With the mystery thriller produced as a special, 75th-anniversary tribute to the publication of Mickey Spillane's first novel I, the Jury, famed novelist, screenwriter, and playwright Max Allan Collins presents a one-night-only staging of Encore for Murder: The New Adventures of Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer, a special September 17 event held in the Muscatine High School Auditorium, and staring Gary Sandy of WKRP in Cincinnati fame.

Often, mass tragedies are best understood not through bare statistics, but through personal stories of those affected. My Brother's Gift, a play by Claudia Haas based on the real experiences of survivor Eva Geiringer Schloss, tells one of these stories. I saw it on Saturday at the Black Box Theatre, and director, designer, and Black Box co-founder Lora Adams and her cast and crew have put together a spare, straightforward production that serves both as a remembrance and a call to action.

One of the most celebrated country-music stars in history will be showcased at Mt. Carroll's Timber Lake Playhouse September 8 through 18, with the lauded bio-musical Hank Williams: Lost Highway enjoying a run directed by television and stage sensation Ted Lange, an artist recognized the world over for his portrayal of Isaac Washington on the classic television show The Love Boat.

Opening Riverside Theatre's 2022-23 season with a one-woman comedy about love, sex, and existential dread, playwright/performer Megan Doherty brings the world premiere of Chipmunk'd to the Iowa City venue September 9 through October 2, her latest solo describing the real-life incident in which Gogerty got bit by a chipmunk in her backyard - an event that set off an increasingly alarming chain of disasters for her and her family.

Ka-pow! T. Green and Calvin Vo, the co-stars, co-masterminds, and co-comedy icons behind Haus of Ruckus, came onstage for the pre-show announcement during Thursday’s opening-night performance at the Mockingbird on Main, and their latest stage piece Random Access Morons was immediately funny – in the best, most bizarre way possible. The 90 minutes that followed kept up that same energy.

A moving play being produced in conjunction with the community-wide Holocaust-remembrance project "Out of Darkness: Holocaust Messages for Today” (OutOfDarknessQC.com), Claudia Haas' award-winning memory drama My Brother's Gift enjoys a September 2 through 11 run at Moline's Black Box Theatre, the work a moving testament to the power of art under unconscionable circumstances.

Leaving Iowa, the winning comedy currently running at the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre, follows Don (played by Kevin Babbitt), a middle-aged writer who reflects on vacations from his youth. In the play's present, Don travels across the cornfield states to spread his father’s ashes at his childhood home. And in a series of flashbacks, Don and his family find themselves in interesting situations with zany characters during their Midwest road trips.

If you’re looking for a sentimental story that slowly sneaks up on you, might I suggest The Christmas Letter Writing Club at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre?

Running in downtown Davenport August 25 through September 3, the latest stage comedy by the Haus of Ruckus team of T. Green and Calvin Vo is Random Access Morons, and as those first two words and the title's acronym suggest, the show is technology-themed. But despite this latest Mockingbird on Main presentation reacquainting audiences with Green's and Vo's familiar and beloved characters Fungus and Johnny, the duo's third theatrical adventure since November doesn't find the goofball slackers playing video games. Not externally, at any rate.

During Thursday's opening-night performance and area premiere of Ride the Cyclone, Ryan J. Hurdle’s character Ricky stops at one point in his song “Space Age Bachelor Man” and says, “It gets weird now.” But oh, gentle readers, that ship sailed from the moment the lights went down.