Encore Atlanta

February 2013

This weekend’s best bets: Feb. 28

Looking for something cultural to do in the next week or so? Here’s our select list of recommendations. Pictured: Danielle Deadwyler as Charlotte and Christopher Moses as Wilbur the pig in “Charlotte’s Web” at the Alliance Theatre, part of Saturday’s FAMILIES Centerstage event at the Woodruff Arts Center in Midtown.

Angry Fags. WORLD PREMIERE. 7 Stages presents Atlanta playwright Topher Payne’s dark comedy about a couple of gay pals who become enraged when a friend is assaulted. Described as an “Oscar Wilde-meets-Fight Club fever dream.” The cast: John Benzinger, Melissa Carter, Johnny Drago, Suehyla El-Attar, Michael Henry Harris, Marcie Millard and Jacob York. Justin Anderson directs. Run time: three hours, with two intermissions. The critics: “In spite of the challenging title and serious subject matter, Angry Fags includes Payne’s signature humor throughout, and the atmosphere is surprisingly tender. … But it seeks to be a lot of things and, in the end, perhaps takes on too much” (Andrew Alexander, ArtsATL.com); $20-$25. Through March 17. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and 5 p.m. Sunday. 1105 Euclid Ave. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.7647. For discounts, visit PoshDealz.com.

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Music director Robert Spano conducts Bach’s Mass, with the ASO Chamber Chorus and guest artists Celena Shafer and Krisztina Szabo (sopranos), countertenor James Laing, tenor Thomas Cooley and bass Stephen Powell. 8 tonight-Friday. $24-$75. Symphony Hall, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.

FAMILIES Centerstage 2013. For one day only, the Woodruff Arts Center becomes a family fair with live performances, arts, crafts and music. See performances and appearances by folks from the Center for Puppetry Arts, Zoo Atlanta and Milton High School’s Cirque program. Tickets include admission to either the 1 p.m. or 4 p.m. performance of the Alliance Theatre’s Charlotte’s Web. This event benefits the Alliance’s educational programming. Begins at 1 p.m. Saturday. $25-$38. 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.4200.

Fela! The Musical. OPENING TONIGHT. This musical is based on the true story of legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti, whose soulful Afrobeat rhythms ignited a generation. Inspired by his mother, a civil rights champion, he defied a corrupt and oppressive military government and devoted his life and music to the struggle for freedom and human dignity. Fela! features former Destiny’s Child member Michelle Williams. $38-$63.50. 8 tonight-Friday; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 1.855.285.8499. Read more in this Encore FEATURE.

Fly. EXTENDED THROUGH MARCH 10. Follow four courageous young African-Americans as they become part of WWII’s famous Tuskegee Airmen, fighting for a country that has yet to embrace them as full citizens on the ground. At Theatrical Outfit. The critics: “Fly movingly and effectively brings an incredible, heroic and resonant moment of history to the stage” (Andrew Alexander, ArtsATL.com); “Theatrical Outfit has a bona-fide hit on its hands. … The actors are perfectly cast and very fine” (Manning Harris, Atlanta INtown); “In large part Fly takes wing. … a sporadically soaring production” (Bert Osborne, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). $15-$33. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Theatrical Outfit at the Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W. Details, tickets HERE. (Pictured, from left: Eric J. Little, Doc Waller, Brian Kurlander and J.C. Long. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus)

La traviata. OPENING SATURDAY. In celebration of the bicentennial of Giuseppe Verdi’s birth, Atlanta Opera presents his tale of Violetta, one of opera’s most beloved fallen women. Mary Dunleavy sings the role. In Italian with projected English translations. Pre-opera talks begin an hour before each curtain. $25-$140. 8 p.m. Saturday; 7:30 p.m. Tuesday; 8 p.m. March 8; and 3 p.m. March 10. Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre, 2800 Cobb Galleria Parkway. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.881.8885.

Master Harold … and the boys. FINAL WEEKEND. Aurora Theatre stages Athol Fugard’s 30-year-old masterpiece, the 1982 Tony Award-winning best play. An ordinary rainy afternoon in 1950s South Africa becomes a life-changing moment for 17-year-old Hally, when two beloved servants become his confidants in the midst of family turmoil. Contains adult content. The critics: “Director Jaclyn Hofmann’s rather accomplished production is another welcome reminder of what a commanding force Rob Cleveland can be” (Bert Osborne, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution); $15. 8 tonight-Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. 128 Pike St., Lawrenceville. For free parking, enter at 153 Crogan St. The deck is attached to the theater. Tickets, details HERE or at 678.226.6222. For discounts, visit PoshDealz.com.

The Odd Couple. FINAL WEEKEND. It’s Felix vs. Oscar, neat freak vs. slob and friend vs. friend in Neil Simon’s 1965 comedy classic about a couple of recently divorced pals who re-enter bachelorhood side by begrudging side. Veronika Duerr directs. The critics: “Fabrefaction rolls out this warhorse with energy and panache, and Dave Lauby and John Stanier are smartly cast as Felix and Oscar. … While there are few surprises awaiting viewers of The Odd Couple, it proves time and again that it’s a cultural survivor” (Andrew Alexander, ArtsATL.com). $22; student and senior citizen discounts. 8 tonight-Friday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Fabrefaction Theatre, 999 Brady Ave. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.876.9468. For discounts, visit PoshDealz.com. (Pictured, from left: Dave Lauby and John Stanier. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus)

Romeo and Juliet. FINAL WEEKEND. Atlanta Shakespeare Company celebrates its 13th season of R&J by casting teenagers in the leading roles. Jake West (Romeo) is a senior at North Cobb Christian School in Kennesaw; Margaret Flock (Juliet) is a senior at Atlanta’s Lovett School. $15-$36. 7:30 tonight-Saturday; and 6:30 p.m. Sunday. New American Shakespeare Tavern, 499 Peachtree St. N.E. Tickets, details HERE or at 404.874.5299. Get $50 gift cards for just $25 at PoshDealz.com.

Symphony Gala. Funny man — and banjo player extraordinaire — Steve Martin drops by with his bluegrass band, the Steep Canyon Rangers, for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s  annual fund-raiser. The night of humor and music benefits the ASO’s education and community engagement programs. 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Concert only: $45-$120 HERE. For gala tickets that include pre- and post-concert activities, go HERE or contact Sarah Levin at Sarah.Levin@woodruffcenter.org. Symphony Hall, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E.

Two Trains Running. August Wilson, one of America’s great playwrights, visits 1969 Pittsburgh in this drama from his 10-play cycle about African-American life in the 20th century. The Hill District is gentrifying, threatening the cultural heart of black Pittsburgh. Slated for demolition: a diner that’s the last refuge for a makeshift family of wounded souls. Run time: Nearly three hours. The critics: “In the end, although True Colors gives Two Trains Running a top-notch production, some viewers may find that a sense of emotional connection and catharsis is missing from Wilson’s deeply political play” (Andrew Alexander, ArtsATL.com). $15-$60. Through March 10. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. True Colors Theatre Company at the Southwest Arts Center, 915 New Hope Road S.W. Tickets HERE, details HERE,

The Waffle Palace: Smothered, Covered & Scattered 24/7/365. Horizon Theatre returns to the griddle with this encore run of its summer hit. The script, by Larry Larson and Eddie Levi Lee, is inspired by real-life news stories about Waffle Houses everywhere. $20-$40. Through March 17 — three weeks left. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 and 8:30 p.m. Saturday; and 5 p.m. Sunday. 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. (at Euclid Avenue). Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450. (Pictured: Allan Edwards and Maria Rodriguez-Sager.

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Kathy Janich, Encore Atlanta’s managing editor, has been seeing, covering or working in the performing arts for most of her life. Full disclosure: She’s affiliated with Fabrefaction Theatre and Theatrical Outfit, both mentioned above. Please email: kathy@encoreatlanta.com.


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