By John Thomason
By Benjy Caplan
By Artburst Miami
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Daniel Reskin
Barrio Hollywood: The New Theatre's latest world premiere has considerable potential: it's not only a play about boxing, it's also about Mexican-American culture, family loyalty and cross-cultural romance. To this add some imaginative staging by the New's Rafael de Acha and evocative, colorful production design and all signs point to superior stagecraft. Yet while each of these assets is on display in this world premiere, the sum of the parts doesn't add up to much impact.-- Ronald Mangravite Through November 14. New Theatre, 4120 Laguna St., Coral Gables; 305-443-5909).
Late Nite Catechism: Vicki Quade and Maripat Donovan's one-woman show starring Kathleen Stefano that has turned the Encore Room into a parochial school complete with holy cards, wooden rulers and one formidable nun who will be sure you do not chew gum, speak without permission or ever everforget your Easter duty. You've heard about Irish Alzheimer's? That's when you forget everything but the grudges. Should priests be allowed to marry? Only if they really, really love each other. You get the idea. -- Octavio Roca Through December 19. Coconut Grove Playhouse, Encore Room, 3500 Main Hwy.; 305-442-4000.
Miklat: The serious issues of Jewish identity and spiritual confusion are at the heart of Joshua Ford's funny comed. The play follows a bewildered American Jewish couple who arrive in Jersualem at the start of the 1991 Gulf War to visit their grad student son, only to learn he has become deeply religious and plans to wed the next day in an arranged marriage. The story runs out of gas before it ends and coasts to an easy, safe resolution, but the production features an accomplished cast and some snappy direction from Bill Castellino. -- Ronald Mangravite Presented through November 28 by Florida Stage, Plaza del Mar, 262 S. Ocean Blvd., Manaplan; 561-585-3433, 800-514-3837, www.floridastage.org.
Shear Madness: The funniest murder-mystery you'll ever see takes place at the Shear Madness Hair Salon in Coral Gables (nestled inside the Miracle Theatre), where two detectives enlist the help of the audience to figure out which of four suspects murdered a famous pianist residing upstairs. -- Dan Hudak Through January 2. Actors' Playhouse at the Miracle Theatre, 280 Miracle Mile, Coral Gables. 305-444-9293.
Vampire Lesbians of Sodom: Charles Busch's 1984 camp classic, one of Off-Broadway's longest-running hits, moves from the original Twin Cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to Hollywood in the Jazz Age then on to Las Vegas today. This enthusiastic production is a work of love by a troupe that may not know enough to savor Busch's lines but is nevertheless probably having a very good time putting on the show. There are worse things. -- Octavio Roca. In repertory with Sleeping Beauty, or Coma. Presented through December 18 by Sol Theatre Project, 1140 NE Flagler Dr., Fort Lauderdale; 954-525-6555, www.soltheatre.com.