Things to Do: Shows opening at Bay Area theaters this weekend

Ain't Misbehavin' San Jose Repertory TheatreIt’s another barn burner of a weekend for local theater here in the Bay Area, with openings up and down the peninsula. With the nicer weather, now is the perfect time to take in some live stage action!

And there is something for everyone, from a musical celebrating the Cotton Club era to a thrilling romance with big heart… and nose.

Here’s the run down. If I’ve missed anything, please leave a comment. Or send me an email. Enjoy the weekend, and the excitement that is live theater.

Ain’t Misbehavin’
San Jose Repertory Theater, San Jose
Opens Friday, March 19

The joint is jumpin’ to the music of Thomas “Fats” Waller in this Tony® Award-winning musical revue. Five phenomenal artists and a jumpin’ jazz band take you through the pain and triumphs of the African-American experience during the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and 30s. It was the Golden Age of Jazz with places like the Cotton Club and Savoy Ballroom where snappy swing music, snazzy jazz and the stride piano infused the energy of the country. 

The Illusion
Pear Avenue Theatre, Mountain View
Opens Friday, March 19

The Illusion is a play by Tony Kushner, adapted from Pierre Corneille’s seventeenth-century comedy, L’Illusion Comique. It follows a contrite father, Pridamant, seeking news of his prodigal son from the sorcerer Alcandre. The magician conjures three episodes from the young man’s life. Inexplicably, each scene finds the boy in a slightly different world where names change and allegiances shift. Pridamant watches, but only as the strange tale reaches its conclusion does he learn the ultimate truth about his son. The Illusion has a lighter mood than Kushner’s most famous play, Angels in America, but the two plays share a love of poetic dialogue and theatricality.

Frank Langella’s Cyrano
City Lights Theatre Company, San Jose
Opens Saturday, March 20

Poet and swordsman, Cyrano de Bergerac believes that his enormous nose makes him unworthy of love. To satisfy his own taste for romance, he aids the handsome Christian in wooing the beautiful Roxane, the woman they both love. Christian becomes the vessel for the passionate missives that fly from Cyrano’s pen to Roxane’s heart. But as Roxane finds herself ever more intoxicated by the heady cocktail of Cyrano’s heartfelt words and Christian’s dashing good looks, both men are left to wonder to which of them her heart truly belongs – until fate steps in and reveals to her at last the surprising truth that Cyrano has spent a lifetime concealing.

Kiri Te KanawaOpera sensation Kiri Te Kanawa returns to Marin Center for exclusive Bay Area concert
Marin Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium
Saturday March 20

The Marin Center has announced that opera star Kiri Te Kanawa will return this month, accompanied by distinguished pianist Brian Zeger, to the Marin Center for an exclusive Bay Area concert on Saturday, March 20 at 8 pm. Kiri Te Kanawa has enjoyed a forty year career as one of the world’s most celebrated opera singers singing a wide repertoire that encompassed works from the 17th to the 20th century in Italian, French, German, Russian, and English.

Other shows already playing:

Den of Thieves (review)
SF Playhouse, San Francisco

Sunsets and Margaritas (review)
TheatreWorks, Palo Alto

Concerning Strange Devices from the Distant West (review)
Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Berkeley

Legally Blonde (review)
Broadway San Jose, San Jose

Burn This (review)
Dragon Theatre, Palo Alto

…and Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi
The Cutting Ball Theatre, San Francisco

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