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Rogue Valley theater scene: Oct. 18

Ashland Contemporary Theatre: Tickets can be purchased at ashlandcontemporarytheatre.org, at Paddington Station in Ashland, Grocery Outlet in Medford, or at the door. Call 541-646-2971 for information.

‘Third’: In playwright Wendy Wasserstein’s final play, “Third,” Professor Laurie Jameson has challenged patriarchal thinking for the past 30 years, transforming humanities studies in her Ivy League college. But with the outbreak of the Iraq War, Laurie’s latest student, Woodson Bull III — simply called “Third” — pushes all the wrong buttons. She calls him “a walking red state,” and denounces his brilliant term paper as plagiarism. But is she right? Or have stereotypes and prejudice gotten the better of her intellectual honesty? The professor’s private struggles with her relationships, her age and the nation’s adversarial politics inflate Third from jockish student to personal nemesis — with results that force Laurie to reconsider her perspective and integrity. Directed by Jeannine Grizzard and starring Livia Genise and Adam Kilgore. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, Nov. 1-23, and at 2 p.m. Sundays, Nov. 3-24, at Carpenter Hall, 15 S. Pioneer St., on the Oregon Shakespeare Festival campus in Ashland. Tickets are $18.

Ashland New Plays Festival: See ashlandnewplays.org.

Fall Festival: Ashland New Plays Festival will present staged readings of four new plays: Tira Palmquist’s “The Way North;” Michael Gotch’s “Starter Pistol;” David Johnston’s “Pelicans;” and Joshua Rebell’s “The Night Climber.” Discussions with the playwrights and casts will follow each performance. Performances are set for Wednesday, Oct. 16, through Sunday, Oct. 20, at the Unitarian Fellowship Center, 87 Fourth St., Ashland. Performance times vary. Tickets are $20.

Barnstormers Theatre: 112 Evelyn Ave., Grants Pass. See barnstormersgp.org or call 541-479-3557 for tickets. Group discounts are available.

‘Quilters the Musical’: This is the story of a pioneer woman and her six daughters. A rich mosaic of scenes captures the sweep and the beauty, the terror and the joy, the harsh challenges and the abiding rewards of frontier life. Illuminating stories intertwined with music and dance depicts the lot of women on the frontier — girlhood, marriage, childbirth, spinsterhood, twisters, fire, illness, death — but also love, warmth, rich and lively humor, plus simple human dignity and steadfastness in the face of adversity. Directed by Denise Baker with music director Brian Kerns and choreographer Erica Bury. Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays, Oct. 18 through Nov. 10. A $5 preview night will be offered on Thursday, Oct. 17, and a pay-what-you-can performance will be held Saturday, Oct. 26. Regular tickets are $23. The Legacy quilt used in the play was created by several local quilters and will be raffled off at the end of the play. Raffle tickets will be $5 each and available at the box office and at each performance.

Collaborative Theatre Project: 555 Medford Center, Medford. Tickets and information are available at ctpmedford.org, by calling 541-779-1055 or at the box office. Group rates are available.

‘The Haunting of Hill House’: “The Haunting of Hill House,” adapted by F. Andrew Leslie from the 1950 Gothic horror novel by American author Shirley Jackson, relies on terror rather than horror to elicit emotion in the viewer and creates complex relationships between the mysterious events and the characters’ psyches. Much of the supernatural phenomena that occur are described only vaguely, or else are partly hidden from the characters themselves. A small group of “psychically receptive” people are brought together in Hill House. The house is a brooding, mid-Victorian mansion infamous as a place of evil. Directed by Russell Lloyd. Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays, Oct. 10-26, at 1:30 p.m. Sundays, Oct 13-27, and again at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, Oct. 29-31. Tickets are $18 to $25. Also look for multimedia sculpted paintings by local artist JONO in the CTP gallery.

Oregon Cabaret Theatre: First and Hargadine streets, Ashland. Tickets and information are available at theoregoncabaret.com or by calling 541-488-2902. Reservations are required for pre-show dinner and brunch. Appetizers, beverages and desserts are available without reservations. Student rush tickets are $10 and can be purchased 30 minutes before curtain. A 20% discount is available for groups of 10 or more.

‘The Rocky Horror Show’: This humorous musical tribute to science fiction and horror B movies with music, lyrics and book by Richard O’Brien will be presented at 11:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, Oct. 18, 25-26; 8 p.m. Sundays and Wednesdays, Oct. 20-30, and Monday, Oct. 28, and at midnight Wednesday, Oct. 31. Tickets are $25, $36 or $39 for the 8 p.m. shows; $36 for the 11:30 p.m. shows. Dinner reservations are available only for the 8 p.m. shows; appetizers and desserts are available for the 11 p.m. shows. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. shows; 10:15 p.m. for the 11 p.m. shows.

‘Sweeney Todd’: Stephen Sondheim’s Tony Award-winning masterpiece tells the story of Sweeney Todd, an unjustly exiled barber, who returns to 19th-century London seeking vengeance on the lecherous judge who framed him and ravaged his young wife. The road to revenge leads Todd to Mrs. Lovett, a resourceful proprietress of a failing pie shop, whose fortunes rise when Todd’s thirst for blood inspires the integration of an ingredient into her meat pies that has the people of London lining up. With both music and lyrics by Sondheim, Sweeney Todd contains more than 20 musical numbers, including “Johanna,” “A Little Priest,” “The Worst Pies in London,” and “City on Fire.” Directed and choreographed by Michael Jenkinson. Performances are set for at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and select Monday and Wednesday nights, through Nov. 9, and at 1 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through Nov. 10. Tickets are $43, $39 or $29. Please note this musical contains graphic scenes of violence and murder.

Oregon Center for the Arts at Southern Oregon University: Theatre Arts Building, 491 S. Mountain Ave., Ashland. Tickets are available at oca.sou.edu/box-office or by calling 541-552-6348.

‘Hedda Gabler’: Widely regarded as the father of modern drama, Henrik Ibsen created his most memorable character in Hedda Gabler, the free-spirited, strong-minded general’s daughter, dangerously chafing against the restraints placed on women in the late 19th century. The questions bedeviling Hedda are still relevant today: What does it cost a woman to be “likable”? Can she be strong but not bossy, smart but not scary? Can she break free of the tropes of femininity or is she doomed, even in her own life, to fail the Bechdel Test? Directed by Jackie Apodaca. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 7-17, and at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 16-17. Tickets are $20, $15 for senior. Student discounts are available by calling the box office.

‘Angels in America Part Two — Perestroika’: The second part of Tony Kushner’s epic masterpiece, “Angels in America,” “Perestroika” means “restructuring,” an apt title for a play about people struggling to repair broken relationships and damaged lives. At its heart are two polar opposite AIDS patients: The reluctant “prophet” Prior, who sees angels, and the notorious reactionary Roy Cohn, who sees the ghost of Ethel Rosenberg. “Perestroika” offsets end-of-the-world dread with a powerful affirmation of love and hope. Directed by Jim Edmondson. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 17-23, and at 1:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 23-24. Tickets are $20, $15 for senior. Student discounts are available by calling the box office.

Oregon Shakespeare Festival: 15 S. Pioneer St., Ashland. Showtimes, ticket prices and information available at osfashland.org or at 800-219-8161.

‘As You Like It’: Exiled from the controlling confines of the court, Duke Senior and her daughter Rosalind seek refuge — and find much more — in the unconstrained Forest of Arden. Also fleeing danger at home, Orlando encounters a young man named Ganymede and seeks help in love — unaware that Ganymede is actually his heart’s desire, Rosalind, in disguise. All society’s rules of conformity are off in this exuberant theatrical journey into one of Shakespeare’s most beloved comedies. Directed Rosa Joshi. The show runs through Oct. 26 in the Angus Bowmer Theatre.

‘Hairspray — The Broadway Musical’: It’s 1962, and Baltimore teenager Tracy Turnblad lives in a world that tells her plus-sized gals shouldn’t be dancing on television and that racial segregation is here to stay. When she wins a spot on The Corny Collins Show, Tracy becomes a star and uses her newfound fame to challenge the status quo in this wildly joyful production that celebrates radical inclusion at its heart. Christopher Liam Moore directs. The show runs through Oct. 27, in the Angus Bowmer Theater.

‘Mother Road’: A powerful story about land, family and survival inspired by John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” this world-premiere drama by Southern Oregon-based playwright Octavio Solis finds hard-living William Joad meeting an unexpected relative, Martin Jodes, and reversing the Joads’ mythic journey from California back to Oklahoma. Directed by Bill Rauch. The show runs through Oct. 26 in the Angus Bowmer Theatre.

‘Cambodian Rock Band’: This epic play/rock concert thrusts us into the life of a young woman trying to piece together her family history 30 years after her father fled Cambodia. Featuring actor/musicians, playwright Lauren Yee brings to life the Cambodian rock scene of the ’60s and ’70s, a movement cut short by the Khmer Rouge’s brutal attempt to erase the music — and musicians — once and for all. Chay Yew directs. The show runs through Oct. 27 in the Thomas Theater.

‘Between Two Knees’: Sketch-comedy troupe the 1491s tell a fearless intergenerational story of familial love, loss and connection spanning the massacre at Wounded Knee, all of the World Wars so far and the 1973 takeover at Wounded Knee. Infused with the 1491s’ uninhibited and subversive approach to comedic storytelling, it takes a hard look at the impacts of systematic oppression after the point that textbooks typically stop teaching Native history. Also, its funny. Eric Ting directs. The show runs through Oct. 27 in the Thomas Theater.

‘La Comedia of Errors’: Two sets of identical twins, separated at birth, unknowingly begin interacting with each other’s family and friends, leading to a not-so-serious case of mistaken identities. This bilingual adaptation of one of Shakespeare’s zaniest comedies will feature intimate, actor-and-text focused performances with live music. Directed by Bill Rauch. The show runs through Oct. 26 in the Thomas Theater.

‘Indecent’: This spirited and revolutionary love story celebrates Yiddish language and literature, charting the real-life controversy of Sholem Asch’s play “The God of Vengeance” and the Jewish artists who faced persecution after its Broadway debut in 1932. This collage of theatre, music, dance and poetry is a heart-stirring affirmation of the impact of art in a time of chaos. Directed by Shana Cooper. “Indecent” was commissioned by the Oregon Shakespeare Festival as part of American Revolutions: the United States History Cycle, and by Yale Repertory Theatre. The show runs through Oct. 27 in the Angus Bowmer Theatre.

‘How to Catch Creation’: Spanning more than 40 years, this is a story of love, longing, having your heart broken and simply existing. Playwright Chistina Anderson explores the act of creation — of life, of family, of art — through the experiences of a black, queer, feminist writer whose life is changed in the 1960s when her girlfriend tells her some unexpected news. Decades later, the implications of that moment still echo in the lives of four artists in the Bay Area who find their lives unexpectedly intertwined. Nataki Garrett directs. The show runs through Oct. 26 in the Thomas Theatre.

Randall Theatre: 20 S. Fir St., Medford. Tickets and information are available at randalltheatre.com or by calling 541-632-3258.

‘Evil Dead — The Musical’: This hilarious show takes all the elements of the cult classic films “The Evil Dead,” “Evil Dead 2” and “Army of Darkness” and combines them into one crazy theatrical experience. Five college students go to an abandoned cabin in the woods and accidentally unleash an evil force that turns them all into demons. It’s all up to Ash — a housewares employee turned demon-killing hero — and his trusty chainsaw to save the day. Blood flies. Limbs are dismembered. Demons tell bad jokes — and all to music. Performances are set for 7 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 18-26, and Wednesday through Saturday, Oct. 30-Nov. 2, and at 2 p.m. Sundays, Oct. 20 and Oct. 27. Advance tickets are $15, $20 after opening night. Please note ages 17 and under will not be admitted without an adult, and there is a “splatter zone.”At least the first three rows will get you “bloody,” and there is a chance of getting “blood” on you even if you are outside the zone. Don’t wear any clothes or bring any items you don’t wish to get stained.

Rogue Theater Company: The Black Swan Theater, 100 E. Main St., Ashland. See roguetheatercompany.com or call 541-205-9190.

‘`night, Mother’: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and nominated for four Tony Awards, Marsha Norman’s “`night, Mother” has been celebrated for its heart-wrenching specificity and cathartic force. The play is a portrayal of one woman’s decision to end her own life and her mother’s attempts to change her mind. In their evening together, the mother-daughter bond between Jessie and Mama is stronger than ever, making it possible for Jessie to enter a quieter, calmer existence with closure and love. Directed by Oregon Shakespeare Festival actor Caroline Shaffer, the play features actors Andrea Hochkeppel and Jessica Sage. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, Nov. 1-16, and at 2 p.m. Sundays, Nov. 3-17. A preview night will be held at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30. Proceeds from the opening night performance on Friday, Nov. 1, will benefit Community Works and the Maslow Project. Tickets for the opening night are $25. Regular tickets are $20, $18 for seniors and students.

Teen Musical Theater of Oregon: Craterian Performances’ youth theater program stages professional productions at the Craterian Theater, 23 S. Central Ave., Medford. Tickets and information are available at craterian.org, at the box office, 16 S. Bartlett St., or by calling 541-779-3000.

‘Howlin’ Halloween II’: Howlin’ Halloween II is the perfect seasonal alternative to a terrifying haunted house experience. The fun, upbeat-but-spooky revue features pop songs and musical numbers from shows you know and love, including “Phantom of the Opera,” “Jekyll & Hyde” and “Hocus Pocus.” You might even spot a Disney villain or two. Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Oct. 25-26, and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27. Family-friendly costumes are strongly encouraged. No masks or weapons. Indoor trick-or-treating, costume contests, and deliciously creepy concessions will be offered before the show. Tickets are $20, $10 for ages 22 and younger.

"Mother Road" at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Jenny Graham photo /OSF