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Summer Stages: BWW Top Summer Theatre Picks- Birmingham (Something For Everyone)

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School is out and the fun days of summer are upon us. But that doesn't mean that there isn't a lot of great theatre still available.

Before we dive into the pool of community theatre productions coming this summer, I would like to tell you about an opportunity to share a great night with some high school kids. Spain Park High School Theatre will present its original, award winning one act play PALS. Inspired by letters from the trenches of WWI, the students have created a multimedia presentation that aims to put a face on the lives destroyed by the war. Joining the Spain Park students will be Dolores Hydock, acclaimed storyteller, who will present LESSONS IN LOVE the same evening, June 7 at 7pm. Tickets are $10 and are available at www.sparktheatre.net or by calling 439-1465. Come enjoy a meaningful night and help these students get to the Atlanta Fringe Festival.

Virginia Samford Theatre has two offerings during the summer. In the main theatre you can see the classic DAMN YANKEES, directed by Jack Mann, June 16- July 3rd or head upstairs to the Martha Moore Sykes Studio and see COMING OUT: TO AND FROM: STORIES OF HORROR AND HOPE. A fundraiser for VST and PFLAG this unique presentation will run the first two weekends of June. Tickets are $30. For more information on both presentations go to www.virginiasamfordtheate.org.

Red Mountain Theatre Company's summer production is THE LITTLE MERMAID. As with all of RMTC's big summer offerings, I expect this to be an outstanding production that will rival any Broadway tour. Having gotten a glimpse of Ursula during the Lyric Theatre's opening weekend, I feel confident in recommending this to everyone in Birmingham. It runs July 8-31 at the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre at the Alabama School of Fine Arts which gives you lots of opportunities to get your kids, grandkids and your friends and head over to see THE LITTLE MERMAID. Go to www.redmountaintheatre.org for ticket information.

South City Theatre in Pelham will present I HATE HAMLET Friday, June 3 -June 11. A hilarious play that will leave you laughing, I HATE HAMLET is full of crazy characters. Later in the summer SCT is presenting A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, but in a way that you might never have seen it before. Although it would seem like a summer of Shakespeare, neither production is typical by any means. If I were you I would make my plans now, because SCT has been selling out regularly since their move to Pelham. Call 205-621-2128 or go to www.southcitytheatre.com .

Theatre Downtown also has two offerings for the summer months. THE EXPLORERS CLUB runs from June 9-25 and is another humorous play. Set in 1879, this all male club is considering allowing a woman in. Horrors! Then from July 21-August 6 TD does the unexpected and presents DEBBIE DOES DALLAS- THE MUSICAL. For more information on these shows and for tickets go to www.theatredowntown.org or call 205-565-8838.

Birmingham Festival Theatre opens July 7 with a four week run of THE SAVANNAH DISPUTATION. Funny and thought provoking, this play by Evan Smith centers around two Catholic sisters who are visited by an evangelical missionary. For more information go to www.bftonline.org or call 205-933-2383.

Leeds might be the place to be this summer as the Leeds Arts Council presents OKLAHOMA! July 7,8,14,15,22 and 23 at 7pm and July 9,16,24 at 2. Call 699-1892 for information. Over at the Episcopal Church of the Epiphany in Leeds THE RED VELVET CAKE WAR opens on June 9 and runs for two weekends. Written by the team of Jones, Hope and Wooten this promises to be a fun night.

The Wherehouse Players in Gardendale will present THE 25th ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE July 24-27. Check out their page on Facebook for upcoming information.

Besides the plays that will be presented all over town, the Birmingham Music Club will present the opera DIE FLEDERMAUS at the Dorothy Jemison Day Theatre at the Alabama School of Fine Arts on June 10,11 and 12 at 7:30. With live orchestra and exceptionally talented singers this opera will be presented in English. Go to www.bhammusicclub.org or call 205-726-2853 weekdays between noon and 2 for information and tickets.

Another unusual presentation that I only have a "Save The Date" for is a collaboration between Carl Stewart and Dolores Hydock scheduled for July 7-30. More details should be available soon at www.terrificnewtheatre.com or by calling 205-328-0868. Knowing these two, it will be a show you won't want to miss!

If you are feeling adventurous and want to leave the Birmingham area, might I suggest the Covered Bridge Players in Oneonta. This great group is presenting ON GOLDEN POND August 5-14. Go to www.coveredbridgeplayers.com or call 205-903-4060.

In Gadsden, CharACTers Theatrics will present BIG RIVER June 10-12 at the Wallace Hall Fine Arts Center at Gadsden State. Go to www.wallacehall.org for information. In August, this same group will present GODSPELL.

The Whole Backstage Theatre in Guntersville will present THE FABULOUS FIFTIES June 24 through July 3. You can check it out at www.wholebackstage.com

The Springville Community Theatre is putting on MARY POPPINS July 28-31 and LES MIZ (School Edition) can be seen at the Albertville Fine Arts Center June 10-12 and 16-18.

For those who are less adventurous you can see WICKED at the BJCC starting June 22 -July 3. It is a great show and if you haven't seen it- where have you been?? You can get more information at www.theatreleague.com

Speaking of WICKED, Kristin Chenowith, who originated the role of Glinda the Good Witch on Broadway, will be at the Alys Stephens Center on Sunday June 12 at 6pm. Since it is a fundraiser, tickets are super pricey and can be obtained through www.eventticketcenter.com or www.alysstphens.org

I don't know about you, but my head is swimming from all of this great entertainment headed our way. I am sure I have left things out, it was just too much to put in one article. There is more coming soon about summer camps and their productions. I know I have a summer full of shows I am seeing. I hope you do, too! As one friend put it, "If you are ever bored in Birmingham, it is your own fault!" Amen.


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From This Author Marietta Lunceford

With a BFA in musical theatre and a true love of the theatre, Marietta is thrilled to write for BroadwayWorld.com. Reviews and responses to local (read more...)