If life is a cabaret, then yeah, sure, just go to the theater. Everything is beautiful in there—even the band! Taste that wine! Blow your horn!
Headlined by Chico State’s production of Cabaret, this fall’s theater season in Butte County is made up almost entirely of musical productions. Could it be that things are a little tense out here in America? Maybe we all could stand to lose ourselves in a song? (Just not completely—remember that Cabaret is a metaphor for really, really bad times).
Here’s what’s on the marquee in the coming months:
Dracula: A Musical with Bite, Theatre on the Ridge (Sept. 8-25): A “gothic jukebox musical” with a stacked cast of local actors and musicians playing out a melodic version of Bram Stoker’s classic vampire tale. Adapted/directed by Amber Miller with musical direction by Ben Ruttenburg and Samantha Francis.
The Twilight Zone, Blue Room Theatre (opens Sept. 9): Nick Anderson directs stage versions of “It’s a Good Life” and “The Fever” episodes of the classic sci-fi/horror TV series.
Something Rotten, Chico Theater Co. (Sept. 16-Oct. 9): It’s Shakespeare vs. the Bottom brothers, who are endeavoring to create the world’s first musical.
West Side Story, Center for the Arts (Sept. 23-Oct. 9): The Jets vs. The Sharks to the tunes of Bernstein and Sondheim! Presented by California Regional Theatre (CRT).
Cabaret, Harlen Adams Theatre (Oct. 7-16): Matthew Teague Miller directs the student production of the musical set in 1920s Germany that he says is “timeless, but it is also timely. There are fascinating parallels to the depressed time [in which] it is set and the era in which we are currently living.”
Evil Dead: The Musical, Birdcage Theatre (Oct. 27-Nov. 5): What could be added to the funny violence of the campy horror franchise to make it even better? Let the demons sing!
Rent, First Street Theater (Oct. 27-Nov. 11): CRT presents the rock musical that tells the story—loosely based on the opera La Bohème—of a group of struggling musicians living in New York City. We promise, it will be at least five hundred, twenty-five thousand, six hundred minutes until you get that song out of your head.
Hogfather, Theatre on the Ridge (Nov. 3-20): Jerry Miller directs one of the only non-musicals of the season, a stage adaptation of a book in Terry Pratchett’s comic-fantasy Discworld series, this one starring the God/Santa-like Hogfather, Death, Death’s granddaughter and an assassin named Mr. Teatime.
Another Night Before Christmas, Chico Theater Co. (Nov. 25-Dec. 18): Santa is staying the night, whether you want him to or not, in this modern holiday musical.
1740 Bird St., Oroville
Blue Room Theatre
1005 W. First St.
California Regional Theatre
First Street Theater (139 W. First St.)
Center for the Arts (1475 East Ave.)
Chico State, Department of Music and Theatre
PAC 144, Chico State
Chico Theater Company
166 Eaton Road
Theatre on the Ridge
3735 Neal Road, Paradise