Anna's Picks

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June 7, 2004 // UPDATED 1:51 pm - April 25, 2007
By: Anna Pratt
Anna Pratt

'A Class Act'

Step, kick, kick, leap! I'm not talking about Celtic aerobics in "Riverdance" or "Lord of the Dance," but an impressive number from lyricist Edward Kleban in "A Chorus Line." "A Class Act" references such flexibility and tuneful fitness as choristers run on and off the stage in sequins and top hats. This is the musical from Kleban that he never wrote.

Although he never saw them staged, Kleban's own songs sum up his friendships, neuroses, mishaps and dramatic feats. Appropriately, these songs, published posthumously by his friends, tell about Kleban's unfulfilled ambitions and, greater yet, his real accomplishments.

The show starts somberly, set at Kleban's 1987 funeral at the Shubert Theatre (now on 5th street and Hennepin Avenue South), after he succumbed to cancer. But the then 13-year historic run of "A Chorus Line" brings some comic relief to the memorial, as dancers trot in and out in, yes, sequins and top hats. So does the idiosyncratic Kleban bring slapstick remedy as friends recount old times, lending more laughs than tears.

This homage to the talented music man is full of "pizzazz" and underscores (literally) what it means to be "One Singular Sensation."

Friday-Sunday, June 4-27, 7:30 p.m.

Hey City Theater,

824 Hennepin Ave. S.

$21.50. 673-0404.



'Vanishing Point'

The idea of vanishing has always been captivating, but what if the missing persons found themselves absent together? Writer Scott Keys imagined what a Bermuda Triangle might be like, had it contained the likes of aviator Amelia Earhart, author Agatha Christie and evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson.

Although Christie and McPherson eventually materialized, their disappearances still baffle the public. But this isn't a newsy "60 Minutes." This comical, musical mystery lampoons these three women, in the zenith of their careers, into metaphysical space -- where not only are they unsure of their geographic bounds, but no longer know how to pursue their ambitions and whether or not they should. To go boldly where no one has gone before or not? That is the question.

Wednesday-Sunday,

June 11-June 3, call for times

The Illusion Theater,

528 Hennepin Ave. S.

$21-$26. 339-4944.