Here’s our overview of what’s playing in the St. Louis metropolitan area on regional professional and community theater stages this weekend. See you at a show!
“The Unrepentant Necrophile”
Friday, Feb. 23, and Saturday, Feb. 24 at 8 p.m.
YoungLiars presents The Coldharts production
Centene Center for Arts and Education, Fourth Floor
Olive St., St. Louis
What It’s About: The punk-rock opera “The Unrepentant Necrophile” is a three-person minimalist musical created with drums, electric bass and electric guitar. It’s a blend of physical theater, music and horror, exploring sexuality, consent and gender politics.
A mortician falls in love with a man as she prepares his corpse for burial. She has three days until the funeral.
Starring: The Coldharts – Katie Hartman and Nick Ryan – of Brooklyn
Of Note: This musical premiered at the 2015 Twin Cities Horror Festival in Minneapolis. Theatre artists Katie Hartman and Nick Ryan create American Gothic-inspired, devised, music-theatre. Their work has been seen across North America, and they performed their award-winning “Edgar Allan” at SIUE’s Xfest in Fall 2016.
“The Wizard of Oz”
Show times are Friday and Saturday evening at 7:30 p.m., Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m., Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. and at 6:30 p.m.
Fox Theatre, 529 N. Grand
What It’s About: Based on Frank L. Baum’s classic children’s novel, this production of “The Wizard of Oz” is a magical celebration of the 1939 film. The musical follows Dorothy, Toto and their friends the Cowardly Lion, Tin Man and Scarecrow on adventures in Munchkin Land, the Haunted Forest and the Emerald City. The score includes Harold Arlen’s timeless “Over the Rainbow,” “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead” and “If I Only Had A Brain.”
Director: Dean Sabon
Starring: Kalie Kaimann is Dorothy, Chris Duir is the Scarecrow, Christopher Russell is Tinman, Victor Legarreta is the Cowardly Lion, Emily Perzan is the Wicked Witch of the West, Ashleigh Thompson is Glinda and Kirk Lawrence is The Wizard.
Toto is Murphy, a white Brussels Griffon/Cairn Terrier mix with scruffy fur and an adorable underbite, who is music director
Of Note: St. Louis’ own Troyer Coultas of Dardenne Prairie appears as the Coroner, Nikko the Flying Monkey and an Ozian on this national tour.
Patrick Huber photo
St. Louis Actors’ Studio
Feb. 9 – 25
Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sundays at 3 p.m.
St. Louis Actors’ Studio
Gaslight Theatre, 358 N. Boyle Ave., 63108
What It’s About: Ray, 56, has a new identity and made a new life for himself, after years in prison. He thinks he can’t be found, but Una, 27, after seeing a photo of Ray in a magazine, shows up at his office, unannounced. They recollect the passionate relationship of 15 years ago – when she was 12 and he was 40. She wants answers. Guilt, rage and raw emotions run high. The play is 80 minutes and runs without an intermission.
Starring: John Pierson, Elizabeth Kirkenmeier
Director: Annamaria Pileggi
Of Note: St. Louis Actors’ Studio has printed a “Trigger Warning” in the program: “Blackbird contains content that explicitly describes a sexual encounter between a minor and an adult, and may be unsuitable or triggering for some audience members. Discretion is advised.”
“Bud, Not Buddy”
Public Performances: Fridays and Saturdays at 7 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m. through Feb. 25.
Metro Theatre Company and Jazz St. Louis
Grandel Theatre, 3610 Grandel Square in Grand Center, St. Louis
Tickets: MetroTix online or 314-534-1111
What It’s About: Based on the 2000 Newbery Medal-winning novel by Christopher Paul Curtiss, this play combines eight actors with a 13-piece jazz band, who will perform an original score from Grammy-winning composer Terence Blanchard. The story, set in the 1930s, is about a 10-year-old boy who is looking for his father and finds a home and a passion for music. It was commissioned by the Kennedy Center and won the Coretta Scott King Award.
Starring: Anthony Terrell, Myke Andrews, Felice Skye Hutchinson, Don McClendon, Reginald Pierre, Carl Overly Jr., Nicholas Kryah and Chris Ware.
Director: Julia Flood
Of Note: Metro Theater Company, celebrating its 45th anniversary, and is the first company in the country to do “Bud, Not Buddy” after its commissioned debut at the Kennedy Center.
Kranzberg Arts Center, 501 N. Grand, St. Louis
Fridays through Sundays until Feb. 25
Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m.
What It’s About: A day trader in quarantine delivers a relentless, near-manic monologue that reveals his derailment from the fast track, and the resultant downward, deadly spiral as though he may have contracted some horrible virus from the stock market monitors themselves.
Director: Patrick Siler
Starring: Alan Knoll
Of Note: Albert Ostermaier, one of Germany’s leading poet/playwrights, wrote this psychological study of a man and a society infected by greed. Artistic Director Philip Boehm translated it. This play is a one-act, without an intermission.
“Red Scare on Sunset”
Justin Been photo
Stray Dog Theatre
Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. until Feb. 24
Tower Grove Abbey, 2336 Tennessee Avenue, 63104
What It’s About: In 1950s Hollywood, film star Mary Dale finds the Red Menace invading her Beverly Hills backyard. When she discovers her husband has been lured into the local Communist Party by way of a Method acting class and there is a left wing plot to abolish the star system, Mary wages a private war to save her husband, country, billing over the title. The McCarthy era is turned on its head in this outlandish take on a serious subject.
Starring: Will Bonfiglio, Shannon Nara, Stephen Peirick, Chris Ceradsky, Ariel Roukaerts, Stephen Henley, Gerry Love and Michael Baird
The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis
Through March 4
Loretto-Hilton Center on the Webster University campus
What It’s About: Three generations of the Blake family have gathered in a dingy New York City apartment for Thanksgiving. Everyone’s trying to make the best of it, but life’s little indignities are piling up. With a mixture of pathos and dark humor, Stephen Karam’s vivid family portrait is nothing but honest.
Director: Steven Woolf
Starring: Brian Dykstra, Darrie Lawrence, Carol Schultz, Kathleen Wise, Lauren Marcus, Fajer Kaisi
Of Note: “The Humans” won four Tony Awards in 2016, including Best Play, Reed Birney as Erik Best Featured Actor, Jayne Houdyshell as Deirdre the Best Featured Actress and David Zinn, Best Scenic Design. It also was a finalist for Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
“Menopause the Musical”
“Menopause the Musical”
Through March 31
The Playhouse at Westport Plaza
635 West Port Plaza
What It’s About: Four women meet while shopping for a black lace bra at a lingerie sale. After noticing unmistakable similarities among one another, the cast jokes about their woeful hot flashes, mood swings, wrinkles, weight gain and much more.
Starring: Laura Ackerman, Marty K.Casey, Lee Ann Matthews and Rosemary Watts
Director: Seth Greenleaf
Of Note: There are 1.7 million menopausal women worldwide. Nearly 11 million people in 13 countries (more than 350 cities) have attended the performance. It’s the longest running scripted musical in Las Vegas history. Internationally, the show has performed in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Philippines, United Kingdom, South Africa and South Korea.
“Transferred: A Story about Life After Death”
Feb. 22 – 24, with a talk-back after Friday performance
The Rogue Theatre Company
The Old Milton Schoolhouse
(Third floor above Mavea’s Coffeehouse)
1320 Milton Road, Alton
What It’s About: Can we predetermine our afterlife by what we do with our existence? Or is it set? Or can we glitch the system and explore the hereafter at will?
Of Note: This is the second show of the new professional company’s inaugural season. It’s a new devised piece exploring the ending of the human experience and what lies “after,” and features original music – and a pleasant surprise.
Recommended for audiences age 18 and up.
“Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”
Feb. 15 – 25
Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.
Southampton Presbyterian Church, 4716 Macklind, St. Louis
What It’s About: Vanya and his adopted sister Sonia are living a quiet existence in their family home in Bucks County, Penn. Their B-list celebrity sister, Masha, arrives with boy-toy Spike in tow and throws their world into comic upheaval. Mayhem ensues, featuring a star-struck neighbor, a soothsaying housekeeper and a very strange costume party.
Director: Rob Corbett
Starring: Jadienne Nolan Davidson, Jackie Wynne Smith, Michelle Girse Beczkala, Jessa Knust, Jonnie Onthespot and Jim Danek.
Of Note: This homage to Chekhov by Christopher Durang won the Tony Award for Best Play in 2013.