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Defender Picks


State of Play: NOLA Theatre 9.3-9.8

This weekend’s theatrical calendar boasts a spate of early-fall openings, including Tony-winning comedy Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike and the modern literary classic One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. If you missed MidCity Theatre’s comedic homage to the Bard and the Dude, you’ll be happy to learn that Two Gentlemen of Lebowski is held over for this weekend. Full listings follow.


(Shows opening this week are marked with asterisks. Otherwise listed in order of closing:)


*A NOLA Love Story

Compleat Stage at SEED, 1330 Prytania St

504-302-2599 or

Compleat Stage presents five-course, plant-based dinner theater. Storytelling show begins at midnight; contact with dietary restrictions. Thu Sept 4, 11:30pm; ONE SHOW ONLY.


*The Three Charmers of New Orleans Vacation to Grand Isle

Castle Theatre, 501 Williams Blvd, Kenner

504-287-4707 or

BECKY ALLEN, JODI BORELLO, and AMANDA HEBERT return, directing your attention to the comedic possibilities of shrimping boots, frying pans, and crab nets. Thu-Sat 8pm, Sept 4 – 6. 


*One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

The NOLA Project at NOCCA, 2800 Chartres St

504-302-9117 or

NOLA Project celebrates the launch of its 10th anniversary season by welcoming back award-winning “Balm in Gilead” director MARK ROUTHIER to stage Dale Wasserman’s adaptation of the landmark Ken Kesey novel, about raucous Randle McMurphy (ALEX WALLACE) a free spirit who butts heads with the authoritarian Nurse Ratched (AMY ALVAREZ) after he finagles his way into a mental hospital rather than serve prison time. This ensemble comedy-drama also features ERIC CHARLESTON, KYLE DAIGREPONT, MIKE HARKINS, KAITLYN McQUIN HECKEL, LEVI HOOD, KALI RUSSELL, MICHAEL AARON SANTOS, MICHAEL SULLIVAN, and company members A.J. ALLEGRA, JAMES BARTELLE, NATALIE BOYD, KEITH CLAVERIE, SAM DUDLEY, and RICHARD POMES. Thu-Sat 8pm, Sun 2pm; Sept 4 – 21.


*Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike

Le Petit Theatre, 616 St Peter

504-522-2081 or

Christopher Durang’s Tony-winning comedy transplants Chekhovian figures to present-day Pennsylvania. The idyllic lives of siblings Vanya (MARTIN COVERT) and Sonia (SUSAN SHUMATE) —sponging off their B-movie star sister Masha (CASSIE WORLEY)—are disrupted when she returns to their family home with Spike (JAKE WYNNE-WILSON), her newest boy toy, in tow. RON GURAL directs a cast that includes SOPHIE AMOSS and IDELLA JOHNSON. Thu-Sat 8pm, Sun 3pm, plus an industry night Wed Sept 8, 8pm; Sept 5 – 20. 


*The Trip to Bountiful

Playmakers, 19106 Playmakers Rd, Covington

985-893-1671 or

Another Tony winner, Horton Foote’s beloved drama concerns Mrs Watts, a widow living unhappily in Houston with her son and daughter-in-law, who makes an impulsive, lonely pilgrimage by bus to Bountiful, her long-lost hometown. DEREK THRUSH directs. Fri-Sat 8pm, Sun 2pm; Sept 5 – 21.


*Katrina: Mother-in-Law of ‘Em All

Bayou Playhouse, 101 Main St, Lockport

888-992-2968 or

Bayou artistic director PERRY MARTIN directs SPUD McCONNELL, JANET SHEA, TROI BECHET, ZEB HOLLINS III, and TRAVIS RESOR in ROB FLORENCE’s acclaimed New York Fringe comedy-drama about Katrina survivors swapping stories at the legendary Lounge. Fri-Sat 8pm, Sun 2:30pm; Sept 5 – 28.


The Two Gentlemen of Lebowski

Mid-City Theatre, 3540 Toulouse

504-488-1460 or

Mid-City follows its successful staging of the Star Wars: Verily, A New Hope with JUSTIN GUIDROZ’s presentation of Adam Bertocci’s Shakespearean take on the Coen Brothers’ comedy classic, extended one weekend. The cast is ALLISON BLAIZE, MARTIN BRADFORD, EVAN EYER, JARED GORE, ERIN HILDEBRAND, MICHAEL MARTIN, MATT REED, MATTHEW RIGDON, KATHRYN TALBOT, and JAMES WRIGHT. Fri & Sat 8pm, Sept 5 – 6; by donation. FINAL SHOWS.


Fiddler on the Roof

Slidell Little Theatre, 2024 Nellie Dr, Slidell

985-641-0324 or

Closing weekend for the beloved Bock/Harnick family musical. Starring DAVID JACOBS and SARA PAGONES. Fri-Sat 8pm, Sun 2pm; through Sept 7.


Jesus Christ Superstar

Cutting Edge Center, 767 Robert Blvd, Slidell

985-649-3727 or

It’s a musical-heavy weekend on the North Shore. Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s rock opera stars CAMERON WELCH in the title role, alongside BRYANT LAICHE and JESSICA BAYARD, at Cutting Edge’s newly expanded space. Fri-Sat 8pm; through Sept 19.



 [Your compiler makes no promises to be comprehensive, either of shows or within shows. Still, he’s trying, so press releases to]

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