BecauseHeCan: Arthur Kopit's cautionary tale of a New York couple plagued by a crazed computer hacker is only five or so years old, but it already feels very dated. It's obvious from the start that the creep is hacking computers, yet this information is served up as the Big Surprise at the play's end. Before that there's a lot of drinking and cursing, but to little effect. Richard Simon's production is colorful and atmospheric but neither he nor his cast manages to get this show going. The result is dire. -- Ronald Mangravite Through April 17. Mosaic Theatre, American Heritage Center for the Arts, 12200 W. Broward Blvd., Bldg. 3000, Plantation. 954-577-8243.
The Syringa Tree: Pamela Gien's semiautobiographical one-woman show centers on a precocious white girl and her world-weary black nanny in apartheid-era South Africa. Joseph Adler's colorful, evocative production features the talented Claire Tyler playing dozens of characters in an intense, well-researched performance. There are drawbacks, though. Many unexplained references in the text and the thick accents make some of this hard going. Nevertheless several sequences are riveting. -- Ronald Mangravite Through May 1. GableStage at the Biltmore Hotel, 1200 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables; 305-445-1119.