The week’s best Patriotism, plants and Petula Clark
This is what’s going on in the South Florida theater scene this week.
Becoming Dr. Ruth
The show recounts the major episodes in the famous sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer’s life, from fleeing the Nazis in Kindertransport to becoming a sniper in Israel, studying in Paris and finding fame on TV in the 1980s.
When: Through Dec. 24; 8 p.m. Thursday-Friday; 7 p.m. Sunday; 2 p.m. matinee Sunday (and Dec. 16 and 23)
Where: GableStage, 1200 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables
Cost: $45-$60 ($15 for students on Thursday and Sunday evenings)
Contact: 305-445-1119 or GableStage.org
Irving Berlin Salutes America
Written by Palm Beach Gardens’ Alan Jacobson (the creator of “WaistWatchers — the Musical”), this patriotic tribute to Irving Berlin has been updated to keep it timely.
“I revisited this show for three reasons,” Jacobson explains in a press release. “First and foremost is that we are living in difficult times, geopolitically and climatewise, and our own country has seen politics overtake our lives and create tremendous polarization amongst our citizens, friends and family included. I wanted to use the power of the theater, and live music, to take people's minds off the daily stresses, and to remember that we must fight against the divisiveness and bring back a sense of unity and patriotism.
“Second was the music. Who better to look to for this kind of upbeat and moving music than Irving Berlin? This show also exemplifies the tremendous contributions of immigrants; Mr. Berlin was one, and one who proudly served in the American armed services.
“[The third reason is] I wanted a real feel-good, patriotic show, something that will lift people’s spirits.”
When: Through Dec. 24; 7:30 p.m. Thursdays; 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 2 p.m. matinee Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays
Where: PGA Arts Center, 4076 PGA Blvd., Palm Beach Gardens Cost: $45-$48 Contact: 855-448-7469 or PGAArtsCenter.com
Little Shop Of Horrors
In this campy musical, down-and-out florist assistant Seymour discovers a new breed of plant that makes him a media superstar. But there’s a problem: The otherworldly plant has a taste for blood. The stage musical was originally based on a lower-than-lowbudget 1960 movie (not a musical) by schlock-meister Roger Corman. With book and lyrics by Howard Ashman and music by Alan Menken, it moved from a stage musical to the big screen again in 1986. That movie starred Rick Moranis and Steve Martin, with Four Tops l ead singer Levi Stubbs providing the voice of the voracious plant.
When: Dec. 1-17; 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays- Saturdays; 1:30 p.m. matinee Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays
Where: Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach Cost: $45 Contact: 561-832-7469 or Kravis.org
It’s Only A Play
Terrence McNally wrote and re-wrote this play in the late 1970s, throughout the ’80s and into the ’90s. In 2014, a successful production made it to Broadway, where its run was extended three times. That’s the version of the comedy about a group of actors waiting for theater reviews to come in that Curtain Call Playhouse is opening in Boca Raton before taking the show on a tour of South Florida. “It’s Only a Play” will run Dec. 16 at the Herb Skolnick Center in Pompano Beach (954-786-4590), Jan. 6-7 at the Sunrise Civic Center in Sunrise ( sunrisefl. gov /index.aspx?page=548) and Jan. 12-21 at the Pompano Beach Cultural Center (CCPompano.org).
When: Dec. 1-10; 8 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays; 2 p.m. matinee Sundays
Where: Willow Theatre, 300 S. Military Trail, Boca Raton (in Sugar Sand Park) Cost: $15-$20 Contact: 561-347-3948 or WillowTheatre.org
An Evening with Petula Clark
The singer, actor and composer comes to South Florida fresh off a world tour promoting the 2016 album “From Now On.” The octogenarian is famous for megahit recordings such as “Downtown” and “Don’t Sleep i n the Subway,” as well as for starring in movies “Goodbye, Mr. Chips” and “Finian’s Rainbow.” When: 8 p.m. Dec. 7 Where: Duncan Theatre at Palm Beach State College, 4200 Congress Ave., Lake Worth Cost: $50, $60 and $75 Contact: 561-868-3309 or DuncanTheatre.org
Hamilton Workshop with Andrew Chappelle
Andrew Chappelle, who starred in “Hamilton” and “Mamma Mia!” on Broadway, will lead a workshop for young emerging talent (ages 7 to adult). Registration is being accepted until 80 spots are filled (at presstime, nine slots were still available) When: 6 p.m. Dec. 8 Where: Kravis Center for the Performing Arts, 701 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach Cost: $160 Contact: 561-651-4376 or Kravis.org (click on “Education and Community,” then the drop down “Community Education Programs,” then the drop down “Students Arts Enrichment” and then click on “Workshops and Master Classes”)
Around the World in 80 Days
Sol Children Theatre gives its take on the Jules Verne classic, which is now a musical. The story is the same, though, following the adventures of Phileas Fogg and his bet that he can race around the globe in 80 days. The production includes a mix of adult and child actors.
When: Dec. 8-23; 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 2 p.m. matinee Saturdays and Sundays
Where: Sol Theatre, 333 N Federal Highway, Boca Raton
Cost: $20 ($15 for juniors age 11 and younger)
Contact: 561-447-8829 or SolChildren.org
Melissa Jacobson, John Lariviere and Leah Sessa in "Irving Berlin Salutes America.
Murphy Hayes as Phileas Fogg and Christian Matthiesen as Passepartout in “Around the World in 80 Days.”