TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA (EgoPo): High-spirited and delightfully messy

This musical theater version of Shakespeare’s Two Gentlemen of Verona, launches EgoPo’s season as a cabaret/fundraiser.

Daniel Barland in BROKEN STONES at InterAct Theatre. Photo by Kathryn Raines

BROKEN STONES (InterAct): Searching through the meta rubble

What better theatrical vehicle for cynicism than “meta”: how many ways can the playwright fool an audience?

IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: A LIVE RADIO PLAY (Walnut): A bell rings

If you’re in the mood for a misty-eyed, life-affirming moment, It’s a Wonderful Life is the show for you.

Buyer & Cellar 1812 Productions

BUYER & CELLAR (1812 Productions): The way we are

This is one of those truth-is-stranger-than-fiction moments. BUYER AND CELLAR is about Barbra Streisand’s basement.

KINKY BOOTS (national tour at the Academy of Music): Everybody say yeah

Seeing KINKY BOOTS every couple of years turns out to be a semi-good idea

The National Touring Company of WICKED. Photo by Joan Marcus.

WICKED (National Tour at Academy of Music): Something wizard this way comes

The sets are lavish, the stagecraft is spectacular, and WICKED satisfies every requirement for a Big Broadway Musical.

FUN HOME (national tour at Forrest Theatre): Hiding who you are is likely to be tragic

FUN HOME is both a musical and a family drama; it’s also an activist declaration

HOW TO USE A KNIFE (InterAct): A sharp new play

Scene one is hilarious; scene two wipes the smile right off your face.

PEACEABLE KINGDOM (Orbiter 3): Can we live in peace?

A remarkable play navigating the deep waters of philosophy and the shallow waters of adults wearing animal costumes.

BUZZER (Theatre Exile): We wouldn’t come here if we didn’t live here

A provocative and dismaying story, conveyed through complex characters rather than through statistics and theories

HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH (Forrest Theater): She’s coming for you

They dusted off the rarely used Forrest Theater for this touring production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch, a twenty-year-old rock musical which was itself recently dusted off for a 2014 Broadway revival.

Philadelphia Theatre Company Hand of God review

HAND TO GOD (PTC): The human comedy with sock puppets

What a funny, nasty, smart show.

CABARET (Roundabout Theatre): Tomorrow belongs to…

This brilliant Kander and Ebb show is about the decadence of Weimar Germany and the rise of Nazism

THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST (Walnut): A trivial comedy for serious people

Walnut Street Theatre’s delectable production of THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST finds just the right tone and style.

azuka shitheads akeem davis

SHITHEADS (Azuka): Nice ride

Azuka’s terrific production of SHITHEADS, a new play by Douglas Williams, details the New York bicycle subculture.

LIZZIE (11th Hour): Lizzie Borden took an axe

This is what “stifled rage” sounds like. Not so stifled, but certainly enraged.

AN AMERICAN IN PARIS (Broadway Philadelphia): Put on your dancing shoes, watch your spirits climb

If your dancing shoes aren’t quite up to the task, this show will do the trick.

GUARDS AT THE TAJ (Theatre Exile): Beauty and brutality join hands

The debate central to Rajiv Joseph’s absorbing new play isn’t just talk: when you lose this one, you really lose.

RADIANT VERMIN (Inis Nua): Devilishly good home redecoration

An entertaining cautionary tale about the wages of greed and consumerism

Shakespeare Fringe Roundup: Misadventures among the classics

Toby Zinman gives bullet reviews of nine Shakespeare-ish shows in this year’s Fringe.