Opening This Week

Dangerous Stages
A drama company, the Human Theatre Project, tries to adapt Jane Austen's Mansfield Park to the stage and in the process, pursues their deepest, darkest sexual agendas. Vanity Productions, at Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 230-9303, Wed-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm, through Sept 28, $10

I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change
The trials and tribulations of romantic relationships, showtune style. Triangle Productions' hit production is back for its third year in a row. World Trade Center Auditorium, 121 SW Salmon, 239-5919, Fri-Sat 8 pm, through Oct 19, $24-30

Three real-life improvised monologues interweave with three fictional improvised monologues. Brody Theater, 1904 NW 27th Ave, 224-0688, Fri-Sat 8 pm, through Oct 5, $10

Night of the Iguana
A clergyman-turned-tour-guide finds himself on the coast of Mexico, emeshed in relationships with three very different women: a spinster, a sensualist, and a teenager. Tennessee Williams at his steamiest! Artists Repertory Theater, 1516 SW Alder St, 241-9807, Opens Fri, runs Tues-Thurs, Sun 7 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm, through Oct 20, $15-30

The Birds
Aristophanes' comedy about Athenians turning into birds and ruling the world from a kingdom in the clouds. Classic Greek Theater at the Cerf Amphitheater, Reed College, 3203 SE Woodstock Blvd, 258-9313, Opens Sat, runs Wed-Fri 12 pm, Sat-Sun 4 pm, through Sept 29, $10-15

One Week Only

With These Hands...A Theatrical Prayer
Classic text from Shakespeare, Euripedes, Forche, and others is performed in the context of post-9/11 chaos. Theatre of the Invisible, at the Interstate Firehouse Cultural Center, 5340 N Interstate, 452-7113, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, $10-20 sliding scale

Closing This Week

Down South
Set in 1962, Down South tries to spice up an unoriginal story about sexually repressed couples by using the Cuban Missle Crisis as a backdrop. A smarter play would have tied in those fateful 13 days with the action onstage, but South simply introduces it for the sake of ambience, then discards it for the pursuit of banality. The play is really about early-60s liberation from the chains that were the fifties. Daria O'Neill stars as a perfect housewife who longs to be humped passionately. Her performance is solid, but surprisingly quiet considering her radio personality. Don Alder, as her toolish, oblivious husband steals the show with a wonderfully understated performance. HUSTINO SANDS Triangle Productions, at Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 239-5919, Thurs 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 5 pm, through Sept 15, $17-23

Private Eyes
Steven Dietz's play within a play about actors cheating on each other. PSU, Lincoln Hall, Studio Theater, 1620 SW Park Avenue, 224-5065, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, through Sept 14, $5

Current Runs

Greater Tuna
The plethora of characters that exist in this exploration of a small Texas town fail to create a rich tapestry of a unique location. Instead, they adhere to the play's gimmick, which is that the same two actors, Michael Teufel and Darrin Murrell, play all of them. This is comedy that scrapes the bottom of the barrel for laughs, and if that weren't enough, it's been extended again! There is no God! JUSTIN SANDERS Triangle Productions, at the Flying Rhinoceros Theatre, 1440 NW Overton, 239-5919, Fri-Sat 8 pm, through Sept 28 (extended), $17-23

See review this issue. Stark Raving, at the CoHo Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 232-7072, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, through Oct 5, $10-$20

The Late Summer Replacement Special
Cunt cunt cunt cunt cunt! God it's liberating! God bless House of Cunt for bringing it to the masses. God bless 'em for their incredible late-night sketch comedy, too! Cunt! House of Cunt, at Coho Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 232-7072, Fri-Sat 10:30 pm, through Oct 5, $12

The Seven Deadly Sins
That bastion of 360-degree theater in the most random of places (night clubs, top floors of buildings, parking garages, and now a seedy techno bar), Liminal, is at it again with this revival of the operatic musical by the late, great writing/composing team of Bertolt Brecht and Kurt Weill. Liminal, 341 SW 10th, 890-2993, Thurs-Sat 8:30 pm, Thurs 10:30 pm, through Sept 28, $16 (includes one alcoholic beverage)

Three one-time Texas cheerleaders meet for a reunion in New York. Paula Productions, at Jack Oakes Theater, 2820 NE Sandy Blvd., 775-3881, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, through Sept 21, $10

Poodle Farm: CityBoy Born in a CountryBoy's Body
Gregg Bielemeier is a choreographer with a very funny sense of humor. His new work abstractly chronicles his coming-of-age in a small, Oregon, German-Catholic, farming community. Conduit Studio, 918 SW Yamhill, 4th Floor, 221-5857, Fri-Sun 8 pm, through Sept 22, $15