What's on stage in the Berkshires this week

A digest of what's playing at area theaters in and around the Berkshires, based upon reviews by Berkshire Eagle theater critic Jeffrey Borak.

Capsules include publication date of review, closing date of production, performance schedule and production running time.

- denotes a highly recommended critic's choice.


Joseph Kesselring's 1941 comedy about a pair of spinster sisters who, out of the goodness of their hearts, dispatch lonely old men to the next world with servings of their homemade elderberry wine — laced with arsenic, cyanide and a hint of strychnine — is given a wonderfully daffy and caring production under the directorial hands of Gregg Edelman and a fine cast headed by Harriet Harris and Mia Dillon as the captivating, ingenuous Brewster sisters and Graham Rowat as their befuddled nephew, Mortimer. A welcome refuge from a world that is indeed too much with us and a summer theater season that has had a lot on its mind (8/2). Through Aug. 19. Evenings — Monday through Thursday at 7; Friday and Saturday at 8. Matinees — Wednesday and Saturday at 2. 2 hours, 21 minutes

Berkshire Theatre Group, Fitzpatrick Main Stage, 83 E. Main St., Stockbridge. Tickets: $65. 413-997-4444; berkshiretheatregroup.org


What begins as an average, uneventful Sunday for a married textbook editor in New York turns into something fateful and life-changing. Director Eric Hill and a pitch-perfect three-member cast take hold of these two plays, written and then paired by Albee 45 years apart, and examine with bristling insight what it means to communicate, and not communicate. Just as he did two summers ago with Harold Pinter's "The Homecoming," Hill gets under the skin of Albee's material and what he uncovers is untidy, unsettling, poignant, sad, haunting. Welcome back to the theater, Mr. Hill. (7/31). Through Aug. 26. Evenings — Monday through Thursday at 7; Friday and Saturday at 8. Matinees — Saturday at 2. (2 hours, 9 minutes)

Berkshire Theatre Group, Unicorn Theatre, 6 East St., Stockbridge. Tickets: $52. 413-997-4444; berkshiretheatregroup.org


An extraordinary interactive experience in which audience members, chosen at random, perform in various ways with actor Joel Ripka to tell a remarkable story about a list of things in the world that make life worth living that is meant as a lifeline not only for a suicidal mother but also for her son as he journeys from boyhood to manhood; despair, confusion and guilt to hope (8/10). Through Aug. 13. Evening — Saturday at 8. Matinees — Friday and Sunday at 2. (1 hour, 12 minutes)

Chester Theatre Company, Town Hall Theatre, 15 Middlefield Road, Chester. Tickets: $37.50; ($10 Chester resident/student rush — day of; at box office only). 413-354-7771; chestertheatre.org


Lynn Nottage's lengthy play about a 35-year-old African-American seamstress trying to make her way in New York in 1905 is given pedestrian, workmanlike treatment (7/31). Through Aug. 13. Selected afternoons and evenings. (2 hours, 47 minutes)

Shakespeare & Company, Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre, 70 Kemble St., Lenox. Tickets: $65-$25


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