Studio Arena Theatre will premiere Lynn Nottage's political thriller "Mud, River, Stone" during preview performances at 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday in its theater space at 710 Main St. About an African-American couple who travel to Africa for a second honeymoon and to return to their ancestral roots, the play's previews will continue at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, and 8 p.m. next Thursday. Opening night will be at 8 p.m. Oct. 25, with regular performances continuing at 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday, 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 4 and 8 p.m. Saturday, and 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday, through Nov. 17 (except no evening show closing night, and a matinee at 2 p.m. Nov. 14).
"Murder in the Cathedral," by T.S. Eliot, will be opened by Shakespeare in Delaware Park at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 3107 Main St. Performances will continue at 7:30 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, plus 5 p.m. Sunday, through Nov. 10. Opening night will be a benefit show with a reception.
"Blithe Spirit," a comedy by Noel Coward about an unusual love triangle, will open at 7:30 p.m. next Thursday in the Irish Classical Theatre, 48 W. Chippewa St. Performances will continue at 7:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday, through Nov. 24 with a "pay-what-you-can" performance 3 p.m. Oct. 26.
"Joan of Arc: Alive!," a one-woman musical by Betsey Baun which suggests that the 15th century martyr was not burned at the stake, will open at 8 p.m. Friday in St. John's Grace Episcopal Church, 51 Colonial Circle, Lafayette and Richmond avenues. Produced by Jebb Productions with music by John Adamo, the play stars Bess Brown Kregal, along with soprano Jill Raisen Buerk, tenors Michael Sulzbachand and Marco Rodriguez. Shows will continue at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, through Oct. 26.
"A Piece of My Heart," Shirley Lauro's drama about six women who served in Vietnam, will be opened by the Four Seasons Players at 8 p.m. Friday in the Kenan Center's Taylor Theater, 433 Locust St., Lockport. Performances will continue at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, plus 7 p.m. Sunday, through Nov. 9 (except no show this Sunday).
"The Musical Comedy Murders of 1940," a comedy by John Bishop about aspects of Hollywood and the mystery of "the Stage Door Slasher," will open in Marvel Theatre, Rockefeller Arts Center, Fredonia State College, at 8 p.m. Friday. Performances will continue at 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, through Oct. 26.
Niagara University Theatre will open two productions this week, "Olympus on My Mind: The Musical Comedy," a musical spoof on Greek mythology with book and lyrics by Barry Harman and music by Grant Sturiale, and "Antigone," the classic tragedy by Sophocles.
Beginning at 7:30 p.m. Friday, performances of "Olympus on My Mind" will continue at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 25, Oct. 27 and Nov. 2; 2 p.m. Sunday and Nov. 3, and 8:30 p.m. Oct. 26 in Clet Hall Theatre on the university's main campus, Route 31. "Antigone," about two king's sons killed in a civil war they started, will be previewed at 7:30 p.m. next Thursday, with an opening show at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 26. Performances will continue at 2 p.m. Oct. 27 and Nov. 2, plus 7:30 p.m. Oct. 31 and Nov. 1.
"The Fox" by Alan Miller, adapted from a story by D.H. Lawrence, will be performed by the Forum Players at 8 p.m. next Thursday through Oct. 26 in the Genesee Community College Center for the Arts, One College Road, Batavia.
Ghostlight Theatre Company will open its production of "Mercy Mild," a dramatic comedy by L. Don Swartz, about a boardinghouse on Lake Champlain and its mysterious boarders, at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Grant School Theatre, Grant and Christianna streets. Performances will continue at 7:30 p.m. next Thursday and 8 p.m. Oct. 25 and 26.
Performances of "Natalie Needs a Nightie," a comedy by Neil and Caroline Shaffner, will continue at 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, through Oct. 26, plus a matinee at 2 p.m. Oct. 27, in South Buffalo Theatre, 2219 South Park Ave.
Dance performances this week include Feld Ballets/NY, a professional American original ballet company, at 8 p.m. next Thursday in Rockwell Hall Auditorium, Buffalo State College, 1300 Elmwood Ave.
Also, the University at Buffalo's Zodiaque dance company will present its fall dance concerts at 8 p.m. Thursday to Saturday, plus 2 p.m. Sunday, through Oct. 27 in the Center for the Arts Drama Theatre, UB North Campus.