When: Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m., Sun., Aug. 18, 2 p.m. and Wed., Aug. 21, 8 p.m. Continues through Aug. 24 2019
Nathan Detroit is a gambler without a location for his big craps game and no money to secure one. It's killing him, until he realizes that Sky Masterson could be his big investor. Masterson would bet on the sun coming up in the west, and so Detroit bets him a grand that Masterson can't get the woman of Detroit's choice to have dinner with him in Havana. Masterson agrees, and then Detroit plays his ace in the hole: The lady has to be Sarah Brown, the pious missionary who loathes gamblers and drinkers and other such reprobates. Masterson goes to work, and promises Brown a dozen genuine sinners will repent at the mission if she has dinner in Havana with him. In a bid to save her beloved mission, she reluctantly accepts. Guys really will do anything for dolls, as the song says. Frank Loesser's musical Guys and Dolls, with book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows, is based on Damon Runyon's stories about the New York underworld of the 1930s. Stray Dog Theatre closes its current season with Guys and Dolls, which is often held up as the greatest musical of the Golden Age. It's performed at the Tower Grove Abbey (2336 Tennessee Avenue; www.straydogtheatre.org) at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday (August 8 to 24), with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, August 18, and at 8 p.m. Wednesday, August 21. Tickets are $25 to $30.