Modern Orthodox: Culture clash always makes for great comedy. It's fun to poke fun at ourselves through the archetypes we witness colliding on stage and screen. In this engagingly cute show, playwright Daniel Goldfarb brings culture clash to temple, with a battle between Orthodox Jews and their liberal, Reformed Jew opposites. Before Manhattan financier Ben Jacobson can pop the question to his obstetrician girlfriend of six years, Hannah Ziggelstein, he needs a ring; enter the young Hasidic diamond merchant Hershel Klein. Before sealing the diamond deal, Hershel negotiates to flop on the couple's couch until he meets his own betrothed, for whom he searches via jewdate.com. Farces live or die in the quality of comedic timing. If you can hear the comedy engine's gears knocking, it's a clunker. Director Michael Hall, however, fine-tuned this engine to hum. Metaphorically speaking, Modern Orthodox has the large carat of talented presentation, and it definitely has color. But the play falls short in the plot line's cut and clarity. -- Dave Amber Through July 31. Caldwell Theatre Company, 7873 N. Federal Hwy., Boca Raton; 561-241-7432.
Sisters of Swing: The Andrews Sisters, who rose to mega-stardom during the World War II Big Band era, were the Dixie Chicks of their time. That is, if you replace the Chicks' antiwar sentiment with patriotism and then add an unbridled popularity no girl group since the Andrews Sisters has ever quite matched. Okay, so they weren't the Dixie Chicks of their time; they were the Andrews Sisters. During their long career, the three recorded more than 700 songs and sold more than 90 million records. There may have been other sister acts back in the day, but it's difficult now to think of any more closely linked with patriotic support of troops than the A-sisters. To many, LaVerne, Maxene, and Patty were the home front. Getting behind the home-front-girl iconography is the musical's well-realized intention. Among the production's many surprises -- besides an excellent supporting six-piece band, a retro Big Band orchestra set, and clever musical arrangements -- is the ambitious legwork of the play's two male costar Everymen. Whatever energy created the Andrews Sisters phenomenon is also rabidly contagious. The talented cast and crew of this play have caught that energy and are having as much fun giving good show as the real Andrews Sisters certainly had. -- Dave Amber Through August 28. Florida Stage, 262 S. Ocean Blvd., Manalapan; 561-585-3433.