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Michael Urie

Now best known for his role in TV’s Ugly Betty, Michael Urie was in New York this week taking part in a reading of Caligula by Albert Camus. A graduate of Juilliard, Urie scored big last year off-Broadway starring in the play The Temperamentals, which was recently nominated for a GLAAD award.

Lydia R. Diamond’s The Bluest Eye opens on February 12 at the Paul Robeson Theatre at the African American Cultural Center. The play is based on Toni Morrison’s first novel, The Bluest Eye. Co-directed by Paulette Harris and Ibn Shabazz, the production will star Ebony Pace and Ciandre M. Taylor. Incidentally, Shabazz’s play Insidious will have its premiere in July at Road Less Traveled Theater.

Speaking of Road Less Traveled, Caitlin McAneny’s play Ashes of Emeralds was the winner of the company’s 2009 Buffalo Young Writers Competition. McAneny’s play will have a workshop production on May 26 at the RLT Theater.

Wading Through the Light and Shadows, a new work by David Butler, will premiere on February 4 at the Alt Theater. Directed by Drew McCabe, the production will feature music and sound design by David Kane and choreography by Amy Taravella. In addition to Butler and Taravella, the cast will also feature Kristin Bentley, Michael Renna, and Tim Newell.

Playhouse of American Classics continues its 2009-2010 season with the classic The Heiress, starring Jennifer Fitzery, Keith Elkins and Andrew Starr. Based on Henry James’s Washington Square, the play by Ruth and Augustus Goetz made its Broadway debut in 1947. Its latest revival in 1995 earned the fabulous Cherry Jones her first Tony award. The Heiress, directed by Terence McDonald, will run February 12-14 at the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society.

American Repertory Theatre of WNY will hold a Mardi Gras celebration at Rust Belt Books on February 16, 6-10pm. Entertainment will consist of several readings, including original work by local writer Greg Turner and a staged reading of Christopher Durang’s parody For Whom The Southern Belle Tolls. For further information, go to

John Scherer

After The Relapse, the Irish Classical Theatre Company will present Martin McDonagh’s The Lonesome West, February 26-March 28. Directed by Greg Natale, the production will star Joe Wiens, Steve Copps, Candace Kogut, and Bryan P. Stoyle. McDonagh’s plays include The Beauty Queen of Leenane, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, and The Cripple of Inishmaan. His latest play, Behanding in Spokane, will open on Broadway in February, starring Christopher Walken. Spokane is McDonagh’s first play set in the US (Washington State) and his first play to originate on Broadway.

Speaking of ICTC, save the date! This year’s The Wake will take place on Friday March 12 at the Karpeles Museum on Porter Avenue.

Mommy’s Martini Hour starring Kerrykate Abel, Loraine O’Donnell, and Chuck Basil at the piano returns to BUA for two performances only, February 6 at 8pm and February 7 at 7pm. And in its TBA slot in April, BUA will present Daniel Talbott’s play Slipping, about gay teen angst.

Buffalo’s John Scherer, who was last on Broadway in Lovemusik (directed by Hal Prince), is currently starring and shining as Albin/Zaza (notice the boa) in the Maltz Jupiter Theater production of La Cage Aux Folles.

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