The Starry Messenger
This cute, two-character play features a conversation in the afterlife between an elderly Galileo (Mitch Agruss, the patriarch of Sacramento’s theater scene) and his daughter (played alternately by Bonnie Antonini or Keri Fuller). It’s part history, part science lesson. Mostly, Starry Messenger is a marvelous vehicle for octogenarian Agruss, who uses his twinkling eyes, melodious voice, and perfectly timed delivery to charm the socks off the audience for 75 minutes. (If you’re a middle-aged adult who recalls Agruss as “Cap’n Mitch” on local TV, you’ll get an extra lift.) Starry Messenger has an educational mission—it’s available for school performances, starting in January). But it also makes delightful December entertainment, which children and adults can honestly enjoy.
California Stage, 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday; $10 ($5 for teachers and their families). 1723 25th Street; (916) 451-5822, www.calstage.org. Through December 16.