Judd Hirsch
(© Joseph Marzullo/Retna)
Judd Hirsch
(© Joseph Marzullo/Retna)
May is merry with comedy and music. ACT imports award-winner Judd Hirsch for Below the Belt (May 22-June 21), a Richard Dresser's farcical skewering of globalized corporate culture. Intiman sends in the clowns with Herb Gardner's A Thousand Clowns (May 15-June 17). The 5th Avenue Theatre does the hand-jive with Grease (May 12-30), importing the tour of Broadway's new popular version, directed and choreographed by two-time Tony Award-winner Kathleen Marshall. Seattle Musical Theatre rolls the dice with Guys and Dolls (May 8-24) and The Village Theatre brings the river to the Sound with Show Boat (May 13-August 2), starring Cayman Ilika as Julie, fresh from her acclaimed performance as Patsy Cline.

Paramount presents the tour of Frost/Nixon (May 6-10), with Stacy Keach and Alan Cox in this fast-paced Tony Award nominated new play. Seattle Public Theater introduces A Wedding Story by Bryony Lavery (May 14-June 7), where Alzheimer's tests Evelyn and Peter's marriage and daughter Sally falls in love with another woman. The Pulitzer Prize-winning Rabbit Hole -- by Shrek creator David Lindsay-Abaire -- opens at ReAct (May 1-31), telling a tale of loss, love and forgiveness. Picasso at the Lapin Agile by Steve Martin (May 7-30) is Balagan's offering, starting with, "Albert Einstein and Pablo Picasso walk into a bar..." The West Coast premiere of Maria/Stuart by Jason Grote comes to Theater Schmeater (May 8-June 6), incorporating ghosts, German poetry, and supernatural fax machines that reveal all.

Classic tales made theatrical include Taproot's Around the World in 80 Days (May 20-June 20) adapting Jules Verne's novel madcap adventure. Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus is adapted into an ensemble creation by Washington Ensemble Theatre (May 15-June 15), entitled simply Titus. Theater Machine mounts an adults only version of Medea (May 7-23).

Theatre9/12 presents the world premiere of The Oddwoman of Pioneer Square: A Parodied Pipe-Dream, by Charles S. Waxberg (May 1-31), in which a greedy trio plot to acquire oil they have discovered deep under the streets of Seattle. Artattack Theatre mortifies with Embarrassed (May 1-30) as a group of actors, comedians, musicians and storytellers bring their most embarrassing moments to the stage. Burien Little Theatre presents The Bill and Peggy Hunt Playwrights Festival (May 1-24) featuring new works by Washington playwrights Judith A. Jacobs, Dave Tucker, Ann Teplick, Michael Wallace, Christopher Bailey, Russell Weeks, Freddie Brinster, and Sean Walbeck. Indulge your impulse-buying in Shopping! The Musical by Morris Bobrow (Bellevue Civic Theater, May 1-9), a musical comedy revue of original songs.

Lots of fun choices open for children this month, as Seattle Children's Theatre debuts their 101st world premiere, I Was A Rat! (May 1-June 7), where Roger the rat is thrown in jail for being a sewer monster and saved by the Princess and the Cobbler. Rapunzel lets down her hair at SecondStory Repertory (May 8-24). Thistle Theatre wonders if you should help the grocer or help the poet in The Goblin and the Poet (May 13-June 7). Heidi comes down from the Swiss Alps to Tacoma Musical Playhouse (May 23-31) and The Little Mermaid comes out of the sea at Moonpaper Tent (May 1-16).