DENNIS PARLATO has worked in a lot of theaters -- he's been on Broadway frequently and recently has been flying back and forth to London for the workshop of a musical based on Dr. Zhivago -- but he returns to Cincinnati for very simple reasons. "It's Lynn Meyers and great material," he told me recently. That's D. LYNN MEYERS, artistic director at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati (ETC), whom he met two decades ago when she worked at the Cincinnati Playhouse. In the 1980s she hired him for the leading role in Marsha Norman's Traveler in the Dark and used him again when she re-staged the show in New York. They've worked together several more times; he's back now for his fourth ETC production. In 2002 he did The Guys, a dramatic post-9/11 show that teamed him with CEA award winner AMY WARNER. Now they're reunited for Steven Dietz's play FICTION, opening at ETC Wednesday (through Feb.Theatre.org. ...
Here's an early (and exclusive) tip: Late summer is usually a dry spell for theater in Cincinnati, but Aug. 11 is guaranteed to be a date you'll want to circle. Local writer NANCY JONES' new one-woman show, Above the 37th Parallel, will be presented at the Aronoff's Jarson-Kaplan Theatre. The 50-minute script, about her life before and after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, will be brought to life by actress SHERMAN FRACHER and director DREW FRACHER. That's a fine one-two punch, since the Frachers have been frequently recognized by the CEAs. More later, including whether the show might be presented for a second night. ... If you were dismayed when the musical DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS was canceled at the Aronoff Center in December, make note that it will turn up to open Dayton's 2007-08 Broadway Series at the Schuster Center next September. The Victoria Theatre Association will also offer a one-man show Say Goodnight Gracie (Oct. 30-Nov. 11), Mamma Mia (Nov. 29-25), Chicago (Jan. 29-Feb. 3, 2008), Blast! (Feb. 19-March 2, 2008), Monty Python's Spamalot (April 22-27, 2008) and Shenandoah, produced by the Human Race Theatre Company at the Victoria (May 6-18, 2008). By the way, it's less likely Scoundrels will make it to Cincinnati next season if it's landing in Dayton. Info: www.victoriatheatre.com
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