Top 20 theater shows this spring
Here's your guide to the best plays, musicals and classics.
Mon Feb 27 2012
A trash-talking hand puppet takes charge of its shy teenage handler (the brilliant Steven Boyer) in Robert Askins's outrageous morality tale, set at a Christian puppet ministry in Texas. Moritz von Stuelpnagel and his committed cast (including the marvelous Geneva Carr and Scott Sowers) throw themselves full-throttle into the melee; watching Boyer switch back and forth between contrasting personae is a hallelujah. 866-811-4111, ensemblestudiotheatre.org. $25—$35.
Red Bull Theater remounts Jean Genet's weird, hypnotic tale of two servants letting their erotic (and murderous) imaginations run wild. Jess Berger directs a mouthwatering cast that includes Ana Reeder, Jeanine Serralles and J. Smith-Cameron. This 1947 modern classic is frequently dusted off as a showcase for out-of-school hopefuls, but here's one production that we have to see. 212-352-3101, redbulltheater.com. $25—$75.
- Price band: 3/4
- Critics choice
Gore Vidal's 1960 election-year drama concerns a presidential candidate (Eric McCormack) with secrets he's trying to keep out of the campaign. Michael Wilson (The Orphans' Home Cycle) directs a cast of pros that includes Candice Bergen, John Larroquette, Angela Lansbury and James Earl Jones. 212-239-6200, thebestmanonbroadway.com. $66.50—$131.50.
The frisky and clever team of meta-musical makers who gave us [title of show] returns with a new work that asks life's big questions. Among the topics to be pondered by Hunter Bell, Susan Blackwell, Heidi Blickenstaff and Jeff Bowen are "birds, bees, reptiles, early man, ancient civilizations, and outer space. Also, loneliness, friendship, hoarding, hiding, laughing, living and dying. And middle school. And dinosaurs." 212-353-0303, vineyardtheatre.org. $75—$100.
One of our favorite young companies, Collaboration Town, presents a Brecht satire that was the toast of the Fringe Festival a couple of years ago. In this waggish travesty of Mother Courage and Her Children, antihero Mother LaMadre and her ragtag crew drag their wagon through the Fifth World War and the post-postapocalyptic wasteland that is New Europe. Oh, and there are zombies, too. Suck it, Bertolt. 212-868-4444, collaborationtown.org. $18.