Monday, December 19, 2011

2011-2012 most produced plays

One of the recent fall issues of American Theatre magazine reported the 10 most-produced plays in national theatres this year (2011-2012). The Top Ten List (which has 11 plays because of a tie in the number of productions) omits holiday themed shows (such as The Santaland Diaries and A Christmas Carol) as well as works by Shakespeare. We have seen 9 out of 11 :
"God of Carnage" by Yasmina Reza. Two sets of parents meet to discuss their child's fight but they become increasingly childish resulting in chaos.
"In the Next Room (or The Vibrator Play)” by Sarah Ruhl. It concerns the early history of the vibrator, when doctors used it as a clinical device to bring women to orgasm as treatment for "hysteria."
"The 39 Steps" a farce adapted by Patrick Barlow from the 1915 novel by John Buchan and the 1935 film by Alfred Hitchcock.
"Next Fall" by Geoffrey Nauffts. A story about two gay men in a committed relationship with a twist, one is devoutly religious and the other is an atheist.
"To Kill a Mockingbird" adaption of the Harper Lee novel by Christopher Sergel
"Spring Awakening" is a rock musical adaptation of the controversial 1892 German play by Frank Wedekind. Music by Duncan Sheik and a book/lyrics by Steven Sater. The musical boldly depicts how young people navigate the thrilling, confusing and mysterious time of their sexual awakening.
"Race" by David Mamet. It follows three attorneys, two black and one white, offered a chance to defend a white man charged with a crime against a black woman.
"August: Osage County" by Tracy Letts. Riveting family drama of drug abuse, alcoholism, suicide, death, family dysfunction, sexual harassment, aging, generational change, racism, incest, infidelity, and ultimately love.
“Clybourne Park”
by Bruce Norris. Takes Lorraine Hansberry's "A Raisin in the Sun", of a black family moving up to an all white neighborhood, as a jumping off point for a clever refocusing on the politics of race, class, and real estate gentrification.
A 9th play is performing locally beginning in March 2012. We hope to see "Red" by John Logan. It is about the artist Mark Rothko and it plays this season at Berkeley Repertory Theatre.
The one play we have not seen and doesn’t seem to be playing in the Bay Area is Donald Marguillies' "Time Stands Still." The play revolves around a woman photojournalist who has returned from covering the Iraq war after being injured in a roadside bomb, and her reporter ex-boyfriend who is swamped by guilt after leaving her alone in Iraq.
Now, where is it showing??

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