Thinking about going to the theater? Not sure what to see, or even if there's anything left? Fear not! This area's enthusiastic theater folk would never, and I mean never, let you down. There is something, somewhere, for everyone.
There's farce, from companies big and small. Road Less Traveled Productions rolls out Jon Elston's "Buffalo Movie," where a couple of local filmmakers kidnap a potential savior for their project. And Paul Robeson Theatre sends up religious themes, relationships and more with Zora Neale Hurston and Langston Hughes' 1931 "Mule Bone."
Alleyway Theatre finds Alex Wexler and Bill Parsley's "Lost in Hollywoodland," about a director whose soul is challenged by evil studio czar Dyablik. Irish Classical Theatre Company will bring Noel Coward's "Blithe Spirit," with a ghostly first wife on the haunt, astral bigamy and elegant silliness.
Studio Arena Theatre offers a spoofalicious production of Charles Ludlam's gothic "Mystery of Irma Vep" -- once again, the second wife is treated to eerie goings-on. As for the mother of all spoofs, "Monty Python's Spamalot" gallops into town at Shea's Performing Arts Center in May. Comic genius Eric Idle adapts his own movie, complete with killer bunnies and singing, dancing knights. Irresistible.
This is not to say that there aren't plenty of dramas, musicals and clever comedies around. For a combo platter, try Buffalo United Artists' production of "Love! Valour! Compassion!" Terrence McNally's Tony Award-winner is a juicy, adult com/dram.
Other dramas include a Torn Space production of David Rabe's Hollywood dissection, "Hurlyburly," and political commentary in debate form with Gary Earl Ross' "The Best Woman," from Ujima Company.
Musicals in store include Lancaster Opera House's "Pajama," a treat for Rock Hudson/Doris Day fans. "Sweet Charity" at Shea's should satisfy your taste for big, glitzy song-and-dance delights.
For comedy, Kavinoky Theatre will offer a luscious bit of fun: Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest." Neil Simon is represented as well, by his classic "Odd Couple," at Lancaster Opera House.
Family fare, homage shows and the masterful Harold Pinter are also featured this winter and spring.
Theatre of Youth's family offerings are all adapted from Newbery Award-winning books: "The Bridge to Terabithia," "The Giver" and "Charlotte's Web" are based on known quality. Take the kids.
Individuals in the musical spotlight will include Harold Arlen, Sophie Tucker, Frank Sinatra and Chita Rivera (as herself). And there's Michael Walline's ode to Joni Mitchell as MusicalFare premieres "Familiar Strangers," which conceptualizes the iconic singer-songwriter as a woman imagining stories about people outside her window -- with a cast of nine singers and dancers. O'Connell & Co. will present takes on blues legends such as Ma Rainey and Bessie Smith.
Harold Pinter's darkly funny comments on the world have earned him a Nobel Prize for literature. See why, as Irish Classical presents "Birthday Party," and BUA gets its version of "Betrayal" up and running.
A tantalizingly rich and varied season remains, so now is definitely the time for those of you who have resolved to get out of the house more, support regional theater, broaden your horizons -- or all of the above.