Reviews are by Donald Munro; NR = not reviewed.
Beauty and the Beast: Visalia’s Theatre Arts Alliance opens at the L.J. Williams Theatre the family musical about a prince transformed into a hideous beast. (Opens Thursday, Aug. 18)
Witness for the Prosecution: Good Company Players opens the Agatha Christie tale of a gripping murder trial at the 2nd Space Theatre. (Opens Thursday, Aug. 18)
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Arsenic and Old Lace: The Visalia Players presents the classic play at the Ice House Theatre. Closes Sunday, Aug. 21. (NR)
Heathers: The Musical: To turn one of the many quotable lines from the cult-classic film, this production is so good, the eagles want to fly with it. Director Dominic Grijalva finds the black-comedy heart of and soul of this exceedingly profane, biting, introspective and hilarious depiction of a late 1980s high school that makes “Lord of the Flies” look like kindergarten. The skewered topics include teen suicide, guns in schools, bullying and a society which humans are pretty nasty to each other. But there’s hope as long as Veronica (a stellar Claira Broach) is able to maneuver around the popular Heathers of the world. The acting, dancing and singing is stellar, making this a must-see for the tough-and-trendy theatergoer. Closes Saturday, Aug. 20.
My Fair Lady: Director Dan Pessano, in the finest tradition of Good Company Players, offers a sweet, fresh spin on the well-known story of a Cockney flower girl who takes London society by storm. A trio of strong performances (Chris Mangels as Henry Higgins, Breanne Gallagher as Eliza and Teddy Maldonado as Alfred) deliver the classic songs and sparkling humor this oldie-but-goodie title needs. David Pierce’s handsome set design adds to the appeal in the intimate Roger Rocka’s Dinner Theater space. Through Sept. 11.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead: Woodward Shakespeare Festival presents Tom Stoppard’s absurdist comedy about two minor characters from “Hamlet.” Through Sept. 10.