Iowa City – Riverside Theatre will present Dancing Lessons beginning tonight and running through April 17. I don’t know too much about the show; it’s relatively new having premiered a couple of years ago at Barrington Stage Company in Massachusetts. I always appreciate it when a theatre company stages a playwright’s work that’s new to me. This show stars new artistic director Sam Osheroff and it’ll be fun to see him show off his acting ‘skillz’, as the kids say. The subject matter is an extremely timely, as the character Sam portrays has Asperger’s Syndrome, something that has been diagnosed more and more in recent years. The show is directed by Angie Toomsen, who seems to be on a mental health directing kick – she just completed Next to Normal at TCR. If Dancing Lessons is half as good as Next to Normal was, you’re in for a great evening of intimate theatre.
Here’s the press release from Riverside:
“He can’t tell a lie. She can’t face the truth.”
That’s the dilemma of Dancing Lessons, the acclaimed play by Mark St. Germain that will premiere at Iowa City’s Riverside Theatre tonight and continue through April 17.
After Senga (played by Heather Chrisler) suffers an injury that will likely bring an end to her dancing career, she’s approached with a surprising proposition by her neighbor, Ever (played by Sam Osheroff). A geoscientist with Asperger’s Syndrome, Ever needs to learn how to dance for an upcoming social function. So he offers Senga an absurdly high amount of money to teach him.
Osheroff – who is also the Artistic Director at Riverside Theatre – says the funny, unsentimental and honest romance takes a hard look at what constitutes “normal.”
Dancing Lessons is directed by Angie Toomsen, a veteran Corridor director who just finished staging the musical Next To Normal at Theatre Cedar Rapids.
Dancing Lessons will be performed April 1-17. The full performance schedule is:
Friday, April 1, 7:30pm
Saturday, April 2, 7:30pm
Sunday, April 3, 3:00pm – with talk back
Thursday, April 7, 7:30pm
Friday, April 8, 7:30pm
Saturday, April 9, 3:00pm & 7:30pm
Sunday, April 10, 3:00pm – with talk back
Thursday, April 14, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, April 15, 7:30pm
Saturday, April 16, 7:30pm
Sunday, April 17, 3:00pm
Tickets are $25-30 for adults and $15 for youth, with a $12 student rush on Thursdays. For more information, visit riversidetheatre.org, or call the Riverside Theatre Box Office at (319) 338-7672. Riverside Theatre is located at 213 N. Gilbert Street, Iowa City, Iowa.