SALT LAKE CITY — January in Utah’s theater scene is set to bring three literary adaptations, several comedies and a performance by Tony-nominated actress Carmen Cusack.
Cusack was nominated for the 2016 Tony Award for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a musical for her performance in “Bright Star,” and the actress will reprise her role at Pioneer Theatre Company, according to a previous Deseret News article.
The musical — with a book by Steve Martin (yes, Steve Martin of “The Jerk” and “Father of the Bride” fame) and music by Martin and singer-songwriter Edie Brickell — is set in the 1940s with flashbacks to the 1920s and tells the story of Alice Murphy (Cusack), who is reminded of the longing she has for her son who was taken away from her as a baby.
You can catch the show at Pioneer Theatre Company, 300 S. 1400 East, Jan. 12-27, times vary, $42-$64 (801-581-6961 or pioneertheatre.org)
Theatergoers can forget about the dreary winter weather with several comedies being offered at local theaters, including the national touring production of the musical comedy “Something Rotten!” at the Eccles Theater.
“Something Rotten!” premiered in April 2015 at Broadway’s St. James Theatre and tells the story of brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom, who aspire to be playwrights in the 1590s — the same time as “rock star” William Shakespeare writes hit after hit. When a soothsayer predicts that the next big thing in theater will be stories told by singing and dancing, the brothers work to write the first-ever musical.
Rob McClure, who stars as Nick Bottom alongside his wife, Maggie Lakis, as Nick’s wife Bea, said in an interview with the Deseret News that the show has humor fit for almost everyone, whether you’re a lover of musicals and Shakespeare or a hater of both.
The show will be at the Eccles Theater, 131 S. Main, Jan. 9-14, times vary, $35-$110 (801-355-2787 or artsaltlake.org)
Other comedies set to hit local stages include:
• Hale Center Theater Orem will stage “Dear Ruth,” a play about a teenager who uses her sister’s photo to become pen pals with a soldier, which is all fine and dandy until he decides to pay a visit. Performances will be Jan. 3-Feb. 3, Hale Center Theater Orem, 225 W. 400 North, Orem, $24-$18 for adults, $14-$18 for children ages 4-11 (801-226-8600 or haletheater.org)
• “Don’t Drink the Water” — a farce by Woody Allen set at an American embassy — will be at CenterPoint Legacy Theatre’s Leishman Performance Hall, Jan. 12-Feb. 3, CenterPoint Legacy Theatre, 525 N. 400 West, Centerville, $15 (801-298-1302 or centerpointtheatre.org)
• The Off Broadway Theatre will mount a production of Eric Jensen’s “Charlie’s Aunt,” a show that “features mistaken identities, young lovers in need of chaperones and one ugly guy in a dress,” according to theobt.org. The show will be at The Off Broadway Theatre, 272 S. Main, Jan. 19-Feb. 24, $10-$16 (801-355-4628 or theobt.org)
• Hale Centre Theatre’s Jewel Box Theatre will open a production of “Cash On Delivery” starting Jan. 19. HCT’s website calls the play — which follows a landlord who continues to cash his tenants’ welfare checks after they die — “simply one of the funniest and most clever comedies ever written.” Catch it Jan. 12-March 17, Hale Centre Theatre, 9900 S. Monroe St., Sandy, $36-$40 for adults, $18-$20 for youths (801-984-9000 or hct.org)
Several well-loved stories that originate from novels will see local stage adaptations this month.
• Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird” has become a familiar story to many, thanks to its frequent appearance on school reading lists. See well-loved characters Atticus, Jem and Scout Finch as they wrestle with “racism, trust and the meaning of being an honorable citizen,” according to centerpointtheatre.org, Jan. 5-Feb. 3, CenterPoint Legacy Theatre’s Barlow Main Stage, 525 N. 400 West, Centerville, $17.50-$25.50 (801-298-1302 or centerpointtheatre.org)1 comment on this story
• Even 200 years after her death, Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” still proves to be a crowd pleaser. Heritage Theatre will take audiences into the tangled romance between Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet Jan. 19-Feb. 10, Heritage Theatre, 2505 S. Highway 89, Perry, $10-$12 (435-723-8392 or heritagetheatreutah.com)
• Logan-based theater company Music Theatre West will present a production of “The Scarlet Pimpernel,” a musical based on the novel by Baroness Emma Orczy’s novel set during the French Revolution, Jan. 26-Feb. 3, Ellen Eccles Theatre, 43 S. Main, Logan, $20-$23 (435-752-0026 or cachearts.org)