It’s an unfortunate tale you’ve heard a lot lately: The Village Theatre, home of New Ground Theatre, wound up with water in the basement this past month. But “The show must go on!” is a cliché for a reason, and Friday's opening-night performance of American La Ronde, indeed, went on as planned to recap the romantic journey of a single silver bracelet.

In author Aaron Randolph III’s brand-new adaptation of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s classic tale The Little Prince, we’re immediately introduced to Aviator (Randolph) as he tells us a tale from his past, in which he crashed his plane and met a boy, Little Prince (Daniel Rairdin-Hale), who is traveling from planet to planet. Aviator and Little Prince have a lot to learn from each other, and this charming production serves up many life lessons.

I’ve got to hand it to director Kimberly Kurtenbach, who expertly captured every child’s attention before last Thursday’s performance of the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse's Junie B. Jones Is Not a Crook by blasting the ever-popular Baby Shark. When the dance party was cut off for pre-show announcements, the room full of smiling children was already fully engaged and ready to be wowed.

If you’ve secretly always wanted to see one of William Shakespeare’s plays performed just to try it out, the Prenzie Players' current production of The Comedy of Errors is the perfect high-energy, introductory show for you. Directed by Adam Lewis, the production’s run time of just an hour and 15 minutes is stuffed full of physical comedy and mistaken identities, keeping you fully engaged and entertained.

Statistically speaking, 40 to 50 percent of U.S. marriages end in divorce. Such is the case with the union in The Last Five Years, the current musical running at Moline's Black Box Theatre. Somehow, though, with its upbeat songs interspersed with dramatic ballads, this production is surprisingly sweet, even though you know from the start that the marriage will eventually sour.

It was mentioned – more than once – at its opening-night performance that the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse’s production of Diamonds & Divas: A Murderous Fiasco was the comedy's United States professional premiere. If we were supposed to be impressed by that fact, it really isn't saying much, as author Robin Hawdon's script would feel right at home with a group of American middle-schoolers. However, the cast, composed of many familiar Circa '21 favorites, injects talent amidst the chaos of this melodramatic escapade, almost fully redeeming an otherwise ridiculous affair.

Is Nora, the protagonist of Henrik Ibsen's classic drama A Doll's House, a hero or a villain? Given that the play ends with her walking out on her husband and children seemingly forever, it’s a theme that’s been discussed since 1897, and one that the QC Theatre Workshop seeks to continue with its local premiere of A Doll’s House, Part 2, directed by Dave Bonde.

Let’s just get this truism out of the way: When a show has a swear word in the title (though we’ve taken the liberty of adding some well-placed hyphens for you), one should expect mature language. But if a little – okay, a lot – of swearing won’t ruffle your feathers, then the Playcrafters Barn Theatre's Stupid F---ing Bird is a presentation that will satisfy your needs to think and emote.

The heartbreak was palpable at the Black Box Theatre's Saturday-night opening of Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill. Transformed into a quaint cabaret, the space featured a small stage with a single stool and microphone, with a bar (dutifully tended by server LuAnne Sisk), a three-piece band, and two tables rounding out the experience. And from the moment the lights went down, audience members were treated as patrons of Emerson’s establishment, whisked away from the Quad Cities, and transported to 1959 Philadelphia – for Billie Holiday’s last concert.

Here’s the thing: Any show that opens with a warning of “Please don’t shift your chair to avoid being trampled” is bound to be thrilling, even if, I admit, I was initially pretty hesitant about the idea of seeing the Prenzie Players’ Friday-night opening of Macbeth amidst the snow. But damn was this an exciting, emotional two hours in Scotland care of director Catherine Bodenbender.

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