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Our critics weigh in on local theater

Macbeth: Verdi's take on Shakespeare's "Scottish play." Through Dec. 2. War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness (at Grove), 864-3330,

Monday Night Improv Jam: It's been all around town, doubled then disappeared ... and now it returns. It's still $5 and will feature long form improv, presented by you the improvisers of SF. We'll have a new host each week and look forward to sponsor groups as well. Mondays, 8 p.m. Continues through Dec. 31, $5, Off-Market Theater, 965 Mission (at Fifth St.), 896-6477,

Monday Night Marsh: Each week a different lineup of musicians, actors, performance artists, and others take the stage at this regular event that's hosted local celebs like Josh Kornbluth and Marga Gomez in the past; see for a lineup of future shows. Mondays, $7. The Marsh, 1062 Valencia (at 22nd St.), 826-5750,

The Mousetrap: Agatha Christie's whodunit. Nov. 23-Dec. 17. Dean Lesher Regional Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic (at Locust), Walnut Creek, 925-943-7469,

Murder Mystery Dinner: A dinner that begins with detectives gathering to split $5 million in royalties from their latest book. Includes fruit and cheese reception and three-course dinner. Beverages available for purchase. One Saturday a month. Call for specific date. Saturdays, 6:30 p.m., $85, The Archbishop's Mansion, 1000 Fulton (at Steiner), 563-7872.

Necessity of Hank: In this psychedelic dramedy set within the confines of a dentist's office and told from two perspectives, Hank explores issues of keeping up appearances and illusive self-respect. Through Dec. 15. Exit Theatre, 156 Eddy (at Taylor), 673-3847,

No Such Thing: A low-level corporate employee experiences a series of tumultuous events in his personal and professional life. Through Dec. 1. New Langton Arts, 1246 Folsom (at Eighth St.), 626-5416,

Oh, Lady! Lady!!: A young man's wedding plans are derailed by a vampy former flame, a jewel thief out for one last spree, and an imperious future mother-in-law who has a shocking secret. Nov. 23-Dec. 16. Eureka Theatre, 215 Jackson (at Front), 788-7469,

Race Is a Lie: A drama by River Jackson in rhyming couplets of iambic pentameter. Through Nov. 30, $15-$20, 800-838-3006. SF Playhouse Stage 2, 533 Sutter (at Powell) Second Fl..

Rake's Progress: A morality tale that cautions of the outcome of a dissolute life, while portraying such a life in imaginatively graphic terms. Nov. 23-Dec. 9. War Memorial Opera House, 301 Van Ness (at Grove), 864-3330,

Seussical, the Musical: A musical romp through the world of Dr. Seuss. Through Dec. 2. The Ashby Stage, 1901 Ashby (at MLK Jr.), Berkeley, 510-841-6500.

Shopping! The Musical: Songs and sketches about shopping. Daily, $23-$29, Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter (at Powell), 433-1226,

Solohouse: A new monthly showcase presented and directed by W. Kamau Bell, one of San Francisco's finest comedians. Sundays. Continues through Dec. 2, $10. Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter (at Powell), 433-1226,

Staircase: One of the first gay plays to tackle Broadway and the big screen. Through Dec. 16, $15-$35. Theatre Rhinoceros, 2926 16th St. (at South Van Ness), 861-5079,

Stardust and Empty Wagons: A tribute to the culture, music, and everyday life of a New Orleans now struggling to be reborn. Through Nov. 29. Brava Theater Center, 2781 24th St. (at York), 647-2822.

Teatro ZinZanni: A bewitching evening of European cabaret, cirque arts, theatrical spectacle, and original live music, all blended with a five-course gourmet dinner, set in the nightclub of your dreams, now in its eighth season in San Francisco. Current show is The Royale Invitation. Wednesdays-Saturdays, 6 p.m., $116-$140, 438-2668, Pier 29, Embarcadero (at Battery), 273-1620.

Troy: Gates of Hell: Drama directed by Mohammad Kowsar. Through Dec. 2, SFSU Campus/Little Theater, 1600 Holloway (at 19th Ave.) (Creative Arts Bldg.), 338-2467.

The Velveteen Rabbit: Featuring ODC/Dance's energetic and imaginative dancing and recorded narration by legendary actor Geoff Hoyle, this production is fun for the whole family. Nov. 23-Dec. 9. Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater, 700 Howard (at Third St.), 978-2787.

Very Special Money & Run Winter Season Holiday Special: An Impact Theatre holiday special directed by Jeremy Forbing. Through Dec. 22. La Val's Subterranean Theater, 1834 Euclid (at Hearst), Berkeley, 510-234-6046.

Yugen Presents: A series showcasing experimental and Asian-based performing artists. No regular schedule; check Web site for upcoming dates. Daily, $10-15, Noh Space, 2840 Mariposa (at Florida), 621-7978.

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