By Randall Jobe
Main Street Theatre in Rice Village presents Enemies, directed by Rebecca Greene Udden. Maxim Gorky’s extraordinary play, written in exile and banned in his home country, presents a panoramic view of a restless society. It’s 1905 and Russia is at a critical moment in of its history. The bourgeoisie is no longer confident in its own values. The working class is realizing the sacrifices they will have to make. This imaginative piece, with great humanity and a broad dramatic scope, offers a glimpse into what the world might have been like between aristocratic rule and the revolution in Russia. Through October 15. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 7:30 p.m. Sundays, 3 p.m. Tickets: 713-524-6706.
Although badly damaged by Hurricane Harvey, the Alley Theatre proves the age-old adage, “The show must go on!” And go on it has, with the world premiere of Rajiv Joseph’s Describe the Night. In 1920, the Russian writer Isaac Babel wanders countryside with the Red Calvary. Seventy years later, a mysterious KGB agent spies on a woman in Dresden and falls in love. In 2010, an aircraft carrying most of the Polish government crashes in the Russian city of Smolensk. Mature audiences. Through October 15. Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday, 7:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, 2:30 p.m. Tickets: AlleyTheatre.org or 713-220-5700.
Also from the Alley Theatre, in its Texas Avenue location, comes Cleo, the story of the scandalous romance between Hollywood icons Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, set during the filming of the disastrous 1963 film, Cleopatra. Their relationship is condemned by both the Vatican and U.S. Congress, ensuring that the famous couple will always be associated with the greatest sex scandal of all time. Through October 27. Tickets: AlleyTheatre.org or 713-220-5700.
The Catastrophic Theatre presents Evening at the Talk House. The team behind a critically acclaimed but unsuccessful play has gathered at their old haunt on the tenth-year anniversary of what turned out to be one of the last plays ever presented. The story takes place in an imagined near future over a night of drinking and stories with some revealing disturbing secrets about what their lives have become. October 5 through 21. Thursday,
7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 8 p.m. Sunday 2:30 p.m. MATCH (Midtown Arts and Theater Center), 3400 Main Street, Suite 285. Tickets: 713-522-2723.
Balls, a world premiere by Kevin Armento and Bryony Lavery, lands at Stages Repertory Theatre. It’s 1973 and Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs face off in “The Battle of the Sexes” tennis match. Balls embraces the high-intensity physical groove of the match and features a carnival-like atmosphere. October 11 through 29. Wednesday and Thursday, 7:30 p.m. Friday, 8 p.m. Saturday, 2:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sunday, 2:30 p.m. Tickets: www.stagestheatre.com or 713-527-0123.
Mildred’s Umbrella Theatre Company presents the horror comedy, Feathers and Teeth at Spring Street Studios. The story is about a factory town in the late 1970s and a teenager, Chris, and her father’s fiancée, Carol. Their relationship makes for a tense atmosphere that gets even more stressful when Chris’s dad, Arthur, hits a mysterious creature. A series of events spins frighteningly out of control. October 16 through November 11. Tickets: MildredsUmbrella.com or 832-463-8409.