whale-prod-4Want to get your culture on? Our recommendations this week once again include “The Whale” at Actor’s Express with Freddie Ashley and Tiffany Porter. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus.



11391563_10152900178997091_4746282691767709442_nVanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. THROUGH JUNE 28. Regional premiere. Horizon and Aurora theaters partner to present playwright Christopher Durang’s Tony Award-winning riff on all things Chekhov. Vanya and adopted sister Sonia live a quiet life in a Pennsylvania farmhouse, while sister Masha travels the world as a movie star — until she returns home with boy toy Spike in tow. $25 and up. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 + 8:30 p.m. Saturday; and 5 p.m. Sunday. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450. Runs Oct. 1-25 at Aurora Theatre in Lawrenceville. (Pictured: Masha, Vanya and Sonia, aka Tess Malis Kincaid, Bill Murphey and Lala Cochran)

The Whale. THROUGH JUNE 14. Actor’s Express tops a stellar season with Samuel E. Hunter’s multi-award-winning off-Broadway hit about one man’s last chance at redemption and how he finds beauty in the most unexpected places. Its center: a 600-pound recluse who’s hiding away in his apartment and eating himself to death while desperately wanting to reconnect with his daughter. $26-$45. 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.



Skelton, Blythe
Skelton, Blythe

ASO Season Finale. TONIGHT + SATURDAY. Maestro Robert Spano conducts Saint-Saën’s Samson et Dalila, the final offering in the Atlanta Symphony’s 2014-15 classical season. The story of love, seduction and betrayal features tenor Stuart Skelton as Samson and mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe as Dalila. Also taking part: bass-baritone Greer Grimsley and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus. $20-$99. 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.

BEE-e1414622656271Atlanta Fringe Festival. TONIGHT-SUNDAY. This one-of-a-kind live performance celebration returns for a fourth consecutive year. Twenty shows at five venues showcase everything from family-friendly cabaret to puppetry, modern dance, aerial acrobatics, satire and comedy. $10 single shows; $40-$99 passes. Every patron must have a Fringe Fest button ($3). Venues: 7 Stages (mainstage and black box), 1105 Euclid Ave. N.E.; Highland Ballroom, 644 North Highland Ave. N.E.; the Wrecking Bar, 292 Moreland Ave. N.E.; and the International Montessori Academy, 1240 Euclid Ave. N.E. Complete festival details HERE. Tickets HERE.

aveQpuppetAvenue Q. THROUGH SUNDAY. Horizon Theatre takes its irreverent hit to Piedmont Park for five performances. Rest easy (or not), this version of the smart, hilarious and risqué Tony and Suzi Bass Award-winning musical is rated PG-13. The neighbors are nice on Avenue Q, the only address you can afford when you’re fresh out of college, out of a job or just trying to find your purpose. Returning cast members: Suzi winner Nick Arapoglou, Jill Hames, J.C. Long, Jeff McKerley, Matt Nitchie and Spencer Stephens. New are Molly Coyne as Kate Monster and Natalie Gray as Christmas Eve. $35 table seating; $15 reserved seating; general admission is free (bring your own blanket or low beach chair for lawn seating). 7:30 nightly. The Promenade in Piedmont Park (parking in the SAGE garage at the Atlanta Botanical Garden), 1345 Piedmont Ave. N.E.  Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450.



slide-fairytaleuglyducklingMy Life As a Fairy Tale: The Ugly Duckling. THROUGH SUNDAY. Hans Christian Andersen himself tells the story of The Ugly Duckling in this piece by Open Eye Figure Theatre of Minneapolis. With actors and found objects. $16.50 nonmembers age 2 and up; $9.25 members. 10 a.m. + noon today-Friday; 11 a.m., 1 p.m. + 3 p.m. Saturday; and 1 + 3 p.m. Sunday. Center for Puppetry Arts, 1404 Spring St. N.W. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391.



Aris-AMMW-02The Artist Man and The Mother Woman. OPENS TONIGHT | THROUGH JUNE 21. When Geoffrey discovers that art teachers are off-the-charts sexy, he decides to seek a wife, which doesn’t sit well with his doting mum. Scottish playwright Morna Pearson gives us a savagely funny glimpse into the surreal universe of a spectacularly dysfunctional mother and son. At Arís Theatre, Atlanta’s stage for Celtic culture. Not appropriate for young audiences. $15-$25. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. Studio B, Georgia Public Broadcasting, 260 14th St. N.W. Free, covered parking. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.692.0053. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com. (Pictured: Joanna Daniels and Doug Graham. Photo by Jessica Fern Hunt)



Coriolanus. THROUGH JUNE 14. Shakespeare’s tale of extreme betrayal is one of his bloodiest and most political. Jonathan Horne is the title character, forced into the Senate by his overbearing mother and eventually banished by his own people. Cast includes Chris Kayser, Tony Larkin and Jacob York. $15-$39. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 6:30 p.m. Sunday. New American Shakespeare Tavern (with a full pub menu and bar), 499 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.874.5299. Discount gift certificates at PoshDealz.com.

LRzm1id6_sbCfo0u0On5gBQuXfbwiTk3m1BoPnd7IDI,0gPSzG-QduVCLKQh2mRu3KDMNxrxfIYY4yoOxvPgbnkKnuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Musical. THROUGH JUNE 28. The Alliance Theatre and director Rosemary Newcott present a musicalized version of the Mo Willems story about Trixie and Daddy, who take a trip to the Laundromat. The tunes are by Grammy Award-winning composer Michael Silversher. $15; $8 ages 6-17; 5 and under free. 10 + 11:30 a.m. Wednesday-Friday; 1 + 3:30 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. Also at 5 p.m. this Sunday. Alliance Theatre’s Hertz Stage, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. For more, see this ENCORE FEATURE. (Pictured, from left, Jeremiah Parker Hobbs as Dad, Devon Hales as Trixie and Hannah Church as Mom. Photo by Greg Mooney)

GARDEN 3The Secret Garden.   THROUGH AUG. 2. World premiere. The coming-of-age story about recently orphaned Mary Lennox is adapted by playwright Rachel Teagle and performed in the new (and permanent) English Garden at Serenbe. Based on the Frances Hodgson Burnett book of the same name. $10-$20.  11 a.m. Friday-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. Serenbe Playhouse, 10950 Hutchesons Ferry Road, Chattahoochee Hills. Details, tickets HERE or at 770.463.1110. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com. (Pictured: Shelby Folks as Mary. Photo by BreeAnne Clowdus)



web-play-homeThe 4th Atlanta One-Minute Play Festival. SUNDAY-TUESDAY. Scripted, split-second mayhem returns to Actor’s Express with minute-long plays by playwrights with Atlanta ties. Among them: Margaret Baldwin, Paris Crayton III, Jessica De Maria, Suehyla El-Attar, Megan Hayes, Patricia Henritze, Karla Jennings, Hank Kimmel, Matt Myers, Theroun Patterson, Topher Payne, Jordan Pullman, Pamela Turner, Steve Yockey, Pat Young and Jacob York. The One-Minute Play Festival is the brainchild of Dominic D’Andrea, who does 20 such events nationwide every year. $20. 6 p.m. Sunday; 7:30 p.m. Monday-Tuesday. Actor’s Express, 877 West Marietta St. N.W. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469.

s20-events-dgfriends--detailDad’s Garage & Friends. JUNE 11-13. This gala, a self-described “star-studded, big comedy bash of the year” features comics Colin Mochrie and Fred Willard; Gary Anthony Williams (the voice of Uncle Ruckus on “The Boondocks”); Dad’s regulars Amber Nash and Lucky Yates (both from “Archer”); Too Many Cooks: The Musical; and the Atlanta Opera. $20-$37 (8 + 10:30 tonight-Friday) at 7 Stages, 1105 Euclid Ave. N.E. No tickets available at the door. $29-$78.25 (8 p.m. Friday) at the Fox Theatre, 660 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.3141. 


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: 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.

View all posts by Kathy Janich