Cincinnati has its fair share of stages, and this week has its fair share of great shows.
In one of opera’s most famous and tragic stories, Carmen is a beautiful and feisty Spanish gypsy who finds herself caught between two lovers—one of whom is dangerously jealous. The Cincinnati Ballet performs Amedeo Amodio’s interpretation of the beloved work through his contemporary choreography, and retains its classical roots with composer Georges Bizet’s melodic score. Feb 10 & 11 and 17 & 18 at Aronoff Center for the Arts, (513) 621-5282, cballet.org
2. Don Giovanni
Mozart’s famous opera tells the story of Don Juan and his amorous adventures. Junghyun Cho conducts this entry in UC College Conservatory of Music’s Mainstage Opera Series. Feb 9–12 in the Patricia Corbett Theater, ccm.uc.edu
3. The 39 Steps
Newport’s Monmouth Theatre plays host to the first local production of the Tony Award–winning play, The 39 Steps. Performed by The Falcon Theatre group, the show is a rowdy send-up of stony-faced director Alfred Hitchcock’s famous thriller, complete with spies, assassins, and mystery (plus a little Monty Python–style slapstick comedy thrown in for good measure). Feb 10–25 at Monmouth Theatre, falcontheater.net
4. The Whipping Man
Don’t miss this unconventional treatment of the conventional Civil War story. It’s Passover in 1865; the battle has ended. Follow one Jewish Confederate’s return to his ruined home, abandoned by his family and now inhabited by two former slaves whose status as Jews complicates the soldier’s homecoming. Thru Feb 12 at Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati, cincyetc.com
5. Disney’s My Son Pinocchio Jr.
Here’s one for the kids: The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati director Jack Louiso takes on this classic children’s tale, made most memorable in its musical Disney incarnation. Your brood will recognize old favorites like “When You Wish Upon a Star” and “I’ve Got No Strings,” along with a very familiar cast of colorful characters. Feb 10–12 & 18 at Taft Theatre, thechildrenstheatre.com