Stage Door: Angels and Supermen

There's a lot of promising theater in town over the next few weeks, so if I were you I'd give serious consideration to getting a head start this weekend. Two good choices await you. Know Theatre of Cincinnati kicks off its presentation of the monumental 1990s classic Angels in America on Saturday evening when they open Part I, Millennium Approaches. —-I wrote about it in my column this week if you need more rationale for why it's a show to see. Part II, Perestroika will join the bill later in April, and you'll likely want to see that part, too. I urge you to get these on your calendar.

The other promising work is a world premiere that opens next week at the Cincinnati Playhouse, David Bar Katz's The History of Invulnerability. I'll be writing more about this show in an upcoming issue of CityBeat, but this weekend you have a chance to catch the show in previews on the Playhouse's Shelterhouse stage.

The History of Invulnerability is a show about Jerry Siegel, one of several young Jewish men who created superheroes in the 1930s, in part responding to the rise of Nazism and the helplessness that many felt about attacks on Jews in Europe. Siegel's Superman was the greatest of these creations, and Bar Katz's play is a fascinating study in the origins, needs and desires of the era. Expect a work with a lot of exciting lighting and video effects, too, since one of America's best designers is part of the team, Thomas C. Hase.

The show officially opens on April 8, but you can see inexpensive previews this weekend. And if you'd like to hear my conversation with Bar Katz, tune in to WVXU's Around Cincinnati (91.7 FM or listen online here) on Sunday evening at 7 p.m.

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