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Boston Metro Spotlight: November 2010

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Larry Pine
This month's big event is Huntington Theatre Company's world premiere of a new play by Bob Glaudini: Vengeance Is the Lord's (November 12 - December 12), a dramedy about a family trying to recover from the murder of a daughter. The mother (Roberta Wallach) is inclined to forgive the killer, who is coming up for parole; her ex-husband (Larry Pine), who heads a family business in petty crime, is vehemently opposed. Their surviving children (Lee Tergesen, Karl Baker Olson, and Katie Kreisler) find their allegiances torn, to passionate and often surprisingly comic effect. Huntington's special benefit, An Evening With Sutton Foster (November 15), will help to support such daring premieres, as well as community outreach.

The Celebrity Series of Boston brings us the sure-to-enchant puppet ballet, Basil Twist's Petrushka at the Paramount (November 11-21). Boston Lyric Opera puts on Tosca at the Shubert (November 5-16), starring Jill Gardner and Diego Torre as the ill-fated inamorati and Bradley Garvin as their nemesis Scarpia.

At the Boston Center for the Arts' Plaza Theatre, Robert Kropf and Gabriel Kuttner appear as a pair of reunited, inimical brothers in the Boston premiere of John Kolvenbach's On an Average Day (November 2-20), which garnered acclaim a few years back at the Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre, Kropf's summer stomping ground. In the Plaza Black Box, Fort Point Theatre Channel presents Codes of Conduct: Plays About Women and Men (November 12-19), consisting of Trapped Inside a Low-Fat Twinkie by Silvia Graziano and Sunday with Joy by James Swindell.

The Mistakes Madeline Made, by Elizabeth Meriwether, makes its Boston debut at the tiny Factory Theate, under the aegis of Holland Productions (November 26 - December 4); it's a wonder that this marvelous 2006 comedy about a snarky ablutophobe (Paige Clark) didn't hit the city sooner. Chelsea's Apollinaire Theatre Company is quicker on the draw in picking up on Gina Gionfriddo's 2008 satire U.S. Drag (November 5 - December 5), which provocatively links crime and celebrity culture.

Cambridge's Underground Railroad Theatre takes on Naomi Wallace's The Fever Chart: Three Visions of the Middle East (November 18 - December 19), a triptych of dream plays inspired by true events and proffering a magical-realist glimpse of possible peace.

Out in the suburbs, the North Shore Music Theatre continues its phoenixlike resurgence with a pro-packed production of A Chorus Line (November 2-21). The Stoneham Theatre gets a jump on holiday hijinks with Barbara Robinson's family-friendly but enjoyably anarchic The Best Christmas Pageant Ever (November 26 - December 23), featuring local faves Stacy Fisher, Dee Nelson, and Kathy St. George. Lowell's Merrimack Rep counters with the cheerfully eccentric Beasley's Christmas Party (November 26 - December 19), adapted from a story by Booth Tarkington.

At the Arsenal Center for the Arts in Watertown, New Rep revives Terrence McNally's romance Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune (November 28 - December 19), starring Anne Gottlie and Robert Pemberton as the taken-by-surprise lovers. The center's Black Box hosts F.U.D.G.E. Theatre Company's rendition of A Midsummer Night's Dream (November 5-13), introducing a pair of Pucks - one of each gender.

Trinity Rep's annual production of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol (November 19 - December 31) in Providence, Rhode Island, has proved so popular -- and such a revenue-enhancer -- over the past 33 seasons that its span now extends to pre-Thanksgiving. This year, newly minted Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Program grad Michael Perlman directs the repertory members and select guests, including a whole lot of local kids. Snow is guaranteed to fly, along with a performer or two.

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