Catch “Boy” (Theatrical Outfit), “The Christians” (Actor’s Express) and “Sense and Sensibility” (Synchronicity) through Oct. 15; “Bengal Tiger” closes Sunday at 7 Stages; and “The Ghastly Dreadfuls” returns Wednesday at the Center for Puppetry Arts. Pictured (from left): Tom Key, Clifton Guterman in the Outfit’s “Boy.” Photo by David Woolf Photography.

** Indicates an Encore Atlanta fall/winter season top pick. See them all HERE.

Recommended

Joe Sykes. Photo: Stungun Photography

Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo. CLOSES SUNDAY. 7 Stages begins its season with this Pulitzer-nominated drama from playwright Rajiv Joseph (Gruesome Playground Injuries). The lives of two U.S. Marines and their Iraqi translator are irrevocably changed when they meet a tiger who haunts Baghdad’s rubble-strewn streets. Co-artistic director Michael Haverty directs a cast that features Kevin Stillwell as the Tiger and includes Paris Benjamin, Marium Khalid, Rudy Roushdi, Joe Sykes, Markell Williams and Sam Younis. The drama had a limited run on Broadway in 2011 with Robin Williams as the tiger. $22 and up. 8 tonight-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. 1105 Euclid Ave. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.7647.

** Boy. THROUGH OCT. 15. At Theatrical Outfit. The Huffington Post called this drama “a smart, fresh transgender-play twist” and said, “It’s likely there are none like this one, certainly not any more beautifully realized.” Anna Ziegler’s 2016 piece spans 22 years and begins in 1968 Iowa after an accident, when a doctor persuades the parents of an infant boy to raise him as a girl. The drama is based on a true story. Atlanta actor Clifton Guterman, the Outfit’s associate artistic director, plays the title role. He’s directed by frequent collaborator Melissa Foulger, making her Outfit debut. Also in the cast: Daryl Lisa Fazio, Matt Lewis, Annie York and Outfit artistic director Tom Key. $22.50-$49. 7:30 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 2:30 + 7:30 p.m. Saturday; and 2:30 p.m. Sunday. The Balzer Theater at Herren’s, 84 Luckie St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 678.528.1500.

Brian Kurlander. Photo: Studio 7 Photography

** The Christians. THROUGH OCT. 15. This 2014 script by Lucas Hnath (Broadway’s A Doll’s House, Part 2) asks how far you’ll go for something to believe in. Actor’s Express calls it “a provocative excavation of modern faith.” The setting is a megachurch that’s rocked when its pastor discards fundamentalist Christianity for something more inclusive. Director Freddie Ashley’s cast is led by Brian Kurlander and Enoch King. Expect to hear church choirs, too. $28 (subject to change). 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. At the King Plow Arts Center, 887 West Marietta St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.607.7469. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.

Marianne Fraulo (from left), Christy Clark, Bobbi Lynn Scott, Carolyn Cook. Photo: Greg Mooney

** Project Dawn. THROUGH OCT. 29. At Horizon Theatre. This fact-based drama shows both sides of the judicial system as it depicts a program dedicated to rehabilitating sex workers instead of punishing them. Seven actors double as victims/participants and court staff. Artistic director Lisa Adler leads a cast of familiar Atlanta faces (Lane CarlockCarolyn CookMarianne FrauloMaria Rodriguez-SagerBobbi Lynne Scott) and some that should be familiar soon: Brooke Owens, a Suzi Bass Award nominee for Synchronicity’s Anne Boleyn; and Christy Clark, Horizon’s Blackberry Daze). This National New Play Network rolling world premiere was written by Karen Hartman, who used a revolutionary Philadelphia court as the basis for her script. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 3 + 8:30 p.m. Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. 1083 Austin Ave. at Euclid Avenue. $25 and up. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.584.7450.

“Sense and Sensibility”: Shelli Delgado (from left), Marcie Millard, Michelle Pokopac, J.L. Reed, Robert Lee Hindsman, Rachel Mewbron, Jennifer Schottstaedt. Photo: Jerry Siegel

** Sense and Sensibility. THROUGH OCT. 15. A regional premiere at Synchronicity Theatre. Jane Austen is fun. Just ask playwright Kate Hamill. Her 2014 adaptation of the beloved novel ratchets up the energy level, using inventive staging and a cast of 10 to play the Dashwoods, the Ferrars and a busy bunch of gossips that show just how much privacy the private lives of Georgian-era Brits lacked. Artistic director Rachel May directs an athletic cast led by Shelli Delgado as Elinor Dashwood, Jennifer Schottstaedt as Marianne Dashwood, Justin Walker as Edward Ferrars and Bryant Smith as Colonel Brandon. $30. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday; 5 p.m. Sunday. One Peachtree Pointe in Midtown, 1545 Peachtree St. NE.  Details, tickets HERE or at 404.484.8636.

Opening this week

The Ghastly Dreadfuls. Photo: Center for Puppetry Arts

The Ghastly Dreadfuls. OPENS OCT. 11. A Center for Puppetry Arts offering for the 18-and-up crowd. This spooktacular musical annually salutes the season of ghosts and goblins. Written by artistic director Jon Ludwig and puppeteer Jason Hines. The ghoulish cast once again includes Scott DePoy, Reay Kaplan Maxwell and Spencer Stephens. A Ghastly Ghathering Halloween Party welcomes them back from the dead at 7 p.m. this Saturday ($30). Show tickets $24. Through Oct. 28. 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday. 1404 Spring St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391.

Dani Herd (left), Matt Nitchie. Photo: Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse

Macbeth. PREVIEWS TONIGHT | OPENS FRIDAY. At the Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse. One fateful evening, three weird sisters greet Macbeth and Banquo with visions of what could be. Is it their magical prophecies, or Macbeth and his wife and their hunger for power, that sets in motion some of the most murderous events that Scotland has ever seen? With Matt Nitchie as Macbeth and Dani Herd as Lady Macbeth. Pub menu and libations available. $15 preview tonight; regularly $22-$45. Through Oct. 29. 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 6:30 p.m. Sunday. 99 Peachtree St. NE (across from Emory University Hospital Midtown). Details, tickets HERE or at 404.874.5299. Discount gift cards at PoshDealz.com.

Closing this week

The Seven Deadly Sins. TONIGHT + FRIDAY. The Atlanta Opera starts its season with an intimate cabaret experience that looks at the duality of the character(s) Anna I and Anna II, two sides of the same woman. She embarks on a seven-city pursuit of the American Dream, uncovering envy, gluttony, greed, lust, pride, sloth and wrath along the way. The Kurt WeillBertolt Brecht piece was first performed in 1933. Serenbe Playhouse Artistic Director Brian Clowdus directs his first opera; Rolando Salazar conducts. Only VIP seating at $80 and $150 remains). 7:30 nightly. Performed at Le Maison Rouge at Paris on Ponce as part of the opera’s Discoveries series, 716 Ponce de Leon Place NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.881.8885.

[MORE: BRECHT & WEILL COLLEAGUES NOT BUDDIES

Wicket. CLOSES SATURDAY. World premiere. Many Bothans died in the making of this musical parody, say the folks at Dad’s Garage Theatre CompanyWicket tells the classic Star Wars tale from the Ewoks’ perspective, which means they’ll sing, dance and share the true story of life inside the Galactic Federation. Not recommended for anyone not cool with adult humor. Kennesaw State’s Rick Lombardo (Little Shop of Horrors at Actor’s Express) directs, with script & lyrics by Travis Sharp and score & lyrics by Haddon Kime. $12.50-$29.50 (always cheapest online). 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday. 569 Ezzard St. SE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.523.3141.

Still running

Lee Osorio (left), Diany Rodriguez. Photo: Chris Bartelski

** Abigail/1702. THROUGH OCT. 15. Aurora Theatre catches up with Abigail Williams from Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. It’s 10 years later, and she’s haunted by the lives she ruined and the blood on her hands. Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa’s 2012 script finds her in Boston, seeking salvation. Justin Anderson directs a cast led by Diany Rodriguez. You may know Aguirre-Sacasa from Say You Love Satan (Dad’s Garage, 2001), Weird Comic Book Fantasy (Dad’s, 2003) and Good Boys and True (Actor’s Express, 2010). This 90-minute drama has no intermission and contains mature themes. $20-$55. 8 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 2:30 + 8 p.m. Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. 128 E. Pike St., Lawrenceville. $20-$55. Free, covered, attached parking in city deck at 153 E. Crogan St. Details, tickets HERE or at  678.226.6222. Discounts at PoshDealz.com.

Photo: Center for Puppetry Arts

Charlotte’s Web. THROUGH OCT. 22. At the Center for Puppetry Arts. E.B. White’s novel comes to life with Wilbur the pig, Charlotte the spider and other barnyard animals portrayed with Czech Black and rod puppets. The cast: head puppeteer Amy Sweeney, Dolph Amick, Nikolas Carleo, Anna Caudle and Brian Harrison. $9.75 members, $19.50 nonmembers plus tax. 10 + 11:30 a.m. Wednesday-Friday; 11 a.m. + 1 p.m. Saturday; 1 + 3 p.m. Sunday. 1404 Spring St. NW. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.873.3391.

Dial M for Murder. THROUGH OCT. 15. At Stage Door Players. Frederick Knott’s killer drama follows a man who married his wife for money and now plans to kill her. An alibi, a blackmail scheme and Scotland Yard are all part of the action before the case gets cracked. Kate Donadio MacQueen directs a cast that includes Charles Green, David Alan Grindstaff, Kristin Markiton, Chad N. Martin, Doyle Reynolds and Robert Egizio, Stage Door’s producing artistic director. $15-$33. 8 p.m. Thursday-Saturday; 2:30 p.m. Sunday. At the North DeKalb Cultural Center, 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road, Dunwoody. Details, tickets HERE or at 770.396.1726.

Otello. SATURDAY & TUESDAY. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra presents a mash-up of theater (William Shakespeare) and opera (Giuseppe Verdi). Verdi’s Otello propels you through Shakespeare’s stormy seas, soaring love duet, tender “Ave Maria” and crushing conclusion. Music director Robert Spano conducts. Tenor Russell Thomas sings the title role, with Mary Elizabeth Williams as Desdemona and Nmon Ford as Iago. $22-$97. 8 nightly. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.

Photo illustration: BreeAnne Clowdus

The Sleepy Hollow Experience. THROUGH NOV. 5. Serenbe Playhouse reprises its annual Halloween season spook-tacular with a new twist or two. This year’s edition features a new adaptation by artistic director Brian Clowdus and family performances at 2 p.m. Sundays throughout October, with a pumpkin patch, harvest games, popcorn, hot cider and a chance to meet the actors before the show and at intermission (grounds open at 1 p.m.). This season’s cast: Jennifer Alice Acker and Brandon Partrick as Storytellers, Blake Burgess as Brom Bones, Erin Burnett as Katrina Van Tassel and Chris Mayers as Ichabod Crane. Note: This is a traveling performance without seating, but chairs can be requested through the box office. $15-$40. Regularly at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Thursday; 8 + 10:30 p.m. Friday-Saturday; and 8 p.m. Sunday. Performed in the Horse’s Meadow at Serenbe. 10950 Hutchesons Ferry Road, Chattahoochee Hills. Details, tickets HERE or at 770.463.1110. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.

Next week

Michael Gandolfi

Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. OCT. 12 + 14. Chic. Inspired. Eclectic. Fun. Take a sonic journey with music director Robert Spano and the ASO. The program features the world premiere of American composer Michael Gandolfi’s A Garden Feeds also the Soul; Croatian-born composer/pianist Dejan Lazić in his own Piano Concerto “In Istrian Style”; and Rachmaninov’s Third Symphony. $22-$97. 8 nightly. Symphony Hall, Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree St. NE. Details, tickets HERE or at 404.733.5000. Discount tickets at PoshDealz.com.

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About Kathy Janich

Kathy Janich, Encore Atlanta’s editor, is a longtime arts journalist who has been seeing, working in or writing about the performing arts for most of her life. She's a member of the Theatre Communications Group, the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, Americans for the Arts and the National Arts Marketing Project.

View all posts by Kathy Janich