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Sunday, November 18 News

Applause / Premieres and stars dominate theater season

Shine up that crystal ball. The new theatrical season is upon us and choosing what to see would be a conundrum for the finest seer in the land. One sure thing is the sui generis “Hamilton,” which blazes at the Bushnell in December. Other predictions are unreliable, though some attractions show more promise than others.

If there’s a trend, it’s race, politics and war — no surprise. Hereabouts, the schedule is filled with family conflicts. Those old tropes — man against nature, man against man, man against himself — resurrect themselves. Throw in some classics, and we’re off.

In New York, stars shine. Daniel Radcliffe, Glenn Close, Edie Falco, Bryan Cranston and Ethan Hawke, among many others, challenge themselves and audiences. Both venues are loaded with works that, though they take place in the past, reflect our troubled, insecure time.

Herewith a chronological selection of scheduled Connecticut shows for the year and New York shows through December. Remember: Many are limited engagements.

CONNECTICUT

“The Drowsy Chaperone” — Musical comedy comes to life for theater buff. (Goodspeed, Sept. 21)

“Man of La Mancha” — Don Quixote, Sancho Panza and Aldonza sing and dance in a revival of the great musical. (Westport Playhouse, Sept. 25)

“El Huracán” — Family and forgiveness in the wake of a Miami hurricane. (Yale Rep, Sept. 28)

“The Roommate” — Two women, a city mouse/country mouse combo, thrown together by need, try to prevent their wheels from coming off. (Long Wharf, Oct. 10)

“Thousand Pines” — A high school shooting’s impact on the families of the children who died. (Westport Playhouse, Oct. 30)

“The Prisoner” — Genius director Peter Brook examines crime, justice and compassion. (Yale Rep, Nov. 2)

“Paradise Blue” — Jazz-infused drama pits a gifted trumpeter vs. a mysterious woman. (Long Wharf, Nov. 21)

“Hamilton” — Get your tickets now for this blockbuster. (Bushnell, Dec. 11)

“Miller, Mississippi” — Southern family descends into private ruin while public laws advance. (Long Wharf, Jan. 9)

“The Engagement Party” — In which a spilled glass of wine causes havoc. (Hartford Stage, Jan. 10)

“A Doll’s House, Part 2” — Nora’s back, a changed woman (Theaterworks, Hartford, Jan. 18, and Long Wharf, May 1)

“Good Faith” — Inspired by actual events, personal and political values clash around events in the New Haven Fire Dept. (Yale Rep, Feb. 1)

“Tiny Beautiful Things” — A four-hankie about an advice columnist who weaves together various lives, including her own. (Long Wharf, Feb. 13)

“Detroit ‘67” — Sibling rivalry mirrors racial rivalry. (Hartford Stage, Feb. 14)

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“Twelfth Night” — Afro-futurist music is the food of love in this version of Shakespeare’s romcom. (Yale Rep, March 15)

“An Iliad” — Love and war, order and chaos in Homer’s era — and ours. (Long Wharf, March 20)

“Cabaret” — MTC revives its much-praised production of the Nazi-era musical. (Music Theater of Connecticut, March 29)

“The Book of Mormon” — Hilarious musical hit, not for the kiddies. (Palace, Waterbury, April 9)

“Come From Away” — Warm, true story of Canadian town that opened its homes and hearts to stranded passengers on 9/11. (Bushnell, April 30)

“The Flamingo Kid” — Brooklyn teen comes of age in a new musical based on the 1984 film. (Hartford Stage, May 9)

“The Scottsboro Boys” — Powerful musical retelling of a notorious trial, in the ironic form of a minstrel show. (Playhouse on Park, Hartford, June 26)

NEW YORK

“Bernhardt/Hamlet” — Janet McTeer as the legendary Sarah Bernhardt dares tackle Shakespeare’s Prince of Denmark. (American Airlines, now playing)

“The Nap” — Let’s play! Snooker (British for billiards) gets its time to shine in this comedy-thriller. (Friedman, now playing)

“I Was Most Alive With You” — Craig Lucas’ play, performed simultaneously by deaf and hearing actors, deals with interpersonal miscommunication and features the incomparable Lois Smith. (Playwrights Horizons, now playing)

“Collective Rage” — The collision of five women, all named Betty, unleashes their inner beings. (Lortel, now playing)

“The True” — Edie Falco fights political shenanigans, back in the 1970s. (Pershing Center, now playing)

“The Lifespan of a Fact” — Daniel Radcliffe, Cherry Jones and Bobby Cannavale

debate fake vs. factual news (Friedman, Sept. 20)

“The Waverly Gallery” — Kenneth Lonergan’s sad/funny look at Alzheimer’s stars Elaine May, Lucas Hedges, Joan Allen and Michael Cera. (Golden, Sept. 25)

“Fireflies” — Civil unrest in the Jim Crow South. (Atlantic, Sept. 26)

“Apologia”- Stockard Channing plays a former rebel who faces her past. (Laura Pels, Sept. 27)

“The Ferryman” — Arrival of an unexpected visitor upends an Irish feast in this prize-winning British drama. (Jacobs, Oct. 2)

“Mother of the Maid” — Glenn Close is the title character, a woman baffled by her remarkable daughter Joan (“of Arc” that is). (Public, Oct. 2)

“Gloria: A Life” — Interlacing the personal history and public influence of Gloria Steinem. (Daryl Roth, Oct. 2)

“King Kong” — A musical in which the big boy is played by a puppet. (Broadway, Oct. 5)

“American Son” — A missing child catches Kerry Washington and Steven Pasquale in our national divide. (Booth, Oct. 6)

“The Prom” — Date night and tuxedos ain’t what they used to be in this new musical. (Longacre, Oct. 25)

“The Hard Problem”- Tom Stoppard’s latest pits matter against consciousness. (Newhouse, Oct. 25)

“Wild Goose Dreams” — Love blossoms between South Korean man and North Korean woman. (Public, Oct. 30)

“To Kill a Mockingbird” — Aaron Sorkin adapts the Harper Lee classic with Jeff Daniels as Atticus Finch. (Shubert, Nov. 1)

“Network” — Bryan Cranston won’t take it anymore in this adaptation of the hit film. (Cort, Nov. 10)

“True West” — Ethan Hawke and Paul Dano duke it out in Sam Shepard’s tale of two cantankerous brothers. (American Airlines, Dec. 27)

“Choir Boy” — Gospel singer can’t fulfill his promise at prep school. (Friedman, Dec. 27)

David Rosenberg’s column on the local theater scene appears monthly.

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