At the Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater you can see The Empaths, a timely, face-paced comedy, mines the complex landscape of shifting societal mores, family roles, and the expectations of relationships. Celine, a 30-something serial entrepreneur playing with her father’s money, is faced with the adult challenge of finding love. After randomly meeting Lichen, an overly-compassionate SNAG (Sensitive New Age Guy). Celine is instantly convinced Lichen is The One. In order to ensure the relationship sticks, Celine tricks him and her wizened psychotherapist into having their first six dates in couples counseling, with all outside contact forbidden. And this weekend only, you can see The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey. Written and performed by James Lecesne and based on his 2008 book of the same name, Absolute Brightness tells the story of detective Chuck DeSantis, a small New Jersey town investigator who sets out to solve the disappearance of a flamboyant 14-year-old boy named Leonard Pelkey. Through Leonard’s world, DeSantis confronts the horrors of bullying and sees how a community can learn to embrace their differences by having the courage to stay true to their individuality. For times and tickets, go to WHAT.org
At the Cape Rep Theatre in Brewster it’s Men on Boats. In 1869, one-armed explorer John Wesley Powell and his crew of 9 men in 4 boats went down the Colorado River into the Grand Canyon, not knowing what lay ahead. This great adventure is reenacted by ten women —- the rapids, the rations, the ride of their lives— an ingenious and hilarious new play and a hit of the season last year at New York City’s Playwright’s Horizons. See my review on the Arts Week blog at WOMR.org, and get times and tickets at caperep.org
Provincetown’s Art House has a full schedule of Broadway greats, comedians, and cabaret performers. Varla Jean Merman’s new show is called Bad Heroine. Jinkx Monsoon and Peaches Christ bring their smash hit, Return to Grey Gardens, for a summer long run from July 5 – September 7. Next, Jinkx Monsoon debuts her own new show The Ginger Snapped with cohort Major Scales at the piano, from July 8 through September 10. Super-duo Kitten n’ Lou make their Art House debut with their new comedy “Holier Than Thou” – fresh from a critically-acclaimed, sold out smash run at Fringe World in Australia and Joe’s Pub in NYC, from July 9 – 24. Following that, Varla Jean, Ryan Landry & Peaches Christ debut their new comedy 5 to 9 – a hilarious parody of the hit movie 9 to 5, set in our even MORE absurd Oval Office, running from July 14 – September 9. For tickets and information, visit www.ptownarthouse.com
On July 18th at the Provincetown Theater it’s the fifth annual Provincetown Story Night, a Moth-like production of real people and real stories. And then it’s the Summer of Salome, Oscar Wilde’s passionate play about passions run amuck. More at provincetowntheater.com
The musical Chicago is the longest-running musical in Broadway history and it’s making its Outer Cape premiere with the Peregrine Theatre Ensemble at Provincetown’s newly renovated Fishermen Hall. The show follows murderesses Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart who find themselves on death row together and fight for the fame that will keep them from the gallows in the 1920s. See my reviews on the Arts Week blog and in this week’s Provincetown Magazine: this is absolutely a must-see. peregrinetheatre.com
Coming up at the Payomet Center for the Performing Arts in North Truro, it’s Joan Osborne, Suzanne Vega, and more. For tickets and to see the entire season lineup, go to payomet.org.
This is your last weekend to catch Anne of Green Gables at the Cape Cod Theatre Company in Harwich. See the classic tale of an orphan girl, Anne, who rises from destitution to happiness in farm country, entirely by virtue of her pluck and personality. Anne’s adventures at Green Gables, the farm owned by her new caretakers, are both comical and heartwarming. The original Anne of Green Gables novel is the first in a prized series by writer L.M. Montgomery. More at capecodtheatrecompany.org.