WESTON — The Weston Playhouse Theatre Company will raise the curtain on seven productions this summer, opening June 25 with "Ring of Fire," featuring the music of Johnny Cash, and closing with "An Iliad," a gripping adaptation of Homer's classic.
"This season our two stages will bring us stories full of heart, joy, and generosity — from a Tony-award-winning musical about the most unlikely of friendships, to a new play about forging connections in the digital age, to a raucous and witty comedy about women who stick together through the best and the worst of times," said Susanna Gellert, in her second season as the theater's executive artistic director.
"We're presenting work by some of America's most beloved artists, including Dr. Seuss, Johnny Cash, and Cyndi Lauper, not to mention five divas whose voices are etched in time. It's a vibrant and varied lineup that celebrates the classics and nurtures new stories. We cannot wait to share these productions with our audience," Gellert said.
Kicking off the season at the Playhouse is "Ring of Fire," created by Richard Maltby, Jr., conceived by William Meade, and featuring the music of Johnny Cash. "Ring of Fire" brings the music of Johnny Cash to life with an exhilarating story of struggle and success, recklessness and redemption, love and family. With more than two dozen classic Cash hits, including "I Walk the Line," "A Boy Named Sue," and "A Thing Called Love," a multi-talented cast of actor-musicians creates a unique portrait about an American legend. Performances run June 25-July 11 at the Weston Playhouse.
Next on the Playhouse stage is a musical inspired by true events featuring a book by Broadway legend and four-time Tony Award-winner Harvey Fierstein and music by pop icon Cyndi Lauper. "Kinky Boots" celebrates friendship, loving oneself, and the importance of taking chances. As Charlie Price struggles to save his family's century-old shoe factory, in steps Lola, a drag queen with an eye for style. "Kinky Boots" is the winner of six Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Score. Performances run July 23-Aug. 15 at the Weston Playhouse.
The final Playhouse show of the season is Robert Harling's "Steel Magnolias," the funniest play that will ever make you cry. Set in Chinquapin, Louisiana, six friends gather for hairdos, manicures, juicy gossip, and witty banter in Truvy's salon. Anybody who's anybody is a regular, and through thick and thin, these six women form friendships as strong as steel - friendships they are forced to lean on when tragedy strikes. Performances run Aug. 20-Sept. 6 at the Weston Playhouse.
At Weston's Walker Farm theater, the summer begins with Weston Playhouse Theatre's Young Company production of Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens's "Seussical." Follow Horton the Elephant, the Cat in the Hat, and more of your favorite characters into the colorful, zany world of Dr. Seuss. An afternoon of storybook fun and "all the thinks you can think" for the whole family, presented by an all-star group of actor/singer/dancers from undergraduate training programs across the country. Performances run June 18-July 3 at Walker Farm.
Next, Weston Playhouse at Walker Farm presents "Tiny Beautiful Things," based on the book by Cheryl Strayed and adapted for the stage by Nia Vardalos. For two years, Cheryl Strayed (NYT bestselling author) answered letters as the anonymous advice columnist, "Dear Sugar." Navigating her readers' deeply personal questions, Strayed discovered love for people she knew only through her computer screen and the courage to share her personal experiences with them. Called "a theatrical hug for turbulent times," "Tiny Beautiful Things" is a funny and moving celebration of the power of empathy and the tiny moments that make up our lives. Performances run July 9-July 25 at Walker Farm.
Be among the first in the U.S. to see Joanna Murray-Smith's stunning new musical, "Songs for Nobodies." This one-woman tour-de-force shines a light on five ordinary women whose lives were forever changed by their unexpected encounters with legendary divas Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf, and Maria Callas. Featuring favorites such as "Come Rain or Come Shine," and "La Vie En Rose," "Songs for Nobodies" illuminates the magical ability of song to make every nobody feel like a somebody. Performances run Aug. 6-29 at Walker Farm.
Closing out the season is Lisa Peterson and Denis O'Hare's "An Iliad," a gripping adaptation of Homer's classic. The eternal, enchanting power of storytelling comes to life through a solitary bard on a bare stage who throws us right into the midst of conflict where heroes and countries clash in a quest for power and glory. The Trojan War and the present day are set side by side as the excitement of an ancient tale is catapulted into an intimate, urgent, and spellbinding story for today. Performances run Sept. 24-Oct. 18 at Walker Farm.
Audiences are encouraged to enjoy pre-show dinner at the theatre's popular restaurant on the lower level of the Playhouse, MKT: Weston. Subscribers save 10 percent (not including alcohol or guests who are not subscribers) on pre-theater meals. Through late August, audiences step out of the theater and into the licensed lounge for, as Yankee magazine calls it, the "best spot for a nightcap," while joining in on the wild fun of Weston's legendary Cabaret, an hour-long music and comedy revue presented by Main Stage talent and Young Company actors.
Subscriptions go on sale later this month, and single ticket sales will be available online and by calling the Weston Box Office at 802-824-5288 beginning April 1. Gift certificates for the Weston 2020 season can be purchased online at westonplayhouse.org.