An Evening With John Wilkes Booth
William Voorhees is back in the one-man show he first presented about a year ago at the small, club-like Thistle Dew Dessert Theatre. It’s a full-length portrait of a complicated man—reared in theatrical tradition, envious of his more famous brother, and furiously angry at President Lincoln, who he blames for the destruction of the American South. It’s an intense and deliberately self-conscious performance—the script demands as much—but in this case, actor and role are well matched, and the swagger compliments the character. Thistle Dew Dessert Theatre, 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday (June 17), $13-$17. 1901 P St. 444-8209. Through June 30. J.H.
The Woodland Opera House has come up with a particularly handsome set for this production, a warm family drama about youth and age, commitment and transition set on a rural Appalachian farm in northern Georgia. The story’s sentimental in the better sense of the word, as the central character looks back on her long life, reflecting on marriage, child-rearing and self-sufficiency through changing times. Woodland Opera House, 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday, $7-$14. 340 Second St., Woodland. (530) 666-9617. Through June 16. J.H.3
While this World War II-themed production is little more than a series of songs from the golden age of swing music strung together with cheesy dialogue and jokes, it’s the lack of enthusiasm and uninspired performances that make the show lack the real spark it begs for. With incredible set design, a topnotch band and a talented crew, it’s a shame Swingtime Canteen just doesn’t seem to work. Garbeau’s Dinner Theatre, 6.p.m. Thursday, Friday, Saturday; 11:30 a.m. Sunday. $15-$32. 12401 Folsom Blvd., Rancho Cordova. 985-6361. Through June 24. M.B.C.
Tales From the Beijing Opera
Actor-acrobats Zhou Xin-Lai and Merrianne Moore perform theatrical scenes to taped music in this show. The costumes are wonderful, and so is their acting, but some technical aspects of the show feel “homemade.” It’s a small show, about an hour long, geared toward the matinee crowd in Old Sacramento. But it’s fun nonetheless—think of it as a sort of theatrical equivalent to a lunch special. Eagle Theatre, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday; 1 p.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Sunday. $8-$12. 111 I St., Old Sacramento. 441-4214. Through July 1. J.H.
Women Who Steal
The B Street Busfields do it again with their newest offering from playwright Carter W. Lewis. Peggy, experiencing a midlife crisis, confronts the vixen who had an affair with her husband, then ends up on a nightlong quasi-Thelma and Louise-style adventure complete with guns, booze and a kidnapped man in the trunk of her Mercedes. This laugh-a-minute, black romantic-angst comedy continues a recent local trend—plays that give voice to the issues and lives of women and allow audiences to experience strong, well-written leading roles for female performers. Director John P. Lamb has assembled a stellar cast that breathes life into a play that easily could have missed its mark. B Street Theatre, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday; 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday; 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. $16.50-$20.50. 2711 B St. 443-5300. Extended through June 17. M.B.C.