Curtain Call — Theater previews, openings Sept. 14-20
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“Alice”: Upended Productions remounts the ambulatory, multi-disciplinary theatrical experience in which the audience follows a white rabbit to various locations throughout Evanston’s Main-Dempster neighborhood. For ages 6 and up. Preview Sept. 16, opens Sept. 22; to Oct. 21. Meet at LaCapra State Farm Office, 829 Chicago, Evanston, $17, $25; upendedproduction.com
“The Artificial Jungle”: Charles Ludlam’s throwback to the classic age of film noir about a drifter who walks into the life of a mild-mannered husband and his bored wife; directed by Shade Murray. Previews begin Sept. 20, opens Sept. 23; to Oct. 28. Hell in a Handbag Productions at Stage 773, 1225 W. Belmont, $32, $39; handbagproductions.org
“A Chorus Line”: The Tony Award-winning musical that captures the spirit of the Broadway audition. Opens Sept. 20, to Nov. 3. Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, 111 W. Campbell, Arlington Heights, $35, $40; metropolisarts.com
Dance COLEctive & Third Way Projects: New dance pieces by Margi Cole, Peter Carpenter and Colleen Halloran. Sept. 14-16. Dovetail Studios, 2853 W. Montrose, $15, $20; margicole.com/the-dance-colective/
“Downstate”: World premiere of Bruce Norris’ drama about four sex offenders in a group home who must negotiate their place in the world; directed by Pam MacKinnon. Previews begin Sept. 20, opens Sept. 30; to Nov. 11. Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N. Halsted, $20-$99; steppenwolf.org
“Koalas”: J. Joseph Cox’s play explores the changing definition of what it means to be a man; directed by Josh Sobel. Previews begin Sept. 20, opens Sept. 27; to Oct. 27. 16th Street Theater, 6420 16th St., Berwyn, $22; 16thstreettheater.org
“Musas”: Nestor Caballero’s work imagines an encounter between two icons — Mexican painter Frida Kahlo and American poet Sylvia Plath; directed by Iraida Tapias. Sept. 20-23. Water People Theater at Steppenwolf’s 1700 Theatre, 1700 N. Halsted, $25; steppenwolf.org
“Nell Gwynn”: Jessica Swala’s comedy about a 17th century actress whose wit and beauty propels her to the court of King Charles II; directed by Christopher Luscombe. Previews begin Sept. 20, opens Sept. 28; to Nov. 4. Chicago Shakespeare at Navy Pier, 800 E. Grand, $48-$88; chicagoshakes.com
New Stages Festival: The 15th annual festival of new plays: “There’s Always the Hudson” by Paola Lazaro-Munoz, “Felons and Familias” by Sandra Delgado, “Graveyard Shift” by Korde Arrington Tuttle, “The Wizards” by Ricardo Gamboa, “Between Covers” by Sarah Schulman, “Birthday Candles” by Noah Haidle, “Cressida on Top” by Paula Vogel. Opens Sept. 19, to Oct. 7. Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn, Free; goodmantheatre.org
“We’re Only Alive for a Short Amount of Time”: David Cale in his one-man show that looks back on his life via music and a detailed portrait of his mother; directed by Robert Falls. Previews begin Sept. 15, opens Sept. 24; to Oct. 21. Goodman Theatre, 170 N. Dearborn, $20-$75; goodmantheatre.org