The Light in the Piazza

South Coast Rep celebrates its vigorous middle age with a fiftieth year lineup offering something for everybody, including a neo-romantic musical by one member of its early and frequently featured family of artists. Playwright Craig Lucas’ The Light in the Piazza has darkness, meaning star-crossed, class- and culture-conflicted romance. And it’s the most bilingual American musical ever written, with Italians singing songs based on the brave politics of the 1960 Elizabeth Spencer novel: a lush, sentimental, Henry-James-meets-Tennessee-Williams-meets-Rogers-and-Hammerstein piece that both celebrates and fights for all kinds of love. You’ll laugh, cry, book a flight for Florence, and buy Italian language learning tapes, too.

Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 24. Continues through Feb. 23, 2014

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