Opening This Week

Angel Street
New Century Players remounts its "tremendously successful production" of this play that once inspired the Ingrid Bergman classic Gaslight. RPHS Black Box Theater, 4950 SE Roethe Rd., Thurs-Sat 7 pm, through Sept. 17, $7-10

Dirty Story
See My, What A Busy Week, pg. 17. Interstate Firehouse Cultural Center, 5340 N. Interstate, 235-1101, Opens Fri, runs Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm, through Oct. 8, $15-20

Dreampuffs of Lorna
Allegedly selected from over 300 submissions, Stark Raving's season opener is Jennifer Haley's provocative comedy about "women, sex, war, and, of course, anthropomorphization." We LOVES us some anthro-po-mo... po-mo... fo...ization. Coho Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 232-7072, Opens Fri, runs Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, through Oct. 8, $10-20

Enchanted April
ART opens its 2005/2006 season with Matthew Barber's stage adaptation of Elizabeth von Arnim's classic novel. Artists Repertory Theatre, 1516 SW Alder St, 241-1278, Opens Fri, runs Tues-Thurs, Sun 7 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 2 pm, through Oct. 16, $15-40

Sordid Lives
Triangle remounts its big-haired production of this Texas funeral comedy. Stars Oregonian columnist Margie Boule. Triangle Productions, Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 224-8499, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, through Sept. 23, $17-23

The Lion King
How excited are you for the Portland premiere of this award-winning Broadway musical? THAT excited huh? Wow. That's a lot. Keller Auditorium, SW 3rd and Clay, 790-ARTS, Opens Fri, runs Tues-Sat 7:30 pm, Sat 2 pm, Sun 1 & 6:30 pm. through Oct. 23, $27.50-72.50

One Week Only

Back from a summer trek through Poland, the Hand2Mouth Theatre group presents their ongoing project Blue, an eerie spectacle with stilt-walkers, truly creepy puppet work, and other forms of intense physical theater. It's a strange fit for the Pearl District Street Fair, but fight your way through the yuppie throng, and you'll be well rewarded. Pearl District, NW 8th & Glisan, 235-5284, Fri 5 pm, free

Forgiveness/The Unforgivable
Readers Theatre Repertory launches its fifth season of staged readings with a forgiveness theme. Plays read include Karen Sanford's Ophelia, Brooke Berman's Dancing With a Devil, and Romulus Linney's Goodbye, Oscar. Readers Theatre Repertory, at the Blackfish Gallery, 420 NW 9th Ave, 295-4997, Fri-Sat 8 pm, $8

Current Runs

Pure Gold Baby 2005
After a successful run in the fall of 2004, playwright Michelle Keil has rewritten this play about strippers, which contains nudity and other strip-related nuances, or lack thereof. Milk & Honey Studio, 2512 SE Gladstone, 224-8499, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, through Sept 17, $25-30

The Flu Season
The mise en scene in Will Eno's more-meta-than-thou comedy is a psychiatric hospital. The patients are a pair known only as "Man" and "Woman," who fall in and out of love. Commenting on the action, and manifesting the play's latent self-awareness are two characters introduced as Prologue and Epilogue. As Prologue, who functions for the most part like a traditional narrator, Todd Van Voris' larger-than-life musings fill the stage with a heartbreakingly misplaced optimism. Meanwhile, Darius Pierce's vitriolic Epilogue channels Eno himself, a reminder that what we're watching has all been written by an anxious man sitting alone in a room trying to find the right words. Unfortunately, it's hard to care about struggles of the playwright when we don't care about the play he's writing. By emphasizing the meta-theatrics, Vertigo has built a tin man of a production, heavy on wit and brains but without much heart. AH Theatre Vertigo at Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 306-0870, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, through Sept 24, $15

Extra Medium
The funny/funky monthly brew of standup, sketch, and indie comedy films that is Extra Medium forges onward with a show that includes "fun with a Manatee and how not to pick up chicks." Jasmine Tree, 401 SW Harrison St, 223-7956, Tues 9 pm, $3