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33 Variations  
Park Square Theatre 33 Variations
 
Obsessed by a musical genius, Katherine is on a mission to unlock Beethoven's strangest mystery: why can't Ludwig stop generating complex variations on a simple waltz? On stage, present-day New York and nineteenth-century Austria co-exist, brilliantly bridged by memory, tenacity and live music. Both Katherine and Beethoven deny love and friendships as they strive for perfection; they might share just enough to make time (and our hearts) stand still.
   
Colossal  
Mixed Blood Theatre Colossal
 
Mixed Blood -- which pioneered the concept of colorblind casting in decades past -- continues to expand its definition of inclusive theater: Andrew Hinderaker's script will be performed in four 15-minute quarters with a half-time show, featuring a dance company and a drum corps. Toby Forrest, a quadriplegic actor from Los Angeles, leads a 20-person cast directed by Will Davis, a transgender theater artist known for movement-based work.
   
Disenchanted!  
Illusion Theater Disenchanted!
 
Think fairy tales are a little overexposed these days? Well, so do their stars. Disenchanted! features all of your favorite disgruntled princesses as they come together to "storm the castle" and take their lives back from the countless movie studios and toy merchandisers exploiting their happily ever afters. Mark Bergren, a former Disney writer-director, directs this hilarious sendup, with music direction by two-time Ivey Award winner Raymond Berg (Urinetown: The Musical) and Lori Dokken. Here's your chance to catch Disenchanted! before it heads off to New York for an off-Broadway production.
   
Dracula: The Musical  
Youth Performance Company at Howard Conn Fine Arts Center Dracula: The Musical
 
Dracula -- the world's favorite and most famous vampire -- may best be known for his bloodcurdling (and slurping) feats of shape-shifting, mesmerization and allurement ... but sometimes he's just gotta sing! An upbeat and humorous musical spoof of Bram Stoker's immortal creation, Dracula: The Musical follows its young heroine, Sarah, as she journeys to 505 Transylvania Avenue -- prompting a fun, funny and family-friendly adventure that features classic horror film favorites like Igor and the Bride of Frankenstein. Celebrate the Halloween season with songs and howls of laughter courtesy of the Youth Performance Company.
   
Encyclopedia Show Minneapolis  
Word Sprout at Kieran's Irish Pub Encyclopedia Show Minneapolis
 
Live music, mascot dancing, movies, stories and more -- it's all part of the monthly variety extravaganza Encyclopedia Show Minneapolis at Kieran's Irish Pub Titanic Room. Each month, Encyclopedia Show commissions artists and experts from a wide variety of disciplines to showcase their individual talents and create a collective tongue-in-cheek encyclopedia entry. A new topic is tackled for each performance, from video games to flightless birds to the periodic table. Hosted by spoken word artist Allison Broeren, and featuring fearless fact-checker Levi Weinhagen, the show's been lovingly described as "nerdcore vaudeville."
   
Grounded  
The Playwrights' Center Grounded
 
George Brant's toothsome and timely one-woman play presents us with a passionate fighter who sees her career in the sky interrupted by an unplanned pregnancy. Reassigned to a job operating military drones, she first chafes, then numbs, then finally has difficulty separating the Middle Eastern desert she patrols and the American desert in which she lives. Sha Cage stars in Frank Theatre's production.
   
Hauptmann  
People's Center Theater Hauptmann
 
John Logan's Hauptmann is an intense dramatization of the 1932 investigation into the kidnapping and murder of Charles Lindbergh's young son. When the primary suspect quickly became the German immigrant Bruno Hauptmann, the young F.B.I. head J. Edgar Hoover used the case to secure his position at the institution he would give his life to. An Oscar-nominated screenwriter (The Aviator, Gladiator and many more). Logan's absorbing drama is a fascinating look at the justice system, bringing up difficult questions that call into doubt whether Hauptmann was guilty or a victim of the media and rising anti-German sentiments in America. The story is told from Hauptmann's point of view, speaking directly to the audience and enacting vignettes that show the investigation, the trial and its aftermath.
   
Hello, Dolly!  
Chanhassen Dinner Theatres Hello, Dolly!
 
Dolly Levi is a delightfully scheming busybody who makes her living as a matchmaker in glamorous New York City. She's out to make a match for Horace Vandergelder, the "well-known half-a-millionaire," with the charming hat maker, Irene Molloy - but in the process, Dolly snares a groom for herself. Dolly masterfully orchestrates romance and adventure in a glittering mixed up night on the town.
   
The House On Mango Street  
Park Square Theatre The House On Mango Street
 
Esperanza has dreams, hopes, and plans that lie beyond her dilapidated home on Mango Street. Her friendship with Rachel and Lucy helps her discover the real life and culture beneath the crumbling edifices of her dangerous neighborhood. Her friendship with Sally helps her discover womanhood. Her writing helps her discover who she is. This touching and humorous story of a young girl growing up in Chicago among Chicanos and Puerto Ricans has been a mainstay of American literature and culture for a quarter-century. Esperanza learns that she can go home again, and even that she'd never left at all.
   
Life Could Be A Dream  
Old Log Theater Life Could Be A Dream
 
From the writer/director/producer of the smash hit The Marvelous Wonderettes comes this 1960s musical comedy follow-up. The doo-wop quartet called The Crooning Crabcakes -- the boy group once banned from the Springfield High School prom in favor of the Wonderettes -- sets out to finally find their own path to the top of the charts by entering a radio talent contest. This family-friendly show features plenty of fun banter, along with such classic songs as "Stay (Just a Little Bit Longer)," "Runaround Sue," "The Great Pretender," "Tears On My Pillow," "Unchained Melody," "Earth Angel" and more.
   
The Marriage of Bette and Boo  
Theatre in the Round The Marriage of Bette and Boo
 
Bette and Boo never should have gotten married. Their son Matt narrates scenes of their bewildered attempts to provide a semblance of hearth and home - all the while undermined by their own families, bereaved by miscarriages and alcoholism, and utterly mystified by their priest. A very black comedy, and hailed as the best play by one of theatre's leading satirists.
   
Master Class  
MacPhail Center for Music Master Class
 
Twin Cities stage favorite Sally Wingert will take on the role of the legendary vocal virtuoso Maria Callas. Technically, the Callas character shares the stage with a handful of aspiring vocalists, but -- make no mistake -- this is a one-woman show. Theater Latte Da's production will be staged, appropriately enough, in MacPhail's Antonello Hall, a site that's certainly seen its share of master classes.
   
The Music Man  
Ashland Productions at Maplewood Performing Arts Theatre The Music Man
 
There's trouble in River City! Maplewood Performing Arts Theatre presents the heartwarming family favorite The Music Man. Lovable swindler "Professor" Harold Hill is trying to pull a con on the citizens of River City, Iowa. He claims he'll save the town's youth from sin and corruption by selling them instruments and helping to organize a boys' band -- despite the fact that he actually knows nothing about music. Soon, the irresistible "Music Man" manages to turn the bickering school board into a barbershop quartet, win the heart of Marian the librarian, and somehow transform into an honest man in the process. The delightful story is set to a parade of classic Broadway tunes, including "Seventy-Six Trombones," "Ya Got Trouble," "Till There Was You" and "Goodnight, My Someone."
   
Next to Normal  
Bloomington Center for the Arts Next to Normal
 
A contemporary rock musical about the devastating toll that mental illness takes on a suburban family, Next to Normal has become one of Broadway's biggest and most compelling hits in recent years. This riveting show nabbed three Tony Awards in 2009, as well as the Pulitzer Prize for its heartbreaking, humorous and unflinching look at a seemingly normal modern family's struggles with the effects of bipolar disorder. Each character's journey in this Bloomington Civic Theatre production is further punctuated by powerful music scored by Tom Kitt (American Idiot). Featuring 30 original songs -- including "Just Another Day," "You Don't Know" and "Superboy and the Invisible Girl" -- Next to Normal is, in the words of The New York Times, "much more than a feel-good musical; it is a feel-everything musical."
   
Our Mighty Mississippi  
Minnesota Centennial Showboat Our Mighty Mississippi
 
Climb aboard the beautiful Minnesota Centennial Showboat theater for a floating Mighty Mississippi-themed stage show with baritone and storyteller Steven Marking. Born and raised on the Mississippi's backwaters, Marking presents a sensory feast of song, stories, film and photos capturing its life and times. Guiding you down a narrative of rollicking twists and turns, he'll perform songs such as "Ol' Man River" and Simon and Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water," expound on the Mississippi's history and biology, and share his stunning photography and videography capturing images ranging from baby wood ducks leaping from their nests to tributaries in bloom. The Mississippi River is a character in itself -- here's your chance to get to know her a whole lot better.
   
Prince Rama's Journey  
Green T Productions at In the Heart of the Beast Puppet & Mask Theatre Prince Rama's Journey
 
The famed Hindu allegory of Ramayana comes to the stage in a stunning theatrical event featuring authentic gamelan music and traditional dance from the Sumunar Indonesian Ensemble. Based on a folk tale some 15 centuries old, Prince Rama's Journey follows the epic quest of the exiled Prince Rama to rescue his beloved wife Sita by unleashing an army of monkeys on her captor Ravana, a powerful 10-headed demon king. This Green T production melds the company's signature physical performance style with the beautiful movement and music of Indonesia and Java.
   
Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash  
Plymouth Playhouse Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash
 
This rocking country jukebox musical celebrates the songs of an American music legend: The Man in Black himself, Johnny Cash. Ring of Fire includes performances of such Cash classics as "Folsom Prison Blues," "A Boy Named Sue," "Jackson," "I Walk the Line" and, of course, "Ring of Fire." Without impersonation, the show presents Cash's music in authentic fashion. It also pays tribute to him with dance, comedy and stories. Ring of Fire was created by Tony Award-winner Richard Maltby Jr. and conceived by William Meade.
   

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