Looking for something cultural to do this weekend and beyond? Here are Encore Atlanta’s recommendations (in alphabetical order). Pictured: A scene from “The Small House of Uncle Thomas” ballet in “The King and I,” presented through Tuesday at the Fox Theatre.

The King and I. THROUGH TUESDAY. Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most sumptuous musical comes to the Fox Theatre via Theater of the Stars. Both passion and politics are in play when British schoolteacher Anna Leonowens travels to 1860s Siam (now Thailand) to teach the King’s children. Based on the memoirs of the real-life Anna. The show won five 1952 Tony Awards, including best musical, and is just as timeless as ever. The score includes “I Whistle a Happy Tune,” “Hello Young Lovers,” “Getting to Know You,” “Shall We Dance” and many others. The TOTS cast is led by Victoria Mallory as Anna and Ronobir Lahiri as the King. 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 1:30 and 7 p.m. Sunday. $23-$58. 660 Peachtree St. N.E. Tickets, details HERE or at 1.800.ATL.TIXX. For ticket discounts that include a gift card to the Terrace restaurant, visit PoshDealz.com. Did you know The King and I almost never happened? STORY HERE.

Kiss of the Spider Woman. Actor’s Express opens its 2012-13 season with this musical thriller from Kander and Ebb (Cabaret, Chicago) based on the Manuel Puig novel and the 1985 movie of the same name. It tells the story of Valentin and Molina, a Marxist revolutionary and a gay window dresser, respectively, who develop an uneasy friendship rooted in surviving life in a Latin American prison. Directed by Express Artistic Director Freddie Ashley. The critics: “Mr. Ashley does a fine job of steering a large, energetic cast and turns Spider Woman into an exotic, ultimately moving evening of musical theater” (Atlanta INtown); “One of the theater’s strongest productions in recent history” (AtlantaTheaterFans.com). The show won seven 1993 Tony Awards including best musical. Through Oct. 7. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. $26-$47, plus tax (tickets are $2 cheaper when purchased online). 887 W. Marietta St. in the King Plow Arts Center. Tickets, details HERE or at 404.607.7469. For  discounts, visit PoshDealz.com.

Photo by S. Slusser/Georgia Ensemble Theatre

The Man Who Came to Dinner. OPENING WEEKEND. Georgia Ensemble Theatre opens its 20th anniversary season with this classic comedy by Kaufman and Hart, the duo whose You Can’t Take It With You was GET’s very first production. This one features a cast of more than 25 actors (including Allan Edwards, pictured at left, with Steve Hudson) telling the story of irascible arts critic Sheridan Whiteside, who makes a visit and just … won’t … leave. Through Sept. 23. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday; 8 p.m. Thursday-Friday; 4 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. $20-$33. Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forest St., Roswell. Tickets HERE or at 770.641.1260.

My Name Is Asher Lev. Theatrical Outfit opens its season with this coming-of-age story about art, family and religion in post-WWII Brooklyn. The critics: “Brilliant … riveting … revelatory” (AtlantaTheater Fans.com); “Nick Arapoglou plays so effectively against type it’s as though he’s been replaced by his own evil twin” (Curt Holman, Creative Loafing); “Played by a top-notch cast … Arapoglou’s energy and charisma is undeniable” (Wendell Brock, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution). The cast — Arapoglou, Lane Carlock and Brian Kurlander — plays a total of eight characters. Directed by Mira Hirsch (of the former Jewish Theatre of the South). $15-$40. Through Sept. 16. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W., Atlanta. Information at 678.528.1500. Tickets HERE or at 1.877.725.8849. For discounts, visit PoshDealz.com. Get up close and personal with Kurlander HERE.

Time Stands Still. SOUTHEASTERN PREMIERE. Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Donald Margulies tells the story of Sarah and James, a photojournalist and foreign correspondent who’ve been together for years and share a passion for documenting the realities of war. When circumstances send them home, conventional domesticity seems to threaten them more than roadside bombs. The cast: Robin Bloodworth, Carolyn Cook, Ann Marie Gideon and Chris Kayser. Previews at 8 p.m. Sept. 12-13 ($15). Opens at 8 p.m. Sept. 14. Through Oct. 14. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 and 8:30 p.m. Saturday (no 3 p.m. show Sept. 15); and 5 p.m. Sunday. $20-$25. Horizon Theatre Company, 1083 Austin Ave. N.E. (at Euclid Avenue). Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450.

The Tranquil Tortoise and the Hoppity Hare. FINAL WEEK. The Alliance Theatre invites those 18 months to 5 years (and their grown-ups) to this piece about the famous race. The audience is invited into the center of the track to experience the action all around them. Told with dance, movement, music and storytelling. Through Sept. 8. 9:30 and 11 a.m. In the Hertz Stage. $10. 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets at 404.733.5000.

What I Learned in Paris. WORLD PREMIERE. Miniskirts and bell-bottoms sold downtown for $8.87. Stevie Wonder sang “Livin’ for the City” on the radio. And change was in the air from Buckhead to Butler Street. This political romance by Pearl Cleage (pictured, at right) opens the Alliance Theatre‘s 2012-13 season in a big way. The story, a tale of passion and politics that could only happen in Atlanta, begins the night Maynard Jackson is elected mayor. Sept. 5-30. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday; 8 p.m. Friday; 2:30 and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. On the Alliance mainstage, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. $30-$50. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.


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@atlantametropub.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.

View all posts by Kathy Janich