitates each suitor who fails to answer her riddles. When the character Calaf falls in love with her, he wins her ghastly game and proposes a riddle of his own. Italian tenor Gianluca Terranova, who made his Atlanta Opera debut as Rodolfo in La bohème, sings the role of Calaf for the first time. In Italian with English supertitles. $45-$151. 8 p.m. Saturday; 3 p.m. Sunday. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, 2800 Cobb Galleria Parkway, Atlanta. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.881.8885.
The Comedy of Errors. THROUGH MAY 21. Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse tells the comic tale of the merchant twins Antipholus (Enoch King, Andrew Houchins) and the servant twins Dromio (Matt Felten, J.L. Reed), a slap-happy story of mayhem, merriment and, yes, errors. Also in the cast: Chris Hecke, Dani Herd, Steve Hudson, Amanda Lindsey, Gina Rickicki, Jennifer Lamourt, Matt Nitchie and India S. Tyree. $28-$39. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 6:30 p.m. Sunday. 499 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.874.5299.
Curious Queer Encounters. THROUGH MAY 14. 7 Stages’ annual interactive theater festival features seven local ensembles/artists creating original performances hidden in and around the Little Five Points theater space. This year, they represent and redefine queer culture. The event, curated by co-artistic director Michael Haverty, includes such artists as Jared Dawson, Jed Drummond, Corian Ellisor, Jim Grimsley, Heidi S. Howard, Jason Livingston, Rebecca Makus, Matthew Terrell and Jessica Unker. Note: Includes nudity and flashing lights. $22.50 and up. 7 tonight; 8 p.m. Friday-Saturday; and 2 p.m. Sunday. 1105 Euclid Ave. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404-523-7647.
The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told. THROUGH MAY 14. Out Front Theatre Company ends its inaugural season with this 1998 Paul Rudnick comedy inspired by the fundamentalist remark, “God made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve.” In Rudnick’s revisionist version of the Old Testament, God makes Adam and Steve, along with Jane and Mabel, the first lesbians. The foursome navigates the centuries together, encountering the gay animals on Noah’s Ark, a lesbian rabbi and a flamboyant pharaoh. The historical pageant eventually lands in present-day Manhattan. $15-$25. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 3 p.m. Sunday. 999 Brady Ave. in West Midtown. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.448.2755. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
Pete the Cat. THROUGH MAY 21. Premiere. The Center for Puppetry Arts stages an all-new production based on the book series by Georgia artist James Dean, who adopted a scrawny black kitten in 1999. These are Pete’s imagined adventures. Told with marionette, rod and shadow puppets. Artistic director Jon Ludwig wrote the adaptation and directs. Puppeteer/composer Dolph Amick 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.
Atlanta Symphony Orchestra: Gluck’s “Orfeo.” MAY 11 + 13. The myth of Orpheus, the musician who descends to the underworld to rescue his wife, Euridice, is considered a Gluck masterpiece. American countertenor David Daniels makes his ASO debut in the title role; Susanna Phillips makes her ASO debut as Euridice. This is the complete opera, with choreography by Lauri Stallings, direction by James Alexander and scenography by Daniel Arsham. $20-$79. 8 nightly. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.
Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra Finale. MAY 14. The 120-member ASYO wraps its 2016/17 season with performances of Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No.2 (2nd and 3rd movements); Respighi’s Pines of Rome; and Marquez’s Danzón No. 2, under the baton of assistant conductor Joseph Young. All tickets $10. 3 p.m. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.
** Father Comes Home From the Wars (Parts 1, 2 & 3). MAY 10-JUNE 11. At Actor’s Express. Suzan-Lori Parks’ 2015 Pulitzer Prize finalist resets Homer’s epic Greek poem The Odyssey during the American Civil War. In this trilogy, a slave named Homer — in exchange for a promise of freedom — follows his master into battle for the Confederacy. Parks, who won the 2002 Pulitzer for Topdog/Underdog, examines freedom and truth. Father, which won off-Broadway’s 2015 Obie Award for playwriting, is one of the most celebrated plays of the past decade. Martin Damien Wilkins directs. Evan Cleaver plays Hero. $22 and up. 8 p.m. May 10 (Director’s Rough Cut); 8 p.m. May 11-12 (previews). Opens at 8 p.m. May 13. Regularly at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. At the King Plow Arts Center in West Midtown, 887 West Marietta St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.
Xperimental Puppetry Theater. MAY 11-14. XPT returns to the Center for Puppetry Arts with this annual, decidedly adult event. This innovative puppet theater fest features six live performances, four short films and an art installation with such titles as Helix of Fire, AcroCloud and Coyote Love. $10 members; $15 nonmembers. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. 1404 Spring St. SW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391.
Finding Neverland. MAY 16-21. The 2015 stage musical, adapted from the 2004 Johnny Depp-Kate Winslet movie, provides the backstory for Peter Pan, focusing on Scottish novelist/playwright J.M. Barrie and his friendship with the family that inspired his tales of the Boy Who Won’t Grow Up. In this Broadway in Atlanta production, Barrie is played by Billy Harrigan Tighe, who spent his formative years at Pebblebrook High, Cobb County’s performing arts magnet. The show had a 16-month Broadway run. $30-$125. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 855.285.8499.