What to do? What to see? Our top recommendation comes in two words: “Blackberry Winter.”  The Steve Yockey-penned piece takes us deep inside the heart and mind of one Vivienne Avery (Carolyn Cook, pictured), who’s doing her best to care for her mother, who has Alzheimer’s disease. Photo by Chris Bartelski



Blackberry Winter. CLOSES SUNDAY. See. This.  Show. Carolyn Cook, in a tour de force, plays Vivienne Avery, a successful Southern woman dealing with her mother’s dementia. A National New Play Network rolling world premiere by onetime Atlantan Steve Yockey. At Actor’s Express in a co-production with Out of Hand Theater. Joe Sykes as the Gray Mole and Maia Knispel as the White Egret complete the cast. $21.60-$30.24 plus fees. 8 tonight-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. King Plow Arts Center, 887 West Marietta St. N.W. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469. For more on Yockey, see this ENCORE FEATURE.

Will Demery as Clay, Brad Raymond as Fetch. Photo: Josh Lamkin
Demery as Clay, Raymond as Fetch. Photo: Josh Lamkin

Fetch Clay, Make Man. CLOSES SUNDAY. In the days before one of Muhammad Ali’s most anticipated fights, the heavyweight boxing champ forms an unlikely friendship with out-of-fashion Hollywood actor Stepin Fetchit. By Will Power. Eric J. Little directs for True Colors Theatre. Rob Demery is Clay, Brad Raymond is  Fetch. $20-$50. 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Southwest Arts Center, 915 New Hope Road. Details, tickets HERE or at 877.725.8849. For more on Raymond, see this ENCORE SNAPSHOT.

Last chance

brotherslogo-192x300Brothers of Affliction. CLOSES SUNDAY. Rising Sage Theatre ends its three-show 2015 season with a reprise of this drama about three troubled siblings and their secrets. The script is by Atlanta playwright Paris Crayton III. Cast: Anthony Goolsby, Carlus Houston and Kerwin Thompson. $17-$50. 8 tonight-Friday; 2 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. West End Performing Arts Center, 945 Ralph D. Abernathy Blvd. S.W. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.500.7243.

RJ_web_smallRomeo & Juliet. CLOSES SUNDAY. Georgia Ensemble Theatre does Shakespeare for the first time in its 23-year history. Jonathan Horne (The Elephant Man) and Jennifer Alice Acker (Camelot) play the unlucky lovers in a cast that includes Allan Edwards, Steve Hudson, Megan McFarland, Brandon Patrick, Chris Rushing and Kevin Stillwell. Tickets start at $26. 8 tonight-Friday; 4 + 8 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. Roswell Cultural Arts Center, 950 Forrest St., Roswell. Details, tickets HERE or at 770.641.1260. Discount tickets at For more on director Crowe, see this ENCORE SNAPSHOT.

This weekend only


ASO with Yevgeny Sudbin. TONIGHT + SATURDAY. The superstar Russian pianist joins the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra for Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1. Also on the program: Suppe’s Poet and Peasant Overture and Brahms’ Piano Quartet in G Minor. Grammy-nominated Uruguayan conductor Carlos Kalmar is on the podium. $20-$89. 8 nightly. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.

Opening this week

Brandon O'Dell, who wrote this year's revue, returns to perform.
Brandon O’Dell, who wrote this year’s revue, returns to perform.

Christmas Canteen 2015. OPENS TONIGHT | THROUGH DEC. 20. Aurora Theatre’s annual holiday revue turns 20 with more of the audience-pleasing jokes and songs for which it’s known. Brandon O’Dell again anchors the cast. $30-$65; 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday  (no shows Nov. 25-26). Already sold out: Nov. 27, 29 and Dec. 6. 128 E. Pike St., Lawrenceville. Free, covered, attached park in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.226.6222.

De Vries as Scrooge, Neal A. Ghant as Bob Crachit. Photo: Greg Mooney
De Vries as Scrooge, Neal A. Ghant as Bob Crachit. Photo: Greg Mooney

A Christmas Carol. BEGINS TONIGHT | THROUGH DEC. 27. Bah, humbug, indeed. The Alliance Theatre’s  multicultural, musical staging of the Dickens’ classic is a holiday tradition for many of us. David de Vries returns as Scrooge for a second season; longtime Scrooge Chris Kayser returns, after a year off, to play Marley. Let the caroling begin! Tickets begin at $20. Performance times vary; please go HERE for details. Tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. For more, see this ENCORE FEATURE.

Leaver, as Crumpt
Leaver, as Crumpet

The Santaland Diaries. OPENS FRIDAY | THROUGH DEC. 31. Crumpet is back, and he’s not happy about it. Crumpet (Harold Leaver) recounts the true-life tale of an out-of-work writer’s stint as a Macy’s Department Store elf. It didn’t go well, which in writer David Sedaris’ hands, makes it very, very funny — and not for children. Enoch King and Lala Cochran complete the cast. $25-$45. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 8:30 p.m. Saturday; and 6 p.m. Sunday. Horizon Theatre, 1105 Euclid Ave. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450.

Now playing

thankskillingThanksKilling the Musical. THROUGH NOV. 28. What happens when you take a terrible movie about five college kids, headed home for Thanksgiving who happen to cross paths with a homicidal turkey possessed by an ancient Indian curse, and then set out to make an even more terrible musical? Find out with this special holiday treat from Dad’s Garage Theatre Company. Easily offended? Don’t go. $10.50-$22.50. Dad’s Garage at 7 Stages, 1105 Euclid Ave. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.3141.

Next week


ASO: The Music of John Williams. FRIDAY + SATURDAY. Williams, a composer and the longtime conductor of the Boston Pops, wrote music for such movies as Harry Potter, Indiana Jones, Jurassic Park, Saving Private Ryan, the Star Wars series, Superman and War Horse. Join the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and POPS! conductor Michael Krajewski to hear more than a few. $43-$75 and selling briskly. Only single seats remain for Saturday night. Some sections sold out for the other two performances. 8 p.m. Friday; 2 + 8 p.m. Saturday. Note: Saturday matinee is a family-friendly 75 minutes. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. N.E. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000.

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