Hail Caesar!

An outrageous historical time-shift forward for Cleopatra, that ancient, imperious Queen of the Nile, Teatro ZinZanni’s new summer show also marks the return of Frank Ferrante, a rowdy improv master and frequent TZZ performer. He stars as Ceasar, a wisecracking chef in the present day who falls in love with a resurrected Cleopatra, played by multitalented aerialist/actress/ singer Dreya Weber. Between bites of the Tom Douglas-designed dinner, the story goes something like this: After beginning their fling, Caesar tries to figure out how to keep the power-hungry beauty’s admiration without revealing he runs not an empire, but a kitchen. The action stops for songs and cirque performances by supporting entertainers—more eclectic than in past TZZ shows, giving Hail Caesar! more randomness than an episode of America’s Got Talent. The show's star is undoubtedly Ferrante. He’s a charming ad-libber—seemingly able to incorporate any susceptible audience member in his routine without pissing them off. You'll be disappointed not to draw his ridicule. ERIKA HOBART

Thursdays-Saturdays, 6:30 p.m.; Sundays, 5:30 p.m. Starts: May 12. Continues through Aug. 28, 2011

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