On Stage This Week

Theater? Theater.

God's Trombones at Karamu:

A Joyful Noise

Karamu's seasonal fave returns to the Jeliffe Theatre now through April 5. Adapted and directed by artistic director Terrence Spivey, the family-friendly musical features seven stirring "negro sermons" — delivered fire-and-brimstone-style by seven galvanizing preachers, and accompanied by soulful singing and powerful dance. (That's actor Rodney Freeman as Moses, above.) House critic Christine Howey called a previous year's production "a riveting and inspirational experience." Tickets are $21 to $30 by phone or online. — Elaine T. Cicora

At 2355 East 89th St., 216-795-7077, karamuhouse.org.

The Colombi New Plays Festival: Ensemble Theatre presents three new works by local playwrights, running in repertory through April 1. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students with valid ID. Or snag a three-show pass for $30. Get them at 216-321-2930 or online at ensemble-theatre.org, where you will also find show information and times. Ensemble Theatre is at 2843 Washington Blvd. in Cleveland Heights.

The Mousetrap: Great Lakes Theater kicks off the second half of its 50th anniversary season at the Hanna Theatre with this murder mystery from Agatha Christie. Perfomances continue through March 25 at 2067 East 14th St. Tickets are $13 to $70 at 216-241-6000 or greatlakestheater.org.

Poor Little Lulu: Cleveland Public Theatre presents a "vintage circus of comic debauchery," in this cautionary tale of greed, lust, and assorted sexual hijinx. Written by freelance playwright Matthew Earnest, the play continues through Saturday, March 24. Performances are at 7 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Mondays. Tickets are $10 to $25 by phone, online, or at the box office. CPT is at 6415 Detroit Ave.; call 216-631-2727 or visit cptonline.org.

Red: Art, artists, and the act of creation get their due in this 2010 Tony Award-winner by playwright John Logan. The drama takes its cue from an episode in the life of temperamental mid-century artist Mark Rothko. Examinations of aesthetics, philosophy, and the entire history of Western art ensue. Through April 8 at the Allen Theatre, 1407 Euclid Ave. Ticket prices range from $15 to $69. Get yours at 216-241-6000 or clevelandplayhouse.com.

Rusted Heart Broadcast: Ever wonder about the secret life of a stage production? Here's a chance to get a peek at a work in progress, making its way toward the 2012-2013 season. Conceived and directed by artistic director Raymond Bobgan, performances are set for 7:30 on March 22, 23, and 24 in the Parish Hall. Tickets are $10 at 216-631-2727, cptonline.org, or at the box office at 6415 Detroit Ave.

Velocity of Autumn: Beck Center features the regional premiere of this dark comedy by Cleveland playwright Eric Coble. Starring Dorothy Silver, the play is the third in Coble's trilogy exploring life, death, and aging. Performances are set for March 23 through April 29 in the Studio Theater. Showtimes are 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $10 through $28 at 216-521-2540 or beckcenter.org. Beck Center is at 17801 Detroit Ave. in Lakewood.

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