Theater & art

The ticket: Theater

American Repertory Theater's production of "Witness Uganda."
Gretjen Helene/American Repertory Theater
American Repertory Theater's production of "Witness Uganda."

THE FLICK Annie Baker again demonstrates her uncanny ear and empathy for lost souls in this portrait of employees at a fading moviehouse in central Mass. Alex Pollock, Brenna Fitzgerald, and Peter Andersen deliver first-rate performances, and director Shawn LaCount shows a sure grasp of the idiosyncratic Baker idiom. Through March 15. Company One Theatre in collaboration with Suffolk University. At Modern Theatre at Suffolk University, Boston. 800-440-7654,

THE CHERRY ORCHARD An exquisite production, directed by Melia Bensussen. She draws finely detailed performances from her cast, led by Marya Lowry as an aristocratic landowner in danger of losing her estate and beloved cherry orchard, and Steven Barkhimer as a businessman who is offering her a way out. Through March 9. Actors’ Shakespeare Project, at Dane Estate, Pine Manor College, Chestnut Hill. 866-811-4111,

THE WHALE The inimitable John Kuntz stars in the New England premiere of a drama by Samuel D. Hunter about a morbidly obese Idaho man who, nearing death, tries to reconcile with the teenage daughter he hasn’t seen in many years. March 7-April 5. SpeakEasy Stage Company, at Roberts Studio Theatre, Calderwood Pavilion, Boston Center for the Arts. 617-933-8600,



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WITNESS UGANDA Griffin Matthews plays himself in this musical treatment of a story drawn from his life — his journey to Uganda to help build a school, only to learn the charity behind it is a sham. The show is a joyous, wrenching experience. The script, which Matthews co-wrote with composer/partner Matt Gould, skips lightly through the preliminaries, all the better to work up to an emotional chokehold. (Pictured, from left: Nicolette Robinson, Kristolyn Lloyd, Matthews, Jamar Williams, Tyrone Davis Jr .) Through March 16. American Repertory Theater, at Loeb Drama Center, Cambridge. 617-547-8300,


DEATH OF A SALESMAN The beauty of Arthur Miller’s 1949 Tony and Pulitzer winner is that it indicts the American dream without exonerating the American dreamer. In this Lyric Stage production, Ken Baltin as Willy and Paula Plum as his wife, Linda, may shade their characters toward your sympathy, but they never fall into sentimentality. Through March 15. Lyric Stage Company, Boston. 617-585-5678,


Don Aucoin can be reached at