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posted: 1/24/2014 10:00 AM

Theater events: Clockwise stages 'Doubting Thomas'

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Faith vs. certainty

Doug McDade, of Chicago's Shattered Globe Theatre, directs Clockwise Theatre's production of "Doubting Thomas," an examination of faith by John Green. Rooted in the playwright's own lifelong spiritual pursuits, the drama centers on a conflicted young, born-again Christian named Thomas who seeks resolution to his uncertainty from his pastor and from his comparative religions professor.

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Opens at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 24, at 221 N. Genesee St., Waukegan. $20. (800) 838-3006 or clockwisetheatre.org.

High-seas humor

Once again, First Folio Theatre heats up winter with a comedy. This time it's Tom Stoppard's 1984 farce "Rough Crossing." Inspired by Ferenc Molnar's "Play at the Castle," "Rough Crossing" unfolds on an ocean liner whose passengers include a couple of playwrights, their jealous composer, his beloved and her amorous co-star, all of whom are attempting to rehearse their Broadway-bound play and untangle their romantic entanglements. Alison C. Vesely directs a cast that includes ensemble members Christian Kray, Kevin McKillip, Rene Ruelas and David Rice among others.

Previews begin at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 29, at Mayslake Peabody Estate, 1717 W. 31st St., Oak Brook. The show opens Feb. 1. $22-$37. (630) 986-8067 or firstfolio.org.

'Plainsong' premiere

For its second production of the 2013-14 season, Signal Ensemble Theatre presents the Chicago-area premiere of Kent Haruf's lovely, lyrical novel "Plainsong," adapted by Eric Schmiedl. Ensemble member Bries Vannon directs the deeply compassionate drama about the residents of a fictional Colorado town, including a father raising his young sons alone and a pregnant teenager befriended by aging bachelor brothers.

Previews begin at 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 30, at 1802 W. Berenice Ave., Chicago. The show opens Feb. 1. $10-$20. (773) 698-7389 or signalensemble.com.

-- Barbara Vitello

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