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"The New Century" The Richmond Triangle Players opens its latest season with Paul Rudnick's comedy of four short plays opening Oct. 2 at the HatTheatre and continuing production through Oct. 25. $20-$25. 1124 Westbriar Drive. 346-8113.

"New Works Festival" Richmond Ballet presents a performance of four original works in progress, opening Sept. 30 and continuing through Oct. 4. $30. 407 E. Canal St. 800-982-2787.

"The Ugly Duckling" Theatre IV presents a family-friendly musical inspired by Hans Christian Anderson's tale of outer appearance and inner heart at the Empire Theatre Oct. 2 and through Oct. 18. $12-$15. 114 W. Broad St. 344-8040.

"Shining City" The Henley Street Theatre Company begins its 2009-2010 season with playwright Conor McPherson's Tony Award-nominated play about a guilt-ridden man and the therapist he seeks out after seeing the ghost of his recently deceased wife. This contemporary ghost story exploring life, death, faith, and relationships opens Oct. 1 and continues through Oct. 24. $10-$20. 4901 Old Brook Road. 340-0115.


"Boleros for the Disenchanted" Barksdale Theatre launches its 2009-2010 season and the Hispanic Theatre Project with a play by Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Jose Rivera ("The Motorcycle Diaries"), following the story of a Puerto Rican couple pursuing the elusive American dream. Featuring authentic boleros choreography by the Latin Ballet, the play continues through Oct. 25. $35-$38. 1601 Willow Lawn Drive. 282-2620.

"Boys' Life" The Firehouse Theatre opens its 2009-2010 season with a story following the misadventures of three former college friends as they pursue and refuse adulthood in the Roaring '20s. Written by Howard Korder, the production runs through Oct. 3. 1609 W. Broad St. 355-2001.

"Murder in the Court" The Mystery Dinner Playhouse performs a murder-mystery comedy featuring a courtroom backdrop, complete with judge, jury and executioner, at the Holiday Inn West End. Performances Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. through Oct. 10. $42. 2000 Staples Mill Road. 649-2583.

"The Mystery of Irma Vepp" Swift Creek Mill Theatre opens its 2009-2010 season with Charles Ludlam's gothic satire featuring vampires, werewolves and mummies (all played by two actors). Production continues through Oct. 31. $35. 17401 Jefferson Davis Highway in Colonial Heights. 748-5203.

"Psycho Beach Party" Theatre VCU presents a comedic spoof of '60s beach movies and '70s slasher flicks, following the twisted world of Chicklet Forrest, a teenage tomboy with a campy variety of split personalities. Production continues Oct. 1-3 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 4 at 3 p.m. $8-$20. Single Performing Arts Center. 922 Park Ave. 828-6026.

"Souvenir" Barksdale Theatre presents this musically-inclined comedy following the true story of Florence Foster Jenkins, a tone-deaf New York society matron whose foghorn croonings became the talk of Carnegie Hall. Production continues through Nov. 1 at Hanover Tavern. $35-$38. 13181 Hanover Courthouse Road. 282-2620.

"Take a Chance on Love" The Cultural Arts Center at Glen Allen welcomes the Henrico Theatre Company as it presents this situation comedy about a newspaper editor and his attempt to convince his shareholding ex-wives to sell the publication. The play continues production through Oct. 4. $8-$10. 2880 Mountain Road. 501-5859.

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