Friday, September 14, 2018

Autumn harvest delights San Diego play goers with theatrical gems

From left, Teagan Rose, J. Todd Adams and Joanna Strapp in "Blithe Spirit."



ALONG WITH pumpkins, zucchini and a berry bounty, San Diegans are harvesting a bumper crop of plays.
Here are highlights, upcoming dates to save and some stellar "don't miss" productions. These are our favorites.
  Isabella Pruter sings "Ring of Keys"  
"Blithe Spirit." Noel Coward's wise, witty, well constructed story of a flamboyant medium, a sassy wife who returns from the dead and a sparring couple. Like all Coward's wonderfully droll plays, the real star is the language.  Sharp, elegant direction by Rosina Reynolds and a fine cast deliver this long but satisfying production with panache. Through Sept. 30.

"Fun Home."  San Diego Repertory Theatre presents an energetic, full throttle production directed by Sam Woodhouse of the Tony winning story of a daughter's search to understand her father and his complicated identity.  Set in a funeral home (fun home), several actors play the young woman as she matures and searches for meaning. Beautiful, moving, imaginative. Through Sept. 30.

Jesse Perez gives an electrifying performance as Richard III
in Will Power's reimaging of the Shakespeare classic.
"Seize the King."  La Jolla Playhouse. An absolutely masterful tour de force by actor Will Power, an inventive reimagining of "Richard III."  Intense, wonderfully acted. You'll be thinking about it for days, the true mark of fine art. Through Sept. 16 only.
"Real Women Have Curves." The Roustabouts Theatre Company. A one-night-only collaboration between this cutting edge company and Amigos del Rep, at the Lyceum Sept. 17.  The "funny story of five full-figured Mexican-American women" tells of their race to meet nearly impossible production deadlines in order to keep their tiny factory from going under.
Preparing for Sophie's wedding, her mother Donna (Misty Cotton)
 and Sophie (Olivia Hodson) share a moment. Excellent voices, sharp 

direction make the show a hit. It runs through Feb. 24 at Welk Resort.
"Mamma Mia." Welk Resorts Theatre. Classic ABBA score as a teen searches for her birth father on a gorgeous Greek isle. The theater has undergone a spruce-up and the museum is redone. The cast is top-notch. The musical's long run, likely a sell-out, is through Feb. 24.

Michael Louis Cusimano and Caitie Grady charm in "Once."

"Once." Lamb's Players Theatre." It opened to raves in early summer and has done gang-buster's business, but if you have yet to see "Once" you have only through Sept. 16. Beautifully sung and cleverly directed, the feel good, rousing production features a blossoming romance in an Irish pub. Energetically performed, it  has been extended for the last time. Inventive staging, terrific score and a great excuse to visit Coronado. 

"Legacy Lab." Diversionary Theatre. New for 2018, from this cutting edge theater company, Diversionary launches an intriguing new concept, the Lecacy Lab," to feature staged readings of classic LGBT text with a presentation of the goundbreaking 1934 play by Lillian Hellman, "The Children's Hour,"  It is a drama set in an all-girls boarding school run by two women, Karen Wright and Martha Dobie. The reading is Oct 5 and 6 at 7 p.m. It's free, with a suggested $15 donation. Check out the wonderful 1961 Audrey Hepburn-Shirley MacLaine film.
  "Guadalupe in the Guest Room." New Village Arts, Carlsbad. The always inventive play docket just closed a hit "Legally Blonde." Next up: "Guadalupe....," a story of two people, in the bond of shared grief, with an unexpected friendship and healing. Written by the rising playwright Tony Meneses, on the boards Oct. 6-28.

Actor Ro Boddie  -- brilliant at Cygnet.
"Every Brilliant Thing." Cygnet Theatre.  If you haven't seen this captivating performance piece, you have only through Sept. 16. A wonderful one-man show about a son who wants his depressed mother to cheer up. Funny, touching. All the right stuff. Then  leave it to inventive Cygnet to jazz up dull Mondays with a series of Cabaret shows, each with a different theme and Cygnet's top singers, known around town. Oct. 22. "HIR" is next up for the season. Sounds intriguing.

Fort Lauderdale's Water Taxi service is fun, economical
 and a fine way to see the city's sights.
UP NEXT: Come with us to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where we visit a favorite American port city by Water Taxi. The city's splendidly designed canal enterprise is our favorite way to see the sights. We meander via Water Taxi to enjoy the city's history and play tourist as we glide quietly past homes of the rich and famous, sports and acting figures, wealthy investors and "old money" Florida families. Remember to explore, learn and live and catch us each Friday for a novel look at art, travel, nature, music and travel.


  1. Colorado Culture BuffsSeptember 15, 2018 at 8:51 AM

    Wow. Envious un Denver. Good variety.

  2. We love the theater life in San Diego -- far surpasses Los Angeles and the crowds, higher prices, traffic. So lucky to live here. You expressed it well!

  3. Great exposure to well deserved venues.

  4. Fabulous offerings. Saw 3 of the ones you like. Booked 4 more!