On Stage This Week

Your weekly guide to Cleveland's theater offerings

All That Fall — This Samuel Beckett play, originally intended for radio, centers around elderly Maddy Rooney, who walks to the train station to meet her even older and blind husband, and then walks back home with him. (Howey) Produced by Cesear's Forum through October 16 at Kennedy's Down Under, 1615 Euclid Avenue. Tickets are $15; call 216-241-6000 or go to cesearsforum.com.

The Book of Grace — Suzan-Lori Parks' kitchen-sink drama often succeeds brilliantly thanks to some stellar performances. But ultimately it feels like there is a better play inside that is struggling to come out. It involves a white Texas border guard named Vet, his black son by Vet's long-deceased former wife, and Vet's current white wife Grace. The fences in these relationships, and the yawning holes that riddle those barriers, form the bulk of the play. Vet keeps obsequious Grace under his thumb, while Grace secretly writes in her titular tome, desperately trying to keep her optimism alive. (Howey) Through October 16 at Cleveland Public Theatre, 6415 Detroit Ave. Tickets are $22-$25; call 216-631-2727 or go to [email protected].

An Ideal Husband — The Great Lakes Theater crew spins Oscar Wilde's witticisms into a seamless symphony of laughter. Set in the hot-house environment of elegant London society, the play is mixed with just enough social relevance to give the whole enterprise more heft than you might expect. (Howey) Presented by the Great Lakes Theater Festival through October 31 at the Hanna Theatre, 2067 East 14th St. Tickets are $15-$70; call 216-241-6000 or go to greatlakestheater.org.

A Murder, a Mystery, and a Marriage —Actors' Summit revisits the popular musical-comedy in its brand-new home at Akron's Greystone Hall. Through November 7 at 103 South High St. in Akron. Tickets are $17 to $30; call 330-374-7568 or go to actorssummit.org.

My Fair Lady — Ask any theater buff to name the five best musicals of all time, and chances are My Fair Lady will make the list. Trouble is, there's more to a musical than music, and that's where this production at the Beck Center lacks a bit of traction. Although the singers acquit themselves admirably, backed by a lush 13-piece orchestra, much of the rest of the evening is bruised by barren staging, misdirected acting, and an enervating lack of pace. (Howey) Through October 17 at the Beck Center, 17801 Detroit Ave., Lakewood. Tickets are $10-$28; call 216-521-2540 or go to beckcenter.org.

Othello — Shakespeare's Othello has sometimes been described as a battle of wills between the noble Moor and his right-hand man Iago, but it's actually more like a stalking. Iago, a fully-formed psycho, is intent on destroying the blithely unsuspecting Othello, and this stirring production by the Great Lakes Theater Festival explores that conscienceless obsession with terrifying exactitude. (Howey) Presented by the Great Lakes Theater Festival through October 31 at the Hanna Theatre, 2067 East 14th St. Tickets are $15-$70; call 216-241-6000 or go to greatlakestheater.org.

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