Pressley, Nelson, The Washington Times (Washington, DC)
* Barrymore - National Theatre - Christopher Plummer in his Tony-winning role as John Barrymore working at Richard III in William Luce's play. Opens Nov. 3. 800/447-7400.
* Dr. Faustus - George Mason University Center for the Arts - Christopher Marlowe's Elizabethan tragedy about selling one's soul for a lifetime of fulfilled wishes. Opens Nov. 4. 703/993-8888.
* Goodnight Irene - Theater J - Lee Mikeska Gardner directs Ari Roth's play about a journalist who discovers unsettling news and sees his life transformed because of it. Previews begin Oct. 31 at the Cecile Goldman Theater. Opens Nov. 5. 800/494-TIXS.
* June Bride - Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company - Sara Felder's comedic solo turn about her traditional Jewish lesbian wedding. Previews begin Nov. 9. Opens Nov. 11. 703/218-6500.
* The Lion in Winter - Round House Theatre - Jerry Whiddon and Tana Hicken star in this production, with Baltimore's Everyman Theatre, of James Goldman's drama about King Henry II. Opens Nov. 11. 301/217-3300.
* The Magic Fire - Kennedy Center, Eisenhower Theater - The Kennedy Center and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival team up in this play about a family marooned in Buenos Aires at the time of Eva Peron's death. Opens Nov. 7 . 202/467-4600.
* Neville's Island - Rep Stage - Kasi Campbell directs Tim Firth's play about corporate executives marooned on a desert island. Opens Oct. 30 at Howard Community College. 410/772-4900.
* Nijinsky's Last Dance - Signature Theatre - Joe Calarco directs Norman Allen's look at Russian ballet dancer Vaslav Nijinsky. Opens Nov. 3. 703/218-6500.
* Thunder Knocking on the Door - Arena Stage - Keith Glover's play about a Delta blues-guitar showdown, with original music by Keb' Mo' and Anderson Edwards. Opens Nov. 6. 202/488-4377.
* Twelfth Night - Shakespeare Theatre - Daniel Fish directs Shakespeare's classic comedy. Opens Nov. 3. 202/547-1122, 202/332-3300.
* The Captain's Tiger - Kennedy Center, Eisenhower Theater - THREE AND ONE-HALF STARS. Playwright-actor Athol Fugard offers a lovely and insightful glimpse of his beginnings as a writer. The relatively short, intermissionless three-character drama (which plays like a deceptively casual memoir) is set aboard a tramp steamer in the early 1950s. There, the young Fugard - serving as the captain's helper, or "tiger" - hammers out his first hopeful pages and has useful conversations with his illiterate shipmate and his first fictional character, based on his mother. Mr. Fugard (who stars and co-directs) acts with easy charm, and the lessons in art are fascinating. Through Nov. 1. 202/467-4600.
* The Chalk Garden - Washington Stage Guild - Enid Bagnold's play about what happens to a troubled girl and her stubborn grandmother when a stranger moves into their home. Through Nov. 29. 202/529-2084.
* The Changeling - Georgetown Theatre Company. Thomas Middleton's 1623 revenge play. At Grace Church through Oct. 31. 703/578-4710.
* Expecting Isabel - Arena Stage - TWO AND ONE-HALF STARS. Former Arena Stage head Douglas C. Wager returns to direct Lisa Loomer's humorous play about a childless couple trying the myriad modern methods of having a baby. The emotional horrors built into the material could make you cry all night. In fact, the tale gets sluggish, but Miss Loomer's script is breezy, and Mr. Wager keeps the comic rhythm snappy. …