Back in 2006, gay playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney debuted his fine “In the Red and Brown Water” at the Alliance, as part of the Kendeda playwriting competition. Since that time, he’s been produced all across the country. He has returned with “Choir Boy,” a coming of age story about Pharus, a young African-American teenager at the R. Drew Prep School for Boys.

The title character is never identified as gay although everyone seems to know and realize it, especially his classmates, who bully him. “Choir Boy” is a co-production with the Manhattan Theatre Club, where the play opened this summer to exceptional critical success.

Gay director David Crowe’s just-opened “Venus in Fur” at Actor’s Express is a two person play dealing with sex and power. Vanda (Veronika Duerr) is an actress determined to get a role and Thomas (Adam Fristoe) is her director. They two eventually wind up playing a psychological cat and mouse game.

“It’s sexy and funny and twisty,” says Crowe. “It deals with a lot of gender issues, such as who’s really in control and the way we expect men and women to behave.”

Later this year at the Express, gay playwright Steve Yockey and his frequent director/collaborator, out Melissa Foulger, are back for Yockey’s family drama “Pluto.” The two teamed for the gay-themed “Wolves” last season.

Fresh off of his smash rendition of “Hair,” openly gay Brian Clowdus, artistic director of Serenbe Playhouse, has turned his attention to “The Sleepy Hollow Experience.” It’s a new adaptation of the story and will be staged outdoors and in stables.

Before that, however, the ubiquitous Clowdus will direct the comedy “Walter Cronkite is Dead,” about two radically different women stuck at an airport together, at Aurora Theatre.

An Atlanta favorite – “Stomp” – gallops back to the ATL and the Fox Theatre later this month. It is – seemingly – an eternal international percussion sensation that finds itself here every few years or so, usually with a gay or lesbian cast member. This year, gay actor Carlos Thomas is part of the banging ensemble.

Also at the Fox Theatre is Broadway Across America’s “Ghost,” a musical based on the Demi Moore-Patrick Swayze film. It didn’t knock anyone’s socks off on Broadway but we’re curious to see the character of Oda Mae Brown.

A production with real potential is True Colors’ “Spunk,” which involves a trio of stories by Zora Neale Hurston dealing with love, revenge and redemption. It’s adapted by the legendary (and gay) George C. Wolfe.

A slew of other shows are running or about to begin. The Process Theatre’s “Trash” – by gay Johnny Drago – has a gay character and DeWayne Morgan in drag, while 7 Stages’ “The Navigator” – staged at the Goat Farm – promises an interactive adventure through time to save the future.

And it just wouldn’t be Christmas in Atlanta without Horizon’s “The Santaland Diaries.” Gay actor Harold Leaver again will don the elf suit for the seasonal comedy, a merry, snarky tale taken from David Sedaris’ “Holidays on Ice” that has become the perfect counter-programming to the syrupy “Christmas Carols” around.

Current and future productions:

Onstage Atlanta
2969 East Ponce De Leon Ave., Decatur, GA 30030
Through Sept. 28

Alliance Theatre
1280 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Through Oct. 6

“Venus in Fur”
Actor’s Express
887 W. Marietta St., Atlanta, GA 30318
Through Oct. 6

14th Street Playhouse
173 14th St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Sept. 17 – Oct. 13

“Walter Cronkite is Dead”
Aurora Theatre
128 East Pike St., Lawrenceville, GA 30046
Sept. 19 – Oct. 6

“Choir Boy”
Alliance Theatre
1280 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30309
Sept. 20 – Oct. 13

Fox Theatre
660 Peachtree St. NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
Sept. 26 – 29

“The Navigator”
Goat Farm Arts Center
1200 Foster St. NW, Atlanta, GA 30318-4331
Sept. 26 – Oct. 13

“The Sleepy Hollow Experience”
Serenbe Playhouse
9110 Selborne Lane, Chattahoochee Hills, GA 30268
Oct. 10 – 31

Actor’s Express
887 W. Marietta St., Atlanta, GA 30318
Oct. 30 – Nov. 24

Fox Theatre
660 Peachtree Street NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
Nov. 5 -10

“The Santaland Diaries”
Horizon Theatre
1083 Austin Avenue, Atlanta, GA 30307
Nov. 22 – Dec. 29

Photo: Gay director David Crowe’s just-opened ‘Venus in Fur’ at Actor’s Express is a two-person play dealing with sex and power. (Publicity photo)


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