As the spring season begins to reawaken the souls of theater lovers everywhere, thespians, musicians and dancers be will gracing the stages of Sacramento’s premier venues. The area’s thriving arts community has something for everyone, whether you crave a classic romance, obsessive swindle, hilarious farce or musical journey through vaudeville, ancient Rome or a convent full of mobsters.
Romeo and Juliet
Sacramento Theatre Company
1419 H St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 443-6722
Date: Through Mar 23, 2014

STC performs this classic Shakespeare tale of love, revenge and tragedy. Romeo, of the noble Montague family falls in love with young Juliet of the Capulet clan, the sworn enemies of the Montagues. Drama, murder and treachery ensue, but they manage to sneak off and marry. During a fight, Romeo kills a Capulet and he is banished from Verona forever. When Juliet is forced to marry another man, she takes a potion to make her appear to be dead. Romeo finds her and, believing her dead, kills himself. She awakens, finds him dead and plunges a knife into her chest. The SCT production stars Andrew Perez and Denver Vaughn in the lead roles; Ed Claudio directs.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum
Sacramento Theatre Company
1419 H St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 443-6722
Date: April 23 – May 18, 2014

A funny thing will happen at the theater; you will be highly entertained by Stephen Sondheim’s hilarious musical. Ancient Rome is the setting for this outrageous romp, with unforgettable characters like the sloppy, conniving slave Pseudolus, played perfectly by Zero Mostel in the film of the same name. In exchange for his release from slavery, Pseudolus attempts to help his master’s dim-witted son woo the girl he loves. Unfortunately, the lovely and virginal courtesan has already been sold to be the bride of a Roman soldier, and the resulting tumultuous situations make this one of the most humorous farces in stage history.

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Sister Act
Community Center Theater
1301 L St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 557-1999
www.californiamusicaltheatre.comDate: April 8-13, 2014

Deloris, a Philadelphia nightclub performer and wannabe star, sees her Mafioso boyfriend kill a man for ratting them out. Through the help of a high school friend, Deloris goes into hiding at a convent that is in desperate need of monetary salvation. While masquerading as a nun, the tough talking, dancing and drinking Deloris alternately shocks and inspires the habit-wearing sisters. To avoid capture by the thugs, she and some of the other nuns pose as members of a heavenly choir, which ultimately offers a solution to the convent’s financial woes. “Sister Act” is a rollicking musical comedy that keeps audience members’ toes tapping long after they leave the theater.

Inventing Van Gogh
Big Idea Theatre
1616 Del Paso Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95815
(916) 960-3036
www.bigideatheatre.comDate: April 18 – May 17, 2014

Inventing Van Gogh is a mystery about art, obsession, integrity and fantasy. A conflicted, modern-day artist is convinced to create a painting for a crooked dealer, who wishes to pass it off as the final work done by Vincent Van Gogh. The original painting, said to be a self-portrait of the master artist, was never found, and the forger hopes that recreating it will help with his artist’s block. The play fluctuates between an abandoned French warehouse in the present day and the famous painter’s locale during the 1800s.

CSU Sacramento Department of Theater & Dance
University Theatre, Shasta Hall
6000 J St.
Sacramento, CA 95819
(916) 278-6368
www.csus.eduDate: April 9-20, 2014

Long before reality television shows like “Toddlers & Tiaras” and “Dance Moms,” there was Mama Rose, mother of famed burlesque show stripper Gypsy Rose Lee. The classic musical, based on the memoirs of a Gypsy’s life, is set during the waning days of vaudeville in 1920s America. Mama Rose is the ultimate stage mom, relentlessly pushing everyone out of her way in order to promote stage careers for her daughters Baby June and Louise. “Gypsy” features many iconic numbers, including “Let Me Entertain You”, “You Gotta Get a Gimmick” and “Everything’s Coming Up Roses.”

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Valerie Heimerich is a freelance writer out of Sacramento. She typically covers animals and community issues. She has volunteered and worked for many organizations helping animals and people.
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