Critic's Choice: What's Playing in Tennessee? Nashville Theater Calendar for September 7
Feeling the urge to let your imagination run wild, your spirit to soar or to just leave the world in which you live and go on an adventure? Sounds like a trip to the theater is in order! Luckily, companies all over the Volunteer State have been hard at work, creating new productions to transform and to transport, shows that will entertain you this summer. That's where THE NASHVILLE THEATER CALENDAR comes in handy: Peruse our listings every week to find out what shows you should see!
Your show missing from our calendar? Send details about your production to email@example.com (and be sure to include an illustration or photo).
Through September 8 Sister Act - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville. Sister Act - the feel-good musical comedy smash based on the hit 1992 film that has proven to be a hit with audiences all across Tennessee - will open at Crossville's Cumberland County Playhouse on July 21, running through September 8. Featuring original music by Tony Award and eight-time Oscar winner Alan Menken (Newsies, Beauty and the Beast, Little Shop of Horrors), the musical was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Sister Act is directed by Playhouse producing director Bryce McDonald (Million Dollar Quartet) and features choreography by Leila Nelson (Beauty and the Beast), and musical direction by Ron Murphy. Currently at the Playhouse: Smoke on the Mountain in the Adventure Theater, through August 10. Upcoming: Lying in State in the Adventure Theater, August 18 through October 6. Tickets may be reserved by calling (931) 484-5000 or at www.ccplayhouse.com.
Through September 17 Shakespeare in the Park - Nashville Shakespeare Festival, Centennial Park, Nashville. Nashville Shakespeare Festival (NSF) continues its tradition of Shakespeare in the Park with The Winter's Tale and Antony & Cleopatra, running from Thursday, August 10 through Sunday, September 17 at Centennial Park's band shell. Directed by NSF artistic associate Santiago Sosa, The Winter's Tale is a fanciful story set in a fairy tale. The setting is inspired by the diverse South American Cultures during the Gran Columbia era. The David Ian Lee-directed Antony & Cleopatra is a taut thriller about new love in later years and a cautionary tale of political brinksmanship where the powerful play games that result in war and ruin. Lee is a director, playwright and professor at Middle Tennessee State University. Nashville Shakespeare Festival returns to Williamson County for its second annual Shakespeare in Academy Park, which will run from September 28-October 1, and will feature both The Winter's Tale and Antony & Cleopatra at the former campus of Battle Ground Academy. For more information, go to www.franklinshakes.org. General admission to Shakespeare in the Park is open to the public with a $10 per person suggested donation. Food and beverage vendors open at 6 p.m., pre-show entertainment begins at 6:30 p.m. and the performance begins at 7:30 p.m. Royal Packages are available for those seeking the ultimate VIP experience. This package is the Festival's major fundraiser and includes reserved parking, prime seating, a Bacon and Caviar catered gourmet picnic, special gift and personal welcome from the Nashville Shakespeare Festival volunteers and staff. There are a limited number of packages available for each performance and guests are encouraged to book early. Royal Packages are $60 through July 31 and $75 after that date. Visit ticketsnashville.com for details and to support the fundraiser. Businesses are encouraged to Contact Rickey Chick, development director for sponsorship opportunities: firstname.lastname@example.org or (615) 255-2273.
Through October 6 Lying in State - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville. Beginning August 18, Cumberland County Playhouse will present Lying in State, a riotous comedy that's been delighting audiences around the country since its premiere a decade ago. A state senator has died in a ridiculous, self-inflicted accident. And as luck would have it, word of his demise (and some good P.R.) have made him a national hero. On the day of the funeral, everyone is searching for something. The local political party leaders are frantically looking for someone to fill his senate seat. His ex-wife is looking for a bugler to play for his funeral. Buttons, the semi-exotic dancer, and a host of other zany characters are looking for love, votes, the right casket and a giant purple squirrel named Mel. This laugh-out-loud comedy mixes love, politics, outlandish situations, and outrageous characters in a recipe that's sure to provide non-stop laughter! The Lying in State cast features Daniel Black (Smoke on the Mountain), DeAnna Etchison (Smoke on the Mountain), Ross Griffin (Million Dollar Quartet), Britt Hancock (Million Dollar Quartet), Patty Payne (A Second Helping), Jason Ross (Sister Act), and Weslie Webster (Beauty and the Beast).
September 7-17 The Battle of Franklin - Studio Tenn at Jamison Hall, The Factory at Franklin. Studio Tenn Theatre Company returns to the roots of Franklin, Tennessee with its reprise of "The Battle of Franklin: A Tale of a House Divided." Back by popular demand, "The Battle of Franklin" will premier at the Jamison Theatre in the Factory at Franklin thisSeptember 7 - 22. With the historic Carter house just minutes away, Middle Tennesseans are sure to get a sense of the rich history within Franklin with this original masterpiece chronicling the story of Tod Carter. Studio Tenn's Artistic Director, Matt Logan, enlisted the expertise of writer A. S. Peterson to script the tale, along with the guidance of local historians to recreate the stirring performance piece.
September 7-October 21 Mamma Mia - Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theatre, 8204 Highway 100, Nashville. Broadway vet Rachel Potter stars with the nine-time First Night Award-winning Martha Wilkinson (a 2015 First Night Honoree) in the upcoming Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theatre production of Mamma Mia!, the hit musical set to a score of ABBA's biggest hits. Mamma Mia! runs September 7-October 21 at Nashville's iconic dinner theatre. Opening on Broadway in October 2001 - just weeks after 9/11 - the musical provided a much-needed dose of escapism to a battered New York City theatre scene still reeling from the attacks of September 11. It went on to run for 14 years on the main stem, with some 5,773 performances to its credit. The North American touring production, which opened in Providence, Rhode Island, in 2002, continued until its final performance in St. Louis on July 30 of this year, racking up in excess of 4,000 performances along the way. Starring Broadway veteran and former X Factor finalist Rachel Potter as Sophie and Martha Wilkinson as Donna, Mamma Mia! tells the comic story of bride-to-be Sophie and the hilarity surrounding her wedding on a Greek island paradise. The magic of ABBA's timeless songs propels this enchanting tale of love, laughter, and friendship, creating a trip down the aisle audiences will never forget! Bradley Moore directs, with choreography by Everett Tarlton and music direction by Kelsi Fulton. Chaffin's Barn's production of Mamma Mia! will include 30 performances, staged on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings, as well as Thursday matinees, with one special Sunday matinee on September 17. Reservations for Mamma Mia! are now available via www.ChaffinsBarnTheatre.com.
September 8-17 A Few Good Men - Center for the Arts, Murfreesboro. Vickie Bailey directs Aaron Sorkin's play that ultimately became a film starring Tom Cruise, Demi Moore and Jack Nicholson. The riveting courtroom drama, A Few Good Men pits inexperienced Navy lawyer, Lt. Daniel Kaffee, against top brass as he attempts to defend two Marines on trial for murdering one of their own. As the court case proceeds and the possibility of conspiracy arises, the persistent Kaffee finds himself asking complex questions of honor, duty and humanity that demand an answer. The show premiered on Broadway in 1989; a successful film version starring Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson was released in 1992. Cast member Chaney Mosley, who portrays Lieutenant JG Daniel Kaffee, is a Lieutenant in the Tennessee Army National Guard. KT Turner, who is cast as Lieutenant Commander Joanne Galloway, has a mother who is in the Navy and has other close relatives that serve in the military. Tickets are $15 for adults, $13 for seniors and students, and $11 for children. Tickets may be purchased online or by calling the Box Office at (615) 904-2787.
September 8-30 The Wizard of Oz - The Roxy Regional Theatre, Clarksville. Click your heels together and join us over the rainbow in the magical land of Oz! Aided by a talking Scarecrow, Tin Man and Lion, young Dorothy and her little dog Toto battle the Wicked Witch of the West and her winged monkeys in order to get home. Rediscover L. Frank Baum's beloved tale in this fantastic musical treat for the entire family, featuring such favorites as "Over The Rainbow," "Munchkinland (Ding Dong! The Witch Is Dead)," "If I Only Had A Brain," "We're Off To See The Wizard (Follow The Yellow Brick Road)" and more! Tickets are $25. Go to www.roxyregionaltheatre.org or call (931) 645-7699.
September 9-24 Part of the Plan - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville. September 8-24, 2017, the Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) presents the World Premiere of a developmental production of PART OF THE PLAN, a new and original musical featuring the music and lyrics of the late, celebrated singer-songwriter Dan Fogelberg. The musical, of which TPAC is a co-producer, is the first original work featured on the center's annual HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC series. TPAC was selected by producers K-Squared Entertainment due to Fogelberg's deep ties to Nashville and the considerable influence he's had on a variety of luminaries in Country, Bluegrass, and Folk-Rock music.
September 14-23 A Bluer Shade of Gray - Artist Community Theatre at 2601 Una Antioch Pike, Antioch. Curtain is at 7:30 p.m., with a 2 p.m. matinee on September 16. Call (615) 818-6674 for details.
September 14-October 1 The Hundred Dresses - Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville. William Kent Williams' The Hundred Dresses (September 14-October 3, 2017) based on the book by Eleanor Estes will feature Tamiko Robinson Steele as Adult Maddie/Kid Maddie, William Barry Scott as Mr. Mason/Mr. Svenson, Catherine Birdsong as Peggy, Taylor Kelly as Tommy and Kristin McCalley as Wanda/Shy Kid. Scenery is by Mitch Massaro, Lighting by Bill Rios and costumes by Patricia Taber. Josh Stark designs the sound. Ernie Nolan will make his Nashville directorial debut with this brand-new production.
September 15-30 Million Dollar Quartet - Arts Center of Cannon County, Woodbury. On December 4, 1956, one man brought Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Elvis Presley to play together for the first and only time. This historic day is immortalized in the Broadway musical Million Dollar Quartet that will be presented by The Arts Center of Cannon County opening September 15 and runs September 15,16, 22, 23, 29, & 30 @ 7:30pmand September 17 & 24 @ 2pm. Tickets are $15 for adults and $13 for students and seniors. For tickets go to www.artscenterofcc.com Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30pm and Sundays at 2pm, September 15-30.
September 15-October 27 The Drowsy Chaperone - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville. The Drowsy Chaperone tells the tale of a modern-day musical theater fan, known as the "Man in the Chair," (Jason Ross, Sister Act). As he plays his favorite cast album ? the fictional 1928 musical comedy, The Drowsy Chaperone - on his turntable, the musical literally bursts to life in his living room! The audience becomes immersed in the glamorous and hilarious tale of a reluctant stage star bride (Harli Cooper, The Little Mermaid), a groom on skates (Walker Degerness, Beauty and the Beast), a tap-dancing best man (Brett Mutter, Smoke on the Mountain), a womanizing gigolo (Grayson Yockey, Beauty and the Beast), gangsters posing as pastry chefs (Ross Griffin, Million Dollar Quartet and Aaron Atkinson, Sister Act), a Broadway producer (Bill Macchio, The Diary of Anne Frank), a ditzy flapper (DeAnna Etchison, Lying in State) an aviatrix (Illeana Kirven, Sister Act), and an intoxicated chaperone (Weslie Webster, Lying in State)! The Man in the Chair constantly brings the audience in and out of the fantasy as he expresses his thoughts about the mishaps and mayhem that ensue. The Drowsy Chaperone is an old-fashioned, laugh-a-minute crowd pleaser!
October 2-10 35mm: A Musical Exhibition - The Roxy Regional Theatre, Clarksville. A picture is worth 1,000 words - what about a song? Can a picture inspire a song or fifteen? In this stunning new multimedia musical, each photo creates an unique song, moments frozen in time; a glimmer of a life unfolding, a glimpse of something happening. Merging the worlds of musical theatre, photography and pop/rock music, this intricately woven collection of stories told through song re-imagines what the modern American musical can be. Tickets are $20. Go to www.roxyregionaltheatre.org or call (931) 645-7699.
October 6-22 Carrie the Musical - Center for the Arts, Murfreesboro. Carrie the Musical comes to The Center for the Arts this Fall, running October 6-22. The show features music by Michael Gore (Fame, Camp), lyrics by Dean Pitchford (Fame, Footloose), and book by Lawrence D. Cohen, who wrote the screenplay for Carrie, both the 1976 original and 2013 remake. Carrie the Musical tells the story of Carrie White, a bullied teenage girl who is pushed to her limit by her mother and peers, only to discover she has telekinetic powers. Director, Matthew Hayes Hunter, states "While the climactic moments everyone hopes for are still there, the show really focuses on the subject of bullying, and how even small actions can have large impacts, both good and bad." The show features a multi-talented cast of 14 Middle Tennessee performers, 11 of whom are making their CFTA debuts. Cassie Donegan stars as Carrie White, with Alexius Frost as Margaret White, Nicole Turner as Sue Snell, Daniel Carrasquillo as Tommy Ross, Kayla Petrille as Chris Hargensen, Chase Michael Tucker as Billy Nolan, Kate Murphy Johnston as Miss Gardner, and Michael Oystern II as Mr. Stephens. Rounding out the ensemble are Holly Adams as Frieda, Lauren Proctor as Norma, Megan Scott as Helen, Evan Acklin as George, Nathan Willis as Stokes/Rev. Bliss, and Nathan Keffer as Freddy. Carrasquillo and Petrille also serve as co-dance captains for the production. Carrie the Musical is directed by Matthew Hayes Hunter, with musical direction by Emily Dennis and choreography by Tosha Pendergrast. Carrie the Musical is rated R. For tickets, call 615-904-2787 or visit www.boroarts.org.
October 6-15 The Rock - Co-Players Theatre Written in 1921, the three-act play shows the character development of Simon Peter of the Bible. In the first act, Simon, a poor young fisherman, pours out to his wife, Adina, his ambition to become a great merchant. He believes in his dream and in himself, but neither one can see any escape from their environment of poverty. That is, until Simon's uncle, Ucal, arrives with an offer he can't refuse. We see Simon, through the introduction of Jesus into his life, the healing of his mother-in-law, and interactions with Mary Magdalene and his family enter into this new phase of his life with Jesus. He suffers as only the egoist can suffer when his self-love dies, but, at last, through the devotion of Adina and the understanding of Mary Magdalene, he begins to vision faintly the true meaning of his name, Peter: The Rock. CoPlayers will be presenting The Rock from October 6-15 (Friday's and Saturday's at 7:30, and Sunday's at 2:00) at 106 Gallatin Pike N. Tickets are $18 for adults, and $14 for students/seniors. You may reserve tickets through our email, email@example.com. For more information, go to www.coplayerstheatre.com.
October 6-21 Love, Loss and What I Wore - ACT 1 at Darkhorse Theatre, 4610 Charlotte Pike, Nashville.
October 10-15 Fun Home - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
October 12-28 Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific - The Larry Keeton Theatre, 108 Donelson Pike, Nashville. South Pacific is a musical composed by Richard Rodgers, with lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II and book by Hammerstein and Joshua Logan. The work premiered in 1949 on Broadway and was an immediate hit, running for 1,925 performances. The plot of the musical is based on James A. Michener's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 book Tales of the South Pacific and combines elements of several of those stories. Rodgers and Hammerstein believed they could write a musical based on Michener's work that would be financially successful and, at the same time, would send a strong progressive message on racism.
October 13-28 Rumors - Pull-Tight Players, Franklin.
October 13-November 11 Sleepy Hollow, A New Musical - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville.
October 20-28 The Rocky Horror Show - The Roxy Regional Theatre, Clarksville. Dig out your fishnet stockings and sharpen your stilettos ... that sweet transvestite and his motley crew are back for the sixth year! On the way to visit an old college professor, two clean-cut young people, Brad Majors and his fiancee Janet Weiss, run into trouble and seek help at the freaky Frankenstein mansion, where Dr Frank N. Furter is in the midst of one of his maniacal experiments. With Richard O'Brien's cult favorite, prepare to do the "Time Warp" like you have never done it before! Tickets are $25. Go to www.roxyregionaltheatre.org or call (931) 645-7699.
October 26-December 3 - Mr. Popper's Penguins, Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville.
October 26-November 18 Southern Fried Funeral - Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theatre, 8204 Highway 100, Nashville.
October 27-November 12 The Hunchback of Notre Dame - Circle Players at Z. Alexander Looby Theater, Nashville.
October 31-November 5 An American in Paris - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
November 3-19 Catch Me If You Can - Center for the Arts, Murfreesboro
November 3-December 17 Inspecting Carol - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville.
November 3-11 A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Musical - The Roxy Regional Theatre, Clarksville. "Ah, what fools these mortals be!" Whimsically adapted from Shakespeare's classic romantic comedy by Wade Bradford and Rachel Greenlee, this musical features the usual magical forest and spellbound lovers, but also an upstart Puck who decides to liven things up by modernizing the dialogue and adding song and dance numbers. It's all fun and games until William Shakespeare, fresh from spinning in his grave, leaps onto the stage, demanding to know what on earth is going on! Although this musical version may be a bit more madcap than what the Bard had intended, this show still captures the wonder and the romance of the original play. Tickets are $25. Go to www.roxyregionaltheatre.org or call (931) 645-7699.
November 3-18 The Man Who Came to Dinner - Arts Center of Cannon County, Woodbury.
November 10-25 Laughter on the 23rd Floor - ACT 1 at Darkhorse Theatre, 4610 Charlotte Pike, Nashville.
November 14-19 An American in Paris - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
November 17-December 22 A Sanders Family Christmas - Cumberland County Playhouse, Crossville.
November 23-December 16 A Charlie Brown Christmas - The Roxy Regional Theatre, Clarksville. When Charlie Brown complains about the overwhelming materialism he sees among everyone during the Christmas season, Lucy suggests that he become director of the school Christmas pageant. Charlie Brown accepts, but this proves to be a frustrating endeavor. When an attempt to restore the proper holiday spirit with a forlorn little Christmas fir tree fails, he needs Linus' help to discover the real meaning of Christmas in this adaptation of the classic animated television special. Tickets are $25. Go to www.roxyregionaltheatre.org or call (931) 645-7699.
November 24-December 23 It's A Wonderful Life: The Musical - Chaffin's Barn Dinner Theatre, 8204 Highway 100, Nashville.
November 30-December 17 Winter Wonderettes - The Larry Keeton Theatre, 108 Donelson Pike, Nashville.
December 1-16 Christmas Belles - Pull-Tight Players, Franklin.
December 1-17 A Christmas Carol - Center for the Arts, Murfreesboro.
December 1-17 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - Studio Tenn at Jamison Hall, The Factory at Franklin.
December 14-21 Cinderella - Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville.
January 9-14 Jersey Boys - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
January 12-28 The Full Monty - Circle Players at Z. Alexander Looby Theater, Nashville.
January 18-February 1 The Snowy Day & Other Stories, Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville.
January 30-February 4 The King and I - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
February 9-24 Death of a Salesman - Pull-Tight Players, Franklin.
February 15-March 3, 2018 9 to 5: The Musical - The Larry Keeton Theatre, 108 Donelson Pike, Nashville.
February 15-25 Doubt: A Parable - Studio Tenn at Jamison Hall, The Factory at Franklin.
February 16-18 The Illusionists - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
February 27-March 4 Cabaret - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
March 1-18 Mockingbird (mok'ing-burd) - Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville
March 2-17, 2018 The Pillowman - ACT 1 at Darkhorse Theatre, 4610 Charlotte Pike, Nashville.
March 23-April 8 Steel Magnolias - Circle Players at Z. Alexander Looby Theater, Nashville.
March 28-April 22 Wicked - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
April 6-21 Boeing-Boeing - Pull-Tight Players, Franklin.
April 12-28 West Side Story in Concert - The Larry Keeton Theatre, 108 Donelson Pike, Nashville.
April 12-May 13 Dragons Love Tacos - Nashville Children's Theatre, Nashville
May 4-19 The Little Foxes - ACT 1 at Darkhorse Theatre, 4610 Charlotte Pike, Nashville.
May 10-20 Grease - Studio Tenn at Jamison Hall, The Factory at Franklin.
June 1-16 Monty Python's Spamalot - Pull-Tight Players, Franklin.
June 1-17 Disney's Beauty and the Beast - Circle Players at Z. Alexander Looby Theater, Nashville.
June 5-10 Waitress - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
June 14-30 Annie - The Larry Keeton Theatre, 108 Donelson Pike, Nashville.
June 19-24 Love Never Dies - HCA/TriStar Health Broadway at TPAC Series, Tennessee Performing Arts Center, Nashville
June 22-July 7 - Measure for Measure - ACT 1 at Darkhorse Theatre, 4610 Charlotte Pike, Nashville.