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October Theatre Highlights

10/15 through 10/24- 4th Wall Productions presents FRANKENSTEIN (musical), by Mark Baron, Jeffrey Jackson and Gary P. Cohen, at Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center, Poughkeepsie—You have to feel for Mary Shelley’s poor creature; since his “birth” over a century ago, people have been making the guy do all sorts of crazy things (Herman Munster, anyone?) over the years. Now they’ve got him….singing. Yep, that’s right, and it’s not Peter Boyle in Young Frankenstein doing “Putting on the Ritz” either, it’s serious. Frankenstein (the musical) had its 2007 world premiere at 37 Arts in New York City, and though it generally got a positive response from audiences, the New York critics brought the torches and pitchforks, and the show had a limited run. 4th Wall Productions have made good use of the classic Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center space over the years, as it continues to fundraise for its future home in Beacon, and if there’s one thing we can be sure of—based on past productions—they will find some fine singers, present an excellent production, and bring the beast to life yet again. Singing, of course. Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center, 9 & 12 Vassar St., Poughkeepsie,,, 845.486.4571. Fr/Sa 8 PM, Su 3 PM

Through November- ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST (10/13-10/17), THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (10/22-10/31), at The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck, Rhinebeck—Looks like a good two-fer this month from The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck, plus their usual Saturday morning kid-friendly fare (visit the website below for more info). Ken Kesey’s audacious first novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1962)—based on his own gig moonlighting at a mental institution, plus his famous experimentation with LSD—resulted in a hit movie a decade later, directed by Milos Forman and starring Jack Nicholson, that won five Academy Awards in 1975. But well before that, in 1963, Dale Wasserman adapted the story for the stage, and it had a fruitful Broadway run that starred Kirk Douglas as McMurphy, and a Tony Award-winning revival in 2001. (The play script was not used for the movie version.) Then it’s Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice, one of the Bard’s most famous “comedies”…and most controversial. The portrayal of Shylock the Jew—the term “pound of flesh” comes from his required price for a forfeited debt, owed by Antonio, the play’s hero—has been debated for centuries now over its perceived anti-Semitism. But Shakespeare did give Shylock one of his all-time great speeches (“Hath not a Jew eyes?”), and the play has resonated through the ages The Center for Performing Arts at Rhinebeck, 661 Rte. 308, Rhinebeck,, 845.876.3080. ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST: 10/10 through 10/17; THE MERCHANT OF VENICE: 10/22 through 10/31.

Fr-Su 10/15, 16, 17- Rosendale Theatre Collective presents PAUL NEWMAN FILM FESTIVAL, at Rosendale Theatre, Rosendale—Why hasn’t anyone done a Paul Newman film festival before? After all, there’s an awful lot of good cinema there, and the actor/race car driver/spaghetti sauce magnate/philanthropist/Nixon enemy list-maker was consistently excellent throughout his career; it’s downright criminal that he didn’t get an Oscar until 1986 for Scorcese’s Fast Eddie sequel Color of Money—almost nobody’s favorite Newman performance, though certainly worthy of the award. Well, the Rosendale Theatre Collective has answered that question, and will be big-screening five Newman faves over three days, including a Q&A session with festival curators Michael Cristofer (Original Sin, Witches of Eastwick, Gia) and Ron Nyswaner (The Painted Veil, Soldier’s Girl, Philadelphia), who will share stories of working with the actor and his wife Joanne Woodward on various films. (Cristofer also acted with and directed Woodward at Woodstock’s Byrdcliffe Theatre.) So which five made the cut? Friday starts with a bang—really, a fusillade—with Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kidi (8 PM). Saturday hosts a trio of classic early Newman with Somebody Up There Likes Me (2 PM), followed by Rachel, Rachel (directed by Newman, starring Joanne Woodward and Estelle Parsons, 5 PM) and finishing with his tour-de-force performance in Hud (8 PM), preceded by the curator Q&A. Sunday the festival closes with Hudson Valley-filmed Nobody’s Fool (7:15 PM), featuring the latter-day, rightly-seasoned actor still schooling the pups. Rosendale Theatre, 408 Main St., Rosendale,, 845.658.8989.

Th 10/21- Arts Organization Time & Space Limited and By Experience present A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION WITH GARRISON KEILLOR, in HD live Simulcast, at Time & Space Limited, Hudson— It goes without saying that a good radio show doesn’t need to be watched. Indeed, many fans of the long-running Prairie Home Companion—over 35 years running—have only heard the show on National Public Radio, broadcast from its home at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, MN. But PHC has also been a traveling stage show, with various special guests (both famous and decidedly not famous) joining the cast of host Garrison Keillor, Protean-voiced actors Sue Scott and Tim Russell, the head-scratchingly able sound effect man Tom Keith, and the nimble Guy’s All-Star Shoe Band…all courtesy of sponsors Powdermilk Biscuits and Bop Baba Rebop Rhubarb Pie. The first “Cinecast” of A Prairie Home Companion in February 2010 drew more than 70,000 fans in 500 movie theaters and performing arts centers in the U.S. and Canada. Time and Space Limited will be one of those theaters in October, showing the live performance (from St. Paul) in high definition. Keillor’s mixture of laconic humor, folksy musicality, and apparent deep appreciation of the Lutherans of Minnesota, has made the show hugely popular, with over six million listeners worldwide. TSL’s digital visuals with 5.1 SurroundSound makes this experience very close and intimate: folks, this will be way better than the Robert Altman movie, trust me on this. Time and Space Limited, 434 Columbia St., Hudson,, 518.822.8448. “Walk in” pre-show 6:30 PM, show at 7 PM

10/29 through 11/14- Performing Arts of Woodstock presents Kimberly Akimbo, by Davis Lindsay-Abaire, at Woodstock Town Hall, Woodstock—For the start of its 47th season, Performing Arts of Woodstock features another play by Davis Lindsay-Abaire (previous PAW productions include his Fuddy Meers, Rabbit Hole and Wonder of the World). Kimberly Akimbo is the hilarious and heart-rending story of a teenager with a premature aging disease who lives in Secaucus with her wildly dysfunctional, self-absorbed family, which is attempting to cope—sort of— with Kimberly’s expected shortened life span. Somehow, the story finds itself with a “happy ending.” Woodstock Town Hall, 63 Tinker St., Woodstock. Th Fr Sa at 8:00 PM., Su 4:00 PM. No show 10/31. Th, Nov. 4, by donation. $15; $12, students and seniors., 845.679.7900

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