By Heidi Masek firstname.lastname@example.org
• After JFK: Post-election, the Carriage Theatre Ensemble at New England College presents Kennedy’s Children. The play by Robert Patrick is inspired by “shattered dreams and lost hope,” in the wake of the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Set in a bar on Valentine’s Day 1974, Kennedy’s Children tells the story of five characters shaped by an era. It runs Thursday, Oct. 30, and Saturday, Nov. 1, at 8 p.m.; and Friday, Oct. 31, and Sunday, Nov. 2, at 3 p.m., at 35 Main St. in Henniker. Emma Laing directs. Tickets cost $5 and $7. Call 428-2485.
• Itching: A daughter in need of attention and a creature possibly prowling upstairs bedrooms factor into a Thanksgiving for one privileged, dysfunctional American family in The Pain and the Itch, by Bruce Norris. The social satire examines denial and its consequences. It originally premiered at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago. Now, Rolling Die Productions produces it at the Players’ Ring for four weekends. Todd Hunter directs. The Pain and the Itch runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 7 p.m. from Nov. 7 through Nov. 30 at the Players’ Ring, 105 Marcy St., Portsmouth (436-8123, playersring.org). Ticket costs range from $8 to $12.
• Hot Box: A showgirl, gamblers, and a missionary mix on the streets of New York in Guys and Dolls, based on a story by Damon Runyon. The Majestic Theatre presents it with musical direction by Jamie Feinberg. Candice Glickman directs and choreographs. See it Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. from Nov. 7 through Nov. 16, at 281 Cartier St. in Manchester. Ticket costs range from $10 to $16. Call 669-7469 or see www.majestictheatre.net.
• An answer to Wobegon: “Frost Heaves” is an old-fashioned radio-style show from musician and author Ken Sheldon. After an October performance, Sheldon returns to Peterborough as Fred Marple, representing Frost Heaves, “the most under-appreciated town in New Hampshire,” in Harvest Hijinks. Sheldon credits a successful first show to professionals collaborating on the project, including Kathy Manfre and Jon Egging of the Peterborough Players. See Harvest Hijinks at the Peterborough Players Friday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m. It sports a Thanksgiving theme, with turkeys discussing “the present crisis.” Tickets cost $12. Buy them at the door, Toadstool Bookshop or Steele’s in Peterborough, or call 924-7585. Visit www.frostheaves.com for video.
• New Will: Professional New Hampshire companies New Art Theatre and Advice to the Players collaborate for a contemporary interpretation of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. See it at the Dana Center at Saint Anselm College Thursday, Nov. 6, at 7 p.m. Visit www.anselm.edu/dana or call 641-7700 for tickets, which range in cost from $5 to $21.50. See www.newarttheatre.com or www.advicetotheplayers.org for details.
• Look back: “War Bonds: The Songs & Letters of World War II” is a musical revue interspersed with personal letters from the front and headline news of the period. See it Thursday, Nov. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the Franklin Opera House, 316 Central St in Franklin. Tickets cost $21.50 and $23.50. Call 934-1901.