Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A Guide to LGBT shows this summer. Who knew there were so many!

Actors come in many varieties, too.

Do you think the Berkshires are ready for Judy Gold? This week in Williamstown she's about to reveal her latest comic outing titled The Jewdy Show - My Life as a Sitcom. Her unique brand of humor was honed in the clubs of Provincetown, small stages she shared with Lea DeLaria, Paula Poundstone, Sandra Bernhard and Kate Clinton. What would the annual October Women's Week in P-Town be without her special appearances? Not as funny, for one thing.

So, if you have been blissfully unaware that the esteemed and venerable Williamstown Theatre Festival is opening its 2010 season with both the king and queen of LGBTJ comedy, you are hereby informed.

And since the fact that much of the top entertainment in the Berkshires has creative LGBT writers, performers and content that is poorly publicized, you might just help spread the word. And take a gander at the advance story I have written about Judy and her show in BerkshireOnStage.com.

Judy Gold (l) and her partner Elysa.

You might also make that a regular stop in your web browsing since it has an LGBT category that you can search for the latest entertainment of special interest. Of course you will also find reviews and interviews that you won't find anywhere else as well. Right now we have two advance stories on Sweeney Todd which opens Wednesday, a photo preview of the cast and show, and an interview with director Julianne Boyd about her Sondheim obsession.

You may also want to read all about The Baltimore Waltz being done by Main Street Stage in North Adams. The Paula Vogel play is filled with humor as she uses her imagination to cope with the loss of her brother to AIDS. It's far from depressing, as I point out in my Berkshire On Stage review.

There is also a complete listing with photos of all the cabaret artists coming to the Berkshires this summer. While we were disappointed to see Elaine Stritch postponed since she and the LGBT community are long time friends, her replacement, the glorious Barbara Cook is also dearly beloved. I last saw her at the Provincetown Town Hall. Now I can enjoy hearing her again right here in the Berkshires at the LGBT friendly Mahaiwe in Great Barrington. And, my heart be still, Ute Lemper is due in at the Colonial I could go on. If you love cabaret, read the full story and start saving those pennies.

The maestro, simply referred to as MTT, is a master of Mahler.

And over at Tanglewood, the replacement of the perpetually ailing James Levine with Michael Tilson Thomas (story with slide show) on opening weekend comes as great news to the LGBT community. MTT is the first openly gay conductor to achieve national prominence without having to conceal his homosexuality. Currently the music director of the San Francisco Symphony, we think he would make a great leader for the BSO and Tanglewood, and say so in this story that has been getting lots of hits and controversy in the classical community.

Les Ballets de Trockadero make audiences laugh - they are in pointe shoes and tutus, after all - but oh my, how can they dance!.
Over at Jacob's Pillow, there is dance, dance and more dance, including all those free performances on the inside/out stage at dusk. But if I had to pick two companies not to be missed, it would have to be the Trey McIntyre Project (August 4-8) and the fabulous, stunning, outrageous "Trocks" who play various programs from August 11-15. And if you love real Russian ballet, the incredible ballerina assoluta stupenda Nina Ananiashvili and the State Ballet of Georgia takes the stage this week. The complete Pillow schedule with video samples of each group is on a special page at BerkshireOnStage.com.

Want more? There is also the Bill Nelson All Male Review coming to Barrington Stage Company, and the Bill Finn Labor Day weekend show with the horribly long name that always include LGBT composers.

Who is not excited about the all-male version of the Sondheim musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. That already witty show opening in Williamstown next week should deiight both the eye and the ear. We searched for all the cast member's pictures too, and you can see them in our exclusive Berkshire on Stage preview story.

I'm not done yet. Don't forget the three social "out" nights at Barrington Stage, a first for the Berkshires.

Check the post that follows this one. It will have additional details I am confirming now. You can also keep up to date on the latest buzz by joining the Berkshire On Stage Facebook group. Each new article gets a link on the wall, and you get weekly pick and preview announcements.

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