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We want to take you behind the scenes, to give you insider information you won't find anywhere else. This is where we pull Bloomington's hip happenings together with recommendations from our team, first-hand accounts from project producers, and guest blogs by local gurus.  The Backstage Blog helps you stay in front of it all.

Friday, March 15, 2013

To the Theater!

Categories: Indiana University, Arts & Culture, B-town Giveaways

I am no theater expert by any means.  I barely know the difference between Paul Simon and Neil Simon.  I catch maybe two or three productions a year, simply because there are so many shows, festivals and events offered in this fine city, and also because I have two young children who limit my interactions with the social world.  But I am excited about the theater productions that round out this year's season. There are so many great options!  Here's a quick recap.

At the Bloomington Playwrights Project (BPP), they're getting ready to open Ampersand, by Vincent Delaney, April 5-20.  This play, the winner of the Reva Shiner Comedy Award, is about a couple and their clones.  Well it's more than that-it's about marriage and relationships and change, but it's got clones too, so it's insightful and comical.  Next on the BPP schedule is Spun: A Comedic Rock Musical with music and lyrics by Jeremy Schonfeld and book by Emily Goodson, May 17-June 1.  This rocking musical is about mending the relationship between two band members (who are also brother and sister-doubly difficult), and doing it with wit, humor and rock.  As with all BPP productions, these are world premieres, brand new plays that have never been seen before but will surely be seen across the country soon enough.

Cardinal Stage Company next show is Next to Normal with music by Tom Kitt and book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey, March 22-April 7.  This is also a rock musical (is this town rocking or what?) about a family (more family drama too!) fighting through mental illness to get back to "normal".  Then Cardinal presents Underneath the Lintel by Glen Berger, May 3-19.  This story follows a librarian turned detective after a book is returned 113 years overdue.  Rounding out the season is the family friendly classic Charlotte's Web by E.B. White, June 8-23.  This sweet story about a friendship between a pig and spider, and their barnyard friends, is a great chance for kids to experience professional theater.

IU Theater has two dramatic presentations to round out the season.  First up is their new series At First Sight, which features plays written by IU students, March 22-30.  This year they feature two plays: (a love story) by Kelly P. Lusk, and Dontrell, Who Kissed the Sea by Nathan Alan Davis.  The last play of the season is Sunday in the Park with George with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and book by James Lapine, April 12-20.  This story is inspired a painting and the authors interpretation of what is happening in that painting and with the painter when he created it.  It's a sophisticated and challenging piece for the student performers and crew, and a great chance for us to support their educational experience.

So many great shows, so little time!  It will be difficult to choose which show to see, but we'll make it easy on some of you.  We've got tickets to giveaway to each of these productions, along with some restaurant gift certificates so you can make an evening of it.  To enter the drawing, leave a comment on this post describing a great theater performance you saw in Bloomington.  We will pick several winners next Thursday the 21st and contact you via Facebook message (so keep an eye on your inbox).  Good luck, and enjoy the show!


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Julie Warren

Julie Warren

Julie was raised in Bloomington and attended IU, and all of that experience and knowledge comes in handy as the Director of Tourism. She loves live music, ice cream, swimming, craft beer, and of course her adorable family.