Seasonal treats: Time to put tickets under the tree; local groups announce auditions


By SUE SUCHYTA
If you are still looking for holiday gifts, do not overlook the versatility of gift certificates to local theaters. Not only does one size fit all, but you support local artists with your gift. From Broadway favorites to original revues, you are sure to find shows for every taste and budget.

DOWNRIVER ACTORS GUILD OFFERS MUSICALS AND WHO-DUNNITS

The Downriver Actors Guild will hold auditions for the farce, “Drop Dead” Jan. 6 and 7 at Out of the Box Theater, 1165 Ford Ave. in Wyandotte. The show will run for two weekends, April 12 to 20, with direction by Lucinda Chavez.

When actors and technicians are killed during rehearsals and performances of a potboiler murder-mystery, the surviving thespians must band together to solve the real mystery and save their lives.

In February, the group presents “Beehive, the ’60s Musical.” Directed by Carol Ann Black, the show features the songs that inspired women singers as a new generation of vocalists emerged from the Eisenhower era and faced the short-lived promise of the Kennedy administration. Featuring popular hits from the past and a hand-picked cast, the show, which runs weekends Feb. 8 to 17, is a fundraiser for the group. From the tunes of Tina Turner to Aretha Franklin, from Connie Francis to Janis Joplin, the show promises to lift spirits and get you dancing in the aisles.

DAG will also present Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods” weekends March 8 to 17 with a teen cast. Directed by Carol Ann Black, the irreverent musical romp looks at what happens when “happily ever after” turns out to be not what you really wanted after all.

For more information, visit the DAG Facebook page, or go to
www.downriveractorsguild.net. For tickets, call 313-303-5269 or order online through the group’s website.

DEARBORN HEIGHTS CIVIC THEATRE TO PRESENT ‘TWELVE ANGRY MEN’
The Dearborn Heights Civic Theater recently announced plans to produce “Twelve Angry Men” in early March.

Originally staged as a live television play in 1954, the show was rewritten for the stage in 1955, and again in 1957 for a feature film.

For more information about the play or the group, email Marc Walentowicz, the group’s vice president, at marc@dhctstage.org, or check the DHCT Facebook page for regular updates.

SHOWBIZ KIDZ ANNOUNCES AUDITIONS FOR SPRING MUSICAL
Showbiz Kidz will hold an audition workshop from noon to 3 p.m. Jan. 5 for Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty Kids,” followed by auditions from noon to 3 p.m. Jan 12 at the Royal Majestic Theater inside Trillium Academy, 15740 Rancho Road, in Taylor. The registration deadline is Friday. Auditions are open to children 4 to 16 years old.

Rehearsals are held Saturdays from noon to 3 p.m. Performances are 7:30 p.m. April 5 and 6, and 2 p.m. April 7.

The workshop will prepare children for the audition, introducing them to characters, audition readings and possibly choreography.

Those auditioning will sing a song, read from the script and perform a dance audition in a small group setting. It is helpful if those auditioning are familiar with the basic story.

For more information, contact Carol-Ann Black at 734-771-2515 or www.showbizcarolann@hotmail.com.

KIRABELLE FRABOTTA RETURNS FROM NASHVILLE FOR LOCAL SHOW
Local singer and songwriter Kirabelle Frabotta will celebrate her “Wildwood Flower” EP release with a showcase performance at 8 p.m. Wednesday in the Pike Room of the Crofoot Ballroom, 1 S. Saginaw St. in Pontiac. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Go to www.thecrofoot.com for more information.

A local talent who has been living in Nashville, Frabotta loves revisiting American folk songs and rearranging them. She also writes songs with both folk and jazz elements, adding the fiddle, guitar, piano, bass, ukulele, melodic, mandolin and autoharp.

For more information, or to listen to her music, go to her Facebook page, or go to www.kirabellefrabotta.com.

SOUTHGATE COMMUNITY PLAYERS PRESENTS ‘BILOXI BLUES’
The Southgate Community Players will present Neil Simon’s “Biloxi Blues” at 8 p.m. Feb. 8, 9, 15 and 16 at Davidson Middle School Auditorium, 15800 Trenton Road in Southgate.

The show is the second part of a trilogy based loosely on the author’s life, and follows Eugene Jerome through basic training in Biloxi, Miss. during the World War II.

Tickets are $13 for adults and $1 for students and seniors. For more information, call 734-282-4727 or go to www.scponstage.com.

DYPAC TO HOLD AUDITIONs FOR DISNEY’S ‘LITTLE MERMAID JR.’
The Downriver Youth Performing Arts Center will hold auditions for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid Junior” from 3 to 6 p.m. Jan. 6, and from 6 to 9 p.m. Jan. 7 at the Trenton Village Theatre, 2447 W. Jefferson Ave. in Trenton.

Children age 5 to 18 may audition.

The DYPAC show, directed by Mary Zaleski, will run at 7 p.m. March 15, 16, 22 and 23, with a 2 p.m. March 23 matinee.

Those auditioning should come prepared to sing and dance, but should not prepare a song from the show for which they are auditioning. Those auditioning should bring dance shoes, and not wear flip-flops, clogs or boots.

For more information, call 734-362-8153 or go to dypac.com.

Auditions will be held in February for May performances of “Annie!”

HFCC TO PRESENT 2009 PULITZER PRIZE WINNER ‘RUINED’
Henry Ford Community College will perform Lynn Nottage’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Ruined” at 8 p.m. April 18 to 20 and 25 to 27, with a 2 p.m. April 28 matinee.

Chris Bremer will direct the show, a haunting, probing work about the resilience of the human spirit in times of war. Set in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a land torn apart by civil war, the show contains strong language, mature themes and depictions of war and brutality.

Tickets are $15 to the public, with a $12 admission price for seniors, staff, faculty and students. Call 313-845-9817 for reservations or more information.

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