The Cradle Will Rock:
Corruption in Steeltown, U.S.A.
Long-time home of free professional performances, Oberlin Summer Theater Festival serves up its first-ever musical this season: 1937's The Cradle Will Rock. Marc Blitzstein's legendary theater piece — originally directed by Orson Welles — paints an almost-operatic picture of corporate corruption and greed in "Steeltown, U.S.A." The current production is helmed by Joey Rizzolo, co-artistic director of acclaimed N.Y.C theater troupe the New York Neo-Futurists, and features such notable regional talents as Marc Moritz, Katherine DeBoer, and Dana Hart. Performances continue through August 4 at the college's Hall Auditorium; find them at 67 North Main St. Tickets are free but reservations are requested at 440-775-8169 or firstname.lastname@example.org. — Elaine T. Cicora
And the World Goes 'Round: A collection of Broadway's best with a comic twist, this musical showcase features the Porthouse Young Professional Company on songs by Kander and Ebb (Chicago, Cabaret, and New York, New York). Perfomances continue through July 21 at Porthouse Theatre, 1145 West Steels Corners Rd. in Cuyahoga Falls. Tickets are $17 to $33 at 330-929-4416 or visit porthousetheatre.com.
As You Like It/The Famous History of the Life of King Henry VIII: Cleveland Shakespeare Festival marks its 15th season of free outdoor theater with these two classic pieces playing in repertory on Saturdays and Sundays through August 5. See cleveshakes.org for venues and schedules.
Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson: "Gleefully loaded with anachronisms and ballsy candor, this play is a freaking rush from the get-go," advises house critic Christine Howey. Performances continue through July 22 at the Beck Center. Tickets are $28 for adults at 216-521-2540 or beckcenter.org. Find them at 17801 Detroit Ave. in Lakewood.
Grace: What would it take to destroy your faith? That's what this new tragicomedy by award-winning playwright Craig Wright wants to know. Produced by the always-edgy Convergence-Continuum, Grace makes its Ohio debut at the Liminis, 2438 Scranton Rd. Performances continue through July 21. Tickets are $15 for adults, less for seniors and students; get them at 216-687-0074 or at convergence-continuum.org.
Mama Mia: The musical inspired by ABBA hits like "Dancing Queen" returns to the Palace Theatre through July 22. Ticket prices range from $10 to $70 at 216-241-6000, playhousesquare.org, or at the box office. The Palace is at 1615 Euclid Ave. on Playhouse Square.
Once Upon a Mattress: Mercury Summer Stock's zany musical retelling of The Princess and the Pea continues through July 21 at Regina Auditorium at Notre Dame College, 4545 College Rd. in South Euclid. Tickets are $15 to $18 at 216-771-5862 or visit mercurysummerstock.com.