Theater Beat: PlayPenn rolls out summer schedule; MacMillan ignites Tiny Dynamite

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RevShakes strikes again! Wednesday at 6:30 p.m., Revolution Shakespeare descends on Brewery ARS, 1927 W. Passyunk Ave., for the RevShakes 2017-18 season revels. Titled All-Natural Summer Honey, it's an evening of conviviality and theater. A $40 ticket includes a beer, munchies, and performances from past and future RevShakes works. Check it out at revolutionshakespeare.org.

'Gospel' extended. Nice news about The Gospel According to Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens and Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord at the Lantern Theater: It's been extended to July 9. Nice work, gents!

'Oslo' awesome. For Father's Day, my adored spouse took me to see J.T. Rogers' Oslo, developed in part here at PlayPenn on South Broad Street, and, I must say, it won that best play Tony for a reason. Seldom have I heard an audience so abuzz when lights came up for the break. Not everyone's cup of tea, but neither is tea. May it play here soon.

Speaking of PlayPenn . . . Support new plays! Fresh from the dizzying success of Oslo, PlayPenn has announced its Summer Conference lineup for July 11-30. Culled from 800-plus eager applicants, six plays go into development with casts including great Philly actors (Mary Tuomanen, Akeem Davis, Joilet Harris, Jered McLenigan) and directors, and then, in one of the summer's great entertainment values, two free public readings of each play. Yes, I said free. I'm planning to go see some; you? Here's the lineup. I'll follow each title with the dates for the public readings (all at the Drake). Beat the rush and see a couple: Hard Cell, by Brent Hashem Askari (8 p.m. July 18 and 8 p.m. July 28); Galilee, by Christine Evans (5 p.m. July 18 and 8 p.m. July 27); Thirst, by C.A. Johnson (5 p.m. July 19 and 8 p.m. July 29); The House of the Negro Insane, by Terence Anthony (8 p.m. July 20 and 2 p.m. July 30); With, by Carter William Lewis (5 p.m. July 20 and 5 p.m. July 30); and penny candy, by Jonathan Norton (8 p.m. July 19 and 4 p.m. July 29). Other readings, monologues, and seminars also are planned. See more at playpenn.org

Ticket $$. Vivid Seats ticketing company says Philly ranks seventh among U.S. theater towns, based on the number of live productions in 2017. The list is (1) New York; (2) Chicago; (3) Los Angeles; (4) Las Vegas; (5) Washington; (6) San Diego; (7) Philly; (8) Denver; (9) St. Louis; and (10) Kansas City, Kan. The average ticket is $131. The top ticket prices, according to Vivid, are Wicked (July 26-Aug. 27, Academy of Music) at an average of $152; Saturday Night Fever (through July 16, Walnut Street Theatre) at $93, and Stomp (Dec. 26-31, Kimmel Center's Merriam Theater), booming at $75.

Big blast for Tiny Dynamite. Tiny Dynamite's Perfect Blue, July 14-23, will be producing artistic director Emma Gibson's last show. Kathryn MacMillan, wondrous actor/director, will then step in. I hope you saw her work in Grounded at InterAct Theatre and Mrs. Warren's Profession at the Lantern Theater. Dynamite, indeed.

A vote for 'School Play.' Sarah Vogel of Philadelphia loves Tribe of Fools' School Play: "I am trying to get everyone I know to come see it while it's still at St. Peter's School. A marvelous work; it broke my heart and enlivened my soul. I can't wait to see their contribution at the Fringe Festival. I know Philadelphia has many theater companies, and this one is a gem." See something good? Write me!

Can't Wait to See:

Upper Darby Summer Stage's production of the Stephen Schwartz/Alan Menken musical The Hunchback of Notre Dame (July 28-29 and Aug. 4-5).

jt@phillynews.com

215-854-4406 @jtimpane