Andrew J. Perez, who stars in "The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Deity" at Capital Stage, has been bumping around the Sacramento theater scene for a couple of years.
Playing characters including the nerdy flower shop clerk, Seymour, in Sacramento Theatre Company's "Little Shop of Horrors," as well as Manuel, the wry delivery boy in New Helvetia's "The Gingerbread Lady," Perez has projected both gravity and a rich inner life that has given depth to even his smaller roles.
As both narrator and main character Macedonio Guerra (a.k.a. The Mace) in Kristoffer Diaz's Pulitzer Prize-nominated, pro- wrestling comedy-drama, Perez has a found a role made for his talents.
He's surrounded by a fine ensemble cast that includes Rushi Kota as the streetsavvy Vigneshwar Paduar (an Indian American Brooklynite known as VP), Donald Paul as a deceptively charming Chad Deity and Randall King as the wrestling czar known as EKO.
The production has an immaculate design (think Jumbotrons, pyrotechnics and an actual wrestling ring) as well as a stunning mural on the front of theater's J Street building.
At Capital Stage, 2215 J St., Sacramento. 7 p.m. Wednesdays; 8 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays; and 2 p.m. Sundays. Through Aug. 11. Tickets are $24-$35, with half-price student rush tickets. Senior Sunday matinee tickets are $28. For information call (916) 995-5464, or go to www.capstage.org.
Bloody bloody Martin McDonagh
The modern Irish playwright Martin McDonagh was finishing a productive, creative run when he wrote "The Lieutenant of Inishmore" in 2001. He had precociously burst on the scene with "The Beauty Queen of Leenane" in 1996, and continued with "A Skull in Connemara" and "The Lonesome West," both in 1997.
McDonagh wrote dark dramas that blended hysterical comedy with bleak pathos and often graphic, gruesome violence. "The Lieutenant of Inishmore" combined these elements as much as any play McDonagh wrote, and Big Idea Theatre unveils its production of it today.
The story revolves around the untimely demise of the beloved cat Wee Thomas and the desperate efforts of his homicidal owner, Padraic, to punish whoever is responsible.
Brian Harrower directs with Justin Muñoz, Kat Muñoz, Benjamin T. Ismail and Scott Divine. 8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays through Aug. 31. At the Big Idea Theatre, 1616 Del Paso Blvd. Tickets are $10-$16. Call (916) 960-3036 or for more information go to www.bigideatheatre.com.
Get out of town
If you're looking for a little theater under the Sierra stars, then Murphys Creek Theatre in Murphys has just the setting for you. The Cornelia B. Stevenot Amphitheatre, 2 miles outside of Murphys, at Albeno Munari Vineyard and Winery (formerly Stevenot), is a 250-seat outdoor natural amphitheatre.
Running today through Sept. 1 is "The Compleat Wrks of Wllm Shkspr (Abridged)," the venerable comedy staple by Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield, which more or less features all 37 of the Bard's plays in less than two hours. Tickets are $18-$20. You are welcome to bring food to the show. Some provisions are available for purchase. Seating is on the tiered lawn, some chairs are available or you can bring your own chairs or blankets. For information call (209) 728-8422 or go to www. murphyscreektheatre.org.
Call The Bee's Call The Bee's Marcus Crowder, (916) 321-1120. Follow him on Twitter @marcuscrowder.