This is the first in a series of three posts in which I detail my 2009 New Year's resolutions, all of which revolve around experiencing more in Lehigh Valley.

Thanks to Netflix, I watch a lot of movies. On the flip side, I rarely go see a play. So my first New Year's resolution is to see five plays performed in the Valley in 2009.

1. Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead at Zoellner Arts Center, March 27 - April 4. I've read the play, I've seen the movie, but I have yet to see this tragic comedy come alive on stage. The title characters (who are actually minor characters in Hamlet) can best be described as the Shakespearean version of Abbott & Costello.

2. Sweeney Todd at the State Theatre, February 12. When I saw Tim Burton's big-screen version of this play starring Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter, I absolutely loved it. It was so dark ... yet funny at the same time.

3. Death of a Salesman at DeSales University, February 18 - March 1. All I know about this play is it was written by Marilyn Monroe's husband, Arthur Miller, but ever since I saw parts of it featured in the ridiculous 90s comedy flick Soapdish, I've wanted to see it.

4. Into the Woods at Pennsylvania Playhouse, October 9 - 25. As I mentioned in a previous post, I enjoy movies where seemingly random characters end up connected. So when I saw that this play featured Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood and a slew of other fairy tale characters, I just had to find out how all their stories would combine.

5. The Tempest at the Touchstone Theatre, April 16 - 26. I read a lot of Shakespeare in college, but never The Tempest. And since Shakespeare isn't the easiest thing to read, I'd rather see this one than try to read it. UPDATE 4/14/09: According to Touchstone Theatre's website, this show has been cancelled.

Next week, my list involves everybody's favorite thing ... eating out, so don't miss it.