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Art & Soul: The Performance Arts - A Local Theatre Group Named After The Little Rascals And More

PTD Productions

This week, "Art and Soul" is about the local performance arts scene.  WEMU's Lisa Barry and Wendy Wright talk to Joe York from an Ypsilanti theatre group and share information about a number of other performance opportunities in the coming weeks.


Since 1995, PTD has produced an enormous range of plays.  Their portfolio includes everything from theatrical classics ("Long Day’s Journey into Night") to world premieres ("Soccer Moms & Reapers").  They stage comedies ("The Norman Conquests"), dramas ("A Delicate Balance"), mysteries ("Mousetrap"), farces ("Farce of Nature"), and genres yet to be categorized.  Our seasons have included large-cast shows ("Auntie Mame") as well as those for just two actors ("’night Mother"). 

PTD Productions
Credit PTD Productions / ptdproductions.com
"Sunshine Boys" by PTD Productions

PTD is committed to nurturing the cultural growth of our community by providing live theater, and to encouraging everyone to participate as producers, directors, playwrights, actors, crew, stagehands, front-of-house staff, refreshment sellers, and in myriad additional roles.

PTD Productions
Credit PTD Productions / ptdproductions.com
"The Women of Lockerbie" by PTD Productions

PTD welcomes lifelong theater-lovers and newbies, seniors and students, men and women, townies and out-of-towners, fans and skeptics, and everyone in between.  They invite you to experience the range of settings, characters, situations, quirks, worldviews, and emotions that are part of the human condition.

Please take a look around the site to learn about our current season, ticketing, upcoming auditions, past shows, and more. 

PTD Productions
Credit PTD Productions / ptdproductions.com
"The Real Inspector Hound" by Tom Stoppard

Feuding theatre critics Moon and Birdboot, the first a fusty philanderer and the second a pompous and vindictive second stringer, are swept into the whodunit they are viewing.  In the hilarious spoof of Agatha Christie-like melodramas that follows, the body under the sofa is only the most obvious of many mysteries.  As mists rise about isolated Muldoon Manor, Moon and Birdfoot become dangerously implicated in the lethal activities of an escaped madman.

Thursday, Friday, and Saturday shows begin at 8:00 pm, seating at 7:30 pm
Sunday and Wednesday matinees begin at 2:00 pm, seating at 1:30 pm
For tickets, click here.



Mary Poppins

The Burns Park Players

Power Center

February 27th-March 1st

Mary Poppins strikes the perfect balance of magical entertainment and adult responsibility, reminding us all that life is more fun with just a spoonful of sugar.


By Duncan McMillan

Kickshaw Theatre

trustArt Studios

Feb 27th-March 15th

The world is getting hotter, there's unrest overseas-the seas themselves aren't very calm-and one couple is thinking about having a child.  This smart and funny drama follows a couple through the surprising life cycle of their relationship as they grapple with questions of family and change, hope, betrayal, happenstance, and the terrible pain that you can cause the people you love.


The Blue LLama Jazz Club

Orrin Evans Trio

Thur. March 12th, 7 & 9 PM

Evans has become the model of fiercely independent artist who's made a habit of rattling the jazz world's confining cages.  That determination has paid off in accolades, like topping the "Rising Star Pianist" category in the 2018 Downbeat Critics Poll.

Vincent York Quartet

Thur. March 19th, 7 & 9 PM

A former member of the Duke Ellington Orchestra, world-class jazz musician Vincent York has played with the most prominent jazz artists and bands both locally and internationally.  Responsible for shaping the Ann Arbor jazz sound for decades in his studio and through mentorship, saxophonist and floutist York steps up and demonstrates that he can both teach and play.

Kerrytown Concert House

Shakespeare in Jazz: All the World's a Song

Thursday, March 5th, 8 PM

Award-winning composer and pianist, Daniel Kelly brilliantly reinterprets texts from Shakespeare’s most beloved plays with powerhouse jazz vocalist, Frederick Johnson.  Excerpts from Shakespeare’s masterpieces are transformed into songs that are engaging, enlivening, and thought-provoking for audiences of all ages. 

The Ark

We Banjo 3

Thur. and Fri., March 5th and 6th - 8 PM

Grassroots crossover sensation We Banjo 3 is one of the most prolific and exciting bands to emerge from Ireland in recent years.

Mountain Heart

Saturday, February 29th - 8 PM

Bluegrass and beyond, this band has been fearlessly revolutionizing the way acoustic music can be presented and played.  The band's name has been synonymous with cutting-edge excellence in bluegrass circles since the group's creation.


Emanuel Ax, Leonidas Kavakos, and Yo-Yo Ma

Tuesday, March 3, 2020 7:30 PM

Hill Auditorium

World-renowned musicians unite to perform an evening of trios by Beethoven.

CatVideoFest 2020

Monday, March 2 at 7:30 PM

Michigan Theater

Each year, CatVideoFest curates a compilation reel of the latest, best cat videos culled from countless hours of unique submissions and sourced animations, music videos, and, of course, classic internet powerhouses.

Screening events raise money for cats in need, often through partnerships with local cat charities, animal welfare organizations, and shelters to identify how best to serve cats in the area.  10% of our proceeds will benefit the Humane Society of Huron Valley.

Non-commercial, fact based reporting is made possible by your financial support.  Make your donation to WEMU todayto keep your community NPR station thriving.

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— Lisa Barry is the host of All Things Considered on WEMU. You can contact Lisa at 734.487.3363, on Twitter @LisaWEMU, or email her at lbarryma@emich.edu

Wendy Wright has been on the radio at WEMU since April 2000. She served as host of 89.1 Jazz, Sunday mornings from 5-8 a.m. for seven years, when she was asked to host From Memphis to Motown. She was then asked to create the Soul Break which airs Wednesday afternoons.
Lisa Barry was a reporter, and host of All Things Considered on 89.1 WEMU.
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