This week, WGBH News’ Arts Editor Jared Bowen reviews a one-woman play at the American Repertory Theater, and examines the art and legacy of Otto Piene at the Fitchburg Art Museum.

“Dragon Lady,” presented by the American Repertory Theater at OBERON through April 7

Dragon Lady
Sara Porkalob stars as Grandma Maria in "Dragon Lady"
Robert Wade, courtesy of Intiman Theatre (Seattle, Washington) and the American Repertory Theater

Sara Porkalob delivers a powerful one-woman performance in “Dragon Lady,” the first installment of her “Dragon Cycle” series. In this production, Porkalob stars as her own Grandma Maria celebrating her 60th birthday with an audience full of her favorite grandchildren. Between meals, karaoke and piles of humor, this Filipino matriarch with gangster ties shares the secrets of her past as she describes her surprising journey to America. “This is an opportunity to see an actor of extraordinary talent, intellect and heart on what will undoubtedly be a very rapid ascent” says Jared of Porkalob.

“Fire and Light: Otto Piene in Groton, 1983–2014,” on view at the Fitchburg Art Museum through June 2, 2019

Fire and Light: Otto Piene in Groton, 1983–2014
Otto Piene, "Plusquamperfect" [Past Perfect Participle], 2003, oil and fire on canvas
Ante Glibota, courtesy of the Fitchburg Art Museum

The Fitchburg Art Museum presents a retrospective of the late artist Otto Piene. Co-founder of the German art collective Group ZERO, Piene was renowned for his avant-garde approach to art in the postwar period, pushing his work beyond the limits of the canvas with inflatable sky art, robotic light ballets and fire paintings. Piene would go on to become the director of MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies, and eventually made his home in Groton, Massachusetts, where he continued to create works on his “art farm.” Jared describes as “Fire and Light: Otto Piene in Groton, 1983–2014” as “an exhibition of international scope.”

Do you have a must-see performance this spring? Tell Jared about it on Facebook or Twitter!