The world of community theater is heating up. Check out everything that is about to transpire on a stage near you:
Tacoma Little Theatre
210 N. I St., Tacoma
Upcoming: “Bell, Book and Candle”
Oct. 26 through Nov. 11
Tacoma Little Theatre continues its 100th Anniversary Season with a Halloween treat for everyone: John Van Druten’s bewitchingly fun romantic comedy “Bell, Book and Candle,” directed by Brett Carr.
Gillian Holroyd is one of the few modern people who can actually cast spells and perform feats of supernaturalism. She casts a spell over an unattached publisher, Shepherd Henderson, partly to keep him away from a rival and partly because she is attracted to him. He falls head over heels in love with her at once and wants to marry her. But witches, unfortunately, cannot fall in love, and this minute imperfection leads to a number of difficulties before they find out if they can live happily ever after.
“Bell, Book and Candle” is recommended for ages 8 and up.
Upcoming: Muh Grog Zoo
Oct. 12, 8 p.m.
Join Muh Grog Zoo for a very special milestone performance of Muh Grog Zoo’s Improvised one-act Plays. They’ll be getting their 149th and 150th word this night. These randomly chosen words (from two audience members) will provide MGZ the wherewithal to do two, 40-minute Improvised one-act plays.
Upcoming: “Fatal Football Fever” Murder Mystery Dinner
The Social Bar and Grill, 1715 Dock St., Tacoma
Oct. 11-13, 7:30 p.m.; Oct. 14, 3 p.m.
Tacoma Little Theatre starts off the football season with The Social Bar and Grill to present a murder mystery dinner experience perfect for the gridiron: “Fatal Football Fever,” directed by Karen Christensen.
What happens when a small town becomes the potential site for a brand new professional football team? The town’s wealthiest residents, Dan and Nancy Ann SeAnsee, would certainly like their names on the scoreboard, as would an aspiring entrepreneur, Andre Pennewer. Throw in two lovely, nouveau riche sisters, Les and Jesse Abelle, a love-sick mayor, Paul Tishen, and an ex-football player, Heathro Ancatch, and you’ve got a locker room full of trouble. Find out who scores and who is taken off the field in this deadly game.
Tacoma Musical Playhouse
7116 6th Ave., Tacoma
Now Showing: “Newsies, the Broadway Musical”
Through Oct. 7
Set in turn-of-the century New York City, “Newsies” is the rousing tale of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a band of teenaged “newsies.” When titans of publishing raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack rallies newsies from across the city to strike against the unfair conditions and fight for what’s right.
Upcoming: “How I Became a Pirate”
Oct. 27 through Nov. 4: Saturday, Oct. 27, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.; Sunday, Oct. 28, 2 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 3, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.; Sunday, Nov. 4, 2 p.m.
Ahoy, mateys! It’s time to step aboard for a high seas adventure: TMP Family Theater announces its first musical of the 2018-2019 season, “How I Became A Pirate.”
The play is based on the picture book “How I Became a Pirate” by Melinda Long and illustrated by David Shannon. The musical amps up the fun of Captain Braid Beard (a non-threatening but playfully gruff Nicholas Bray) searching for a digger to help him and his crew bury his treasure. When he notes the skill with which Jeremy has created a sandcastle, as well as his fine shovel, he whisks young Jeremy aboard his boat. “A Good One to Boot” kicks off the show as the cast of pirates sings and dances with infectious energy.
Sail off on a fantastic musical excursion when a band of comical pirate’s lands at North Beach looking for an expert digger to join their crew. Jeremy finds that adventuring can be lots of fun, but also learns that love and home are treasures you can’t find on any map.
5729 Lakewood Towne Center Blvd. SW, Lakewood
Upcoming: “The fourth annual Lakewood Playhouse Theatre Awards”
Sunday, Oct. 7, 6-8 p.m.
Join the Lakewood Playhouse crew as they celebrate the shows from last season and the incredible achievements made by the cast and crew members of the shows of Lakewood Playhouse’s Amazing 79th Season (2017-2018).
This free event will feature awards voted on by the Lakewood Playhouse Season ticket and flex pass holders from last season.
Everyone is invited, but seating is limited to 151.
Upcoming: “War of the Worlds”
Lakewood Playhouse’s hugely popular live radio show returns for the eleventh year in a row with its annual Halloween radio gala. This year celebrates the radio play that terrified American, “The War of the Worlds.”
The entire show will be presented as if it were live from a radio studio straight out of the ’40s; complete with live sound effects.
Performances are Friday, Oct. 12 and Saturday Oct. 13 at 8 p.m. and Sunday Oct. 14, 2 p.m.
Since it is Halloween season, costumes are welcomed but not required.
Entry into the show includes a glass of wine and complimentary hor d’oeurves.
Upcoming: “An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe”
Oct. 19-20, 7:30 p.m.
South Sound Veteran Actor Tim Hoban recreates an audience with Edgar Allen Poe as he promotes a magazine called “The Stylus” and the stories and poetry found within.
3200 SW Dash Point Rd., #A-1, Federal Way
Upcoming: “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Abridged”
Through Oct. 21
All of Shakespeare’s plays. Three actors. 97 minutes. No footnotes needed.
Pacific Lutheran University
At PLU Eastvold Auditorium Stage
Upcoming: “Constellations” by Nick Payne
Oct. 5-6, 7:30 p.m.
At PLU Phillips Center Studio Theatre
Through a fugue of vignettes, Roland and Marianne’s lives unfold in a multiverse of possibilities.
Tickets: $5 (free PLU students)
Upcoming: “Medea” by Euripides
Oct. 25-27, 7:30 p.m., Oct. 28, 2 p.m.
At PLU Eastvold Auditorium Stage
When her husband leaves her for another woman, Medea takes vengeance in this startling and dramatic classic.
Tickets: $5-$10 (free for PLU students)
University of Puget Sound
Norton Clapp Theatre, Jones Hall
Upcoming: “Antigone” by Sophocles
Oct. 26, 27, Nov. 1-3, 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 4, 2 p.m.
Sophocles’ “Antigone” is the story of a young woman who brings an entire empire to its knees because she does what she believes is right – she buries her brother’s body despite his dishonorable death. This simple choice to cover a body with earth is an act of great rebellion and defiance against her uncle and new king Kreon, who demands loyalty above all else and threatens death as the consequence against it. Throughout the play’s inexorably tragic action, we see the tension between loyalty to family and the gods pitted against loyalty to the state with fatal consequences, revealing a cautionary tale against unchecked power.
Tickets: $5-$10 (free for UPS students)
Toy Boat Theater Company
King’s Books, 218 St. Helens Ave., Tacoma
Upcoming: “Paradise Motel”
Oct. 12 and 13, 8 p.m.
Toy Boat Theatre presents “Paradise Motel,” readings from the writings of playwright/actor Sam Shepard. “Paradise Motel” is a minimally staged reading by six great actors, underscored by American country-rock guitar by Peter Pendras. It plays for about 80 minutes, followed by wine.
“Paradise Motel” is a staged reading of select works from iconic American playwright and Oscar nominated film actor Sam Shepard, who died on July 27, 2017 of complications from ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), or Lou Gherig’s Disease.
Shepard’s cannon of plays and writings offers a dark and gritty portrait of the American family. In plain, often profane language, his characters argue, abandon, return after years away, love hard and fight harder. Many of his works are funny, his characters given to high expectations and very low results. Shepard’s plays continue to be frequently staged and provide coveted roles for actors.
“Paradise Motel” features selections from Shepard’s diverse writings: plays, short stories, poems, essays, journals and interviews. The company of readers is comprised of notable regional actors: Marilyn Bennett, Mark Peterson, Deya Ozburn, Jeff Salazar, Jason Sharp and Meleesa Wyatt. Peter Pendras, a long-time Northwest guitarist and recording artist, will accompany the performance.
This reading contains adult themes and language; suitable for mature teens and adults.
Entrance fee is $5.
508 6th Ave. #10, Tacoma
Oct. 19 through Nov. 4, Fridays and Saturdays, 7:30 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.
A marriage that is falling apart: Between James, an African American man, and Sumi, a Japanese national who met her husband while he served in post-war Japan. After James’ retirement from the Army, the cracks in the pottery of their 37-year marriage begin to crumble.
When James is told to leave their house, Sumi asks that they start over from the beginning. Date again. See each other through new eyes. Can a new life routine (which includes James volunteering at a local community center and Sumi studying the art of pottery) help them repair what is broken and save what is worth keeping?
Yohen is a Japanese pottery term which refers to an “accident in the kiln firing that results in transformation of the pot.” Philip Kan Gotanda’s story uses this term as a metaphor for James’ and Sumi’s marriage, as they struggle to find permanence amidst change. “Yohen” is a bittersweet story that is an exploration of love, marriage, cultural/racial differences and the beauty that comes from creating your own art and your own life.
All proceeds for “Yohen” will benefit Tacoma’s new Bryant Neighborhood Center, which will begin building in Spring of 2019. The Bryant Neighborhood Center’s mission is to build community and provide collaborative services and support to the surrounding Bryant/Jason Lee neighborhood.