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'Bad Seed' reborn

When it comes to plays about child serial killers you can't do a whole lot better than Maxwell Anderson's "The Bad Seed."

The show, a favorite of small theater companies across the United States, tells the disturbing story of a young girl with a penchant for murder. It will serve as the third production of Hamburg Theatre Under the Stars, launched in 2009 by director Tony Baksa. The company performs its shows outdoors in Hamburg's Memorial Park at Lake and Union Streets. Its past productions (William Inge's "Picnic" and Ivan Menchell's "The Cemetery Club") were well received by the Southtowns audiences, and Baksa is hoping to build on that fledgling reputation this year.

"The whole play really deals with the theme of nurture versus nature. It's a chilling piece. I've made it a little graphic just to make it fun," Baksa said, "so we have a man burning onstage."

The show, owing to its open-air location and its director's flair for making a statement, will also feature a fully restored '56 Chevy Impala as a prop. Other set pieces will come from the Orchard Park Antique Mall, which is loaning Baksa his pick of items to give the play an authentic look and feel.

The show opens at 7 p.m. Thursday and runs through Sept. 4. Admission is free. More info is online at htuts.com or 648-6963.

-- Colin Dabkowski

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