(Mirror) Theater is springing up all over South Florida — as the balmy days turn sweltering, regional theaters provide an entertaining way to escape the heat and the realities of the everyday world.
More than a dozen shows will premiere April, May and June, and there is something for every taste.
Love gripping drama? Try “Doubt”at Actors’ Playhouse. Have a short attention span? Don’t miss “Summer Shorts”by City Theate in Miami. Love country music? Check out “Always,” “Patsy Cline”at The Wick Theatre in Boca Raton.
And who doesn’t love a big splashy drag musical with lots of 70s and 80s disco hits? Slow Burn Theatre Company is getting their drag on with “Priscilla Queen of the Desert.”And if your taste runs toward Broadway tours, big musicals “Rent,” “Come From Away” and “Lion King” are headed this way. Happy Theater-ing!
Turn in your gay card if you don’t know “Priscilla Queen of the Desert,” a funny and uplifting musical, produced by Slow Burn Theatre Company, about a glam drag trio in Sydney, Australia who board a battered bus dubbed Priscilla and take their act on the road to the Outback — the region, not the restaurant — battling homophobia, making friends and finding love. At Broward Center, June 15-30.
Coming Out of the…Container?
The concept for Miami’s Microtheater is unusual — short plays performed for a dozen audience members in a shipping container — but it works. The containers are comfy and air conditioned and the experience is unforgettable. For Pride Month, Microtheater presents “,” featuring short plays with LGBTQ themes. And Microtheater is like tapas — the plays are a la carte, so you can choose one, several, or a bunch, whatever your theatrical appetite craves.
Island City Stage in Wilton Manors opens the sophisticated comedy “Veronica’s Position,” by popular playwright Rich Orloff, about a fading star, her errant ex, her right-wing senator fiancé and her gay assistant, as they all get caught up in love and politics during a production of “Hedda Gabler.” It runs June 1-30.
The Ghost and Miss Millie
Broward Stage Door Theatre continues its first season at the Lauderhill Performing Arts Center with “Ghost,” the musical based on the movie, running April 17 through May 5. Next is “Thoroughly Modern Millie,”a musical about a flapper in 1920s New York City, determined to land a rich husband even though love is calling. It runs May 29 through June 16.
Measure for Measure Theatre, founded by transgender director Daimien Joseph Matherson, wowed with their production of “its lead actress, Sabrina Lynn Gore, earned a Carbonell Award nomination. Gore and Matherson team up again for “,” a rock musical about a love triangle set in a bar, at Broward Center’s New River Abdo Room, April 18-28.
A Wedding, a Baby and…a Gorilla?
Thinking Cap Theatre at The Vanguard in Fort Lauderdale has two shows in the wings. The dark comedy “,” is about a woman who learns some unsettling news about the baby she’s carrying and finds solace in an elderly speaker of a vanishing language and a baby gorilla. It runs April 4-21. Next, Casey Dressler makes wedding planning look hilarious in her one-woman show, ".” Dressler, a former wedding planner for a Keys resort, morphs into 15 characters to create a funny and touching portrait of a woman who’s given up on love but still plans perfect weddings. It runs May 2-19.
And the Carbonell Goes To…
The 43rdannual Carbonell Awards, which honors excellence in regional theatre and provides scholarships for high-school seniors pursuing studies in the performing arts or journalism, take place Monday, April 8, at Broward Center. The show will feature performances from the nominated musicals. Single tickets go on sale March 10.
Broadway in the Tropics
La Vie Boheme
Set in 1980s New York, a group of friends deal with love, loss, and the AIDS crisis in the musical “Rent.” The 20th anniversary tour comes to Kravis Center in West Palm Beach April 17.
Never underestimate the power of the right footwear to transform lives and a town — especially when they’re “Kinky Boots.” The musical comes to Kravis Center May 16.
The Broadway tour of Disney’s “The Lion King”roars into South Florida at two venues, April 24 through May 5 at Kravis Center in West Palm Beach and May 8-26 at the Arsht Center in Miami.
Come From Away and Fly Away Home
Based on the true story of a small town in Newfoundland that welcomed a diverse group of more than 7,000 passengers when their planes were rerouted in the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001, the musical “Come From Away”comes to the Arsht Center in Miami June 18-23. The tour features South Florida native Nick Duckart, who won a Carbonell Award for the 2013 production of In the Heights at Actors’ Playhouse.
Hail Mary Pass
Actors’ Playhouse opens “Doubt,” a play set in a Catholic school in the 1960s, about a nun who is suspicious of a priest and his favoritism of a certain boy. “Doubt”runs May 17 through June 9.
Short-Cut to Theater Fun
It wouldn’t be summer in South Florida without the long-running short play festival, “Summer Shorts,” produced by City Theatre at the Carnival Theatre at the Arsht Center, May 30 through June 30. A mix of regional and world premieres, “Summer Shorts”is a program of about eight 10-minute plays, with a very versatile cast.
Home Sweet Home
Internationally produced local playwright Michael McKeever, who wrote “Daniel’s Husband,” will have one of his earlier, successful plays produced at Main Street Playhouse in Miami Lakes. “37 Postcards” focuses on a man who returns home after traveling abroad to find that a lot happened while he was away. It runs April 12 through May 5.
The relationship between a fan and a star is symbiotic — the fan worships the star, while the star doesn’t know the fan exists. That symbiotic relationship is lovingly explored in “Always, Patsy Cline,” a play with music that runs April 27 through May 19 at The Wick Theatre in Boca Raton.