A … My Name Will Always Be Alice Studio Theatre’s Jackie Schultz loves her audiences. And Schultz’s audiences love her productions. This mutual admiration has resulted in a successful seven-year run of Studio Theatre’s musical revue Six Women With Brain Death. Banking on her success, Schultz has come out with a similar all-women revue that touches on the angst of womanhood, both tragic and comic, as sung to basic piano tunes and acted out in funny skits. This new show tones down the bitterness of Six Women and ups the triumphs while including more women on the fringe—singles, single moms, divorcées and widows.
Studio Theatre , 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and 2 p.m. Sunday, $15-$17. 1028 R Street, (916) 446-2668. Through May 18. P.R.
Ain’t Misbehavin’ Cats are jump jivin’ in Rancho Cordova, singing and swinging to the beats of Fats Waller. This musical montage honors the musician and composer that helped define African-American jazz and swing music during the Harlem Renaissance. The theater is transposed into a 1930s nightclub while the jazzy singers, the jamming band and the audience all get caught up in the show’s riffs and rhythms.
Garbeau’s Dinner Theatre ; 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday (dinner seating at 6 p.m.) and 2:30 p.m. Sunday (brunch seating at 1 p.m.); $34-$39 for the show and a meal or $20 for the show only. 12401 Folsom Boulevard in Rancho Cordova, (916) 985-6361. Through May 18. P.R.
Bad Axe Set on the American frontier in 1832, this dark, witty, invigorating drama deals with the conclusion of the Black Hawk Indian War. There’s much talk of raids, retaliation and vengeance and of victims on both sides who get scalped. The central character is a woman who kills her deranged, scalp-collecting husband under bizarre circumstances on the battlefield—was she forced to do it, or did she want to? The subject matter of this Foothill Theatre Company production is too grim for children but is a gripping experience for adults, well worth the drive.
Nevada Theatre ; 7 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday; $5-$21. 401 Broad Street in Nevada City, (530) 265-8587. Through May 25. J.H.
Circus Minimus This 75-minute show displays several hallmarks of Doniel Soto’s previous “movement theater” shows: few spoken words; lots of bending and stretching and visual pictures created with intertwined human forms; minimal props; and chanting and a cappella singing. Soto’s focus this time is a tongue-in-cheek takedown of the once ultra-hip but now mainstream Cirque du Soleil. The show opens as farce: The performers execute entirely ordinary “feats” and then strike heroic poses, inviting applause. But gradually, Circus Minimus opens into several lovely tricks, which simultaneously resemble and satirize the whole cirque genre. Good fun from Abandon Productions.
The Space , 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, $10-$13. 2509 R Street, (916) 737-2304. Extended through May 17. J.H.
Seven Ages of Man How do you make Shakespeare’s language fresh, fun and accessible to a wide audience? Sacramento Theatre Company simply re-packaged the guy’s best-known works in a “greatest-hits compilation,” a selection of scenes, sonnets and soliloquies served up as snippets, snappy repartees, silly scenes and solemn moments. A trio of actors flip-flops from comedy to serious stuff, with the funny scenes working the best. You can steal a funny moment out of context, but serious moments need the support of plot and characterization. In the end, it’s light fare, an appetizer without the full meal, that leaves you hungry for more.
Sacramento Theatre Company ; 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday and 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, with matinees at 12:30 p.m. Thursday and at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; $12-$29.50. 1419 H Street, (916) 443-6722, www.sactheatre.org. Through May 18. P.R.