by Shirley Lorraine
Stages offer Shakespeare to Seuss
Welcome to a new year and new theatrical season line-ups for Ventura County stages. 2019 promises a wide variety of productions to entertain, educate and elate theater-goers of all ages.
Many of the theaters are in rehearsal periods in the month of January, with openings coming up in February. A few are on stage now.
Conejo Players, just a hop and skip over the hill, is beginning their season with To Kill A Mockingbird, running January 18 through February 9.
High Street Theater in Moorpark makes a lively and timely start with Mary Poppins, opening January 25.
Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center presents a limited run of Hamlet mounted by the California Shakespeare Company. Catch this production now through January 27.
The Elite Theater has traditionally brought original one-act plays to their stage in January. The One-Act Festival offers an evening for budding and experienced playwrights to have their works put before the public. This year, weather-related repairs to the building are taking precedence and the festival has been postponed to later in the season.
Ventura’s Rubicon Theater brings Heisenberg to the stage, running January 30 through February 17. The drama, starring Faline England and Rubicon regular Joe Spano, spotlights a chance meeting between two strangers and the myriad ways their lives change as a result.
February brings As You Like It to the Camarillo Skyway Playhouse while Breaking Legs will be presented by the Elite in Oxnard, and The Humans at the Santa Paula Theater Center.
The Ojai Art Center Theater will be celebrating the opening of their 80th season by reprising the first production mounted on their stage back in 1939. The suspenseful who-dunnit Night Must Fall opens February 15.
Popular musicals of a range of types will be on our stages, including Avenue Q, Sweet Charity, Pippin, Mama Mia!, Into the Woods, Seussical, the Musical and Sweeny Todd. There will certainly be something to suit everyone’s taste.
Comedies to be staged bring Vanities, Bless Your Heart and Moliere’s The Miser among others. Announced dramatic works offered are The Crucible, Proof and Seascape for starters.
Ventura County boasts some of the best theater productions in the Tri-Counties area. There are many high school and college productions to be seen, as well as youth productions. Several theaters also mount productions on secondary stages, filling in some gaps or presenting special works. Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Center always has something to offer, from local casts to touring companies.
As always, announced productions are always subject to change as the seasons go along. Each theater will be adding shows not yet announced as well as short run interim offerings on many stages. Check the website of each theater individually for the most up to date information.
Camarillo Skyway Theater – www.skywayplayhouse.org
Conejo Players – www.conejoplayers.org
Elite Theater – www.elitetheatre.org
High Street Playhouse – www.highstreetartscenter.com
Ojai Art Center – www.ojaiact.org
Rubicon Theatre – www.rubicontheatre.org
Santa Paula Theater Center – www.santapaulatheatercenter.og
Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center – www.simi-arts.org
See you at the theater!