A peek at what’s on stage this summer

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Zita Petrahai

The Cockpit in Court Summer Theater at the Community College of Baltimore County kicked off its summer season with Arsenic and Old Lace, which plays through June 25. Look for Sister Act next, starting July 21.
Photo courtesy of Cockpit in Court

Area theaters are showcasing a variety of plays this summer — from a play about an unconventional grandmother, to two of the Bard’s most celebrated works.

Bowie Community Theatre

The Bowie Community Theatre is bringing folks an eccentric comedy all the way from Los Angeles. Nana’s Naughty Knickers is written by L.A.-based Katherine DiSavino and directed by Jennifer L. Franklin.

The comedy explores the relationship between Bridget and her grandmother, Nana, who become roommates in New York City one summer.

Bridget quickly realizes that Nana is not a typical “sit-at-home grandmother.” Based in her NYC apartment, Nana has created an illegal boutique that sells hand-made naughty underwear to seniors throughout the Big Apple.

Will Bridget be able to handle her grandmother’s secret life? Will her Nana get arrested — or worse! — evicted?

The show is scheduled to run from July 14 through July 30. Tickets are $17 for patrons 62 and older and students; $22 for general admission. Discounted rates for groups of 10 or more are available at $15 per person.

For more information or to buy your ticket, email boxoffice@bctheatre.com or call (301) 809-3078.

Baltimore Shakespeare Factory

The Baltimore Shakespeare Factory (BSF) presents its 2017 Shakespeare in the Meadow series with two plays: A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Love’s Labour’s Lost.

The former is directed by BSF’s Artistic Director, Tom Delise, and will be performed July 7 to 30. The two-hour play focuses on the experiences of young lovers, magical creatures, and a charming group of artisan performers.

Love’s Labour’s Lost is directed by BSF Assistant Artistic Director Chris Cotterman, and is a tale of two friends attempting to dedicate themselves to a life of study while avoiding the company of women for three years.

Their pledge becomes increasingly difficult when beautiful women start to arrive the minute the friends make their oath. Testing the men’s high-minded resolve, the women flip gender roles while trying to seduce the studious characters. The play will be on stage July 28 to Aug. 20.

Both plays are performed for most of their run outdoors, in the meadow at Johns Hopkins Evergreen Museum & Library, 4545 N. Charles St. The last three days of each play are indoors at the Great Hall Theater at St. Mary’s Community Center, 3900 Roland Ave. Tickets are $15 for those 65 and older; $20 general admission.

For more information, call (410) 662-9455 or visit www.BaltimoreShakespeareFactory.org.

Arena Players

The Arena Players of Baltimore will put on their last show of the season in late June. Back by popular demand, the play Luther tells the life of Luther Vandross, under Randolph Smith’s directing.

The music and pathos of the play will not only bring back memories; it is sure to have you singing along as well. The play will be onstage for just two weekends: June 23 to 25 and June 30 through July 2. Tickets are $20 for those 65 and older and students with ID; $25 for general admission. They can be purchased by calling (410) 728-6500 or emailing arenaplayersinc@gmail.com.

Cockpit in Court

Cockpit in Court Summer Theatre at CCBC Essex is in its 45th season. Sister Act runs from July 21 to Aug. 6 at the theater’s main stage. The comedy focuses on a flamboyant woman hiding in a convent, helping her fellow sisters find their voices, while rediscovering her own in the process.

At the school’s Cabaret Theater, CCBC Essex is also putting on Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. This winner of the 2013 Tony Award for Best Play examines three siblings: middle-aged Vanya and Sonia, who share their home in Buck County, Pa., and Masha, a world-renowned movie-star.

When Masha brings home her new boy toy, Spike, tensions flair up, eventually leading to threats of selling the old family home.

Sharing the stage are sassy maid Cassandra, who can also predict the future, and lovely aspiring actress Nina, whose prettiness worries the imperious Masha.

Performances are July 22 through August 6. The address is 7201 Rossville Blvd., Rosedale.

For Sister Act, tickets are $22 general admission; $20 for those 60 and older; $14 for children 12 and younger. For Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, tickets are $17 for general admission; $15 for those 60 and older.

For more information and tickets, call (443) 840-2787 or see http://bit.ly/cockpit_in_court.

ArtsCentric

ArtsCentric also joins the line-up of theaters bringing musicals to Baltimore. From July 21 to Aug. 6, Chicago will dazzle audiences with a satirical look at fame, justice and the media machine.

The play is set in 1920s Chicago, and is based on the real-life murders and trials of Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner, who inspired the character Roxie Hart. A wannabe vaudevillian star, Roxie murders her lover and is arrested, even after convincing her husband, Amos, to lie for her.

From Aug. 18 through Sept. 3, ArtsCentric will bring a tale from another city: Memphis. Set in the 1950s, Memphis tells the fictional story of DJ Huey Calhoun, a local boy with a passion for R&B, and Felicia Farrell, an up-and-coming black singer he meets one fateful night.

Despite objections from their loved ones, the two embark on a dangerous affair, with their love challenged by both personal ambition and the pressures of an outside world unable to accept their love.

General admission for either show is $26.

The theater is located at 1201 N. Charles St. For more information, visit www.ArtsCen tric.net or call (410) 205-5130.