Two different perspectives on Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s Communist witch hunt play out on local stages this weekend, part of a rush of openings:
Bedford Community Theatre presents Arthur Miller’s searing play “The Crucible,” set in Salem, Mass., the scene of an actual witch hunt. Miller’s hero, John Proctor, refuses to name names and suffers for it.
Directed by June O’Neill, “The Crucible” opens tonight. Performances at 7 tonight and May 19 and at 8 p.m. May 13, 14, 20 and 21. At Bedford Hills Community House, 74 Main St., Bedford Hills. $15; $12 for students. Call 914-244-0474 or www.bedfordcomunitytheatre.org.
At The Schoolhouse Theater in Croton Falls, director Pam Moller Kareman takes on Neil Simon’s hilarious “Laughter on the 23rd Floor,” a play in which a Communist-hunting senator is referred to but not seen.
“Laughter” is set in the writer’s room of “The Max Prince Show,” a fictional stand-in for Sid Caesar’s “Your Show of Shows,” where a young Simon cut his comic teeth.
And there is plenty of whip-smart Simon dialogue, with a cracker-jack team of writers trying to out-joke each other. It opens tonight, and runs through June 4. $30 at 8 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays; $32 at 8 p.m. Saturdays and at 4 on Sundays. The Schoolhouse is at 3 Owens Road, Croton Falls. 914-277-8477 or www.schoolhousetheater.org.
Michael Mirra had planned to direct “Zombie Prom” for his Little Radical Theatrics troupe. But he was overwhelmed by the number of actresses who showed up at auditions and shifted gears. Instead, this weekend, it’s the Westchester premiere of “Smile,” a satirical musical from Marvin Hamlisch (music) and Howard Ashman (book and lyrics) about the Young Miss American Pageant of Santa Rosa, Calif. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 3 and 7 p.m. May 15. $20. At Main Street Arts, 238 Route 117 Bypass Road, Bedford Hills. www.littleradicaltheatrics.com.
Lighthouse Youth Theatre’s Senior Company presents “Jesus Christ Superstar” this Saturday and next. The rock opera was the first professional collaboration for Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice and follows the life of Jesus from his arrival in Jerusalem through the Crucifixion, set to a rock score. Doors open at 11:45 on both Saturdays, with lunch at noon and a 1:30 p.m. curtain. $45, $35 for those 16 and under; $70 premium seating; $35 for groups of 15 or more. At Westchester Broadway Theatre, 1 Broadway Plaza, Elmsford. 914-592-2222 or www.broadwaytheatre.com
Catch it before it closes …
Hudson Stage’s witty production of David Mamet’s “Boston Marriage” ends its run, with performances at 8 p.m. Friday and 3 and 8 p.m. Saturday. $35; $30 seniors and students. Woodward Hall Theatre, 235 Elm Road, Briarcliff Manor. 914-271-2811 or www.hudsonstage.com.
Pound Ridge Theatre Company’s run of A.R. Gurney’s “Later Life,” directed by Sherry Asch, ends its run with performances at 8 tonight, Friday and Saturday. The play centers on a man paralyzed by the possibility of living his life. $24, $20 for students and seniors. Conant Hall, 257 Westchester Ave. (Route 137), Pound Ridge. 914-764-1902 or www.prtc01.org.
Bedford Community Theatre’s production of Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible” stars, from left: Emily Feierman (as Abigail Williams), David Fritsch (as Deputy Governor Danforth) and Jody Green (as John Proctor). Photo courtesy Bedford Community Theatre