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August Theatre Highlights

8/7 through 9/5- Woodstock Fringe presents the 2010 FESTIVAL OF THEATRE & SONG at the Byrdcliffe Theatre, Woodstock—Though Byrdcliffe has more of a reputation as an art outpost, Woodstock Fringe President/Director Wallace Norman has managed to make it an occasional theatre utopia every summer for the last eight years, drawing on considerable local talent for writing, directing, and acting. This year is no exception: Ric Siler’s one-man show Old Hickory (directed by Norman) has him playing five characters in this engrossing story that explores family, the choices we make and the extremes we go to when we see no other way out- all with a healthy dollop of Appalachian culture, wisdom and humor. Fishing in Brooklyn features writer/performer LaTonia Phipps (directed by Libya Pugh) telling the story of a young woman on the road to self-discovery through the eyes of 12 characters, including the inquisitive and sassy Tia, a 10 year-old girl who, while watching her mother die of cancer, manages to bring a sense of light to the world falling down around her. Award-winning “clown” Bob Berky reprises his popular show Out Of the Box, and the ever-devolving comedy/music duo Mikhail Horowitz and Gilles Malkine bring their hilarious new show Good Buy, Columbus! to their sorely taxed fan base. Actor/playwright Norman Thomas Marshall performs his powerful one-man show John Brown: Trumpet of Freedom, depicting the historical figure’s last moments before execution, and poetry readings by the Goat Hill Poets—a group of Hudson Valley writers—have two scheduled readings/performances. One of the new shows work-shopped with the Fringe’s “First Looks” staged reading series is In Trouble! by Jerry McGee. Also planned: a night of Jacques Brel and Edith Piaf. Byrdcliffe Theatre, Upper Byrdcliffe Rd., Woodstock,, 845.810.0123.

OLD HICKORY: Th-Sa 8/12-14 8 PM, Su 8/15 2 PM, Fr 8/20 8 PM, Sa 8/21 5 PM, Su 8/22 2 PM
FISHING IN BROOKLYN: Sa/Su 8/14 & 15 5 PM, Sa 8/28 8 PM, Su 8/29 2 PM
GOOD BUY, COLUMBUS!: Sa 8/21 7 PM, Su 8/22 5 PM, Sa 9/4 8 PM, Su 9/5 5 PM
OUT OF THE BOX: Sa/Su 8/28 & 29 5 PM, Sa 9/4 5 PM, Su 9/5 2 PM
IN TROUBLE!: Sa 9/4 2 PM

Fr/Sa 8/13 & 14- Arm-of-the-Sea Theater presents the 2010 ESOPUS CREEK PUPPET SUITE at Tina Chorvas Waterfront Park, Saugerties—As the area’s premier contemporary puppet theatre ensemble, The Arm-of-the Sea has been presenting its ecological and multi-cultural friendly performances all around the Northeast (and beyond) for well nigh 28 seasons. Based in Saugerties, this talented group—built around writer/director Patrick Wadden, artistic designer Marlena Marallo, and music master Dean Jones, plus many talented puppeteers and musicians—presents a story that gives a nice break from the uber-connected hypertexted modern world. From the press release: “This year’s story hatches from a Swirling Cosmic Egg, leapfrogs through events in early evolutionary history, and eventually catches up with the antics of a tribe of hominids who uncover a treasure buried deep under the Earth. When that treasure turns into a raging monster, the hominids must reckon with the consequences and struggle to save their home.” Sounds vaguely familiar. All proceeds will benefit Arm-of-the-Sea’s arts-in-education program, which brings performances and workshops to over 10,000 students each year. Arm-of-the-Sea Theater, Tina Chorvas Waterfront Park, East Bridge St., Saugerties,, 845.246.7873. 8 PM

Fr 8/27- Hudson Valley B.R.A.W.L. SUPER BRAWL at Bearsville Theater, Woodstock—So, you haven’t heard about our regional ladies arm wrestling club B.R.A.W.L.—Broads’ Regional Arm Wrestling League—that’s become one of the most uproarious nights out in the Hudson Valley for well over a year now? You must be a tourist or a total homebody…not that there’s anything wrong with that. Seriously, either way, you need to make a night of this: the wrestlers are fabulous, the MC is awesome (Julie Novak as Lady Thumb Prince), the umpire is rigorous, and the entourages make life worth living. For this big Bearsville throwdown it’s past champs galore: The Pilgrim, La Nina, Bunny Bruiser, Jacky O'Nasty, Pushy Galore, Heather Wiesen, Kiki Yorbutt and The Captain vie for the top honors, with all proceeds going to Family of Woodstock's Washburn House Domestic Violence Shelter and Cabrini Home for Girls Recreation Fund. Admission is “sliding scale” at the door, and it is customary to bring lots of small (and large) bills to throw around as “betting” money on favorite wrestlers (sorry lawman, no real gambling here, just spirited donating). And fellas, if you think you got game, you might just get an arm on the table at the end. But be warned: these ladies are very very strong. See for more info. Bearsville Theater, 291 Tinker St., Bearsville/Woodstock,, 845.679.4406. 9 PM

Through 9/5- HUDSON VALLEY SHAKESPEARE FESTIVAL, at Boscobel Restoration, Garrison—At some point this summer, you truly do need to make a trip to Garrison, to the Boscobel Restoration. We’ve waxed poetic in these pages many times over about this place—just last month we covered the CURRENT sculpture exhibit there, courtesy of Garrison Art Center—and we’re not going to stop this month, no sir. Incredible historic mansion with beautiful grounds and art gallery, the killer view of the Hudson: way high on the ridge, with West Point winking across the way. And the best part: great Shakespeare, performed in a large tent with a minimum of set pieces, lighting, and props, by an extraordinary cast directed by some of the best in the biz. Three shows in rotation: the (relatively) rarely staged historical piece TROILUS AND CRESSIDA, the hugely favored comedy THE TAMING OF THE SHREW, and the “modern adaptation” BOMB-ITTY OF ERRORS, a hip-hop version of the “Comedy.” It’s one of the summer treasures we have upstate; make sure to enjoy it! Boscobel Restoration, Rte. 9D (just south of Cold Spring), Garrison,, 845.365.9575. Tu/We/Th 7 PM, Fr/Sa 8 PM, Su 6 PM

TROILUS AND CRESSIDA: August 10, 12, 14, 18, 20, 26, 29, September 1, 4
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW: August 11, 15, 17, 19, 22, 24, 28, September 2, 5
BOMB-ITTY OF ERRORS: August 13, 21, 25, 27, 31, September 3

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