News Column

Serenbe Playhouse branches into fall with 'Sleepy Hollow Experience'

October 3, 2013

YellowBrix

Oct. 03--Serenbe Playhouse, which took "A Walk in the Woods" and let its "Hair" down in critically praised outdoor productions this summer, is up to some new tricks for its first full fall production.

"The Sleepy Hollow Experience," adapted from the Washington Irving story that also serves as the inspiration of a new and heavily promoted Fox TV drama, is being billed as "a cross between theatrical production and interactive haunted house."

To be presented in the Serenbe Stables in the leafy community of Chattahoochee Hills, about 45 miles south of Atlanta, the show will open Oct. 10 for a run through Oct. 31.

"The Stables serves as our playground and you will find yourself being guided through by roving storytellers throughout the entirety of the space," Serenbe Playhouse artistic director Brian Clowdus explained. "We are using the classic story but breathing new life -- or, shall we say, death -- into our concept."

In other words, watch out: The Woman in White or the Headless Horseman might just be gaining on you.

For additional spooks, Serenbe Playhouse will put on a Halloween Monster Mash party on Halloween night (Oct. 31), immediately following "The Sleepy Hollow Experience" performance. Attendees (exclusively for ages 21 and up) can expect a bonfire, costume contest, tricks, treats, music, dancing, specialty cocktails and a chance to mingle with the play's cast and creative team.

Monster Mash tickets, $50, includes admission to that evening's production; $40 Monster Mash party (starting at 9:30 p.m.) only.

Show times for "The Sleepy Hollow Experience" are 8 p.m. Thursdays through Sundays. Tickets, $20. 9065 Selborne Lane, Chattahoochee Hills. 770-463-1110, www.serenbeplayhouse.com.

CLASSICAL MUSIC

Chamber Players' 2013-14 dates

The Atlanta Chamber Players has announced its 38th season.

-- 7:30 p.m. Oct. 16: "Prize Winners." Program includes the world premiere of "Bailes encima del escritorio," a quartet for oboe, violin, cello and piano by Charles Zoll, 22-year-old national winner of the 2013 Rapido Composition Contest. At the New American Shakespeare Tavern, 499 Peachtree St., Atlanta

-- 3 p.m. Nov. 24: "Cities & Countrysides." Copeland's "Quiet City" shares a bill with pastoral compositions by Schubert and Dvorak. At Ahavath Achim Synagogue, 600 Peachtree Battle Ave., Atlanta.

-- 3 p.m. March 2: "Quartet Triptych." Program includes the world premiere of "Bliss Point," a quartet for clarinet, violin, cello and piano, commissioned by the Atlanta Chamber Players from Polish violinist-composer Piotr Szewczyk. At Spivey Hall, Morrow.

-- 7:30 p.m. May 13: "Back to the Baroque." Program includes the Southeastern premiere of John Harbison's "Crossroads," a composition for soprano, oboe and strings, co-commissioned by Atlanta Chamber Players. At New American Shakespeare Tavern.

Full details: www.atlantachamberplayers.com.

THEATER

Suzy Award nominees announced

The Alliance Theatre led metro theaters with 25 nominations as the 2013 Suzi Bass Awards finalist lists were announced recently. Lawrenceville's Aurora Theatre was a close second, however, with 22.

The all-musicals-all-the-time Atlanta Lyric Theatre came up big in the musicals categories with 14 nominations. The attention should come in especially handy, as the Lyric recently moved from the Marietta Square to Cobb Civic Center.

Atlanta's version of the Tonys, the Suzi Awards are named for Suzi Bass, the Atlanta actress who died of cancer in 2002.

The 2013 Suzi Bass Awards ceremony will be held Nov. 4 at Decatur's Porter Sanford Performing Arts Center. Full nominee list: www.suziawards.org.

Academy Theatre inaugurates new home

The Academy Theatre, based in recent years in Avondale Estates, has put down roots in Stockbridge.

The new home, including a 250-plus seat proscenium theater and a 99-seat black box space, is in the 22,000-square-foot Stockbridge Community Arts Center. The city of Stockbridge purchased the former First State Bank Operations Center late last year and recruited the Academy, agreeing to an initial three-year public-private partnership.

"The addition of the Academy Theatre to our downtown will greatly enhance the quality of life for our community with the addition of education, entertainment and cultural opportunities," Stockbridge Downtown Development Authority chairman J.T. Williams said during a July announcement ceremony.

Fittingly, the Academy's debut production is "Tapas: 9 Short Plays about Rebirth and Renewal." Through Oct. 13. 146 Burke St., Stockbridge. 404-474-8332, www.academytheatre.org.

New Atlanta Workshop Players leader

Atlanta Workshop Players has a new artistic director, Anthony Galde, whose 25-year acting career has included Broadway shows from "Starlight Express" to more than seven years in "Wicked."

Galde's first staging for AWP is the revue "Broadway Lights," featuring talent from "Wicked," "Jersey Boys," "Mary Poppins" and "Rent." The 7:30 p.m. Oct. 18 show is a benefit for the troupe's scholarship company.

Tickets: $30; $20 students. 770-998-8111, www.atlantaworkshopplayers.com.

FILM

Lefont toasts 37th anniversary with 'Casablanca'

"Casablanca" was on the marquee when George Lefont introduced Atlanta to the film revival format, featuring American and international classics often on double bills, at his Silver Screen cinema in Buckhead way back in 1976.

For Lefont Theaters' 37th anniversary, Bogie and Bacall are back, with a 50th anniversary print from 1992 set for Lefont Sandy Springs screenings at 10:30 a.m. Oct. 19 and 6 p.m. Oct. 21. "Casablanca" is being shown as part of the Lefont Film Society series launched in May 2012 to try to rekindle some of that old revival-theater spark.

5920 Roswell Road, Atlanta. Tickets: $8.50 404-255-0140, www.lefonttheaters.com.

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(c)2013 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (Atlanta, Ga.)

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