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Anne Frank’s Diary in Song

Theatre: ‘Yours, Anne’

It’s a heck of a thing, making a musical about Anne Frank based on her famous diary.
The topic is not exactly uplifting. The setting is claustrophobic. None of the characters are in danger of breaking into a show-stopping song-and-dance number, though all them could be discovered and deported to concentration camps. Which they were. Only Otto Frank, Anne’s father, survived.

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One Night With Don Juan

Theatre: ‘Don Juan in Hell’

For lovers of Mozart’s great opera, “Don Giovanni,” the idea of a lengthy conversation between the ever-amorous Don in hell and the commander he killed — whose daughter, Anna, the Don was menacing at the time (we think) — and the Devil is a big draw. 

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Love, Humanity And Reconciliation

Theatre: ‘Mothers and Sons’

“Mothers and Sons,” a play about homosexual men in New York City that opened for a three-month run on Broadway in 2014, has had much critical acclaim, some honors and a few short appearances around the country: about three weeks in Albuquerque, N.M., in 2015, and about a month in Philadelphia that same year.
The Ghent Playhouse opened its production of this knotty play — directed by Cathy Lee-Visscher — last weekend to a fairly large, more-varied-than-usual and very receptive audience.

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A Tale Of Late Bloomers

Theatre: ‘Calendar Girls’

The audience was wonderfully responsive. They laughed. They sighed. They clapped in the middle of scenes. They even cheered.
“Calendar Girls” at the Warner Theatre’s Nancy Marine Studio Theatre is more than a tale of love and friendship and what happens when people are willing to leave their comfort zones to support a cause. It’s a celebration of the human spirit.

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Students Ready To Entertain

Theatre

Spring is just around the corner, which means it’s time for students in area high schools to take to the stage for theatrical productions.
Webutuck
The Webutuck Central School District is partnering with the Wassaic Project — a nonprofit organization that promotes art and community year-round — to present Roald Dahl’s “Fantastic Mr. Fox.” The Wassaic Project is taking charge of sets, props, costumes, original music, lighting design and overall direction. 

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A Show Full of Fantasy, Frenzy, Fun

Theatre: ‘Peter and the Starcatcher’

Experiencing TheatreWorks New Milford’s current production of “Peter and the Starcatcher” — the fantasy prequel to “Peter Pan” — is simply a nonstop frenetic triumph. 
There’s no need for a choreographer — Director Alicia Dempster had to move an energized cast around Jim Hipp’s well-crafted small stage. She used every inch of it to allow her talented cast to delight the audience.

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Expanding Horizons at the Playhouse

Theatre

The Sharon Playhouse welcomed two new leaders in November 2016: Emily Soell became president of the board of directors, and George Quick was hired as managing director.

At the time, the duo had no plans to fill the artistic director position that was left vacant by the departure of John Simpkins,  and they were also considering “Guys and Dolls” and “The Fantasticks” for the Playhouse’s summer season.

Well, a lot has changed in three months.

A Pinball Wizard Rocks The Stage

compass@lakevillejournal.com

By the time I left the Warner Theatre after the opening night of “The Who’s Tommy,” I couldn’t stop singing the lyrics to “Pinball Wizard” — “That deaf, dumb and blind kid sure plays a mean pinball!”
Of course, this was accompanied by my amazing air guitar moves.

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It’s Passionate, But Not Universal

Theatre: ‘Our Town’

Although “Our Town” is a theater staple, particularly with community theaters, I had never seen a performance until I sat in the audience during the current run at the Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck. 

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Pleasant, Wry And Cheerful

Theatre: ‘Once Upon a Mattress’

The year is 1428 and no one in court may marry until Prince Dauntless does. And since his mother, Queen Aggravain, nixes every prospective bride with impossible-to-answer quizzes, wedded bliss has ground to a halt (although other aspects of a happy union appear to thrive). 
From here, “Once Upon A Mattress” — a leisurely song-and-dance-version of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Princess and the Pea” — spins out pleasantly, and sometimes wryly, at The Ghent Playhouse.

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