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Notes from the theater beat

My Capture

A roundup:

BROADWAYWORLD AWARD: Congrats to Dominic Grijalva and Mitchell Lam Hau, who picked up a 2013 BroadwayWorld San Francisco award for best scenic design for the 2013 StageWorks Fresno production of “Les Miserables.” Results were determined by an online poll.

‘JANKA’ TO AUSTRALIA: Over the years, Fresno actress Janice Noga has toured her play “Janka” around the world. Her next international gig is the Sydney Jewish Museum in February. Background on the show:

Janka Festinger grew up in Sighet and was deported to Auschwitz in May 1944. Following liberation from slave labor in Germany, she married an American soldier and immigrated to the U.S. in 1946. Shortly after her liberation, Janka wrote to an uncle, detailing a gripping eyewitness account of Auschwitz. This letter was discovered many years later and inspired Janka’s son Oscar Speace to write a play about his mother’s experiences. The family connection continues with American actress and Janka’s daughter-in-law Janice Noga performing the one-woman play. There is also a strong Australian tie to Janka’s story, as her cousins immigrated to join family members who had been imprisoned in Japanese internment camps and following their liberation had moved to Australia.

The play will be performed Feb. 11 and 16.

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THEATER REVIEW: ‘A Year with Frog and Toad’

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Welcome back, Frog. Welcome back, Toad.

StageWorks Fresno’s “A Year With Frog and Toad” was a superlative show when it opened last December at Severance Theatre. After a viewing of this year’s inspired  incarnation, I’m happy to report that my opinion hasn’t changed. If anything, I’m even more insistent that the show’s intimacy and impact make it a must-see for those who want to expose their children to quality theater.

Brent Moser and Joel C. Abels return as Frog and Toad, respectively, and in the careful hands of these veteran performers, the gentle warmth and clever, heartfelt insights of Arnold Lobel’s popular series of popular children’s books remain ever as delightful.

There are two cast changes from last year, but any Fresno theatergoer knows that you’re in safe hands when those names are Taylor Abels and Danielle Jorn. They play two of the three ensemble members who play the birds and other assorted animals who pop in and out of Frog and Toad’s idyllic existence. Each gets a chance to shine. (This year, for some reason, the Moles — who in their stiff fur coats have a sort of crusty, Baltic swagger — particularly tickled my funny bone.)

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Opening tonight

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Lots of theater openings tonight:

CLYBOURNE PARK: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award for best play, this title almost seems like it comes to Fresno straight from Broadway. (I got to see it in New York in 2012, and Bruce Norris’ script is sensational.) The new Fresno State production, which opens tonight at the John Wright Theatre, is the cover story in today’s 7 section. Don’t miss Bee photographer John Walker’s photo gallery of the production.

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Win tickets to ‘A Year With Frog and Toad’

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StageWorks Fresno brings back the thoroughly charming “A Year With Frog and Toad” for the holiday season. It’s basically the same production from last year with two new (very talented) performers in supporting roles: Taylor Abels and Danielle Jorn. Returning cast members are Joel C. Abels as Toad, Brent Moser as Frog and Cody Bianchi as the memorable Snail. From my review of last year’s show:

“Frog and Toad,” directed with a knowing hand by J. Daniel Herring, is an important title in the evolution of the genre known as Theatre for Young Audiences. Originally staged by the Children’s Theatre Company of Minneapolis, it ended up on Broadway in 2003, where it snagged a Tony nomination for Best Musical. With a cast of five adults, this family-friendly show works on several levels. It’s sure to tickle the fancy of young children, but there’s also a crisp adult appeal as it works through such themes as taking risks, trust, friendship and patience. Unlike many kid-friendly entertainments today that seem shrewdly calculated to appeal to both adults and children — all those DreamWorks and Disney movies that toss in an arch level of subtext to keep the parents from fidgeting — “Frog and Toad’s” appeal to all ages feels more organic.

The show opens Friday (Dec. 6) and runs through Dec. 22.

Here’s the giveaway: Two Beehive readers will each win two tickets to any performance in the run (with 24 hours notice). To enter, leave a comment on this post telling us your favorite soup for a cold winter night. Yes, soup. Toad loves soup. And isn’t this the perfect weather for such a question?

Deadline is 10 a.m. Friday.  Please don’t enter more than once. Check your email between 10 and 10:30 a.m. Friday to see if you won, because that’s how I’ll be notifying winners. Complete rules on the jump.

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Take a class with Sara Gettelfinger

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Yes, I have reached the point where I don’t need to double-check the spelling of Sara Gettelfinger’s last name — a sure sign that she has made a big impact on the Fresno theater scene. Many of you got to see her this past summer in StageWorks Fresno’s superb “Grey Gardens,” in which she delivered one of those superbly crafted performances that remain etched somehow on your brain long when the details have faded. Now the Broadway actress, who recently finished up a long run as Morticia in the national tour of “The Addams Family,” returns to offer two sets of master classes through StageWorks:

  • Dance Master Classes will both take place on Saturday, Oct. 26 at DanceWorks Unlimited. There are two opportunities to attend this three hour dance workshop: 9 a.m.-noon or 1-4 p.m. Performers are invited to participate in this dance workshop (limited to 20 students) that will feature choreography from the Broadway smash hits CHICAGO (9 a.m.) and THE ADDAMS FAMILY (1 p.m.). Fee is $50.
  • Musical Theatre Song Coaching Workshop. During this 5 day song-coaching workshop, Gettelfinger will work with students to craft a style that is all their own celebrating them not only as a performer but as an individual. Throughout the five days (3 hour sessions each) this limited class (20 students) includes coaching by Gettelfinger as well as auditions book consultation. This workshop will take place on Nov. 4, 5, 11, 12 & 13 from 6-9 p.m. Fee is $200.

For details, go to the StageWorks Fresno site.

And you think your family is busy?

IMG_104741755056452Just think of the Esteps. Three of them — including Mom and Dad — are in three different plays, all performing tonight. Consider the rehearsal schedules, transportation issues, line memorization marathons … let’s just say it’s going to be a busy weekend.

Shannah Estep writes:

Crazy is the operative word. We have been involved in a single show all at once but never 3 different shows, with 3 different companies, at the same time! Talk about a time-balancing act. We also have 2 children not involved in any show, so we have to think about them as we’ll. Thank God for my inlaws!!

Shannah plays a concerned mother in the first-rate “God of Carnage” at the Fresno Art Museum. Eric is one of the members of the quartet in “Forever Plaid” at the Clovis Veterans Memorial Auditorium. And daughter Emily plays Teen Fiona, Peter Pan and other ensemble roles in “Shrek” at Roger Rocka’s Dinner Theater.

On Monday, do you think they’ll all collapse?

The photo above: Eric and Shannah with daughter Lauren, left, and Emily in the 2011 Children’s Musical Theaterworks production of “Annie.”

THEATER REVIEW: ‘God of Carnage’

EPZ CARNAGE 07I lived in Alaska, and everyone there knows you don’t get between a mother moose and her baby.

As humans, we tend to think kindly of maternal fierceness, whether of the four-legged or two-legged variety. There’s something inherently touching about the instinctual urge to defend one’s offspring. We understand — and celebrate — it. We might not want to be at the receiving end of a 2,000 pound behemoth shaking her antlers at us, but even as we’re running away, a part of us is likely thinking, “Good for her.”

The biggest appeal of Yasmina Reza’s clever and subversive “God of Carnage,” which receives an accomplished new production by StageWorks Fresno, is how the playwright lulls the audience into thinking it’s simply in for an entertaining protective-parents-duke-it-out scenario.

In this modern version of a drawing room comedy, we’re introduced to two sets of parents who gather to deal with the aftermath of a dispute between their two sons. One 11-year-old hit another with a stick on a local playground, taking out a couple of teeth in the process. The two couples get together at the home of the tooth-deprived boy because it’s the “civilized” thing to do.

But it’s clear from the awkward opening moments of the play as the two couples chat — minutes filled with forced courtesy larded with distant disdain — that things aren’t going to turn out well. ”How many parents standing up for their children become infantile themselves?” asks Annette (the wonderful Shannon Eizenga), mother of the offender, telegraphing the mayhem to come.

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Win tickets to ‘God of Carnage’

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UPDATE: Congratulations to winners Amy Scott and Kyle Gutierrez.

ORIGINAL POST: Yasmina Reza, the acclaimed French playwright, knows her away around conflict on the stage. (Her play “Art,” the catalog of a conflict about modern art between a trio of friends, manages to seethe even as it pokes acerbic fun.) So you can imagine “God of Carnage,” the new Reza play (and winner of the 2009 Tony for Best Play) being produced by StageWorks Fresno. When two upscale couples meet together to try to resolve a playground dispute between their 11-year-old boys, the fireworks begin.

I talk with Shannon Eizenga, who plays one of the mothers in the play, for a story in today’s 7 section.

This is a short run — only two weekends — so you’ll have to plan ahead or you’ll miss it. It opens tonight at the Fresno Art Museum.

Good news for Beehive readers: I have four tickets to give away for performances next weekend. I can offer two tickets to the 2 p.m Saturday Sept. 21 matinee and two tickets to the 8 p.m. Saturday Sept. 21 evening performance. To enter, leave a comment on the Beehive post answering this question: Did you ever have a fight on the playground, and if so, did your parents get involved? Include which performance you’d like to attend — or indicate both if you’re flexible.

I’ll pick the winners at random. The deadline for entry is 3 p.m. Monday. One entry per person. I’ll be informing winners by email Monday evening, so please check yours. If you win, you’ll be able to pick your tickets up at Will Call. Rules are on the jump.

Photo: Terry Lewis as Alan Raleigh, far left, tries to pull Shannah Estep, portraying Veronica Novak, center, from her husband Michael Novak, portrayed by Chris Carsten, right. Bee photo by Eric Paul Zamora.

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Facebook photo of the day: theater gossip edition

I get bored easily when it comes to national celebrity gossip, and straight off I’ll tell you this item isn’t exactly a red-hot scoop about Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield. But on the local front, I can’t resist passing on an interesting development that emerged from the recent StageWorks Fresno production of “Grey Gardens”: Sara Gettelfinger, the Broadway guest artist playing the tour de force leading roles, and Terry Lewis, who played her gay-best-friend accompanist, are now an item:

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Yes, there was chemistry up there on stage, and it wasn’t just platonic. Considering that Lewis is pretty much local theater-scene royalty, I figure he deserves at least a sliver of TMZ-style coverage. His next production: the StageWorks production of “God of Carnage,” which opens Sept. 13.

Back from vacation: catching up

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Picture this: I’m on the 15th deck of the Grand Princess cruise ship, and we’ve just sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge on the start of a 10-day Alaska cruise to celebrate my dear parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. Suddenly, amidst the crisp ocean breezes and celebratory champagne, a stray work-related thought hits me. I forgot to put something in that week’s upcoming 7 section about the Reedley River City Theatre Company’s production of “Les Miserables,” opening that coming Friday. I look down at my cell phone. I still have three bars of coverage, but I know that once we’re out of range of San Francisco, I won’t be able to send an email for two days at sea unless I want to sell my car to pay the cruise line’s exorbitant wireless fees. So I tap out a message with numb fingers (it’s San Francisco Bay, after all) to my colleague Joshua Tehee, asking him to get a Reedley mention into the paper. Fingers keep slipping. Down to two bars. Almost done. One bar. I look up at the bridge. It’s receding in the distance. I hit “send.” Message delivered on the last wisps of 3G coverage. From then on, I’m enveloped in blissful days of basically being cut off from the world. I don’t think about work again.

While I was gone: I missed several theater openings.  (And completely missed the StageWorks Fresno production of “Les Miserables,” which was one weekend only.) Now I’m figuring out my schedule this week to try to fit anything in. My plan is to see Good Company’s “Curtains” on Wednesday, CenterStage Clovis Community Theater’s “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” on Thursday (it closes Saturday), StageWorks Fresno’s “Grey Gardens” on opening night Friday, and Woodward Shakespeare Festival’s “Inherit the Wind” on Saturday. Will I have enough stamina to make it to Reedley’s “Les Miz” on Sunday? Oh so busy!

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Notes from the theater beat

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‘GREY GARDENS’ CASTING NEWS:  Joel Abels, artistic director of StageWorks Fresno, had hoped to feature Fresno native and Broadway professional Jacqueline Antaramian, who charmed audiences in last year’s “Master Class,” in the leading role in the upcoming “Grey Gardens.” Antaramian would have made a lot of hometown fans happy, but she ended up having a scheduling conflict.

Abels found a big name to fill Antaramian’s shoes, however. Sara Gettelfinger originated the role of Young Little Edie in the original production of “Grey Gardens” Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons. (Which I saw!) She’s also featured in the cast recording. Now she’ll be tackling the demanding dual roles of Big Edie in the first act and Little Edie in the second act — the roles played by Christine Ebersole in her 2006 Tony Award-winning performance.

That’s a real coup for StageWorks. Here’s Gettelfinger’s bio:

Most recently appeared as “Morticia” in the first national tour of The Addams Family. BROADWAY: “Dona Athene” in John Guare’s A FREE MAN OF COLOR at Lincoln Center. Suessical the Musical,The Boys from Syracuse, “Carla” in NINE with Antonio Banderas, “Jolene Oakes” in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels opposite John Lithgow, as well as the first national tours of FOSSE and 101 Dalmatians “Cruella De Vil”. Other NYC area credits include: “April” in Company (Helen Hayes), “Fastrada” in Pippin (Papermill Playhouse), Tenderloin and Carnival at City Center ENCORES!, Anything Goes at Lincoln Center, and “Little Edie Beale” in the world premier of Grey Gardens at Playwrights Horizons. In 2009, Sara starred as “Fastrada” in the Deaf West production of Pippin at L.A.’s Mark Taper Forum. Television:The Big C, Georgetown, Guiding Light, Ed, and Without a Trace, Film: 10 to Midnight, Sex In the City, Forbidden Love. In 2006 Sara was signed to DECCA/Universal Records with the classical-crossover trio Three Graces. Their self-titled,debut album was released in stores/online in March 2008,reaching the top 10 on the BILLBOARD/CROSSOVER Charts, followed by a world wide, critically acclaimed concert tour.

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Fresno Grand Opera announces 13-14 season. Where’s the opera?

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Fresno Grand Opera announced its 2013-14 lineup to season ticket holders this week. It doesn’t feature any traditional opera. But it does promise a big local production of “Les Miserables.”

“Les Miserables” opens Jan. 17 and will play four performances at the Saroyan Theatre. This will be a local production, not the revamped national tour that has been traveling the country for a few years and is currently in Sacramento. The revamped version, which tightens the storyline and eliminates the trademark turntable, is slated to open on Broadway in March, marking a return to New York after an absence of many years.

National tours of “Les Miserables” played at the Saroyan Theatre in 1993, 1996 and 2000, but this is the first time an original production of the musical will take the stage there.

The opera’s general director, Ronald D. Eichman, said the principal members in the Fresno production have all either performed in the national tour or on Broadway, adding:

Additionally, some ensemble roles are cast with artists who have national experience, and we fully anticipate that the balance of the locally and regionally cast ensemble will deliver on a national caliber level.

Eichman calls the upcoming “Les Miserables” the largest scale production in the company’s history, financially and otherwise. “We have been anticipating this production for three years, when we were notified of the release date for the licensing to produce it,” he said.

Single-ticket prices for “Les Miserables” range from $55-$130.

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THEATER REVIEW: ‘I Am My Own Wife’

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She is polite and soft-spoken. Almost nun-like. With her black boxy dress, orthopedic shoes and head scarf — plus a string of pearls, the only carefree nod to ornamentation — she moves with a determined, contemplative air. When she asks a visitor for a small donation for the museum she’s spent her life building, it is with a demure nod and a slight bow, as if the mere mention of money detracts from the greater glory of preserving history.

But make no mistake. Charlotte Von Mahlsdorf is not a pushover. There is steel within.

From our first meeting with the central character in the beautifully staged and acted production of “I Am My Own Wife” from StageWorks Fresno, it’s clear Charlotte is a survivor. In the hands of Terry Lewis, who gives the most riveting performance I’ve seen from him in numerous local theater outings, and director J. Daniel Herring, whose careful and deft touch is evident throughout this well crafted production, a perplexing and entrancing character comes to life in a rich, textured portrayal. The challenge for Lewis doesn’t stop with Charlotte, however. In this one-person show — which calls for a male actor to play a famous 20th Century transvestite — Lewis portrays all the characters, more than 40, in a tale that gently nudges us toward a deeper understanding not only of an interesting historical figure but also the nature of history itself.

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Donald’s weekend picks

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1. THE MANY FACES OF ‘I AM MY OWN WIFE’
We’ve done a lot of 7 cover stories in my day, but you’ve never seen a center spread like this: 40 photos of one actor, all with different expressions. Forty is the number of characters — some substantial, some conveyed in just a glance — that Terry Lewis plays in the Pulitzer Prize-winning play. (Bee artist John Alvin did the design.) I had an opportunity to interview playwright Doug Wright in advance of the StageWorks Fresno production, which opens tonight. [Details]

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Theater beat: Date set for ‘I Am My Own Wife’

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StageWorks Fresno has made its spring production date official: The Valley premiere of “I Am My Own Wife,” which won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize, and the Tony awards for best play and lead actor Jefferson Mays, will run April 5-14 at the Fresno Art Museum’s Bonner Auditorium.

The one-man show features some 40 roles, all of which will be played by local theater veteran Terry Lewis. Directing is J. Daniel Herring. I’ll be excited to see a StageWorks production in the Bonner — it’s a great intimate theater space for smaller productions.

Donald’s weekend picks

1. JOURNEY TO THE KINGDOM OF SWEETS
For many people, it just isn’t Christmas until you’ve seen “The Nutcracker.” The Central California Ballet production features some top-notch professional talent in the leading roles, including Michaela DePrince and Taureen Green, both of the Dance Theatre of Harlem, as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier; Aurora Frey (pictured) and David Beir, who play the Snow Queen and Snow Queen; and Courtney Boyd, who plays the Dewdrop. Don’t forget to check out my story about DePrince — she was an African orphan who became a star ballerina — in Thursday’s Life section. [Details]

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Donald’s weekend picks

If you thought last weekend was busy, wait till you see this one. Be sure to see our full coverage in Friday’s 7, including a roundup of classical music concerts.

1. SEE ‘ORDINARY DAYS’
It’s beautiful. There are only three performances left: 8 p.m. Friday; and 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday. Director Anthony Taylor’s Q&A interview is here, and my review is here. [Details]

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THEATER REVIEW: ‘A Year With Frog and Toad’

Where can I sign up? Life is pretty sweet as a frog. And as a toad. That’s the case, at least, for the title characters in StageWorks Fresno’s “A Year with Frog and Toad,” a production at the Cal Arts Severance Theatre through Dec. 16 that unfolds with uncommon sweetness and charm.

In the world of this gentle musical, based on the children’s books by Arnold Lobel, Frog and Toad live in tidy cottages in an idyllic setting, leisurely drink iced tea on picnics in the summer and slurp down hot bowls of soup in front of cozy fireplaces in the winter. They swim when it’s hot and sled when it’s cold. Even raking leaves seems fun. The neighbors — a motley crew of snails, mice, birds, turtles and lizards — are unfailingly polite. (Happily, there don’t seem to be any predators.) Most important, Frog and Toad have each other as best friends.

“Frog and Toad,” directed with a knowing hand by J. Daniel Herring, is an important title in the evolution of the genre known as Theatre for Young Audiences. Originally staged by the Children’s Theatre Company of Minneapolis, it ended up on Broadway in 2003, where it snagged a Tony nomination for Best Musical. With a cast of five adults, this family-friendly show works on several levels. It’s sure to tickle the fancy of young children, but there’s also a crisp adult appeal as it works through such themes as taking risks, trust, friendship and patience. Unlike many kid-friendly entertainments today that seem shrewdly calculated to appeal to both adults and children — all those DreamWorks and Disney movies that toss in an arch level of subtext to keep the parents from fidgeting — “Frog and Toad’s” appeal to all ages feels more organic.

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Donald’s weekend picks

So many things to do, so little time … besides the following, be sure to check out our mammoth list of holiday-related concerts, plays and events …

1. HAVE YOURSELF A ‘WHITE CHRISTMAS’
Where can you get snowed on in Fresno? Best bet is Children’s Musical Theaterworks’ “White Christmas,” which opens Friday and continues through Dec. 15. This production is CMT’s annual community-theater offering with performers of all ages. Here’s a description from the company:

The beloved classic holiday movie comes to life onstage in this new musical sensation! Bob Wallace and Phil Davis, two iconic song-and-dance men, follow a sister act to Vermont, only to discover that the nearly-bankrupt lodge they were to perform at is owned by their former commanding general. White Christmas boasts such hits as “Blue Skies,” “I Love a Piano,” and “White Christmas” and is sure to be a Holiday treat for the whole family! All performances feature a “Snow Zone” in section “A” center seating audience members will be treated to a light snowfall. Directed by theater veteran Elizabeth Fiester, and featuring Nick Netzley, Dan Aldape, Heather Price, & Hannah Huyck. (Bee photo below by Craig Kohlruss) [Details]

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Upcoming theater

As we look ahead to the end of November and early December — always one of the busiest cultural times of the year — here’s a quick glance at local theater you don’t want to miss.

‘ORDINARY DAYS’
This new musical from composer Adam Gwon is a last-minute addition to the schedule. I just received word today it will be staged Nov. 30-Dec. 8 by Fresno’s Organic Theater Factory at The Voice Shop. From the company’s website:

Ordinary Days tells the story of four young New Yorkers whose lives intersect as they search for fulfillment, happiness, love and cabs. Directed by Anthony Taylor and performed by Terry Lewis, Taylor Abels, Ashley Taylor and Dominic Grijalva; Adam Gwon’s vibrant score rings startlingly true to life.

The cast recording has received prominent priority on my iPod ever since I bought it. The show includes the beautiful song “I’ll Be Here,” which Audra McDonald sang at her most recent Fresno concert.

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Donald’s weekend picks

1. ENJOY A LITTLE NIGHT (OR MATINEE) MUSIC
It’s the last weekend for StageWorks Fresno’s handsome production of Sondheim’s “A Little Night Music.” Performances are 8 p.m. Friday, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Here’s my review. [Details]

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THEATER REVIEW: ‘A Little Night Music’

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The summer night smiles on Sondheim fans — and the Fresno theater scene — in the new StageWorks Fresno production of “A Little Night Music” at the Cal Arts Severance Theatre.

A smart ensemble cast brings to life this gentle, funny and thoughtful show, which is best known for Stephen Sondheim’s most famous breakout song, “Send in the Clowns.” The happy news is that there’s a lot more to the experience beyond a tune recorded by Frank Sinatra and Barbra Streisand (and piped, via excruciating Muzak-version, into countless dentist waiting rooms over the decades.) The show is a whimsical outing that has a lot of life, love and heart. And it’s a chance for some of the Fresno area’s best community-theater actors to shine in the spotlight.

As for the big song, it’s tenderly delivered by an astute Amelia Ryan as Desiree Armfeldt, the headstrong Swedish actress whose middle-aged trials and tribulations form the emotional core of the play. (Set in Sweden at the turn of the century, the musical is based on the Ingmar Bergman film “Smiles of a Summer Night.”) It’s an easy song to turn into a morose dirge — or into an extended rant, as Catherine Zeta Jones did so awkwardly in the Tony Award broadcast of the recent Broadway revival.

Ryan, however, reveals both steel and tenderness when she sings “Send in the Clowns,” finding within the song’s lilting melody and astute lyrics a sense of loss, frustration and, yes, a little bit of rage. Desiree laments losing her “timing” this late in her career, a common enough human occurrence, and Ryan’s understated loss of dignity as she grapples with her feelings for her former lover, Fredrik Egerman (a strongly played Terry Lewis), is compelling.

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StageWorks Fresno gets a mention in Playbill.com

It’s always nice for a local theater company to get some recognition from a national theater publication. That’s the case with StageWorks Fresno, whose promotional video for the recent “Next to Normal” is featured on Playbill.com in a roundup of regional productions of the show. Here’s the link to the main page of the “Screening Room” story; the Fresno

video pops up on Page 10.

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Dominic Grijalva, no stranger to the Beehive, shot and edited the video. Congrats on the national exposure.

Donald’s weekend picks

Besides splitting identities at “Jekyll & Hyde,” of course … And don’t forget the vacationing Mike Oz’s options that he so thoughtfully left for us in his Monday post.

1. SLEEPWALK WITH CALIFORNIA OPERA
The major weekend event of California Opera’s festival is a fully staged production of “La Sonnambula,” with orchestra, about a heroine who sleepwalks. The role of Amina, to be sung in this production by San Francisco soprano Jamie Bonetto, is renowned for its difficulty. Other cast members include Matthew Acuff as Count Rodolfo, Donald Squillace as Elvino, Merina Amos as Lisa and Alexandra Jerinic as Teresa. Leanna Sterios-Primiani conducts. It will be performed 2 p.m. Sunday at the Mercedes Edwards Theatre in Clovis. Here’s a rundown on all three weekend events from Friday’s 7 section. Pictured below: Matthew Acuff, Jamie Bonetto and Donald Squillace. (Bee photo by Craig Kohlruss) [Details]

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