Onstage: Falsettos

'Falsettos' paints a very human story about protagonist Marvin coming out of the closet, Marvin's ex-wife Trina, his son Jason and his new partner Whizzer, characters you come to know, laugh with and love. You can see a production of 'Falsettos' for free

William Finn’s short musicals about gay men in the late 1980s were adventurous for their time. Today such stories are more familiar and common on stage and screen, but two decades ago, this was new territory. Composer and lyricist Finn, a Jewish man who is also gay, knew the territory.

His songs in Falsettos paint a very human story about protagonist Marvin coming out of the closet, Marvin’s ex-wife Trina, his son Jason, and his new partner Whizzer, characters you come to know, laugh with and love. There’s a big battle over Jason’s Bar Mitzvah, and memorable tunes including “Four Jews in a Room Bitching” and one about parents watching kids play baseball.

Finn put all this material together into the musical, which played on Broadway in the spring of 1992, picking up seven Tony nominations and advancing Finn to the top ranks of musical theater fans.

You can see a production of Falsettos this weekend at UC’s College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) in the Cohen Family Studio Theater. It’s being staged by Ed Cohen and Dee Anne Bryll, veterans of the local community theater scene and CEA winners for shows including Parade at Footlighters in 2007. With talent from CCM’s nationally respected musical theater program, you can expect Falsettos to be worth seeing.

Performances are 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday with an additional 2:30 p.m. matinee on Saturday. The good news is they’re all free, but the Studio fills up fast, so you need to call for reservations.

Get show and venue details here.

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