Play by Play: July 23, 2010

By MADDY MYERS  |  July 21, 2010

THE GUARDSMAN | This 1910 Hungarian play by Ferenc Molnár involves a show within a show, of sorts: an actor decides to use his dramatic skill to impersonate another man and seduce his own wife, as a test of her fidelity. Hilarity ensues as the charade grows more and more nuanced. John Rando directs. | Berkshire Theatre Festival Main Stage, Main St, Stockbridge | 413.298.5576 or | Through July 31 | Curtain 8 pm Mon-Tues | 7 pm Wed | 2 + 8 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri | 2 + 8 pm Sat | $19.28-$63

GYPSY | NSMT's 2010 Broadway Series launches with Bill Hannley's production of Gypsy, which stars Vicki Lewis of News Radio fame. Long-time theatergoers will be familiar with Stephen Sondheim's lyrics and Jule Styne's music, but for those who missed out on the story: Arthur Laurent's 1959 script has to do with famous striptease artist Gypsy Rose Lee and her show-biz-obsessed mother. | North Shore Music Theatre, 62 Dunham Rd, Beverly | 978.232.7200 or | Through July 25 | Curtain 7:30 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri-Sat | 2 pm Sat-Sun | $35-$65

THE LOOSE CHANTEUSE | Varla Jean Merman stars as the titular chanteuse in this intimate one-woman cabaret written by Jeffery Roberson and Jacques Lamarre. Pianist Tom Judson plays the accompanist, Gus Mattox. | Art House, 214 Commercial St, Provincetown | | Through September 4 | Curtain 9 pm Tues-Fri + Sat [August 14, 21; September 4] | $30; $35 VIP

MENGELBERG AND MAHLER | Daniel Klein's one-man play finds illustrious Dutch conductor Willem Mengelberg — who led Amsterdam's Concertgebouw Orchestra for 50 years — engaged in a "conversation" with Jewish composer Gustav Mahler. In Mahler's lifetime and in the first decades following his death, Mengelberg did more to champion his music than any other conductor. Yet in the aftermath of World War II, Mengelberg is accused of having collaborated with the Nazis during their occupation of the Netherlands, and now he faces exile. Robert Lohbauer has the role; Emile Fallaux directs. | Shakespeare & Company, Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre, 70 Kemble St, Lenox | 413.637.3353 or | Through September 10 | Curtain this week: 8 pm Sat | 3 pm Sun | 8 pm Tues + Thurs [July 29] | $21-$48

THE MUSIC MAN | Scott Wahle and Sarah Pfisterer star as Harold Hill and Marian Paroo in Reagle Players' production of the 1957 Meredith Wilson musical about a Midwestern con man who sells instruments and band uniforms while pretending to be a music-conservatory graduate ("gold-medal class of '05"). River City figures to be business as usual — that is, he'll skip town as soon as the goods arrive, without actually forming the band. But then he falls in love with Marian, the town's piano teacher and librarian. | Robinson Theatre, 617 Lexington St, Waltham | 781.891.5600 or | Through July 25 | Curtain 7:30 pm Thurs-Sat | 2 pm Sun | $35-$57; $25 ages 5-18

RICHARD III | Shakespeare & Company artistic director Tony Simotes helms this production of the Bard's history play about the hunchback who, "determined to prove a villain," maneuvers his way to the English throne, stepping on family members and pretty much everyone else in his rise to the top. With John Douglas Thompson in the title role and Tod Randolph as Elizabeth. | Shakespeare & Company, Founders Theatre, 70 Kemble St, Lenox | 413.637.3353 or | Through September 5 | Curtain this week: 2 pm Thurs [July 29] | $15-$43

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  Topics: Theater , Entertainment, Theater, Democracy Center,  More more >
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