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January Theatre Highlights

Sa 1/23- Mighty Theatre Company presents BETRAYAL, by Harold Pinter, at Paramount Center for the Arts, Peekskill—Most folks who cheat on their spouses find little gained from the infidelity, and often suffer much loss. Nobel Laureate playwright Harold Pinter got one of his most critically acclaimed dramatic works from his indiscretions with BBC “televisionpresenter” Joan Bakewell (from 1962 to 1969) with Betrayal (1978). It studies the array of betrayals set into motion over a period of nine years between two couples bound by a close friendship. Pinter uses an innovative technique to tell this particular tale by starting at the end of the story and unfolding the scenes in reverse chronology; thus depriving the “betrayals” any spin or sugar-coating: nothing artificial. Should be an interesting evening of theatre at Peekskill’s Paramount, courtesy of their company-in-residence Mighty Theatre Company. Paramount Center for the Arts, 1008 Brown St., Peekskill,, 914.739.2333. 8 PM

Sa 1/16- COMEDY NIGHT featuring LEAH DUBIE, JASON SAENZ, GEORGE GORDON, and SELENA COPPOCK, hosted by ROB KIRWOOD at Starr Place, Rhinebeck—With its ideal central Rhinebeck location right next to Upstate Films, Starr Place has been making its comeback (thanks to the strong cuisine of chef Roberto Mosconi) after closing briefly last year. Music is back on weekends. The venue is also taking advantage of the easy access to the train by bringing in four hot up-and-coming New York City comics, all in one night. Rob Kirwood hosts special guests Leah Dubie, Jason Saenz, George Gordon, and Selena Coppock for a comedy smorgasbord that may become a regular monthly event. And why shouldn’t it? We all need some funny this winter. Starr Place, 6417 Montgomery St., Rhinebeck,, 845.876.2924. 7 PM

Fr-Su 2/5 through 2/7- New Day Repertory and Wolf Lane Productions present EMPEROR JONES by Eugene O’Neill, at Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center, Poughkeepsie—Widely considered the play that launched the playwright’s career, Eugene O’Neill’s Emperor Jones was also a breakthrough role for influential singer/actor Paul Robeson, who performed the lead both on London stages and in the 1933 screen adaptation (Ossie Davis reprised the role in a 1955 remake). From the New Day Repertory press release: “This is a rarely produced American masterpiece, a tragedy that is rooted deep in American history. It is perhaps the first play to depict the Middle Passage, the voyage of slaves from Africa to America. Its eight brief, expressionistic scenes tell the story of a charismatic Pullman porter with a shady past who has recreated himself as the dictator of a Caribbean paradise. We follow him as he flees for his life during a native revolt. Brutus Jones carries the burden of black oppression within him, ghosts he can’t exorcise. He is O’Neill’s Macbeth, a man of promise and valor who is killed by the silver bullets that represent his greed and ambition.” Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center, 9 Vassar St., Poughkeepsie,, 845.485.7399 (New Day Rep.). Fr/Sa 8 PM, Sa/Su 3 PM

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