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Florida Spotlight: November 2009

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Janet Dacal and Julius Anthony Rubio
in rehearsal for Wonderland
(© Rob/Harris Productions)
Frank Wildhorn presents a pop-musical update on the stories of Lewis Carroll in Wonderland at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center (November 24-January 3), presented as the initial effort from the Broadway Genesis Project. Janet Dacal will star as Alice, with the cast also featuring Julie Brooks, Eugene Fleming, Jose Llana, Karen Mason, Darren Ritchie, Nikki Snelson, and Ed Staudenmayer.

Meanwhile, the Miami area is flush with smart comedy this month. Enda Walsh's The Walworth Farce comes to the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts (November 4-7), a disarming look into the lives of a wonderfully warped Irish family. Nearby, take your pick of David Mamet plays: The Alliance Theatre Lab presents the wry and brutal Sexual Perversity in Chicago at the Main Street Playhouse (November 5-22), while Boca Raton's Caldwell Theatre has The Voysey Inheritance (November 8-December 13), Mamet's timely update of the Harley Granville-Barker drama about an investment swindler.

In Plantation, there's still more satire with Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them, Christopher Durang's story on household paranoia in the age of terrorism playing at the Mosaic Theatre (November 19-December 13). At the Broward Stage Door Theatre in Coral Springs, a Hebrew family moves into a haunted synagogue for a decidedly kosher encounter with the unknown in Ira Levin's Cantorial (November 20-January 3). And a Cuban mother and her distant Jewish daughter bond over a road trip in Quiara Algeria Hudes' 26 Miles, playing at the New Theatre in Coral Gables (November 20-December 20).

West Palm Beach steps lively as the boisterous dancers of Tap Dogs come to the Kravis Center (November 5) before heading up the coast to the Sunrise Theatre in Fort Pierce (November 7) and the Peabody Auditorium in Daytona Beach (November 8). In nearby Jupiter, the Atlantic Theater presents Vincent (November 13-15), Leonard Nimoy's thoughtful examination of the life of Vincent Van Gogh through his own letters.

There's musical whimsy in Sarasota with Florida Studio Theatre's production of the Tony award-winning 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (November 18-January 15) and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, the tuneful adaptation of the con-men comedy film playing at the Venice Theatre (November 10-December 6). North to Orlando, it's royal backstabbing and manipulation over Christmas dinner with Mad Cow Theatre's production of James Goldman's The Lion in Winter (November 20-December 20). And rounding things out, it's love 80's style at the John S. Burd Center in Gainesville with Gainesville Theatre Alliance's staging of The Wedding Singer (November 10-22), the musical adaptation of Adam Sandler's romantic comedy.

The Knights of the Round Table make their way around the state this month in the latest revival of Lerner and Loewe's Camelot. See the classic love triangle in song starting November 21 at the Saenger Theatre in Pensacola, then November 22 at the Tallassee-Leon County Civic Center, November 27 at the Curtis M. Phillips Center in Gainesville, November 29 at Sarasota's Van Wezel Performing Arts Center, and November 30 at the Lakeland Center's Youkey Theatre.

Both coasts will have their share of touring musicals to choose from in the meantime: Elle Woods sings her way through Harvard Law in Legally Blonde at the King Center in Melbourne (November 3-8) and the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale (November 10-22), while Taylor Hicks continues his campy cameo as Teen Angel in Grease at the Barbara P. Mann Performing Arts Hall in Fort Myers (November 3-8) and the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach (November 10-15).

Anything with "Oprah Winfrey Presents" in front of the title is sure to have a following, but with 11 Tony nominations under its belt, The Color Purple really doesn't need the help. See the Broadway musical version of Alice Walker's stirring novel at the Adrienne Arsht Center in Miami (November 1), Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre in Orlando (November 3-8), the Times-Union Center in Jacksonville (November 17-22), or the Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater (November 24-29).


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