If the play’s the thing and going to see plays is your thing, you doesn’t have to go far to enjoy live stage productions. In our area and within a 10- to 15-mile radius there are numerous theaters providing musical and dramatic presentations that can rival many of the theaters  downtown.  

The advantages of these theaters are a close proximity to home, parking and, in many instances, seeing our relatives, friends and neighbors become thespians.

Local high schools are always a place to see a show and showcase the talents of students, some of whom who have gone on to be in the entertainment field. 

Coming up in March is the musical Bye, Bye Birdie at Riverside-Brookfield High School. This feel-good musical will be presented March 6, 7 and 8 at the high school.

North Riverside Village Players have been strutting their stuff for 24 years with some great productions. They are currently in rehearsal for Singin’ in the Rain,  to be presented April 24-26 and May 3-5. Many of the cast are local residents who have enjoyed taking their bows on the stage at the Village Commons and are repeat performers.  As with most local theater groups, auditions are open not just to residents.

Going west the Theater of Western Springs has been in existence since 1929 and in April will be featuring the Kaufman and Hart classic The Man Who Came to Dinner. The company also features a children’s program.

The Jedlicka  Performing Arts Center at Morton College in Cicero has four more performances left of the riotous comedy Moon Over Buffalo. The last performance will be on March 7. According to Riversider Marianne Moravek, who attends many of the productions, it is one that should not be missed, and she praised those at the college for their professionalism.

Dominican University in River Forest also provides productions for both adult and child audiences. 

So if you are interested in seeing a play or you want to experience the “smell of the greasepaint and the roar of the crowd,” local theater could be your opportunity. Who knows, you could be on your way to an award-winning performance.