Marie Antoinette—This play by hot playwright David Adjani is part celebrity-conscious send-up, part historical grand guignol, and, thanks to a startling, emotional star turn performance by Kimberly Gilbert, a powerful and evocative portrait of the celebrity queen who lost her head. At Woolly Mammoth Theatre through Oct. 12.
The Shoplifters—“The Shoplifters,” written and directed by Morris Panych, at first seems like a quartet of character studies in a minor key. But thanks to a terrific cast of actors—Jane Houdyshell, Delaney Williams, Adi Stein and Jenna Sokolowsky—it rises to something more serious (and funny.) Through October 19 at Arena Stage in the Kreeger.
The Taming of the Shrew—The Pellas Theatre Company updates Shakespeare’s classic battle of the sexes to our times, and sets it in Louisiana, no less. At the Anacostia Arts Center through October 26.
Awake and Sing!—Clifford Odets’ stirring, tragic-comic masterpiece is set among the lives of a struggling, politically active Jewish family in Brooklyn. Through October 19 at the Olney Theatre Centre.