The Fall Going-Ons of Local Theatre

What’s new in local theatre? Is that what you’re asking? Oh, no problem, let me tell you. There’s an army captain with an ambivalent heart, a family that celebrates Halloween every day, an orphan who learns how to steal and a family with some unfortunately-fated sisters. Does this seem like a lot? Let’s break it down and explore what’s happening on the theatre scene in Louisville this fall.

A Passionate Production

With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, “Passion” is opening September 17 in the Henry Clay Theatre (604 S. Third Street, 3rd floor, downtown) and is based on an Italian film “Passione d’amore.”

The musical follows the handsome Captain Girogio as he is transported to a remote military outpost and away from his married mistress Clara in 1863 Italy. Once he becomes the object of the obsessive, unrelenting passions of Fosca at his new post, Giorgio is forced to re-evaluate his beliefs about love.

The Best Musical Tony-winner was the final collaboration of Sondheim and playwright James Lapine. The duo had previously worked together on “Sunday in the Park with George” and “Into the Woods,” a fantastic beginning to an exciting partnership.

Pandora’s imagining of the modern classic promises exceptional performances from Andrew Newton, Deborah Mae Hill and Annette Hill McCulloch under the direction of Michael Drury and musical direction of Doug Jones. The show runs September 17-26. Dates and times can be found at pandoraprods.org.

They’re creepy and they’re kooky

On a lighter – and darker – note, the new musical adaptation of “The Addams Family” returns to The Kentucky Center for the Performing Arts (501 W. Main Street, downtown) with a production by Acting Against Cancer for all who love Halloween-inspired entertainment.

The musical follows the classic clan as the usually morose Wednesday brings home a “normal” boyfriend to meet Gomez, Morticia, Pugsley, Uncle Fester, Lurch and Grandma. Filled with lots of laughs, heart and toe-tappers, the musical will be the perfect Halloween treat for the whole family.

And it’s all for a good cause. Acting Against Cancer is actually a nonprofit company that uses its productions to raise funds that will go toward treating pediatric cancer. Profits earned from “The Addams Family” and the group’s whole season will benefit the art therapy program of The Addison Jo Blair Cancer Care Center at Kosair Children’s Hospital. To learn more about what Acting Against Cancer does and how you can help, find them online at actingagainstcancer.com. “The Addams Family” runs October 16-25.

Consider Yourself Enthralled

Speaking of kids, CenterStage at the Jewish Community Center (3600 Dutchmans Lane) is producing “Oliver!” as the third show of their 2015-16 season.

The musical is based on Charles Dickens’ novel “Oliver Twist” and follows the down-on-his-luck orphan as he searches for love. Oliver’s journey from the workhouse to the pick-pocketing streets is droll, heartwarming and full of twists, always keeping the audience on its toes.

Under the direction of John Leffert, CenterStage’s production will undoubtedly make a splash, just as “The Who’s Tommy” and “9 to 5” already have this season. The show runs October 22 through November 8. Tickets are available at centerstagejcc.org.

All’s Art in Love  AND Death

Also dealing with love is Theatre [502], which will bring “Failure, A Love Story” to the Baron’s Theatre (131 W. Main Street, downtown) later this fall.

Directed by Gil Reyes from Philip Dawkins’ script, the show is set in 1928, the year all of the Fail sisters met their demise. The story strives to remind us that love is all that ultimately remains by chronicling the lives of these sisters with a comical yet moving tone.

Always breaking new ground, Theatre [502] is sure to deliver a truly engaging production with a quality that is absolutely unassailable.

Whether your preference lies in lovelorn army captains, spooky and macabre relatives, pluckish orphans or dying sisters, there is something for you this fall season in Louisville theatre. What else do you need? VT