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2 musicals, 2 dramas among openings

'Broadway Babes,' 'Peter Pan' also on tap

Two musicals and two dramas are opening this week along the Wasatch Front.

"THE ILLUSION," Tony Kushner's adaptation of Pierre Corneille's 17th century comedy "L'Illusion Comique," will play March 20-22 and 27-29 in the Jay W. Lees Courage Theatre of Westminster College's Jewett Center for the Performing Arts, 1250 E. 1700 South.

Kushner's adaptation follows an old man searching for redemption into the cave of a mysterious sorcerer, where he seeks news of his long-lost prodigal son. What he finds is a mystical world, inhabited by wraiths and visions, both comic and tragic.

Michael Vought is directing a cast that includes Brandon Rufener, Spencer West, Peter Markowski, Brian Pilling, Teresa Knight, Sarah E. Kaelin, Carl Evans and Michael Burns. Markowski plays the central role of Alcandre, the magician.

Performances are 7:30 p.m., Thursdays-Saturdays. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for non-Westminster students and senior citizens. For reservations, call 832-2135. Free parking is available in the terrace directly west of the theater.

"ARCHIPELAGO," an award-winning drama by LeeAnne Hill Adams, directed by Rodger Sorensen, recounts Stalin's imprisonment of Russian intellectuals and artists in the infamous Gulag. One theme running throughout the play is the prisoners' feelings about Stalin's attempts to silence them.

The drama plays Tuesdays-Saturdays, March 19-April 5, in Brigham Young University's Pardoe Theatre. The cast includes Diane Rane as Nina, a true-life character based on Nina Hagen-Torn, who was sent to the Gulag prison camps twice during her lifetime; Joni H. Clausen as the hopeful Nadya, Laurel Sandberg as the pessimistic Katya and Cort Kirksey as Valeri, a young man who organizes a group of prisoners to perform a play in prison.

Tickets are $12 for the general public and $9 for BYU faculty, staff and students. Half-price previews are Wednesday and Thursday, March 19-20. For reservations, call 801-378-4322.

"BROADWAY BABES DINNER SHOW," an original musical revue, is scheduled for one night only, March 31, at 7 p.m., in the Old St. Rose Reception and Events Center, located at the corner of Church and Main, Layton. The cast includes Teresa Sanderson, Charlene Adams, Megan Pease and Jolene Rausch. Tickets are $30 each, including performance, dinner and dessert. Reservations must be made at least 24 hours in advance by calling 801-497-0601.

"PETER PAN," the classic Broadway musical, is being presented March 20-22 by the Bluffdale Arts Advisory Board. Performances are 7 p.m., Thursday-Saturday, at South Hills Middle School, 13508 S. 400 West, with one matinee at 1 p.m. on Saturday.

Laura Garner is directing a cast that includes Becky Painter as Peter Pan, Daryl Macbeth as Capt. Hook, and Mackenna Garner, Weston Prestwich and Cooper Campbell as the three Darling children, Wendy, John and Michael. Other principal players include Rex King as Smee, Mandy Rigby as Tiger Lily, Kathy Hawkins as Mrs. Darling, Jared Stromberg as Nana, the family dog; William Garner as the crocodile, and Kathy Richmond as Liza, the maid.

Tickets are $6 each or $25 for a family pass (admitting up to six immediate family members, plus $5 for each additional person). There is also a four-ticket "value coupon" for $20. Tickets will be available at the door, or may be purchased in advance from Peterson's Market in Riverton, or from cast members.

THE PIONEER THEATRE GUILD will hold its annual afternoon tea on Friday, March 21, at 2 p.m., in the Alta Club. The program will be presented by several local performers. Tickets are $20 per person. For reservations, send checks to: Dawn Horne, 691 E. 4181 South, Salt Lake City, UT 84107, or call 268-6282 for further information.


E-mail: ivan@desnews.com