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The week’s other openings

The Second City Does Baltimore; The Understudy; The Pirates of Penzance

The Second City Does BaltimoreCenter Stage, Baltimore(410) 332-0033Chicago’s famed comedy troupe “hits some obvious targets” in its spoof of Charm City, said The Baltimore Sun. Yet “there is a lot of fresh and funny stuff” in this partially improvised, ever-topical series of skits. It’s all quite cathartic, because, “let’s face it, Baltimore is ripe for satirizing.”

The UnderstudyLyric Stage Co., Boston(617) 585-5678This “incisive production” of a Theresa Rebeck play may well have “an unexpected resonance” for its recession-weary audience, said The Boston Globe. As a group of catty, insecure actors rehearse for a Broadway show that’s eventually scrapped, their plight becomes an uncomfortable reminder of “general workplace powerlessness.”

The Pirates of PenzanceChopin Theatre, Chicago(773) 989-7352“This is not your father’s Gilbert and Sullivan,” said the Chicago Tribune. But while changing the location of this tale of an apprentice pirate to a setting that looks like “the back porch of a Key West bar,” director Sean Graney’s version remains “true to the topsy-turvy spirit” of the 1879 operetta.

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