Photo by Craig Schwartz

In the years since musical comedy diva Sutton Foster was plucked from the chorus of Thoroughly Modern Millie, just before its opening at La Jolla Playhouse, and elevated to the title role, she's racked up an impressive resume. In addition to playing a lead role in The Drowsy Chaperone at the Ahmanson and on Broadway, she's played Jo in the Broadway musical version of Little Women, the ogress Fiona in Shrek the Musical, and most recently, she was Nurse Fay Apple in the New York City Center revival of Stephen Sondheim's Anyone Can Whistle. In this solo performance, assisted only by her accompanist, musical director and long-time friend Michael Rafter, her manner is casual and down to earth, but she provides a dazzling display of charm, musical skill, vocal virtuosity, and comic chops. She treats us to songs and medleys from shows she's performed, plus “Something's Coming,” from West Side Story, a comedy number evoking NYC's sweltering summer weather called “All You Need Is an Air Conditioner to Be the Man for Me,” and Sondheim's poignant “Anyone Can Whistle.” Her impishly subversive wit illuminates all she does, and she stops the show repeatedly, whether belting out a power ballad, or crooning a rich pianissimo. The Kirk Douglas Theatre, 9820 Washington Boulevard, Culver City; April 30 only, 8 p.m.; (213) 628-2772. (Neal Weaver) 

For a list of shows being reviewed over the weekend, press the More tab directly below:                  

Check back here Monday afternoon for reviews of the following shows:

ACTING: THE FIRST SIX LESSONS Adapted and performed by Beau Bridges
and Emily Bridges, based on the book by Richard Boleslavsky. Theatre West,
3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, L.A.; Fri., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru May 16. (323) 851-7977.
CUMBIA DE MI CURAZON In Spanish with English supertitles. Bilingual Foundation of Arts, 421 N. Avenue 19, L.A.; opens April 30; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru May 23. (323) 225-4044.

DEMENTIA Latino Theater Company presents play about a terminal AIDS patient throwing himself a going-away party, written by Evelina Fernandez. Los Angeles Theater Center, 514 S. Spring St., L.A.; Thurs.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 3 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru May 30. (213) 489-0994.

JAWBONE OF AN ASS  A small-town woman responds to the crises in her
life by entering the Pillsbury Bake-off. Mortimer Olive Productions and Circle X Theatre Company at the Lillian Theatrem 6322 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. Opens Saturday, 8 p.m.

JESSE BOY Ruskin Group Theatre presents Robert Mollohan's Southern Gothic tale of one family, trapped by its own tradition. Ruskin Group Theater, 3000 Airport Dr., Santa Monica; opens April 30; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru June 5. (310) 397-3244.

LENNY BRUCE IS BACK (AND BOY IS HE PISSED) Ronnie Marmo is the comedy
legend. Theatre 68, 5419 Sunset Blvd., L.A.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 6 p.m.; thru May 16. (323) 467-6688.

SPOOF AND SATIRE Two one-act comedies by playwright Christopher Durang: The Actor's Nightmare and Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You. Morgan-Wixson Theatre, 2627 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica; opens May  1; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru May 23. (310) 828-7519.

SHAHEED Anna Khaja illuminates the lives and historical forces surrounding slain Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. Stephanie Feury Studio Theater, 5636 Melrose Ave., L.A.; opens April 30; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; thru May 22. (323) 463-7378.

STARMITES Music and lyrics by Barry Keating, book by Stuart Ross and Keating. Miles Memorial Playhouse, 1130 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica; Thurs.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru May 9. (310) 458-8634.

THE 39 STEPS Alfred Hitchcock's 1935 thriller re-imagined on stage. Ahmanson Theatre, 135 N. Grand Ave., L.A.; Tues.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 1 & 6:30 p.m.; thru May 16. (213) 628-2772.

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