MONTREAL -- The weather is heating up -- and so is the Montreal stage. Here's what's playing this spring about town.

First up, the Centaur Theatre presents "Forever Yours, Marie-Lou." The play, written by Quebec playwright Michel Tremblay in 1971, makes its Montreal English-language premiere tonight.

Set in Montreal's Plateau district in the 1970s, the same neighborhood where Tremblay grew up, "Forever Yours, Marie-Lou" tells the past and present story of Carmen and Manon, two sisters who reconcile their tragic dysfunctional past as told by the re-enactments of their parents, Marie-Lou and Leopold. The show runs until May 25 at 453 St. Francois Xavier St. in Old Montreal. Adult tickets cost $31 for matinees, $38 Tuesday and Wednesday, $42.50 Friday through Sunday evenings, $33.50 for seniors and $20 for students. Call the box office at (514) 288-3161 or visit www.centaurtheatre.com for more information.

THE ODD COUPLE'

Oscar and Felix can only mean one thing -- guess who's coming to the Segal? The Segal Centre for Performing Arts at the Saidye (formerly the Saidye Bronfman Centre for the Arts) presents the familiar favorite "The Odd Couple," by Neil Simon. The tale of bickering divorcees Oscar (the slob) and Felix (the neat freak) runs May 4 through 25.

"This is one of the best pieces of writing. Period," said Director Diana Leblanc in the accompanying press release, about the endurance of the play. "Though written in, and steeped in, the 1960s, it remains fresh, funny and full of heart and wit. Those of us involved in the production are immensely grateful for its mastery and for the laughs constantly filling our bellies and brightening our spirits."

The play stars Rod Beattie as Felix and John Evans as Oscar. Previews run May 4 through 7, with performances continuing until May 25.

Rounding out the season-- any Segal season -- is a play presented by the Dora Wasserman Yiddish Theatre. This year's production is "The Wise Men of Chelm," by Abraham Shulman and directed by Bryna Wasserman. It runs June 11 through July 3.

Adult tickets prices range from $30 to $47. Senior and student discounts are available. The show is at 5170 cote St. Catherine Road. Call the box office at (514) 739-7944 or visit www.segalcentre.org for more information.

MADAME BUTTERFLY'

The Fallen Angel production of "A Lie of the Mind" by playwright Sam Shepard winds down this weekend. The theater's favorite "D" word -- dysfunctional -- returns as two families come together through the marriage of their children. Tickets cost $17 for adults and $13 for students and seniors. Performances are tonight through Sunday evening and a Saturday matinee.

Also at the MainLine is the Pumpkin Theatre presentation of "Short Story Long" from May 8 through 17.

The MainLine Theatre is at 3997 St. Laurent Blvd. Call (514) 849-3378 or visit www.mainlinetheatre.ca, www.fallenangelproductions.ca or www.pumpkintheatre.ca for more information.

There are still a few performances left of the sumptuous "Swan Lake on Ice" presented by the Imperial Ice Stars of Russia with a musical score by Tchaikovsky. The production continues tonight through Sunday. Tickets range from $50 to $85.

Also at Place des Arts is Les Grands Ballets Canadiens' production of "Madame Butterfly," with guest company the Houston Ballet, May 1 through 3, and "Classic Balanchine" May 22 through 24 and 29 through 31. Ticket prices vary and are available through Admission Ticket Network at (800) 678-5440 or www.admission.com.

FRINGE FESTIVAL

Next, original theater, dance and performance art can only mean the return of the Montreal Fringe Festival In all, some 80 independent theater companies -- chosen by lottery -- get to perform anything they wish. It's usually a young and vibrant mix of eclectic theater fun. Each company determines its own tickets prices, which are set at a maximum price of $9. The plays are held at a number of venues centered in the Plateau district near the MainLine Theatre, 3997 St. Laurent Blvd. Free shows are also presented at the main outdoor site as well. The 18th edition runs June 12 through 22. Visit www.montrealfringe.ca for more information.

Finally, as some theater seasons end, others just begin.

The Hudson Village Theatre kicks off its six-play summer season with "All Grown Up," dubbed "A high-octane musical tapestry of '60s-style songs." It runs June 19 through July 6. New this year, you can take the train to the play. The Hudson Village Theatre, housed in a former train depot, has teamed up with AMT, Montreal's commuter rail line, for a special train and theater excursion -- the M&M Express -- (it's not the candy but a Montreal-based food company) on June 21. The train departs from the Lucien l'Allier station downtown. Tickets cost $50 and include round-trip train fare and theater admission. The train/theater combo may be purchased at the AMT at (514) 287-7866 or by visiting www.amt.qc.ca.

The Hudson Village Theatre is at 28 Wharf Road in Hudson, Quebec. For more information and complete season info, call the box office at (450) 458- 5361 or visit www.villagetheatre.ca.

writeonbetty@sympatico.ca

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