It seems as if Dog Days Theatre has found itself something of a niche, offering year-round Sarasota audiences some light, amusing fare for those hot summer days and nights. This season, the Cook Theatre once again plays host to a two-play season featuring professional actors along with students and alumni of the FSU/Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training.
First up is Matthew Burnett’s adaptation of Thornton Wilder’s novel, Theophilus North, directed by Laura Braza. Travel back in time to 1926, when young Theophilus leaves his job at a New Jersey school and heads to tony Newport, Rhode Island. Through a series of fortuitous circumstances, he’s soon mingling with the wealthy and elite there, but can his luck hold? Wilder wrote the original, autobiographical novel in 1973; it was later adapted for a 1988 film titled Mr. North. It’s onstage here July 11-28, with previews July 9 and 10.
A more contemporary comedy follows: Chad Beguelin’s Harbor. The writer of Disney’s stage version of Aladdin (and author/lyricist of Broadway’s The Wedding Singer) focuses on happy gay couple Ted and Kevin, living the perfect life in the Hamptons. That is, until Kevin’s sister shows up pregnant, with her 14-year-old daughter in tow, upsetting the balance of their lives in some outrageously funny and ultimately moving ways. FSU/Asolo Conservatory’s artistic director Greg Leaming is at the helm of this one, taking the Cook stage Aug. 8-25 (previews Aug. 6 and 7).
For tickets, stop by the Asolo box office, call 351-8000 or go to asolorep.org/conservatory/dogdays.