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Summer Stages: BWW's Top Summer Theatre Picks - Seattle!

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As always, summers in the Seattle area are a crapshoot.  Will we or won't we have nice weather?  If the weather lately is any indication I think we're in for some lovely days and plenty of chances to play outside.  But whether the weather forces us outdoors or indoors there's always plenty of theater going on around town to take in.  Here are our top 5 picks for summer theater goings on around town this year.

Summer Outdoor Theater Festival

From Wooden O's "The Winter's Tale" and Greenstage's "Henry VIII" to Balagan's "Sally and Thor Save the World (at Summer Camp)" and Theater Schmeater's "Hansel and Gretel" and much more, the Summer Outdoor Theater Festival always presents a little something for everyone.  And while the festival itself in Capitol Hill's Volunteer Park is July 14th and 15th, many of the shows presented will still be available at various other venues in Seattle and surrounding areas. 

For information on the times and locations of individual shows you can check the web sites of the various theaters involved such as www.greenstage.org, www.seattleshakespeare.org/WoodenO, www.balagantheatre.org/sallyandthor, www.lastleaf99.org, and www.schmeater.org. Plus you can check the Greenstage site for the entire schedule for the festival at www.greenstage.org/sotf.  It's not up yet but keep checking back.

"Sweet Nothing" from Macha Monkey Productions

Macha Monkey presents the northwest premiere of Stephanie Timm's "Sweet Nothing", a (grim) fairytale at Annex Theatre's space in June 2012. "Sweet Nothing" explores the repercussions of violence and war through a fairytale lens. Once upon a time in a raped and pillaged land, the youngest of three sisters weds herself to a man she's never met who lives across the sea. When the next youngest is offered a similar promise of living happily ever after, she discovers that hope might just be her worst enemy.

For information on "Sweet Nothing" visit them online at www.machamonkey.org.

Intiman Theatre's Summer Theatre Festival

Tony-award winning Intiman Theatre turns 40 this year and will celebrate by launching a new summer theatre festival with four plays: "Romeo and Juliet", "Hedda Gabler", "Miracle!" and "Dirty Story". The artists leading the charge - Dan Savage, Valerie Curtis-Newton, Andrew Russell and Allison Narver – are bringing passion projects with a twist to awaken the theatre, and the company of 17 local actors features established heavyweights and new forces, twisting and turning to play more than 40 roles in more than 80 performances. Similarly, the design team is stretching and shifting to build a versatile playground on the mainstage that will support several shows while simultaneously creating a separate universe in Intiman's studio space.

For information on the Intiman Summer Theatre Festival visit them online at www.intiman.org.

"The Producers" at Village Theatre

Mel Brooks' record-breaking, 12-time Tony Award-winner, "The Producers" is a hysterically outrageous hit! When an out-of-luck Broadway producer and his nervous accountant hatch a plan to mount a guaranteed Broadway flop in order to turn some quick cash, their wrongful scheming goes wildly awry. With swingin' tunes and a vaudeville feel, this show is loaded with laughs and dazzling choreography that is sure to leave stars in your eyes.

This one has already opened and runs throughout the summer in Issaquah and Everett.  Check out the BWW Review for this hysterical show!

For information on Village's production of "The Producers" visit them online at www.villagetheatre.org.

"Jesus Hopped the A Train" from Azeotrope

After an impressive debut with their production of Red Light Winter in 2010, Seattle theatre company Azeotrope presents their second production with the Northwest premiere of "Jesus Hopped the A Train" by Stephen Adly Guirgis, directed by Artistic Associate Desdemona Chiang. Jesus Hopped the A Train opens Friday, June 15, 2012 through June 30, 2012 and is produced in association with Central Heating Lab at A Contemporary Theatre.

"Jesus Hopped the A Train" is a stark and sobering examination of life, death, salvation, and what it takes to be a "good" person. The play revolves around the relationship between two prisoners at Riker's Island in Manhattan, each of whom believes himself accountable to a higher law than that of the judicial system. Angel Cruz (Richard Nguyen Sloniker) has shot the leader of a religious cult to which he lost his best friend. Lucius Jenkins (Dumi) is a serial killer awaiting extradition to Florida, guilty of the deaths of at least eight people, and during his incarceration, Lucius finds God. Assigned to protective custody at Riker's, Angel and Lucius find themselves in close company each other during their daily hour of outdoor exercise. The two struggle and clash in their mutual guilt, innocence and faith in higher powers.

For more information on "Jesus Hopped the A Train" from Azeotrope visit them online at www.azotheatre.org.

Photo credit from Village Theatre's "The Producers": Jay Koh

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Jay Irwin Born and raised in Seattle, WA, Jay has been a theater geek for years. He attends as many shows as he can around the country and loves taking in new exciting works.

Instituting a new three letter rating system for my reviews for 2014. They'll range from best to worst as WOW (A can’t miss), YAY (Too damn good), MEH+ (Good, with some great things going for it), MEH (Just OK), NAH (You can miss this one) and WTF (I think you can figure out my complex code there).

Jay is also an actor in the local Seattle scene. Follow me on Twitter @SeattleBdwyGeek


 
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