Reviews are by Donald Munro; NR = not reviewed.
Big Fish: Selma Arts Center opens the musical based on the novel by Daniel Wallace and film directed by Tim Burton. (Opens Friday)
It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play: The beloved holiday classic is imagined as a 1940s radio show in this Good Company Players production at the 2nd Space Theatre. (Opens Thursday)
The Last 5 Years: Visalia Players opens the two-character Jason Robert Brown musical. (Opens Friday)
The Music Man: There’s trouble in Oakhurst as the Golden Chain Theatre presents the classic Meredith Willson musical. Through Nov. 20. (NR)
Camelot: The Good Company Players production at Roger Rocka’s Dinner Theater is a fine showcase for a classic, gorgeously melodic score that comes from a time when Broadway tunes still played on the radio. But the musical’s book (about Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot and the Round Table) is creaky and old-school, and Elizabeth Fiester’s direction and the design of the show feels passive. Jeff Dinmore is a standout as Pellinore, the harumphing older acquaintance who moves into Arthur’s castle. Closes Sunday.
Tar Beach: Tammy Ryan’s semi-autobiographical play at Fresno State is an exploration of marriage, family dynamics and adolescence. J. Daniel Herring directs. Closes Saturday.
OPENING NEXT WEEK
9 Parts of Desire: Fresno Pacific University opens Heather Raffo’s play about Iraq and America through the eyes of nine women. (Opens Nov. 10)
A Christmas Story, the Musical: Good Company Players brings back last year’s popular holiday title. (Opens Nov. 10)
Farragut North: Fresno City College opens Beau Willimon’s political thriller loosely based on Howard Dean's 2004 Democratic presidential primary election campaign. (OpensNov. 11)
The Gin Game: The Curtain 5 TheatreGROUP and Fresno Soap Co. open a fundraising production at the Fresno Art Museum about two lonely senior citizens at a retirement home who strike up an acquaintance. (OpensNov. 11)