The 22 Best Dramas to See in Chicago This November

Strong productions of Appropriate, An Iliad, and A Raisin in the Sun join seasonal classics on stage in November.

Larry Yando in A Christmas Carol   Photo: Dean Lapraire
CRITIC’S PICK

Appropriate

11/8–12/8 The children of a plantation owner grapple with some gruesome discoveries after their father’s death in this Brandon Jacobs-Jenkins play that originated at Ignition Fest in 2008. Previews through 11/14, $20–$40. Regular run $40–$60. Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N Lincoln. victorygardens.org.

Broadsword

Through 11/24 From the Sons of Anarchy scribe Marco Ramirez comes a gritty, hard-rocking drama about a failed New Jersey heavy-metal band. $32. The Gift Theatre, 4802 N Milwaukee. thegifttheatre.org.

CRITIC’S PICK

A Christmas Carol

11/16–12/28 Larry Yando returns as Ebenezer Scrooge in this heartwarming adaptation of Charles Dickens’s classic ghost story. Henry Wishcamper directs. $25–$83. Goodman Theatre, 170 N Dearborn. goodmantheatre.org.

A Christmas Memory And The Thanksgiving Visitor

11/20–12/29 The Provision Theater artistic director Timothy Gregory mounts this apt stage adaptation of Truman Capote’s holiday-themed short stories. Previews through 11/22, $15–$25. Regular run $15–$32. Provision Theater, 1001 W Roosevelt. provisiontheater.org.

Compulsion

Through 11/17 The playwright Rinne Groff explores the obsessive lengths that Meyer Levin, the man who helped bring The Diary of Anne Frank to America, endured to share the Holocaust victim’s story with the world. $25–$40. Next Theatre, 927 Noyes, Evanston. nexttheatre.org.

Cyrano de Bergerac

Through 11/10 The actor Harry Groener and the director Penny Metropulos team up to tell the classic story of a well-intentioned nobleman with a preternaturally large nose. $48–$78. Chicago Shakespeare Theater, 800 E Grand. chicagoshakes.com.

Detroit ’67

11/8–12/15 There’s trouble in Motown in playwright Dominique Morisseau’s portrait of two African American men (Kamal Angelo Bolden, Kevin Ralston Jr.) who come upon a badly beaten white woman (Cassandra Bissell) late one night. Ron OJ Parson directs. Previews through 11/14, $25–$54. Regular run $25–$75. Northlight Theatre, 9501 N Skokie, Skokie. northlight.org.

Dylan

11/23–12/22 Red Theater Chicago remounts this celebration of Dylan Thomas, the Welsh poet who advised against going gentle into that good night. Gage Wallace, quite effective as Thomas in Red Theater’s initial production of the piece, reprises the role. $16–$32. Red Theater Chicago at the Den Theatre, 1333 N Milwaukee. redtheater.org.

Great Expectations

11/11–12/14 A cast of six play more than 30 characters in Gale Childs Daly’s adaptation of the Dickens novel. $28. $24 seniors. Strawdog Theatre, 3829 N Broadway. strawdog.org.

Haunting Julia

Through 12/8 The father of a musical prodigy attempts to find out what drove his brilliant daughter to suicide. $18–$28. Eclipse Theatre at the Athenaeum, 2936 N Southport. eclipsetheatre.com.

CRITIC’S PICK

An Iliad

11/13–12/8 If you missed Timothy Edward Kane’s virtuosic one-man telling of Homer’s Greek epic (adapted by Denis O’Hare and Lisa Peterson) when it ran last year, now’s your chance to see one of the very best shows of 2012. $30–$60. Court Theatre, 5535 S Ellis. courttheatre.org.

It’s A Wonderful Life: The Radio Play

11/22–12/29 Stout-hearted George Bailey wages his annual holiday battle against town meanie Mr. Potter in a joyfully realized radio adaptation of Frank Capra’s omnipresent holiday classic. $25–$40. American Theater Company, 1909 W Byron. atcweb.org.

The Lord of the Flies

Through 11/10 Left to their own devices after a plane crash, English schoolboys devolve into savages in Nigel Williams’s chilling adaptation of William Golding’s hair-raising classic. $20. Steppenwolf Theatre Company, 1650 N Halsted. steppenwolf.org.

Master Class

Through 11/24 Kelli Harrington follows up her Jeff Award–winning turn in last year’s Light in the Piazza by taking on the formidable role of opera icon Maria Callas. $29–$34. Theo Ubique at the No Exit Cafe, 6970 N Glenwood. theo-u.com.

Motortown

Through 11/9 Simon Stephens’s drama explores the fate of an English vet who returns home to heartbreak and violence. $20–$22. Steep Theatre, 1115 W Berwyn. steeptheatre.com.

The Normal Heart

Through 12/22 The acclaimed director Nick Bowling takes on Larry Kramer’s seminal drama about AIDS in the early 1980s. $37–$50. Stage 773, 1225 W Belmont. timelinetheatre.com.

Northanger Abbey

Through 11/10 Joanie Schultz directs Annabel Armour in Jane Austen’s tale of a young woman whose habit of indulging in romantic literature leads her to suspect a murder has taken place. $42.50–$47.50. Remy Bumppo at the Greenhouse Theater Center, 2257 N Lincoln. remybumppo.org.

The Old Man And The Old Moon

Through 11/10 Writers Theatre teams up with New York’s award-winning PigPen Theatre Co. for a piece that combines folk music, shadow puppetry, and live action. $35—$70. 325 Tudor Ct, Glencoe. writerstheatre.org.

Paulus

11/7–12/15 The playwright Motti Lerner gets biblical with his examination of Paulus of Tarsus (a.k.a. the Apostle Paul), whose Christian proselytizing from 58 to 64 A.D. outraged both the Jewish establishment and Emperor Nero. Previews through 11/15, $25. Regular run $35. Silk Road Rising at the Chicago Temple Building, 77 W Washington. silkroadrising.org.

CRITIC’S PICK

A Raisin In The Sun

Through 11/17 The director Ron OJ Parson (The Mountaintop) helms a staging of Lorraine Hansberry’s hard-hitting classic, featuring the gifted actress Mildred Marie Langford (In Darfur). $22–$48. TimeLine Theatre, 615 W Wellington. timelinetheatre.com.

The Seafarer

11/27–1/05 An unexpected guest at a Christmas Eve poker game raises the stakes to devilish heights in Conor McPherson’s eerie, riveting testament to the power of blood ties and diabolical debts. $26–$30. Seanachai Theatre at the Den Theatre, 1333 N Milwaukee. seanachai.org.

Street Justice: Condition Red

11/1–12/14 Chicago cops try to catch a bad guy operating in the vein of Al Capone. Mike Ooi directs. Previews through 11/3. Regular run $10–$25. Factory Theater, 3504 N Elston. thefactorytheater.com.

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