Spring will be here soon, and the weather will (hopefully) be improving as well. It’s a great time to catch a show in Detroit or its surrounding cities, and there are plenty of theaters around to choose from. Whether your taste runs to musicals, dramas, or comedy, there’s something for everyone to be found in the city.
The Farmington Players
Price: $16-18 per ticket
The Farmington Players will be doing a production of “Little Shop of Horrors” from April 27 to May 19. A synopsis of the famous show: This rock musical stars a financially strapped florist’s assistant who takes a chance at fame by enlisting help from an enormous, man-eating plant. The catch: the plant can never seem to get enough to eat. “Little Shop of Horrors” was also made into a 1986 movie with Rick Moranis and Steve Martin, and has a cult-like following. Tickets range from $16 to $18 and can be purchased on their website or by calling the box office.
3011 W. Grand Blvd.
Detroit, MI 48202
Box office: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; tickets can also be bought through Ticketmaster, at (800) 982-2787.
The Fisher, one of the most beautiful theaters in Detroit, will be hosting two shows in the spring, the first being Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast,” which will run from April 10 to April 22. Tickets range from $35 to $125, and the show’s runtime is 2 hours and 30 minutes. The show is also not recommended for children ages five and under. “Beauty and the Beast” was released in 3D at the movies this year as well, and although it’s a “tale as old as time,” it has been sparking new interest this year.
The Fisher will also host the famous Blue Man Group from May 1 to 13. They will be performing Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sunday evenings at 7:30; and Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Children under 5 are not admitted, and the runtime is 1 hour and 40 minutes, with no intermission. The Blue Man Group gives a unique performance where various genres of performance art are shown, and there are different Blue Man Groups all over the country, including New York and Las Vegas. The Fisher has free parking in a structure next door to the theater.
Related: Best Community Theaters in Detroit
Michigan Opera Theatre/Detroit Opera House
1526 Broadway St.
Detroit, MI 48226
Box office: Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
The Opera House will feature many performances this spring. From March 29 to April 1, the Alvin Ailey dance troupe will be in residence performing favorites and new works by contemporary choreographers. From April 14-22, “The Pearl Fishers,” an opera by Georges Bizet in three acts, will be featured (sung in French with English translations given above the stage), and its runtime is 2 hours and 30 minutes. On April 27-29, the classic ballet “Swan Lake” will take the stage, performed by the Corella Ballet. This will be the first time the company has performed “Swan Lake” outside of Spain.
Other performances include “I Pagliacci” (opera, May 12-20, sung in Italian with English translations), which has a runtime of 1 hour and 40 minutes.
The Opera House has a valet parking lot next to the theater and a parking center across the street from the venue, which can hold up to 700 cars. The Opera House is an excellent venue to catch a performance.
Meadow Brook Theater
207 Wilson Hall
Rochester, MI 48309
The Meadow Brook Theater will host a variety of shows this spring. The first, “Spreading It Around,” is currently playing and will end on April 8. The story is about members of a gated retirement community in Florida whose children want them to stop spending their inheritance, as the members have been “sharing the wealth” with those in need in their town.
From April 18 to May 13, “From My Hometown” will be playing, a 2004 off-Broadway show that includes hits from the Motown era and “examines the difference between the Detroit/Chicago and also the Philly/Memphis sound.” Finally, the Meadow Brook will show “Xanadu” from May 23 – June 17, and it is the Michigan premiere of this musical. It takes place in Venice Beach, CA in the 1980s and involves a Greek muse inspiring a struggling artist.
The Meadow Brook Theater is a nonprofit and Michigan’s largest producing professional theater. It’s conveniently located near I-75 and M-59 on the campus of Oakland University, in Rochester.
Detroit Repertory Theatre
13101 Woodrow Wilson
Detroit, MI 48238
Price: $17 advance; $20 at the door
The Detroit Repertory Theatre will have two shows going on this spring; the first being “Dead and Buried” by James McLindon, which is a play set in a cemetery. Bid, the cemetery supervisor, hires Rob and Perdue to work for her, but she doesn’t know about their hidden agendas and closeted secrets
From May 31 – June 24, the theater will feature “Taking Care of Mimi: A Morality Murder Mystery” by Marilynn Barner Anselmi. Detective Helms is looking in to Mimi’s death and is investigating the family who took care of Mimi after she had Alzheimer’s Disease. He’s also investigating the daughter’s employer, the veterinarian Dr. Ferraro. The detective must figure out who murdered Mimi, as she died of “unnatural means.”
Both plays are $17 for advance tickets or $20 at the door, and tickets can be bought by calling the box office. Visa and Mastercard are accepted.
Make sure to check out the artwork in the theater’s lobby as well, all of which are by Michigan artists. The lobby also serves as a space for themed art shows, whether it be for one person, two people, or a group who wants to exhibit.
Related: Best Professional Theatre in Detroit
Liz Parker is a freelance writer and a University of Michigan graduate with a degree in Creative Writing and Literature. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.