Pillowman—In Martin McDonagh's The Pillowman, a fiction writer in a totalitarian state is questioned about his violent short stories due to their similarity with a series of strange events around town. A new production of the play, directed by Grubb Graebner, is currently playing at the Vortex Theatre (2004½ Central SE). The Vortex has a distinguished history of producing McDonagh's plays, so odds are they'll do this one justice. The Pillowman runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 6 p.m. There'll be a free post-show discussion with the cast and crew on Sunday, Oct. 15. The play runs through Oct. 29. $12. 247-8600.
On a side note, the Vortex Theatre recently signed a partnership with Central New Mexico Community College (formerly TVI) to make the theater the teaching and production facility for the college's expanding theater department, which recently hired local playwright Susan Erickson as its first full-time theater instructor. The collaboration seems like an ideal fit. “Our main campus is walking distance from the Vortex,” says Erickson. “We’re neighbors, the kind who help each other.”
The Woman in Black—A more traditional horror story is playing over at the Adobe Theater (9813 Fourth Street NW) starting this weekend. Steven Mallatratt's play The Woman in Black, based on the novel by Susan Hill, is a straight-up thriller about an estate haunted by the ghost of a woman whose child was accidentally killed nearby. Locals think the house is cursed, so a lawyer hires an actor to help him recount the eerie events ... with very freaky results! This show begins on Friday the 13th and runs through Halloween to Nov. 5. Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. Sundays at 2 p.m. $12 general, $10 students/seniors. 898-9222.
Pajama Dudes—I stopped by the Q-staff Theatre last Saturday night to catch the Pajama Men in a fully improvised show called Improviso. They did a lot of the same improv scenarios as last time around, but since most of the show involves getting suggestions from the audience it's completely different every time. You still have two weekends to see them. You need a good laugh, don't you? Personally, I'd like to go one more time before they head back to Chicago. $15 general, $12 students/seniors. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 9 p.m. Runs through Oct. 21. 255-2182.