Capsule Reviews

Dennis Brown, Paul Friswold and Deanna Jent suss out local theater

The Diary of Anne Frank Reviewed in this issue

House of DesiresReviewed in this issue.

I Am Goatand Loop First Run Theatre takes a big step forward this week by thinking small. Instead of staging one long dull play (as it has, all too consistently, till now), First Run presents two intriguing one-acts that offer different spins on illusion, both welcome and unwelcome. The audience sits onstage, making for an intimate and engaging evening. Mario Farwell's I Am Goat(which, despite its title, is not a rip-off of Edward Albee) is an unlikely love story about a young fellow reluctant to leave his fantasy world. Loop, by John F. Williams, is a charcoal sketch of a family dealing with dementia. As directed by John Foughty, both plays are credibly acted. Kathleen Locklar is especially natural and empathetic as the daughter who must cope with her mother's mind loss. Through April 22 at DeSmet Jesuit High School, 233 North New Ballas Road, Creve Coeur. Tickets are $12 ($10 for students and seniors). Call 314-352-5114 or visit www.firstruntheatre.com.
Dennis Brown

Menopause The MusicalWho knew hormone shifts could be so much fun? An energetic cast of four women "of a certain age" sing and dance their way through parodies of popular '60s and '70s songs whose rewritten lyrics tackle night sweats, memory loss and mood swings. Laura Ackerman has great comic timing in her rendition of "Puff the Magic Dragon," while Rosemary Watts has almost too much fun with her ode to sex toys. Rochelle Walker does a great Tina Turner impersonation, and Lee Anne Mathews sings a sultry "Tropical Hot Flash." Designed to amuse and empower women who have "gone through the passage," the show ends with the audience joining the cast for a raucous kick-line celebration. Open-ended run at the Playhouse at West Port Plaza, 635 West Port Plaza (second level), Page Avenue and I-270, Maryland Heights. Tickets are $44.50. Call 314-469-7529 or visit www . playhouseatwestport.com.
Deanna Jent

 
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