Amadeus Sacramento Theatre Company celebrates Mozart’s 250th birthday with a production of Peter Shaffer’s Tony Award-winning play. Amadeus is mired in mystery more than in music, and it focuses more on court composer Antonio Salieri than on Mozart, but it’s still a fascinating plotline. This production forms a memorable partnership with cast regular Matt K. Miller as the dark, conniving Salieri and Derek Manson as the buffoonish yet brilliant Mozart. It’s a handsome production, from the beautifully detailed costumes to the minimalist staging. However, the play lags at times under the density of the dialogue and the minimizing of the music.
Sacramento Theatre Company; 12:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday, 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday; $12-$32. 1419 H Street, (916) 443-6722, www.sactheatre.org. Through March 5. P.R.
Golf with Alan Shepard Spend an evening with a foursome on the back nine. These elderly golfers each have a distinct personality, though all share a certain crusty view of life and impatience with the aches and pains of senioritis. The talented actors breathe life into the play’s characters—a challenge with the playwright’s frustrating script.
Chautauqua Playhouse, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday with a 2 p.m. matinee on March 5, $13-$15. 5325 Engle Road in Carmichael, (916) 489-7528, www.cplayhouse.com. Through March 11. P.R.
The House of Blue Leaves John Guare’s dark, bizarre, antic comedy—written nearly 40 years ago—deals with troubled Hollywood celebrities, Catholicism, madness and medication, military intervention in a distant land, a bomb-toting angry young man, a failing marriage and other odd but strangely interrelated subjects. Current in the early ’70s, most are still current today. This perky little production makes you laugh out loud as you wince with pain. The main attraction is the acting, of course. Director Bob DeLucia does a good job of bringing out the humor without obscuring the play’s dark side.
Actor’s Theatre; 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday; $12-$15. 1616 Del Paso Boulevard, (916) 925-6579, www.actinsac.com. Through March 26. J.H.
Relatively Speaking This British comedy, set in the 1960s, features two couples. One is young and contemplating matrimony; the other is middle-aged and a tad bored. But these four people have something in common. They don’t entirely trust their significant others, and they have a bit of difficulty telling all the truth, all the time. Director Peter Mohrmann deftly leads a seasoned cast through an escalating series of “harmless” white lies, with increasingly funny results.
Capital Stage; 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 7 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday; $20-$24 for show only, and $44-$51 for dinner and show. Delta King, 1000 Front Street in Old Sacramento, (916) 995-5464, www.capitalstagecompany.com. Through March 5. J.H.
Safe at Home: The Jackie Robinson Story Jackie Robinson is the perfect subject matter for a thought-provoking yet entertaining children’s-theater offering. The story of the first black major-league baseball player speaks to history, to perseverance and to a singular passion. The basic story is interesting and conveys a love of baseball, and the lead performer gives a talented portrayal of Robinson. But the production is muddied with songs and perky dancing that distract from the plot, rather than propel it.
Children’s Theatre of California; 7 p.m. Friday, 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday, and 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday; $15 for children and $20 for adults. 2711 B Street, (916) 443-5300, www.bstreettheatre.org. Through March 12. P.R.
Snow Angel The worst blizzard in 100 years hits the small town of Deerpoint, Vt., and the local teens have a sweet snow day ahead of them. This dark comedy is wrapped up in a bizarre mystery that cleverly captures the emotional minefields and peer pressures teens teeter through on a daily basis. The odd script is enhanced by otherworldly staging, lighting and sound. The 16 cast members, all local high-school and college students, should take a well-deserved bow.
River Stage; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday; $15-$18. Cosumnes River College, 8401 Center Parkway, (916) 691-7364, www.riverstage.org. Through March 12. P.R.
The Tempest Director Gina Kaufmann turns her energetic, physical style to Shakespeare in this campus show. Watch how she stages the opening shipwreck scene, with long swaths of white fabric wrapping the actors like shredded canvas sails. Kaufman’s trimmed out text—the show’s only 90 minutes, without intermission. She uses her actors, earnest undergrads of various racial backgrounds, with an eye toward contrasts, sometimes inverting gender. (Why not? Shakespeare used men to play women!) The actors speak the language with varying degrees of success; the main reason to see this one is to check out the conceptual angles.
Playwrights’ Theatre; 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday; $12-$15. Shasta Hall at California State University, Sacramento; (916) 278-4323. Through March 5. J.H.
What He Left There are plenty of jokes and funny stories in Jack Gallagher’s new one-man show, but it’s really a memory play, and a very personal one at that. Gallagher reflects on growing up and on watching his parents grow old, his dad in particular. His father’s voice, recorded before his passing, figures into the show, and you can feel his presence in the theater. The show is directed with sensitivity and understated style by Buck Busfield, but it’s very much Gallagher’s project. He uses both his skills as a stand-up comedian and a degree of revealing sincerity you don’t always sense in performers.
B Street Theatre; 6 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday, with some 2 p.m. Wednesday matinees; $20-$28. 2711 B Street, (916) 443-5300. Extended through March 19. J.H.