Sunday, 12 April 2015 22:34

St. Louis theatre calendar for the week of April 13, 2015

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"I Love Lucy Live on Stage" "I Love Lucy Live on Stage"

Lots of openings this week, running the gamut from Shakespeare to a brand-new play written for Mustard Seed.

Tesseract Theatre Company presents The Age of Bees April 17-28. "It's the year 2098. The bees are gone and the world struggles to keep up with the resulting ecological and economic changes. In the midst of this, we meet Mel, a young woman who has found sanctuary on an agricultural compound, where there's food and safety. She works alongside other girls, also orphans or castoffs. Sarah and Zed, who run the farm, hope that their next child will be a boy; Sarah is at the end of her fertility, however, and, to her dismay, Mel stands next in line to carry children for Zed. Into this uncertain sanctuary steps Jonathan, an independent field researcher who collects samples of plants to forestall additional ecological devastation. Meeting Mel provides a glimmer of other kinds of scientific riches on this compound, and he is determined to take her with him. Zed's history of violence makes any escape a dangerous proposition. Still, there's the hope that something new can grow, that something good can come from the ruined world they struggle to make theirs." Performances take place at the Regional Arts Commission, 6128 Delmar. For more information:

St. Louis Actors' Studio presents Yasmina Reza's comedy Art Aprll 17-May 3 at the Gaslight Theatre, 358 North Boyle. "How much would you pay for a white painting? Would it matter who the painter was? Would it be art? One of Marc's best friends, Serge, has just bought a very expensive painting. It's about five feet by four, all white with white diagonal lines. To Marc, the painting is a joke, but Serge insists Marc doesn't have the proper standard to judge the work. Another friend, Ivan, though burdened by his own problems, allows himself to be pulled into this disagreement. Eager to please, Ivan tells Serge he likes the painting. Lines are drawn and these old friends square off over the canvas, using it as an excuse to relentlessly batter one another over various failures. As their arguments become less theoretical and more personal, they border on destroying their friendships. At the breaking point, Serge hands Marc a felt tip pen and dares him: “Go on.” This is where the friendship is finally tested, and the aftermath of action, and its reaction, affirms the power of those bonds." For more information, call 314-458-2978 or visit

Chuck Lavazzi

The Cabaret Project and 88.1 KDHX present the cabaret open mic night on Wednesday, April 15, from 7 to 10 PM at the Tavern of Fine Arts. "Drop by and enjoy a night of great music from St. Louis cabaret artists, backed up by the inimitable Carol Schmidt on the baby grand." The master of ceremonies for the evening will be Chuck Lavazzi, senior performing arts critic at 88.1 KDHX. If you're planning to sing, be prepared to do one or two songs and bring music, preferably in your key. At least one of your two songs should be a medium-or up-tempo number. We'd also recommend that you have your song memorized. The Tavern of Fine Arts is at 313 Belt at Waterman in the Central West End. There's free parking in the lot right across the street. For more information, visit or call 314-367-7549.

The Cockfighter
Photo: John Lamb

The West End Players Guild concludes their 104th season with the drama The Cockfighter Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM and Sundays at 2 PM, April 10-19. "At once elegant and brutal, this coming-of-age story is set against the savage backdrop of professional cockfighting. The gift of a fighting bird of his own sets a young boy on a journey to adulthood and to choices that will change him - and his family - forever. Based on the novel by acclaimed southern author Frank Manley and adapted for the stage by Vincent Murphy, it is another St. Louis premiere." There will also be a show on Thursday, April 16, at 8 PM and the playwright will conduct a special talkback session with the audience after the April 18th performance. Performances take place at the Union Avenue Christian Church, 733 North Union at Enright in the Central West End. For more information, call 314-367-0025 or visit

The Hawthorne Players present the Beth Henley's Crimes of the Heart April 17-26. "Crimes of the Heart is filled with humanity and humor as it examines the plight of three young Mississippi sisters betrayed by their passions. In the end, the play is the story of how its young characters escape the past and seize the future-but the telling is so true and touching and consistently hilarious that it will linger in the mind long after the curtain has descended. This winner of the 1981 Pulitzer Prize will be directed by Ken Clark, who says, "If you think your family has issues, wait until you visit the Magrath household. As my grandmother once said, Southern hospitality can't fix crazy."" The performances take place at the Florissant Civic Center Theatre at Parker and Waterford in Florissant, MO. For more information, call 921-5678 or visit

St. Louis Community College at Forest Park presents Discipline 17/2 April 16-19. This is the premiere of a play from Bob Mielke (milky), a poet, author and professor of English as well as a longtime fan of the Sun Ra Arkestra which has a ever-changing, flexible lineup. Performances take place in the Bastian Theatre on the campus at 5600 Oakland. For more information: under Bastian Theatre or call 314-644-9100.

Family Musical Theater presents the Stephen Sondheim musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum April 17-28 at the Ivory Theatre, 7622 Michigan. For more information, visit or call 314-571-9579.

Peabody Opera House presents the I Love Lucy Live On Stage Friday through Sunday, April 17-19. "It's 1952 and you are a member of the studio audience awaiting the filming of two hilarious and oh-so-familiar I LOVE LUCY® episodes. Imagine stepping back in time onto the Desilu Playhouse soundstage where a charming host entertains and enlightens you to the behind-the-scenes filming process, the 1950s hi-fidelity technology and this brand-new thing called “television.” The episodes begin and you witness, firsthand, the side-splitting antics of that crazy redhead in the Ricardo's New York apartment and thrill to the Cuban sounds of “The Ricky Ricardo Orchestra” at the famed Tropicana Nightclub. In-between scenes? The Crystaltone Singers perform live advertising jingles of the show's newest sponsors in perfect 50s style harmony." For more information, visit or call 314-622-5420.

Shaulee Cook

Mustard Seed Theatre presents An Invitation Out by Shaulee Cook April 17-May 3. "In this world-premiere comedy of manners, a young man searches for “truth” while living in virtual reality and explores the “reality” of life offline." Performances take place at the Fontbonne Fine Arts Theatre, 6800 Wydown Blvd. For more information, call (314) 719-8060 or visit the web site at

Over Due Theatre presents the musical Little Shop of Horrors Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM and Sundays at 2 PM, through April 19. Performances take place at the Olivette Community Center, 9723 Grandview Drive, in Olivette, MO. For more information, call 314-210-2959 or visit

The Lemp Mansion Comedy-Mystery Dinner Theater presents Muuurder in Maaaybury through April 25. The Lemp Mansion is at 3322 DeMenil Place. For more information:

The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Photo: John Lamb

Stray Dog Theatre presents the musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Rupert Holmes Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 PM through April 18. "This raucous show within a show kicks off when a hilariously loony Victorian musical troupe 'puts on' its flamboyant rendition of an unfinished Charles Dickens mystery. Each performance ends differently depending on how the audience chooses to finish the story that Dickens didn't!" Performances take place at The Tower Grove Abbey, 2336 Tennessee. For more information, visit or call 314-865-1995. Read the 88.1 KDHX review!

Lindenwood University presents Shakespeare's Pericles, Prince of Tyre April 17-25. "This action-packed production is a tempest-tossed hero's quest-a magical mystery tour spanning decades and continents, culminating in one of the most joyous reunions in the Shakespearean canon. Featuring pirates, goddesses, jousting knights, and a lost princess, Pericles, Prince of Tyre is a theatrical journey you don't want to miss!" Performances take place at the J. Scheidegger Center for the Arts on the Lindenwood campus in St. Charles, MO. For more information, call 636-949-4433 or visit

The Bissell Mansion Murder Mystery Dinner Theatre presents Phantom of the Grand Ole Opery through April 26. The Bissell Mansion is at 4426 Randall Place. For more information:

The Monroe Actors Stage Company presents Prescription Murder Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 and Sundays at 2:30 p.m., through Aprl 19, in the Historic Capitol Theatre in downtown Waterloo, Illinois. For more information, visit or call 618-939-7469.

Upstream Theater presents The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel Taylor Coleridge adapted for the stage and directed by Patrick Siler with live music composed and performed by Sleepy Kitty, through April 19. Performances take place at the Kranzberg Arts Center, 501 North Grand in Grand Center. For more information, including show times:

St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley presents Steel Magnolias April 17-25. Performances take place in the Fisher Theatre on the campus at 3400 Pershall Road. For more information: under Fischer Theatre or call 314-644-5522.

Clinton County Showcase presents The Sting through April 19. “This show takes place in Chicago many years ago in a world of small-time hustlers and their girls, their money nonexistent but their ingenuity abundant. Johnny Hooker joins a friend in a successful con of a 'runner.' Unfortunately for them, the runner works for a powerful, vindictive rackets boss, Doyle Lonnegan, who is infuriated and arranges the killing of Johnny's friend. Hoping to avenge this senseless murder, Johnny enlists the aid of the master con man Henry Gondorf. Together they decide to try the big con called 'The Wire.'” Performances take place at the Avon Theater, 525 North 2nd Street Breese IL. For more information, visit

Photo: Whitney Curtis

The Performing Arts Department at Washington University presents Telegraph by Will Jacobs, winner of the 2014 A.E. Hotchner New Play Festival, April 16-19. "A peculiar telegraph operator, Mr. Rivers, looks for lost love in the lyricism of electrical impulse. His search is disrupted by the arrival of the very determined Mrs. Emily Stone, who brings light to the darkened corners of his Pennsylvania home. Together, they grapple with love and laughter within the abstractions of language and the rhythms of dots and dashes. Winner of the 2014 A.E Hotchner Playwriting Competition." The performances take place in the A.E. Hotchner Studio Theater in the Mallinckrodt Student Center on the Washington University campus. For more information, call 314-935-6543 or visit

St. Louis Community College at Meramec presents Christopher Marlowe's The Tragedy of Doctor Faustus Wednesday through Sunday, April 15-18. Performances take place in the theatre on the campus at 11333 Big Bend Road. For more information, call 314-984-7500.

Curtain's Up Theatre presents the courtroom drama Twelve Angry Men April 17-19. Performances take place at the Alfresco Art Center, 2401 Delmar in Granite City, IL. For more information, visit

Would you like to be on the radio? KDHX, 88.1 FM needs theatre reviewers. If you're 18 years or older, knowledgeable in this area, have practical theatre experience (acting, directing, writing, technical design, etc.), have good oral and written communications skills and would like to become one of our volunteer reviewers, send an email describing your experience and interests to chuck at Please include a sample review of something you've seen recently.

Looking for auditions and other artistic opportunities? Check out the St. Louis Auditions site.

For information on events beyond this week, check out the searchable database at the Regional Arts Commission's events web site.