Play by play: October 23, 2009

By JEFFREY GANTZ  |  October 21, 2009

SPEED-THE-PLOW | Recently revived on Broadway with Entourage’s Jeremy Piven and Mad Men’s Elizabeth Moss, David Mamet’s scathing 1988 indictment of business as practiced Hollywood-style, with plenty of testosterone, gets a New Repertory Theatre outing directed by Robert Walsh, with Aimee Doherty as Karen, Gabriel Kuttner as Charlie, and Robert Pemberton as Bobby. | Arsenal Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal St, Watertown | 617.923.8487 | Through November 7 | Curtain 7:30 Wed [November 4] | 2 pm [October 22] + 7:30 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri | 3:30 pm [no October 24] + 8 pm Sat | 2 + 7:30 pm [no evening October 25] Sun | $35-$54

SWEENEY TODD | Metro Stage Company warms up for Halloween with the Stephen Sondheim/Hugh Wheeler musical that’s surely sounded the death knell for the barbershop shave. | Cambridge Family YMCA Theatre, 820 Mass Ave, Cambridge || Through October 24 | Curtain 7:30 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri-Sat | $24; $20 students, seniors

THE TAMING OF THE SHREW | Actors’ Shakespeare Project does not promise to gild its Bard with Donna Summer. But an earthy poetry does hold its own against the WWE-worthy fisticuffs of the Bard’s early comedy, a battle of the sexes whose sexism is better gotten around by a woman director, in this case Obie winner Melia Bensussen, who supervises the bantering and battering of Benjamin Evett’s Petruchio and Sarah Newhouse’s Kate. | Downstairs at the Garage, 38 JFK St, Cambridge | 866.811.4111 | Through November 8 | Curtain 10 am [no October 28] Wed | 10 am + 7:30 pm Thurs | 7:30 pm Fri | 3 + 8 pm Sat | 2 pm Sun | $47; $38 seniors; $25 students

TWELVE ANGRY JURORS | Counter-Productions Theatre Company takes on the story that started out as Twelve Angry Men, a TV drama by Reginald Rose that was turned into the 1957 film directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Henry Fonda before being adapted for the stage by Sherman L. Sergel. In this version, it’s a young black man who’s on trial for the murder of his father, and the panel of 12 jurors has been updated to include women, but the premise is the same: 11 jurors dead certain the defendant is guilty and one holdout. Brian McCarthy has the Henry Fonda role as Juror #8; Daniel Grund directs. | Piano Factory Theatre, 791 Tremont St, Boston | 866.811.4111 | Through October 25 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | 2 pm Sun | $15 advance; $18 doors

2.5 MINUTE RIDE | Downstage @ New Rep brings us Lisa Kron’s New York Times–applauded (“remarkable . . . emotional vibrations that won’t stop”) one-woman show, which the American Repertory Theater presented at Suffolk University back in 1998. Kron kibitzes between Cedar Point (in Sandusky, Ohio) and Auschwitz, to which she traveled with her father, in part so that he could see the place where his parents perished. The roller-coaster — in addition to starring in some funny family anecdotes — serves as a symbol for a life in which escapist distress has long stood in for the real thing. For this incarnation, Adrianne Krstansky fills in as Lisa. | Arsenal Center for the Arts, 321 Arsenal St, Watertown | 617.923.8487 | Through October 24 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs | 8:30 pm Fri | 4 + 8:30 pm Sat | $25; seniors $20; students $12.50

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Related: Autumn garden, Play by play: October 16, 2009, Awake! Awake!, More more >
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