Pictured: The Island of Dr. Moreau. Photo by Suzanne Plunkett. Babes with Blades' Horror Academy. Photo by Beth Cummings
With Halloween hard upon us, Stage Door Jonny knows you want to find a special treat for your special trick. Well, there are many theater, dance and music events geared specifically for the pumpkin parade, so Jonny suggests a show. Here's our run-down, with box office phone numbers listed. You can also find information and order tickets online for all these events.
The Birds—Hell in a Handbag Productions, through Nov. 17. While not specifically a Halloween show, this latest David Cerda ( and Pauline Pang ) parody of a famous film seems appropriate. What could be more horrible and terrifying than mysteriously malevolent feathered friends? Well, perhaps David Cerda in drag. Everybody get your peckers out! Berger Park Coach House, 6205 N. Sheridan; 800-838-3006; $15-$25
Disturbed II—Oracle Theatre, through Oct. 31. A 15-minute splatter show you'll not soon forget, Disturbed II combines live action, video, sound and special effects in an attempt to scare the shit out of blasé adults. Violent, sexual and grotesque—hey, this sounds like fun! Performed eight times a night, once every half hour; 3809 N. Broadway; 773-244-2980; $7-$9; over 18 only.
Ghost Stories: Crucible the Musible!—Strange Tree Group and Aloft Aerial Dance, through Oct. 31. Chicago playwright Emily Schwartz and choreographer Shayna Swanson team on this tale of witchcraft in Chicago's Humboldt Park ... circa 1692. It's part parody, part malarkey and part history, say the authors, who promise things and people hanging from the rafters, a cast of 24 and characters with names like Burntha Witch, Snack Witch, Parris France and the Devil himself. At the Aloft Loft, 937 N. California; 773-598-8240; $13; suitable for 10 and up.
Horror Academy ( pictured on pg. 12 ) —Babes with Blades, through Nov. 4. You can expect cut-throat action in this collection of one-act plays and monologues as the fighting women of Babes with Blades take on vampires, cannibals and zombies, oh, my! North Lakeside Cultural Center, 6219 N. Sheridan; 773-275-0440; $18.
The Island of Dr. Moreau—Lifeline Theatre, through Dec. 2. In 1896, sci-fi author H. G. Wells penned this Mother of All Mad Scientist tales about a naturalist shipwrecked on an island where a twisted madman attempts to humanize animals through terrible surgical experiments. As usual, Wells was far ahead of his time as he combined evolution, ecology and genetics. Stage adaptation by Robert Kauzlaric. At Lifeline, 6912 N. Glenwood; 773-761-4477; $25.
The Madness of Edgar Allen Poe: A Love Story—First Folio Shakespeare Festival, through Oct. 28. Eddie Poe and his wife take you on a guided tour of a real Gothic-style mansion—the Peabody Mansion—and along the way offer up pieces of Poe from The Telltale Heart, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Raven, The Bells, etc. Poe's wife was a bride at 13, but Poe waited 'til she was 15 to consummate the marriage. That's a Southern gentleman for you! Mayslake Forest Preserve, 1717 W. 31st, Oak Brook; 847-986-8067; $26.
The Porno Zombies—Prop Thtr Group, through Nov. 18. A mad scientist brings dead people back to life ( complete with a heightened sex drive ) and videotapes them, while his arch nemesis makes it her mission to take down the seedy underworld of zombie porn. And there's audience participation! Prop Theatre, 3502 N. Elston; 773-539-7838; $20 ( $15 for anyone dressed as a zombie ) .
The Rocky Horror Show—CreatiVision Entertainment, open run. If you're not familiar with The Rocky Horror Show and the unspeakably lurid sexual pleasures that befall good kids Brad and Janet, you've probably been trapped on a Pacific Rim island for decades. This is an all-new, live production starring Scott Alan Jones as Dr. Frank-N-Furter and directed by his real-life partner, Steve Hiltebrand. Mercury Theater, 3745 N. Southport; 773-325-1700; $35-$45.
Vampire Lesbians of Sodom—Easy Street Players, through Nov. 17. Just in time for Halloweenie, Easy Street offers the second of its shows authored by the incomparable Charles Busch ( Northwestern University graduate, don't you know? ) . This one is about, oh, vampires and lesbians perhaps? Does it really matter what a Charles Busch show is about? At the Athenaeum, 2936 N. Southport; 773-935-6860; $15.
For the complete list of treats, see www.WindyCityMediaGroup.com .