blues1 (2)Want to get your culture on? Our top recommendations are “Blues for an Alabama Sky” at the Alliance Theatre, “Storefront Church” at Theatrical Outfit and a Michael Gandolfi world premiere at the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Pictured, from left, Keith Randolph-Smith, Crystal Fox and Tyrone Mitchell Anderson in “Blues.” Photo by Jeff Roffman



Blues for an Alabama Sky. THROUGH MAY 10. Join the Alliance Theatre for a 20th anniversary staging of this Pearl Cleage drama, a timeless look at hopeful dreams in hopeless days during the twilight of the Harlem Renaissance. The Alliance hosted the world premiere in 1995. $25 and up. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday; 8 p.m. Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 + 7:30 p.m. Sunday. Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details (including talkbacks and other special events) and tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. For more, see this ENCORE FEATURE. Discount tickets at

storefrontStorefront Church. THROUGH SUNDAY. Visit a wintery Bronx, where greedy capitalists devour giant gingerbread houses, a disenchanted preacher rediscovers his faith and a curmudgeonly loan officer experiences a rebirth. This piece concludes Tony Award-winning playwright John Patrick Shanley’s Church and State trilogy, which included the Pulitzer Prize-winning Doubt. $20-$35. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Friday; 2:30 + 7:30 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. The Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. N.W. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.528.1500. (Pictured, from left, Clayton Landey and Joe Knezevich. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus)




Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. TONIGHT + SATURDAY. The ASO offers a world premiere, a signature piece, Gershwin and pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet this weekend. The program, led by music director Robert Spano, features the premiere of Atlanta School of Composers member Michael Gandolfi’s Imaginary Numbers, Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite, Gershwin’s An American in Paris and Thibaudet on Ravel’s Piano Concerto. $30-$109. 8 tonight; 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. (Plus: The ASO’s 45th annual Decorators’ Show House & Gardens fundraiser runs through May 10.)



Antigone_flyer-2upcolor-e1424529509902-199x300Antigone, Presented by the Girls of St. Catherine’s. OPENS TONIGHT | THROUGH MAY 9. A world premiere by 2014 Alliance/Kendeda National Graduate Playwriting Competition winner Madhuri Shekar (In Love and Warcraft). Shekar retells Sophocles’ classic tragedy through the lens of a contemporary all-girls Catholic high school. Performed by the Alliance Theatre Teen Ensemble. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday. Hertz Stage, Alliance Theatre, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.



TheBreakers_BurnawayThe Breakers. THROUGH MAY 10. World premiere. 7 Stages presents an interactive erotic thriller, which asks audiences to cast voyeuristic eyes on a mysterious couple (Angele Masters, Kevin Stillwell) whose betrayal creates a haunted house of passion, lies and destruction. The script is by 7 Stages Associate Artistic Director Michael Haverty. For ages 21 and up. $22.50 advance; $25 at the door. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 5:30 p.m. Sunday. Additional shows at 10 p.m. May 2 + 9. At the Goat Farm Arts Center, 1200 Foster St. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.7647.

rocketboysRocket Boys. THROUGH MAY 10. Atlanta premiere. Legacy Theatre in Tyrone stages this new musical based on the best-selling New York Times memoir by Homer Hickam and the basis for the 1999 feature film October Sky, with Jake Gyllenhaal. It’s a coming-of-age story set at the dawn of the 1960s, about a mother’s love, a father’s fears and a group of young men who dreamed of launching rockets into space and made those dreams come true. Music + lyrics by newcomers Dan Tramon + Diana Belkowski. $15-$25. 8 p.m. Friday; 3 + 8 p.m. Saturday; 3 p.m. Sunday. 1175 Senoia Road, Tyrone. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.895.1473. Discount tickets at




ASO: Leila Josefowicz + John Adams. MAY 7 + 9. Composer-conductor John Adams and violinist Leila Josefowicz bring their latest collaboration to Symphony Hall with Scheherazade.2, Symphony for Violin and Orchestra. The piece was written by Adams for Josefowicz, who champions modern composers. Also planned: The Enchanted Lake by Liadov and Respighi’s Pines of Rome. $20-$99. 8 p.m. May 7; 7:30 p.m. May 9. 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.

11080625_10153152306358917_3696488237062873967_oCrazyanity. PREVIEWS MAY 7 | OPENS MAY 8. Meet Paul and Samantha, who’ve been dating for six years. Their seemingly perfect relationship comes screeching to a halt when Samantha realizes she wants more and an elderly neighbor helps turn a routine game night turns into fight night. By Atlanta playwright Paris Crayton III. Through May 24. $15; $25 first-row reserved seats. Rising Sage Theatre at the West End Performing Arts Center, 945 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd. Details HERE, tickets HERE.

hands_monitor-990x557Hands on a Hardbody. OPENS MAY 7 | THROUGH MAY 31. Regional premiere. Dive deep into the heart of Texas at Aurora Theatre, where the lives of 10 strangers intertwine while they vie for a brand-new “hardbody” truck. The soulful, rockabilly score is by Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green. The show had a 28-performance run on Broadway in 2013. Brian Clowdus directs. Musical direction by Ann-Carol Pence. Choreography by Jen MacQueen. $30-$50. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Additional performance at 10 a.m. May 27 ($20-$30). 128 E. Pike St., Lawrenceville. Free, attached, covered parking in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222.

Pippin Setups__268 John Rubinstein as Charlemagne in the National Touring Production of PIPPIN. Credit Terry ShapiroPippin. OPENS MAY 5 | THROUGH MAY 10. Broadway in Atlanta brings us the fantastical revival of this 1972 musical, about a young prince searching for his place in the world. The Diane Paulus-directed staging, a blend of Broadway, circus and Cirque, won three 2013 Tony awards, including best musical revival. This cast features Tony Award-winner John Rubinstein, the original Pippin, as Pippin’s father, Charlemagne. $30-$80. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday; 8 p.m. Friday; 2 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 1 + 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E. Tickets HERE. For more, see this ENCORE FEATURE on John Rubinstein. (Pictured: Rubinstein as Charlemagne, aka Charles. Photo by Terry Shapiro)



11070518_10152671974942470_8108318010946156244_nThe Whale. PREVIEWS MAY 13-15 | OPENS MAY 16. Actor’s Express ends a stellar season with Samuel E. Hunter’s multi-award-winning off-Broadway hit. On the outskirts of Mormon Country, Idaho, a 600-pound recluse named Charlie hides away in his apartment, slowly eating himself to death and desperate to see his estranged daughter. This is one man’s last chance at redemption and of finding beauty in the most unexpected places. The cast: AE Artistic Director Freddie Ashley as Charlie, Kyle Brumley, Stephanie Friedman, Agnes L. Harty and Tiffany Porter. Heidi Cline McKerley directs. Through June 14. $26-$45. Director’s Rough Cut is 8 p.m. May 13 (pay what you can at the door). Previews at 8 p.m. May 14-15 ($20). Opens at 8 p.m. May 16 ($40, includes post-show reception). Regularly 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. 887 W. Marietta St. in the King Plow Arts Center. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469. Discount tickets at (Pictured: Ashley. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus)


Kathy Janich, Encore Atlanta’s managing editor, has been seeing, working in or writing about the performing arts for most of her life. Please email:

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