Here’s what’s opening on the boards this week: a play about cats (and it’s not a musical), illicit love and a masked man. How can you turn away from any of those? Read on:
Seminar — Live Theatre Workshop. See review.
Indoor/Outdoor — Invisible Theatre, 1400 N. First Ave. Poor Samantha. The cat is devoted to her somewhat neurotic owner (really, who can own a cat?) who has rescued her from the pound. And he to her. But as time goes on, Samantha feels she isn’t getting the understanding or the attention she needs. Enter a sexy tom cat. We all know how they can wreak havoc. Samantha begins to question if she really is an indoor cat. And she starts thinking about the big questions in this Kenny Finkle comedy: Who she is and what she wants out of life. Like most of us, she leaves home to discover that. Now, don’t worry: there are no actors crawling around on all fours, meowing and demanding they be fed immediately. Nope, these cats are upright, speak English, understand it and communicate clearly among themselves. Trouble is, those humans in the play with them only hear “meow.” Think it’s a crazy concept? Humans playing animals on stage has been done before, and done well. Think of “Lion King.” Or the wonderful A.R. Gurney play “Sylvia” — Sylvia is a dog, and unforgettable. As is this play, according to some reviewers. Here’s what Variety had to say about the 2006 off-Broadway production: “Genuine kindness — the type that isn’t coated in mawkishness or undercut with irony — is about as rare in the theater as a talking cat. Kenny Finkle’s ‘Indoor/Outdoor’ has both.” Susan Claassen directs and the cast is made up of Jeanne Torres, Christopher Younggren, Bree Boyd and Stevan Matthew Miller. The preview is 7:30 p.m. Sept. 5 and opening is 7:30 p.m. Sept. 6. Regular performances are 7:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Sundays through Sept. 17. There is an additional 3 p.m. performance on Sept. 16. The preview is $20, all other performances, $34.
Scarborough — Temple of Music and Art Cabaret Theatre, 330 S. Scott Ave. This Fiona Evans play from Something Something Theatre tackles love — forbidden love, actually. The first half finds us in a not-very-glamorous hotel room where Lauren and Daz have holed away for some uninterrupted lust time. Here’s the catch: She is older and his teacher. The second act finds us in the same situation, with almost the same dialogue, but this time the teacher is a man and the student is a female. This was a huge hit at the 2007 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and it did well on London’s West End the next year. Whitney Woodcock directs and the cast includes Lucas Giacalone, Callie Hutchison, Boz Lomasney and Kyleigh Sacco. There will be discussions after every performance. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through Sept. 17. Adult content. $18-$22. 468-6111. somethingsomethingtheatre.com
Phantom of the Opera — The Gaslight Theatre, 7010 E. Broadway. The Gaslight is bringing back its Peter Van Slyke version of the classic Gaston Leroux story about an opera singer, a stalking masked man and a famous opera house. Here’s what else the Gaslight is bringing back: Armen Dirtadian as the masked man. And David Fanning as the masked man. Yup the two, who have played the character multiple times on the Gaslight stage, are going to split the role: Dirtadian is the Phantom through Oct. 1; Fanning, will take the stage Oct. 3-Nov. 5. And this piece of news will put Gaslight fans in a frenzy: Joe Cooper is coming out of retirement to reprise the role of Madame Giry. We’re guessing it was just too hard for him to pass up the opportunity to put on a dress again. “Phantom” is at various times through Nov. 5. $19.95. 886-9428. thegaslighttheatre.com.
You’ve Ruined a Perfectly Good Mystery — The Comedy Playhouse, 3620 N. First Ave. A famous investigator and an outlandish narrator draw the audience into this comedy by Christian Neuhaus and Rick Stemm. Literally draw in— the audience gets to decide which clues should be followed. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 3 p.m. Sundays through Sept. 17. $16. 270-9310. thecomedyplayhouse.com.
The Rootin’ Tootin’ Tale of Little Red Riding Boots — Live Theatre Workshop, 5317 E. Speedway. Little Red Riding Boots sets out to bring some beef jerky to her Gran. Along the way she meets critters, vermin and outlaws. Stephen Frankenfield adapted the “Little Red Riding Hood” story and Richard Gremel wrote the music for this piece geared toward kids. 12:30 p.m. Sundays through Sept. 17. $7-$10. 327-4242. livetheatreworkshop.org.
Jennifer Bond contributed to this story.