Play by Play: August 28, 2009

Plays from A to Z
By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  August 26, 2009

OPENING

BAT BOY | The MIT Musical Theatre Guild starts its season with this show by Keythe Farley and Brian Flemming (book) and Laurence O'Keefe (music and lyrics) based on a series of hokum perpetrated by the Weekly World News about a "bat child" found in a West Virginia cave a decade ago. Winner of the 2001 Lucille Lortel and Outer Critics Circle Awards, the hilarious, if intentionally generic, cartoon showpiece makes hay of the capture, civilization, betrayal, and backstory of Bat Boy — a creature "half man, half bat" who proves as educable as Eliza Doolittle and as incorrigible as Nature. Kristen Hughes directs; vocal direction is by Shawn Gelzleichter, orchestra direction by Stephen Peters, choreography by Dawn Erickson. | Kresge Little Theater, 48 Mass Ave, Cambridge | 617.253.6294 | August 28–September 12 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | 3 pm Sun [August 30] | $12; $9 students, seniors

GOOD | Patsy Collins directs this Boston Conservatory Theater Department production of British dramatist C.P. Taylor's 1981 play about a professor in Germany who gets caught up in Hitler's war effort and extermination program even as he tells himself he's doing the right thing. | Boston Conservatory Zack Box, 8 the Fenway, Boston | 617.912.9222 | September 3-6 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | 2 pm Sun | Free

KISS ME KATE | Why does this swell 1948 Cole Porter musical turn up so seldom? It's got a better-than-average-for-a-musical plot (theater company tries to stage a musical version of The Taming of the Shrew while the husband and wife who're playing Petruchio and Kate break up) and a ton of great numbers like "Too Damn Hot" (but will the original "According to the Kinsey Report" line get reinstated?) and "Wunderbar" and "Brush Up Your Shakespeare" and "Tom, Dick, or Harry." No Ann Miller in this Lyric Stage Company of Boston production, but credit artistic director Spiro Veloudos for taking it on. | 140 Clarendon St, Boston | 617.585.5678 | September 4–October 10 | Curtain 2 pm [September 9 + 30] + 7:30 pm Wed | 7:30 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri | 3 + 8 pm Sat | 3 pm Sun | $25-$54

THE SHAPE OF THINGS | Neil LaBute's Biblical fable is set on the campus of a Midwestern liberal-arts college, where Adam is a slightly shlubby if laid-back English major moonlighting as a security guard in the institution's museum and Eve (actually, Evelyn) is the graduate art student who offers him a new image and the imitation of love in exchange for his imperfection-riddled identity and complete surrender. The play, on the surface a makeover tale and an unlikely romance, lobs troubling questions about cruelty in the service of art, what in fact constitutes art, and the effect, in a surface-crazed society, of outer beauty on inner character. This production by the Independent Drama Society, "a company of students and young professionals with a passion for theatre," is directed by Lindsay Eagle. | Factory Theatre, 791 Tremont St, Boston | independentdrama@gmail.com | September 3-6 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | 2 pm Sun | $15

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Related: Too many shows, Going on sale: September 14, 2006, Going on sale: August 8, 2006, More more >
  Topics: Theater , Entertainment, Boston Conservatory, Theater Awards,  More more >
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