From October 27 through 29, high-flying fun will be on hand at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts when the student-theatre talents of the Young Footliters presents Peter Pan Jr., a one-act family musical based on J.M. Barrie's beloved tale featuring unforgettable songs, magic, warmth, and adventure.

If Halloween is approaching, it must be time for that annual theatrical command: “Let's do the 'Time Warp' again!” Consequently, the Circa '21 Speakeasy will stage its eighth-annual presentation of the cult-musical smash The Rocky Horror Show from October 20 through 29, treating audiences to live performances of classic songs in this nutty, interactive experience that has been delighting show regulars and virgins alike for more than half a century.

A Tony Award nominee and Olivier Award winner widely considered one of legendary author Harold Pinter's finest stage achievements, the romantic drama Betrayal serves as the first student-produced presentation in Augustana College's 2023-24 theatre season, its October 26 through 28 run sure to demonstrate why this chronologically inventive drama was praised by the New York Times as a work that "balances surface elegance with an aching profundity."

Bram Stoker sucked the life force from the works of Transylvanian folklore scholar Emily Gerard for his 1897 novel Dracula. His immensely popular book, in turn, has been drained of its essence by many adapters. Playwright Kate Hamill's version is Dracula: a feminist revenge fantasy, currently running at Augustana College. But this show is probably not what you think it is.

With the New York World-Telegram calling the character drama "the rarest of theater experiences" and "an evening which will prove an indelible memory," Horton Foote's stage classic The Trip to Bountiful serves as the 2023-24 season opener at Iowa City's Riverside Theatre, its October 20 through November 5 run sure to demonstrate why the Wall Street Journal's reviewer raved, "I've never been more deeply moved by a theatrical production of any kind."

Had I gone by the sudden chilly weather, or the title of the play itself, I would have assumed I was on my way to a night of frights at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre. Despite its name and October debut, however, there were no scares to be had on Friday – unless, that is, you jump a little at the sight of the word “layoffs.” Skeleton Crew, written by Dominique Morisseau and directed here by Marquita Reynolds, is a solid stage experience and worth seeing.

The world seems to be rampant with disappointments, disasters, and persistent obstacles. Conflict drives drama, but does real life have to be so hard so often? Sometimes, theatre can provide answers, comfort the life-weary, or entertain so thoroughly that you forget your problems. The Richmond Hill Barn Theatre's production of The Seafarer does all three.

A delightful stage adventure boasting mystery, laughs, and a winning tale of friendship, The Skokie Detective Charter School serves as the first presentation in Davenport Junior Theatre's 2023-24 mainstage season, its October 14 through 22 run opening the company's astounding 72nd season with another free entertainment performed wholly by phenomenally gifted student actors.

One of Tennessee Williams' most arresting, fascinating and controversial works will enjoy its long-awaited Quad Cities debut when Suddenly Last Summer is staged at Moline's Black Box Theatre October 9 through 28, the legendary playwright's 1957 drama famed for its deep emotionalism, startling themes, and 1959 film version that earned Best Actress Oscar nominations for both Katharine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor.

School of Rock: The Musical was directed by the theatre's co-owner (and set, lighting, and sound designer) Brent Tubbs, aided here by musical director Laura Hammes and choreographer Becca Johnson. Onstage, we have 30 actor/singer/musicians, plus seven musicians in the pit, and they and the crew have staged an ambitious, complex production that runs smoothly, sounds great, and will leave you grinning.