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Published: Friday, 6/24/2011 - Updated: 3 years ago

Valentine's 13th season: movies, magic, and more

BY ROSE RUSSELL
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Monty Python's 'Spamalot' based on the film classic 'Monty Python and The Holy Grail' comes to the Stranahan Oct. 13. Monty Python's 'Spamalot' based on the film classic 'Monty Python and The Holy Grail' comes to the Stranahan Oct. 13.
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The number 13 is a scary figure for some people. But the Valentine Theatre’s 13th season is anything but intimidating.

It promises to be a season with plenty of laughter and healthy entertainment for families whose members touch every age bracket. And while shows specifically intended for the little ones will certainly delight the young at heart, too, there is a good amount of fun planned just for adults.

Tickets for single seats and for the season go on sale Monday at the theater box office and online at valentinetheatre.com. Tickets for some shows will be available at the Stranahan Theater box office or Ticketmaster.

Special attractions

Highlighting the season’s special attractions is Monty Python’s Spamalot. The 2005 Tony Award winner for Best Musical is based on the film classic Monty Python and The Holy Grail.

Proceeds from the performance are earmarked for maintenance of the Valentine, downtown Toledo’s historic theater. The show was presented here for about a week by the Theater League in 2007, and ticket sales reached nearly $1 million.

To accommodate a larger audience, Spamalot will be performed at the Stranahan, 8 p.m. on Oct. 13.

The mature content of A Two Woman Show with Vicki Lawrence should compel parents to leave their young ones at home so they laugh freely as Vicki and her “Mama” character opine on sundry subjects. The show is set for 7 p.m. on Oct. 2 at the Valentine.

The season’s third special attraction is the return of Jim Witter with the music of Simon and Garfunkel in a program called “Feelin’ Groovy” on May 19 at 8 p.m.

Gala Celebration

The Alvin Ailey II dance company will dazzle the Valentine audience during the annual Gala Celebration to benefit the theater and its programming. The internationally renowned dance group will appear at 6 p.m. Oct. 29. All tickets are $150 and include dinner, dancing, and the performance.

Dance International

Speaking of dancing, the Moscow Festival Ballet will present "Sleeping Beauty" in three acts at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 11. Special stage effects will make this fairy tale ballet spectacular.

Family Series

The Family Series next season will bring back an old favorite plus some magic.

Whole families will be charmed as Dorothy, Toto, the Cowardly Lion, Tin Man, and the Scarecrow travel the Yellow Brick Road in The Wizard of Oz at 8 p.m. Jan. 13.

At 4 p.m. Feb. 5, the Spencers Theatre of Illusion will present a high-tech magic show that combines drama, romance, suspense, and comedy.

Comedy Series

Capitol Steps will again entertain Toledoans as news, politicians, and stars are targeted for satire in the 8 p.m. show Oct. 22.

Another generation of comedians in Second City returns on March 9 at 8 p.m. The touring company launched the careers of stars such as Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, and Gilda Radner.

If you have ever wondered about a rabbit's afterlife, perhaps there's a clue in Sister's Easter Catechism: Will My Bunny Go To Heaven? The sequel to Late Night Catechism will be performed at 8 p.m. on March 31.

Studio A Theatre

These Valentine weekend productions are Evil Dead the Musical, Oct. 7 to 28, and Forever Plaid, Feb. 11 to 26. Dates are not yet confirmed for My Name is Asher Lev, starring Paul Causman.

Moscow Festival Ballet performs 'Sleeping Beauty.' Moscow Festival Ballet performs 'Sleeping Beauty.'
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Silver Screen Classics

There's nothing like good, old-fashioned entertainment with a cold drink and $2 popcorn. Most of the movies in the classics series are scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m., but it's a good idea to call the box office to confirm a show title and date, as both could change.

Pay just $16 for all four of these favorites: Gone With The Wind, Jan. 6, Philadelphia Story, Jan. 20, Double Indemnity, Feb. 3, and Mutiny on the Bounty, Feb. 17.

Other movies to be shown include Meet Me in St. Louis, Dec. 17 at 2 p.m.; The Blues Brothers, Jan. 27; a double feature, the Marx Brothers' Monkey Business and Duck Soup, Feb. 10; The Sting, Feb. 24; The Maltese Falcon, March 30; The Birds, April 6; It Happened One Night, April 20; Dirty Dancing, June 8; The Magnificient Seven, June 15, and Monty Python's The Meaning of Life, June 29, 2012.

Jazz a la Carte

This series begins Sept. 24 at 8 p.m. with the Toledo School for the Arts and Toledo Jazz Orchestra "Songs for Our Sister" to benefit the Mary Ann Russo Memorial Jazz Scholarship.

On Nov. 19 at 8 p.m., the jazz orchestra's Rosemary Clooney Tribute will star Julie Cochill. The orchestra's "Valentine's at the Valentine" dinner and dancing fund-raiser will be Feb. 11 at 7 p.m. Toledo Jazz Orchestra's tribute to Stan Kenton will feature Peter Erskine at its 8 p.m. March 10 performance and "The Music of Frank Sinatra" with Mark Randisi starring is set for 8 p.m. April 14.

Dance & Seasonal a la Carte

The Nutcracker with the Ballet Theatre of Toledo opens these features at 7 p.m. Nov. 25, 4 p.m. on Nov. 26, and at 2 p.m. on Nov. 27.

Four performances of A Christmas Carol by the Toledo Repertoire Theatre are set for Dec. 2 at 8 p.m., Dec. 3 at 2 and 8 p.m., and Dec. 4 at 2 p.m.

Xhibit Chrome by the Toledo School for the Arts is set for 8 p.m. on March 8.

Two performances of If These Walls Could Dance by the Toledo Ballet Association are March 23 and 24 at 7:30 each night.

Crescendo with On Stage Studios is planned for May 25 at 7 p.m.

Children's Series

These three shows will be sure to delight youngsters.

Skippyjon Jones, adapted from Judy Schachner's award-winning book, will be Jan. 14. Fancy Nancy Duck for President & Other Story Books that urges children to widen their reading experiences will be Feb. 18. A tea party with Fancy Nancy is at 1 p.m. and costs $8 per person. Rainbow Fish will offer a lesson about sharing and friendship April 21. Each show is at 2 p.m.

Various schools and organizations will also hold some of their events at the historic theater.

Contact Rose Russell at rrussell@theblade.com or 419-724-6178.



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