atlanta theater | WABE 90.1 FM

atlanta theater

Courtesy of Americolor Opera Alliance

Three brothers, all born of different mothers, find themselves all living under their father's roof. Truths about past affairs surface and the tension builds. This is the way "House of Brothers," the latest production by The Americolor Opera Alliance, begins.

City Lights: Shoe History; 'LadyShakes'; And More

May 15, 2017
Courtesy of Savannah College of Art and Design

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Courtesy of Rebekah Suellau

If you've ever wanted to scream, quit your job, and start a punk ukulele band, Synchronicity Theatre has a show about exactly that. "Hannah Cremation + The Ash" is opening for two nights of performances this week.

Like us on Facebook

Christopher Bartelski

In Actor's Express’ upcoming production, a slave is offered freedom if he fights for the Confederacy. The play, called "Father Comes Home from the Wars (Parts 1, 2, and 3)," is by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks.

This is not a traditional historical drama. For one, it loosely uses Homer's "The Odyssey" as its storytelling mechanism. Also, director Martin Damien Wilkins explained that the vernacular of today is used throughout the story.

Like us on Facebook

Dan Burke / NPR

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Rachel May

It’s a play that the writer describes as “like a Shakespeare hoedown that might make you cry.” It is called “The Heath” and it tells the story of playwright Lauren Gunderson’s own grandfather alongside the story of Shakespeare’s King Lear, who famously went mad.

And on top of that, she plays the banjo.

Like us on Facebook

Horizon Theatre, Nobody Loves You, reality TV musical
Courtesy of Horizon Theatre

Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Stacey Bode

Wednesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Darrell Hazelrig

Born in the street festivals of Atlanta, the character of Pete the Cat has found himself on canvas, on the New York Times bestseller list and now he's finding himself on stage. The Center for Puppetry Arts has written a world premier show featuring the cool cat.

Stungun Photography

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Courtesy of Actor's Express

Any artistic director can tell you that getting a nonprofit arts organization through a single year is a challenge, which makes Atlanta’s Actor’s Express pretty remarkable. The theater company is getting ready to begin their 30th season.

Like us on Facebook

Rafterman Photography

The Atlanta Opera's production of "Don Pasquale" sets the comic opera gem in the golden era of Hollywood. The title character, played by Burak Bilgili, is an aging silent film star at the sunset of his career.

Like us on Facebook

Myke Johns / WABE

The life and work of Atlanta actor Jo Howarth Noonan are being celebrated with a festival Saturday.

Like us on Facebook

Noonan began acting in her 20s, but she put that burgeoning career on hold to start a family. When she returned to the stage, she found a surprising creative renaissance – at a stage of life when most female actors are ushered into involuntary retirement. She died unexpectedly in 2015, and now there is a foundation and a festival which bears her name.

In theater, typically the way things work is a playwright writes a play and then a theater company puts it onstage. There is one group helping Atlanta artists with all of the stuff that happens in between. They’re called Working Title Playwrights.

Like us on Facebook

Jeremiah Parker Hobbs and India S. Tyree star as the titualar characters in the Alliance Theatre’s fairy tale ''Cinderella and Fella.''
Greg Mooney / Courtesy of the Alliance Theatre

The phrase "Cinderella story" is used to describe a meteoric rise from humble beginnings to fame and fortune. The Alliance Theatre is putting a new kind of Cinderella story onstage –  one that subverts its fairy tale origins for today's children.

Like us on Facebook

"Cinderella and Fella" is billed as being "more high-tops than glass slipper" and is fueled by a different kind of magic.

Joan Marcus

“The New York Times” estimated that somewhere between 700 and 900 productions of the musical “Annie” are performed each year in the United States.

Like us on Facebook

Most of those productions, however, do not feature a sizeable chunk of the original crew, including director and lyricist Martin Charnin, or real dogs from rescue shelters.

Horizon Theatre, Nobody Loves You, reality TV musical
Courtesy of Horizon Theatre

Characters must find love in “Nobody Loves You,” a reality TV musical by Gaby Alter and Itamar Moses. The musical will be at Atlanta's Horizon Theatre with performances starting tomorrow and running through April 30.

Like us on Facebook

Courtesy of Alliance Theatre

The Alliance Theatre will bring down the house — quite literally — as it soon begins a major, year-long renovation. The work should result in a theater space that's more accessible as well as acoustically refined.

Like us on Facebook

But, as "City Lights" host Lois Reitzes noted, "the show must go on," and she spoke with the Alliance Theatre's artistic director Susan V. Booth about the company's upcoming nomadic season.

Stacy Bode Photography

Two longtime collaborators who happen to have the same first name, Raymond Carr and Raymond Wade Tilton, have created a show about contrast. Divided into vignettes, the show looks at contrast in a variety ways from relationships to religion to their own artistic partnership.

Like us on Facebook

City Lights: Irish Music; 'Exit Strategy'; And More

Mar 13, 2017
M. Spencer Green / Associated Press

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

City Lights: Madeleine Peyroux; Tara Ochs; And More

Mar 9, 2017
Shervin Lainez

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

MJCCA

Jerry’s Habima Theatre is Georgia’s only theatrical company directed and produced by professionals, featuring actors with special needs ages 18 and up. For 24 years and counting, the company stages a Broadway-style musical, and this year’s production is “The Wizard of Oz.”

Like us on Facebook

Greg Mooney

“Exit Strategy” is the story of a Chicago public school on the brink of closure. A small group of teachers launch a last-minute battle to save their school, following an administrator who may not actually know what he’s doing. The show premiered in Chicago in 2014, and this week it is opening at Kenny Leon’s True Colors Theatre Company.

Like us on Facebook

City Lights: 'A Kid Like Jake'; 'Homages'; And More

Feb 21, 2017
Courtesy of Out Front Theatre

Tuesday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Atlanta Musician Chronicles Sam Cooke's Life In Play

Feb 15, 2017
Sam Cooke performs in concert at New York City's Copacabana Night Club in this undated photo.
AP Photo

In his short life and career, Sam Cooke charted 29 Top 40 hits. As the “King of Soul,” Cooke struck mainstream success for his soul-infused pop songs. His life is a long list of superlatives, punctuated with a sudden and violent death in 1964 at the age of 33. It’s the kind of story ripe for adaptation, and Atlanta musician Nat George did just that.

Like us on Facebook

Cinderella Goes To Harlem In 'Cindy The Musical'

Feb 13, 2017
Courtesy of Stepp Stewart

Never mind the Brothers Grimm, Disney or Brandy. A new Cinderella story plops the title character into 1943 Harlem.

“Cindy the Musical” is the brainchild of Stepp Stewart, who has made his mark both in music and in theater. He based the show off of a 1978 television special of the same name.

Courtesy of Out Front Theatre

Inclusivity is front and center at the Out Front Theatre Company. Its mission is to share stories about the LGBTQIA community through theater. That’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intergender and allied.

“Other cities in the country had companies that have been around for decades telling these stories,” said Out Front Founder and Producing Artistic Director Paul Conroy. “But our audiences weren’t being reached on a consistent basis. Shows might have popped up once in a while, but we wanted to do it full time.”

Jeff Shipman

"Le Petit Prince" is an iconic book. From its illustrations to its cast of characters, the Prince teaches lessons of friendship, growing up, dreams and how to see with the heart.

And there's no better theater company to present "The Little Prince" than the Theater of the Dream, or Théâtre du Rêve, Atlanta's own francophone theater company.

Courtesy of Synchronicity Theater

Ivan the gorilla lived at Zoo Atlanta from 1994 to 2012. And he was quite a gorilla: up until his death, he received fan letters on his birthday. He became an international sensation before he was brought to Zoo Atlanta because he lived in a cement cage and was display in a mall. There in his cramped conditions, he learned how to use finger paints and watch TV.

Ivan's life was the inspiration for a Newberry-winning children’s novel by Katherine Applegate, “The One and Only Ivan,” which was then adapted into a play.

Chef Art Smith participates in the "Top Chef Duels" Premiere Tasting Event, hosted by Chase Sapphire Preferred and Bravo, at the Altman Building, on Monday, Aug. 4, 2014 in New York.
Evan Agostini/Invision for Chase Sapphire Preferred / Associated Press

Thursday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

Pages