Looking for something cultural to do this weekend and beyond? Here are Encore Atlanta’s recommendations (in alphabetical order). Pictured: Allen O’Reilly as Malvolio in a scene from Georgia Shakespeare’s “Illyria: A Twelfth Night Musical” opening this weekend. Photo by Jen Hofstetter Photography.

Alice in Wonderland. WORLD PREMIERE. Serenbe Playhouse and Atlanta playwright Rachel Teagle give us an Alice who’s introverted and closed off from the world. With the help of a ragtag troupe of magical masked characters, however, she loses herself in the rapture of nonsense and learns what it means to be her true self. Critics call this adaptation “goofy” and “creative.” This site-specific romp is staged outdoors on the Forest Glen Stage. Through July 28. 11 a.m. Friday-Saturday. Serenbe is in Chattahoochee Hills, west of Palmetto and about 30 minutes from Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. $15; $10 students and children; under 2 free. Details, tickets, directions: www.serenbeplayhouse.com or 770.436.1110. For discounts, visit poshdealz.com.

C.S. Lewis On Stage. THIS WEEKEND ONLY. The versatile Tom Key (right) dips into his acting bag to once again channel Belfast-born C.S. Lewis (1898-1963), as revealed in the journalist/author’s autobiography and letters. Lewis (The Chronicles of Narnia, The Screwtape Letters) wrote everything from fiction to theology and, interestingly, was pals with J.R.R. Tolkien. 7:30 p.m. Friday; 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 and 5 p.m. Sunday. $20-$40. Theatrical Outfit, Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W. Tickets HERE or at 678.528.1500.

The Flowering Tree. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus present a Theater of a Concert staging of John Adams’ opera. It’s based on an Indian folk tale about a beautiful peasant who discovers that she can transform herself into a flowering tree and sell the blossoms to support her mother. With soloists Jessica Rivera, Russell Thomas and Eric Owens. Robert Spano conducts. Note: No late seating! 8 tonight and Saturday. $21-$79. Atlanta Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Tickets HERE or 404.733.5000. READ MORE HERE.

High School Opera Institute Spring Concert. Graduates from the Atlanta Opera’s High School Opera Institute will showcase their work in a performance featuring arias and small ensemble pieces from some of opera’s greatest works. 4 p.m. Sunday. Free. Morningside Presbyterian Church, 1411 N. Morningside Drive N.E. Details: education@atlantaopera.org or 404.881.8883.

Illyria: A Twelfth Night Musical. OPENING WEEKEND. This gender-bending love triangle, the first cog in Georgia Shakespeare‘s three-show summer repertory, is set to a musical mix of rock ‘n’ roll, country, gospel and Andrew Lloyd Webber-ish theater songs. The music is by John R. Briggs (Shrew: The Musical) and Eric Frampton. Briggs also adapted the piece, directs and contributed the lyrics. Featuring company regulars Courtney Patterson, Joe Knezevich and Chris Kayser and a cast of thousands, well, 17. Good for ages 6 and up. Picnicking before the show on the shaded terrace is encouraged. Bring a basket and a bottle of wine or pre-order from Carole Parks Catering, the company’s preferred partner. Check the website for a schedule of pre-show and post-show chats. Through Aug. 5. (Note: Much Ado About Nothing opens June 21, The Importance of Being Earnest on July 5.) 8 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday; 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday. Season packages still available; single tickets $15-$45. Conant Performing Arts Center at Oglethorpe University, 4484 Peachtree Road N.E. Details, tickets: www.gashakespeare.org or 404.504.1473.  For discounts, visit poshdealz.com.

Jersey Boys. FINAL WEEKEND. This musical about the Four Seasons just became the 19th longest-running show on Broadway, slipping ahead of Lerner and Loewe’s My Fair Lady. The warts-and-all bio about four guys from a tough neighborhood who made it big in pop music actually has a story line, and a pretty good one. Each singer — Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Tommy DeVito and Nick Massi — gets to tell the story from his point of view. Winner of the 2006 Tony Award for best musical. 8 tonight-Friday; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 1 p.m. Sunday. $20-$135. Presented by Broadway in Atlanta at the Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E.  Tickets HERE or 1.800.745.3000. READ MORE about the making of Jersey Boys HERE.

One-Minute Play Festival. TWO PERFORMANCES ONLY. This sounds like F-U-N! Atlanta follows New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami and Chicago in presenting a wild night of drama, comedy and, perhaps, puppetry, that tries to reflect what’s unique about our artistic community. Playwrights taking part include Margaret Baldwin, Nick Boretz, Lisa Braithwaite, Greg Carraway, Laura Carson, Park Cofield, Paris Crayton III, Phillip DePoy, Johnny Drago, Daryl Fazio, Gabrielle Fulton, Neeley Gossett, Doug Graham, Lauren Gunderson, Peter Hardy, Joshua Harmon, Michael Haverty, Patricia Henritze, Karla Jennings, Hank Kimmel, Eddie Levi Lee, Jon Ludwig, Amina McIntyre, Vynnie Meli, Addae Moon, Steve Murray, Lee Nowell, Topher Payne, Theroun Patterson, Robin Seidman, Pamela Turner and Steve Yockey. Directors: Justin Anderson, Melissa Foulger, Jaclyn Hofmann, Melanie Long, Grant McGowen, Heidi Cline McKerley and Ellen McQueen. 8 p.m. Sunday-Monday. $20. Actor’s Express in the King Plow Arts Center, 887 W. Marietta St. Tickets HERE.

Musicals Suck, The Musical. OPENING WEEKEND. If you love to hate musicals or hate to love them, Dad’s Garage promises you’ll love this show. Got that? The story: Sydney was scarred by a musical as a child and now hates them, but the Ironic Curse Gypsy has turned her life into a musical. To escape, Sydney must learn to sing and dance. Written by Travis Sharp and Dad’s Artistic Director Kevin Gillese, who also directs. Music by Eric Frampton (Illyria: A Twelfth Night Musical at Georgia Shakespeare). Previews at 8 tonight ($5-$15). Opens at 8 p.m. Friday. Through June 30. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday. $14-$20, cheapest if you buy online. Also available: Fancy Pants VIP seats for a $5 upcharge (online and by phone). Dad’s Garage Theatre Company, 208 Elizabeth St. N.E. Tickets HERE or at 404.523.3141.

The Waffle Palace: Smothered, Covered and Scattered 24/7/365. WORLD PREMIERE. Extended through July 1. This loving sendup of that most Southern of institutions has heart and plenty of quirky humor. It comes to Horizon Theatre compliments of playwrights Eddie Levi Lee and Larry Larson. The nimble, often hilarious cast features LaLa Cochran, Allan Edwards, Marguerite Hannah, Enoch King, Eric Mendenhall and Maria Rodriguez-Sager. In a brilliant bit of marketing, Horizon is selling waffle-flavored pastries at the theater, and will have Nana G’s Chicken & Waffles food truck outside the theater from 5 to 8 p.m. June 23 (call 404.584.7450, buy a $13 meal voucher and part of the proceeds benefit Horizon). 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 and 8:30 p.m. Saturday; and 5 p.m. Sunday. $20-$30 plus taxes. 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. at Euclid Avenue. Tickets HERE or 404.584.7450. READ MORE about cast member LaLa Cochran.

Xanadu. Disco balls. Roller skates. ’80s hairstyles. What’s not to love? Actor’s Express wraps its season with this powder puff of a musical, a surprise hit in the 2007-08 Broadway season that parodies the Olivia Newton-John movie. Critics, save one, call it “silly fun” and “completely wacky, delightfully preposterous and totally irresistible.” But if you don’t like musicals, stay home! Through June 16. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; and 2 p.m. Sunday. $25-$47 plus fees ($2 discount when you buy ONLINE). 887 W. Marietta St., in the King Plow Arts Center. Box office: 404.607.7469. For discounts, visit poshdealz.com.


Kathy Janich, Encore Atlanta’s managing editor, has been seeing, covering or working in the performing arts for most of her life. Please email: kathy@encoreatlanta.com.

About Kathy Janich

Kathy Janich is a longtime arts journalist who has been seeing, working in or writing about the performing arts for most of her life. She's a member of the Theatre Communications Group, the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, Americans for the Arts and the National Arts Marketing Project. Full disclosure: She’s also an artistic associate at Synchronicity Theatre.

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