On stage in America

California
Los Angeles

West Coast Ensemble

Sylvia

Through April 7

In this romantic comedy, Greg finds escape from his midlife crisis through his dog, Sylvia, who gives him the unconditional love he craves. Originally produced by the Manhattan Theatre Club, Sylvia examines marriage in a humorous light. (323) 525-0022 or www.wcensemble.org

San Francisco

Theatre on the Square

The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe

Through March 31

This one-woman comedy by Jane Wagner looks at pop culture through the eyes of 14 characters, including a bag lady, a punk-performance artist, and a '70s feminist. (415) 433-9500 or www.theatreonthesquare.com

San Diego

Old Globe Theatre

Stones in His Pockets

Through March 16

This two-character comedy by Marie Jones is about a Hollywood film crew who travel to an Irish village to make their next blockbuster. Dozens of locals hired as extras are played by the two actors, who switch between roles. This is the West Coast première of this Broadway hit. (619) 231-1941 or www.theglobetheatres.org

District of Columbia

Kennedy Center, Eisenhower TheateR

Copenhagen

Feb. 26 - March 24

This drama by Michael Fraynand was inspired by the 1941 meeting between two brilliant physicists and friends, German Werner Heisenberg and his Danish counterpart, Niels Bohr. Their work opened the way to the atomic bomb. Heisenberg covertly traveled to Copenhagen to see Bohr, despite being on the opposite side in World War II. The play speculates on why Heisenberg went, and what the men said. (202) 467-4600 or www.kennedy-center.org

Florida
Coconut Grove

The Coconut Grove Playhouse

The Immigrant

March 5 - 24

This musical probes the meaning of the "American dream" in a tale about a Russian immigrant Jew who moves to a Texas town to escape persecution and poverty. He's befriended by Baptists in a story about family and struggle that runs from 1909 to the brink of World War II. (305) 442-4000 or www.cgplayhouse.com

Georgia
Atlanta

Seven Stages Theater

Hush: Composing 'Blind Tom' Wiggins

Through March 10

This story by Atlanta playwright Robert Earl Price is about former Georgia slave and musical prodigy Thomas Wiggins. A well-known performer in the late 19th century, Wiggins battled blindness, prejudice, and financial exploitation during his 50-year career as a touring concert pianist before and after the Civil War. A genius with a gentle demeanor, he could precisely play every composition he heard, backwards or forwards, after hearing a piece for the first time. (404) 523-7647 or www.7stages.w1.com

Illinois
Chicago

Goodman Theater

The Gift Horse

Through March 3

The Goodman premières this drama by Chicago playwright Lydia Diamond about finding one's place in life and discovering the right people with whom to spend it. The play begins with a cello solo played by a young woman. The audience then meets another character, Ruth, a friendly African-American woman who relives her college days, taking the audience on a tumultuous journey. Meanwhile, the mysterious cellist spools out her story, too. (312) 443-3800 or www.goodman-theatre.org.

Massachusetts
Boston

Huntington Theatre

Nixon's Nixon

March 1 to April 7

This political satire by Russell Lees speculates on what may have transpired in a hypothetical meeting between Richard Nixon and Henry Kissinger on the eve of Nixon's resignation. A scheme to make Nixon a hero emerges. 617-266-0800 or www.bu.edu/huntington/

Pennsylvania
Philadelphia

Walnut Street Theatre Company

Art

Through March 3

This award-winning comedy by Yasmina Reza is about the subtle dynamics of friendship. Three middle-aged men debate the value of an abstract white painting that one of them buys for an exorbitant sum. In discussing it, they probe who they are, how they judge things, and what they have in common. (215) 574-3550 or www.wstonline.org

Tennessee
Nashville

Tennessee Repertory Theatre, Polk Theater

Francis of Guernica

Through Feb. 26

This musical by renowned Nashville songwriter Marcus Hummon examines Picasso's inspiration for his landmark work "Guernica." An American boy joins the rebel forces in Spain's 1937 civil war and becomes shell shocked in battle. The story ends with Hitler's bombing of the peaceful city of Guernica, foreshadowing World War II. www.tnrep.org

Texas
Houston

Stages Repertory Theatre

Lobster Alice

Feb. 27 - March 24

The Southwest première of this comedy by Kira Obolensky speculates on what it was like for Hollywood animator John Finch to work with surrealist painter Salvador Dali in the 1940s, after Disney commissioned Dali to create an animated ballet. Finch was working on "Alice in Wonderland" at the time. In this comedy, Finch and his secretary and love, Alice, are drawn through Dali's looking glass into a strange world that engages the imagination. (713) 527-0123 or www.stagestheatre.com

Virginia
Richmond

Theatre Virginia

Crumbs From the Table of Joy

Feb. 20 - March 16

Lynn Nottage's coming-of-age production is told from the perspective of a 17-year-old African-American girl seeking identity in the pre-Civil Rights era. Her father, a widower, is trying to make a new life for his children after leaving rural Florida and relocating in Brooklyn. (804) 353-6161 or www.theatreva.com/

Washington
Seattle

Seattle Repertory Theatre

The Last True Believer

Through March 23

William Sherwood's new play explores the legacy of the cold war and its impact on one man. Through various clues, including a love letter, Kevin learns about his father's past, a journey that leads him into the world of cold-war espionage. While seeking answers from his father's friends, he causes everyone to re-examine beliefs about politics and love. (206) 443-2222 or www.seattlerep.org

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