Theater Talk: Love - forbidden, tragic, criminal, romantic, or even silly - it's all over WNY stages

Jan 17, 2020

After an early start for both THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY and COPS AND FRIENDS OF COPS, over half a dozen other productions are up this weekend, including A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM (Irish Classical with the Buffalo Philharmonic at Kleinhans) and on Monday the second free reading of GOD OF VENGEANCE which is the basis for a Paula Vogel play (INDECENT) coming in March. Take some time to peruse the listings below.

Steve Copps as photographer Robert Kinkaid remembers a photo of Francesca Johnson (in background, sung by Michele Marie Robers) in THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY at the Kavinoky Theatre through February 2.
Credit Gene Witkowski, Kavinoky Theatre

OPENING

THE ANASTASIA TRIALS IN THE COURT OF WOMEN, courtroom drama by Carolyn Gage presented by The Brazen-Faced Varlets, directed by Lara D. Haberberger, starring Jennifer Arroyo, Heather Fangsrud, Jessie Miller, Jamie Nablo, Caroline Parzy-Sanders, Emily Pici, Kathleen Rooney, Stefanie Warnick, Priscilla Young-Anker. Jan17-Feb 1, Fri & Sat at 8, plus Feb 2 at 2.  Alleyway’s Cabaret, 672 Main St. (598-1585).

THE ANTIPODES, play by Annie Baker, directed by Scott Behrend, starring Sean Cullen, Cassie Cameron, Kristen Tripp Kelley, Greg Howze, John Hurley, David Marciniak, Ricky Needham, Dave Hayes, Adam Yellen. Jan 16-Feb 9, Thu-Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2. Road Less Traveled Theater, 456 Main St. (629-3069). www.roadlesstraveledproductions.org

FACTORY FOR MURDERS, play by Scott McCrea, directed by Neal Radice, starring James Cichocki, Trevor Dugan, Sandra Roberts, Emily Yancey, Madeline E. Allard, Bob Bozek, Emily Lotocki, Nolan Miles, Amy Rochford. Jan 16-Feb 18, Thu-Sat at 7:30. Alleyway Theatre, One Curtain Up Alley (852-2600). www.alleyway.com

JUMP, play by Charly Evon Simpson directed by Paulette D. Harris, starring Marcus Thompson Jr., Aqueira Oshun, Andy Finley, Dayane Araujo. Jan 17-Feb 9, Fri & Sat at 8, Sun at 4. Paul Robeson Theatre at the African American Cultural Center, 350 Masten Ave. (884-2013). www.aaccbuffalo.org

MERCURY FUR, play by Philip Ridley, presented by Subversive Theatre Collective, directed by Mike Doben, starring Matthew B. Cullen, Zach Thomas, Lucas Colon, Helen Rose, Jeremy Catania, Zach Bellus, Justyne Harris, Vinnie DeStefano. Jan 17 – Feb 8, Thu-Sat at 7:30. Manny Fried Playhouse, 255 Great Arrow Ave., third floor (462-5549). www.subversivetheatre.org
ONGOING

THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY, musical by Jason Robert Brown and Marsha Norman, directed by Loraine O’Donnell, starring Michele Marie Roberts, Steve Copps, Christopher Guilmet, Ian Hayes, Arin Dandes, Robert Cooke, Ben Moran, Karen Harty, Kelly Copps, Laryssa Petryshyn, Pamela Rose Mangus, Paul Maisano. Through Feb 2, Thu & Fri at 7:30, Sat at 3:30 & 7:30, Sun at 2. Kavinoky Theatre, 320 Porter Ave. (829-7668). www.kavinokytheatre.com

COPS AND FRIENDS OF COPS, play by Ron Klier presented by First Look Buffalo, directed by Drew McCabe, starring Tony Grande, Dan Morris, John Patrick Patti, Shakora Purks, Bob Rusch. Through Feb 1, Thu-Sat at 8. Compass Performing Arts Center, 545 Elmwood Ave. (800-838-3006). www.FirstLookBuffalo.com

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM by Shakespeare performed to the compositions of Mendelssohn, presented by Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and Irish Classical Theatre Company, conducted JoAnn Falletta, directed by Fortunato Pezzimenti, Jan17-19, Fri & Sat at 8, Sun at 2.  Kleinhans Music Hall, 1 Symphony Circle (885-5064).

GOD OF VENGEANCE by Sholom Asch, (the play that served as the basis for Paula Vogel's play INDECENT coming to the Kavinoky Theatre in March) free reading presented by The Kavinoky Theatre in partnership with Jewish Repertory Theatre, directed by Adam Yellen, starring Brittany Bassett, Leah Patricia Berst, Christian Brandjes, Arin Lee Dandes, Diane Di Bernardo, Saul Elkin, Angelo Heimowitz, Kristen Tripp Kelley, Aleks Malejs, and Peter Palmisano. It's free, but reservations and donations at the door are suggested. One night only, Monday, January 20th at 7:00 at The Kavinoky Theatre, 320 Porter Avenue, (829-7668) www.kavinokytheatre.com

UPCOMING

MISS NELSON IS MISSING, play by Joan Cushing; based on the books by Harry Allard, presented by Theatre of Youth. Jan 25-Feb 9, Sat & Sun at 2.  Allendale Theatre, 203 Allen St. (884.4400). www.theatreofyouth.org

THE MOUSETRAP, mystery by Agatha Christie, directed by Nathan Andrew Miller, starring Monish Bhattacharyya, Anne Roaldi Boucher, Jackson DiGiacomo, Jaimee Harmon, Nathanial Higgins, Susan King, David Mitchell, Matthew Rittler. Jan 24-Feb 9, Fri & Sat at 7:30, Sun at 2:30. Lancaster Opera House, 21 Central Ave., Lancaster (683-1776). www.LancOpera.org

NUNSENSE A-MEN!, musical by Dan Goggin presented by O'Connell & Company, directed by Mary Kate O’Connell, starring Michael Starzynski, Jake Hayes, Nick Lama, Daniel Lendzian, Joey Bucheker  Jan 24-Feb 2, Fri at 8, Sat at 2 & 8, Sun at 2. Shea’s Smith Theatre, 654 Main St. (847-1410). www.oconnellandcompany.com

ON A FIRST NAME BASIS, comedy by Norm Foster presented by Desiderio’s Dinner Theatre, directed by Jay Desiderio, starring Eileen Dugan, Russ Papia. Jan 23-Mar 22. Thu & Sat dinner at 6, show at 7:30; Sun dinner at 1, show at 2:30. Bobby J’s Italian American Grille, 204 Como Park Blvd., Cheektowaga (395-3207). www.mybobbyjs.com

Listings courtesy of Javier Bustillos