THE GAME OF LOVE AND CHANCE · Seattle Repertory
GOES DOWN EASY · Pork Filled Players
KING LEAR · New City Theater
MACBETT · UW's Penthouse Theater
THREE DEATHS IN DENMARK · GREX
THE TRESTLE AT POPE LICK CREEK · Theater Schmeater
S.A.M. I AM · ReAct
ONE WEEK ONLY
THE LITTLE MERMAID · Disney on Ice
CLOSING THIS WEEK
ANOTHER ELEKTRA · Speakeasy
*DANTE'S INFERNO · On the Boards
FALLING LEAVES · Seattle Chamber Theater
*JANE EYRE · ACT
KRAKEN · Union Garage
LES MISÉRABLES · 5th Ave Theater
*THE ROYAL FAMILY · Intiman
TRADITION AND INNOVATION · Pacific Northwest Ballet
OPENING AND CURRENT RUNS
A modern twist on a Greek classic (how clever!), as Elektra is forced to scrub the driveway (wait: isn't that Cinderella?) as her failed socialite mother, "Clytamenstra," drinks away her sorrows. Revenge, promises the playwright, is only "a Lysol can away." Speakeasy Backroom, 2801 Second Ave, 781-7081. Thurs-Sun at 8, through Nov 14. $10.
"Communicating Doors is really just frothy British cheek, made even less substantial because Jeff Steitzer's direction doesn't fly with the breathless, free-for-all confidence of a farce. When the play starts gushing sentiments or slashing at us, Psycho-style, Steitzer overreacts and pulls the plug on the comedy; streams of punchlines rush by without so much as getting our feet wet. He does negotiate several very funny physical bits; I just wish it didn't all come in fits and starts." (Steve Wiecking) A Contemporary Theatre (ACT), Seventh Ave & Union St, 292-7676. Tues-Thurs at 7:30; Fri-Sat at 8; Sun at 2 & 7, through Nov 21. $10-$40.
Who better to provide the music for Guiseppi De Liguoro's ethereal 1911 silent film, Dante's Inferno, than the Black Cat Orchestra? With various-voiced instruments tilted toward atmospheric scene-setting, the 8-piece orchestra is sure to lead you on down a spiraling road on a trip you won't soon forget. On the Boards, Studio Theater, 100 W Roy St, 217-9888. Thurs-Sun at 8, through Nov 14. $10/$12.
Sally Smythe and the fabulous Laurence Ballard star in Jerome Kilty's play documenting the saucy correspondence and hot romance between George Bernard Shaw and some lady. Intiman Playhouse, Seattle Center, 269-1900. Tues-Sun through Nov 20. $10-$39. Call for showtimes.
*DEFLOWERED IN THE ATTIC
Those perverts at Re-bar molest V. C. Andrews in this world premiere parody of everyone's favorite incestuous adolescent fiction. "This winning spoof directed by Ed Hawkins begins in High Camp gear and goes gamboling over the top again and again for the rest of the night. Some foreknowledge of the Flowers in the Attic series is ideal, but there is plenty here to cause your spleen bodily harm even without it." (Steve Wiecking) Re-bar, 1114 Howell St, 323-0388. Fri-Sun at 8, through Nov 21. $12.
A contemporary opera centering on AIDS and based on O. Henry's short story "The Last Leaf," by Seattle librettist Lauren Marshall and Boston composer Michael Wartofsky. The performance will be followed by an open forum on caring for a loved one who is ill, and being cared for yourself. Seattle Chamber Theater, 915 E Pine, Fourth Floor, 328-4848. Fri-Sat at 8, Sun at 7, through Nov 14. $12/$8
THE GAME OF LOVE AND CHANCE
This "delectable comedy of mistaken identities and true love" is based on the play by 18th-century French writer Marivaux (translated by director Stephen Wadsworth), and features a cast of tender misunderstandings. Seattle Repertory Theatre, 155 Mercer St, 443-2222. Tues-Sun at 7:30, Sat-Sun 2 pm matinees, through Dec 11. $10-$42.
GOES DOWN EASY
The Pork Filled Players stuff pop culture references from Ace Ventura to Imelda Marcos into Goes Down Easy, promising digestible humor of all forms. Theatre Off Jack-son, 409 Seventh Ave S, 365-0282. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun at 4:30, through Nov 21. $10/$7.
Seattle's finest experimental performance troupe, the Compound, presents their latest work, written and directed by Kristin Newbom and John Holyoke, commissioned by and performed at Consolidated Works. "Rich as it is in sensory possibilities, Happy? chooses to overwhelm quiet narrative moments by crowding the production with coy non-sequiturs and clever props. As much as co-writer and co-director Kristin Newbom says she enjoys things 'you can feel in your gut,' the production doesn't travel far enough below the head to get there." (Tonia Steed.) Consolidated Works, 410 Terry Ave N, 860-5245. Thurs-Sun at 8, through Nov 28. $16.
"Brontë's gothic tale of a strong-willed orphan and her love for the brooding Lord Rochester is here treated to a staging that lovingly enlarges its source novel. When director Beckman smartly turns Brontë's descriptions into revelations of character or sleek illustrations of regret, she is celebrating both the power of theatre and the joys of a great book." (Steve Wiecking) ACT's Bullitt Theatre, Kreiel-sheimer Place, Seventh Ave & Union St, 216-0833. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun at 2, through Nov 13. $10-$15.
Shakespeare's dark, historical dramas benefit from the deep, booming voices of older actors, and director John Kazanjian has found a lovely vehicle in veteran actor Clayton Corzatte. First Christian Church, 1632 Broadway, 328-4683. Wed-Thurs at 7:30, Fri-Sat at 8, through Dec 18. $15.
How do you beat a housing crunch? You live where you work, as the artists in Kraken do in this serial dramedy that promises soap operatic tension -- if they can make the rent. Union Garage, 1418 10th Ave, 720-1942. Fri-Sat at 10:30, through Nov 12. $5.
The musical based on Victor Hugo's saga sweeps into Seattle, bringing the fugitive Jean Valjean and his little band of miserables. The $4.2 million production promises even bigger piles of junk! 5th Avenue Theater, 1326 Fifth Ave, 292-2787. Times and prices vary, through Nov 13.
THE LITTLE MERMAID
Clams and octopi on ice cause a feeding frenzy at the KeyArena, and Ariel must find her legs before she falls flat on her patoosh. KeyArena, Seattle Center, 628-0888. Nov 11-14, 7 pm, $12.75-$18.75.
Ionesco's playful retelling of Shakespeare's Macbeth promises 1,370 beheadings! Performed by UW Drama students. Penthouse Theater, 45th & 17th Ave NE, 543-4880, Tues-Thurs at 7:30, Fri-Sat at 3, Sun at 2, through Nov 28. $7-$10.
THE PSYCHIC LIFE OF SAVAGES
A parody of poets of the mid-20th century (aww, what an easy target!) -- Sylvia, Ted, Anne and Robert -- written by Amy Freed. When the four mighty minds come together, their passions and addictions create chaos. Empty Space Theatre, 3509 Fremont N, 547-7500. Tues-Thurs at 7:30; Fri-Sat at 8, Sun at 2 & 7, through Dec 5. $18-$26.
*THE ROYAL FAMILY
A stage family from Broadway's golden age brings nostalgic fun to the Intiman, in this revival of George S. Kaufman and Edna Ferber's theatrical classic. Intiman Playhouse, Seattle Center, 201 Mercer St, 269-1900. Sun, Tues, & Wed at 7; Thurs-Sat at 8; Sat-Sun 2 pm matinees, through Nov 14. $10-$39.
S.A.M. I AM
A young Asian American writer is caught between ambition and race, fame and dating, in this Northwest premiere of Garrett Omata's "hip, urban, romantic comedy." The Langston Hughes Theatre, 104 17th Ave S, 364-3283. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun at 2, through Nov 21. $6-$12.
THE SEA HORSE
"The problem with Moore's play is that few of the protagonist's secrets are interesting and none are surprising. When Gertrude reveals she's not only been made barren, sexually assaulted, and physically abused, but was also involved in the circumstances surrounding the death of her ineffectual but well-meaning father, one begins to fear the creation of a black hole caused by dense, overlapping clichés." (Tom Spurgeon) Odd Duck Studios, 1214 10th Ave, 364-1421. Thurs-Sat at 8, through Nov 20. $10.
SHORT BUT NOT SWEET
Seven plays under 20 minutes twinkle across the stage in Theater Babylon's showcase of local talent. The plays range thematically from dwarf-tossing to poker, and none of them are long enough to be all that bad, right? Union Garage, 1418 10th Ave, 860-7726. Thurs-Sat at 8, through Nov 13. $9.99 (Thurs pay what you will).
THREE DEATHS IN DENMARK
Methods of revenge riddle GREX's adaptation of Shakespeare's Hamlet, as the play's main characters explore their own motivations through speeches pulled from the original text, backed by a live foley orchestra. The Chamber Theater, 915 E Pine St, Fourth Floor, 985-1019. Thurs-Sat at 8, through Dec 11. $12.
Three middle-aged singers find their tickets to fame becoming more and more wrinkled as the seasons pass, in this original musical comedy featuring Carolyn Maia, Barbara Coffin, and Karen Oleson. Northwest Actors Studio, 1100 E Pike, 324-6328. Fri-Sat at 8, Sun at 7, through Nov 20. $10/$8.
THE TRESTLE AT POPE LICK CREEK
A dangerous pact in a small town leads two teenagers to the heart of drama, poverty, and friendship. Theater Schmeater presents this Northwest premiere of Naomi Wallace's play. Theater Schmeater, 1500 Summit Ave, 324-5801. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun matinees Nov 28 & Dec 12 at 2, through Dec 18. $15.
A TRILOGY OF FANTASIES
Stone Soup Theatre presents three short one-acts that explore the terrain of urban fantasy, including The Loveliest Afternoon of the Year, by John Guare, The Ugly Duckling, by A.A. Milne, and Home Free! by Lanford Wilson. Stone Soup Theatre, 4035 Stone Way N, 633-1883. Thur-Sat at 8, through Nov 20. $5-$10.
It's New Orleans in the late 1930s, and melancholy is the word of the day. Enter a "ranting Southern landlord," her muttering maid, and a host of other eccentric characters (including the author as young observer), and you've got Tennessee Williams' jazzy jazz play, as interpreted by Krying Sky Productions. Hugo House, 1634 11th Ave, 628-0888. Thurs-Sun at 8 pm, through Nov 27, matinee Sat Nov 20 at 2 pm. $10-$14. See review this issue.
An early mob sensibility pervades Ben Jonson's Volpone; the hits and the jokes fly fast when Volpone and his partner Mosca try to scam the citizens of Venice. Nippon Kan Theater, 628 S Washington, 748-1551. Fri- Sat at 8, Sun at 7, through Nov 21. Pay-what-you-can.
A Donne scholar who has spent her life dissecting poetry suddenly finds herself on the other end of the 'scope when she is diagnosed with cancer. "The great triumph of Wit, Margaret Edson's gorgeous, Pulitzer Prize-winning play now on imperfect but wrenching display at the Seattle Repertory Theatre, is the way in which it almost tangibly sinks through the layers of intellectual defense and arrives with shining immediacy at the language of a fearful human heart." (Steve Wiecking) Seattle Repertory Theatre, Second St & Mercer, 443-2222. Tues-Sun at 7:30, Sat-Sun matinees at 2, through Nov 20. $29-$42.
TRADITION AND INNOVATION
Two Seattle premieres and two Balanchine classics round out this evening of yin and yang at Pacific Northwest Ballet. The premieres, Eliot Feld's Intermezzo and Donald Byrd's Subtext Rage, have been received by enthusiastic audiences in New York. Seattle Center Opera House, 301 Mercer St, 292-ARTS. Thurs-Fri at 7:30, Sat at 2 & 7:30, through Nov 13. $16.50-$100.
FESTIVALS, CABARETS, & COMEDY
THE CARPENTERS: UNCOMFORTABLY CLOSE TO YOU
Real-life brother and sister comedy team David and Lisa Koch take on everyone's favorite bulimic drummer in this "uncomfortably close" parody, complete with note-perfect songs. Cabaret de Paris, 1333 Fifth Ave, 623-4111. Thurs at 8, Fri-Sat at 8:30, through Nov 20. $16. Dinner is also available; call for times and prices.
Julie Cascioppo Experience
Songs and characters you may grow to love. The Pink Door, Pike Place Market, 1919 Post Alley, 443-3241. Tues at 8:30 & 11. No cover.
A tickling good time: Professor Hokum W. Jeebs, Louis Magor, and more offer an old-fashioned night of piano. Hokum Hall, 7904 35th Ave, 937-3613. Fri-Sat at 8, through Nov 20. $12/$10.
Five months ago, this show was a true delight, boasting an array of highly accomplished and charming performers and surprisingly decent food. Now, it's a grating mess, with several key performers replaced by charmless, baby-talking howler monkeys and a little less decent food. However, the show still features the utterly amazing Kevin Kent, as well as Ann Wilson and that cute Russian juggler. Seattle Center, 222 Mercer St, 281-7788 ext 700 or 292-ARTS. Thurs-Sat at 7:30, Sun at 6:30, extended through Dec 30. $95.
*THREE DOLLAR BILL
Seattle's original gay/lesbian/bisexual stand-up comedy night is still standing in its second year. Comedy Under-ground, 222 S Main St, 324-8025. Tues at 8. $6.
THE A.M. CABARET
Amoral entertainment for insomniacs; promising naked poetry, music, strippers, and drag queens. You may think you're dreaming. Coffee Messiah, 1554 E Olive Way, 860-7377. Sat from 2-4 am. $5.
Jet City Improv
Improv comedy and music based on audience suggestions. Ethnic Cultural Theater, 3940 Brooklyn Ave NE, 781-3879. Fri-Sat at 10:30.