Opening This Week

For Reasons That Remain Unclear
A priest and a strange man engage in homoerotic banter. Triangle Productions, at Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 239-5919, Thurs 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, Sun 5 pm, through March 30, $15-19

James Canfield Signatures/a rock ballet
The very notion that there is a term called "rock ballet" inspires me. Oregon Ballet Theatre, 818 SE 6th, 222-5538, March 2, 7, 8, 9 @ 7:30 pm, March 3 @ 2 pm, $5-80

Shakespeare's R & J
Repressed Catholic school boys get off on Romeo and Juliet. Triangle Productions, at Theater! Theatre!, 3430 SE Belmont, 239-5919, Thurs 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, through March 30, $15-19

Miranda July
Miranda July, Portland's darling performance artist, will be performing from her latest, How I Learned to Draw . Reed, 3203 SE Woodstock, Thurs, 7 pm, $5

Teresa Mathern, Mihn Tran, Portland Taiko Ensemble: Evidence of Division, Verses, One, New Work, Elements
Mathern is a performer at Conduit, Portland's best contemporary dance studio. Together with Tran, they will execute a multimedia dance performance. Reed, 3203 SE Woodstock, Sat-Sun, $8

Danny Hoch: Jails, Hospitals, & Hiphop
Hoch does a combination of performance art and what he calls "structured improvisation," a solo act that addresses issues of youth, race, and culture. Reed, 3203 SE Woodstock, Friday, 7:30 pm, $12

Closing This Week

Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning, Juliet)
Mild-mannered college professor Constance Ledbelly takes a trip back in time to experience some of Shakespeare's greatest plays firsthand. PSU, Lincoln Hall 1620 SW Park Avenue, 725-3307, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, $6-8

* Where's Toto?
Dorothy A. Hirsch's self-deprecating, one-woman show focuses on the uncomfortable topic of sexual orientation. You'll leave feeling like you know a bit too much about Hirsch, but that having a laugh at her expense was worth the trip. Stark Raving, at the CoHo Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 232-7072, Fri-Sat 10:30 pm, through March 2, $12

Current Runs

* Double Fisted Shot Glass
Well-choreographed, TV-ready sketch comedy that reads like swashbuckling practice, until the cast throws back some Maker's Mark and really gets fired up. The next thing you know, dogs in the park are gettin' in on the action. The show's funny, with super smooth transition from sketch to sketch. (Jennifer Long) Blue Door Productions, at the Miracle Theater, 525 SE Stark, 258-1681, Fri-Sat 11 pm, through March 9, $8

Questions of human existence are pondered through a spectrum of dance, color, noise, and tapping. See review this issue. Lightbox Studio , 1306 NW Hoyt, 231-0839, Fri-Sun 8 pm, through Mar 17, $10

The Gingerbread Lady
Neil Simon's comedy about an actress who returns from rehab to her dysfunctional friends and family. Paula Productions, at the Jack Oakes Theater, 2820 NE Sandy Blvd, 238-9692, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, through March 16, $12

Triple Espresso, A Highly Caffeinated Comedy
Magic and theater mix in this fictitious reunion of the once-promising comedy team, "Maxwell, Butternut, and Bean." Triple Espresso, at the Portland Art Museum, Portland Art Museum, 2nd Floor, 1219 SW Park, Wed-Thurs, Sun 7:30 pm, Fri 7 pm, Sat 5 & 8 pm, Sun 3 pm, through April 21, $39-45, includes dessert and coffee

Yerma is torn between sating her appetite for pregnancy and cheating on her husband, which defies some of the moral fundamentals preached by traditional Spanish Catholicism. To understand this conflict is to understand the tragic act that Yerma's internal struggle drives her to commit. Unfortunately, somewhere during the transition from 1934 Spain to 2002 Portland, sexuality became a lot less taboo and spirituality a lot less important. Yerma's issues have become dated, and the Miracle's current production does little to breathe life into them. Director Carmela Lanza Weil utilizes theatrical cliches to an almost comical degree. Excessive amounts of affected stares off into the distance and the expression of intense emotion through shouting do little to add power to speeches. It's all there and it's all brutal. The Miracle Theater, 525 SE Stark Street, 236-7253, Thurs 7:30 pm, Fri-Sat 8 pm, through March 9, $15

A collection of images that don't add up to anything, but are entertaining nonetheless. Other Hand Productions at the Hope Theater, 1111 SW Broadway, 248-0557, Sat 8 pm, through March 9, $10-14

After the Zipper
This one contains a three-person orgy and full-frontal Stark Raving, at the CoHo Theatre, 2257 NW Raleigh, 232-7072, Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sun 7 pm, through March 2, $10-20

for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enuf
The title of this show is self-explanatory. Portland Center Stage, 1111 SW Broadway, 274-6588, Tues-Wed, Sun 7 pm, Thurs 12 pm Thurs-Sat 8 pm, Sat-Sun 2 pm, through March 10, $12-44