Its mid-June, and once again Im scanning the cultural horizon.
Come summer, Music in the Mountains takes pride of place on my calendar. Concerts will begin July 11 and run through July 29, when the Festival Orchestra will play, among other works, two fanfares, one for the common man and one for the uncommon woman. How about that? (www.musicinthemoun tains.com)
Meanwhile, summer performances have already begun elsewhere with a shout and a song. Last weekend The Henry Strater Theatre launched the first of two productions, The Pursuit of Happiness. The second, After Dark, by the master of melodrama, Dion Boucicault, opens June 27. (See review this page.)
Sandstone Productions in Farmington opens Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat on June 23. The wizard behind the curtain is Theresa Carson, director of theater at San Juan College. Carsons famous energy and humor attract a lot of Durango talent, so expect to see Traci Lyn Thomas and Dallas Padoven in lead roles plus a raft of other Durangoans. Call (877) 599-3331 for tickets.
Two weeks later, the Durango Arts Center will open Greater Tuna. This absurdly funny two-actor play sprouts a whole community of characters. Geoff Johnson and Miles Batchelder will bring Tuna, Texas, to life. Directed by Terry Swan, its a perfect comic follow up to last summers touching Always Patsy Cline. (www.durango arts.org)
Other summer offerings are farther afield but well worth the drive. Creede Repertory Theatre has already opened its 46th season. I Capture the Castle started things off in late May. How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying opened last weekend. Ill be driving over soon to see those and the rest of the offerings: Unnecessary Farce, The Mystery of Irma Vep, Athol Fugards The Road to Mecca, plus an evening of improv and The Bad Man, part of a new trilogy. (www.creederep.org)
Once again, the Santa Fe Opera has a stellar line up. A family night has been added with significantly reduced ticket prices. For Faust Aug. 20, La Bohème Aug. 23, and Menottis Last Savage Aug. 25, the company will sell adult tickets for $25 and $12 for children but you have to have at least one child in your party. No fudging to get these great prices. Inquire by phone: (505) 986-5900 or toll free (800) 280-4654. In addition, the company offers something like rush seats at 50 percent off for seniors and students if you check two days before a performance. Vivaldis Griselda and Bergs Wozzeck fill out the season. (www.santafeopera.org)
Every summer I drive west for the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Celebrating its 50th anniversary, USF is a Tony Award-winning regional company with a multi-million dollar budget. The 2011 roster includes three Shakespearean plays, one comedy, one tragedy, one history play: A Midsummer Nights Dream, Romeo and Juliet, and Richard III. In addition, USF will mount Meredith Wilsons The Music Man with Brian Vaughn as Harold Hill, Noises Off and The Glass Menagerie. It may take the better part of a day to drive to Cedar City, but if you take the northern route, its largely divided highway driving and extraordinarily beautiful. (www.bard.org)
Judith Reynolds is a Durango writer, artist and critic. Reach her at email@example.com.