Despite the heat, pumpkins and scarecrows have already begun their slow creep into every corner of the Sunshine State. Sure, pumpkin spice lattes (maybe martinis) and that perfectly crafted Halloween costume moment are on the itinerary, but what do you plan to see on the stage this October?
In Tampa Bay and Pinellas, we have an extensive pick of plays and productions at a theatre nearest you. Here’s a lineup of spooky, spectacular, and spine-tingling shows in our neck of the woods.
This list is written and compiled by Abby Baker, and if you don’t see your theater on here, feel free to shoot me an email to get on the list for next month.
If you’re going to see any of the productions on this list, these five American Stage-selected events are must-dos for the new to theatre-goers and those seasoned on the scene. These are the most unique, dramatic, and one-of-kind selections. Here’s why.
#1 freeFall Theatre
All Things Equal: The Life and Trials of Ruth Bader Ginsburg (Oct. 6-23)
6099 Central Ave., St. Pete
freeFall is known for its insightful, delightfully unconventional pieces, and October’s upcoming biopic-esque drama is something different, but in that same vein. All Things Equal will give audience members a look into the rich, inspiring, and sometimes heart-breaking life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Supreme Court Justice RBG is someone that we know, but we don’t really know. Perspective inside how she became the inspiring woman she is today is something I’m definitely looking forward to.
#2 Jobsite Theater
Dracula (Oct. 21-Nov. 13)
1010 N. Macinnes Pl., Tampa
Jobsite knows what Halloween is all about. The Tampa theatre is showing playwright Steven Dietz’s adaptation of the bloodthirsty story of Dracula. Whether you’re a horror fan or not, this is obviously a classic story made better with the knowledge that Halloween is just around the corner. Plus, Jobsite has made it no secret that they’re adding special effects. I’m not sure what that will look like via-live theatre, but I’m ready to feel like an unsuspecting London resident with a subconscious fear of vampires.
#3 Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
Guys and Dolls (Oct. 5-Nov. 20)
1012 N. Orange Ave., Sarasota
This is a Sarasota-based theatre company that supports and lifts up Black actors, creators, and professionals unwaveringly. I have no doubt that their depiction of the ‘50s cinema classic, Guys and Dolls will be more inclusive, while keeping the glamour and nail-biting drama of the story. NYC gamling king Nathan Detriot tries to cheat, win, and stay out of prison. His colleague gambler, Sky Masterton, seduces a missionary in an effort to fund the games. I’d like to see what Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe does with this narrative, plus, they’ve released that there will be a local twist.
#4 Straz Center for the Performing Arts
The Avenue Q (Sept.22-Oct. 9)
1010 . W C MacInnes Pl., Tampa
Avenue Q is an adult production following an unconventional band of puppets who live on Avenue Q, a ragtag street resembling perhaps New York City or Chicago. The main character, Princeton, is a recent avenue transplant who's just moved to the puppet-filled town. This is a classic laugh out loud comedy starring American Stage’s own John Perez. Perez is hilarious, animated character, and I’m not just saying that because I work in the same office as him. It’s a hit, and it took a hit after Hurricane Ian caused performance cancellations. See this modern “Sesame Street” for adults-style comedy meets while you can.
#5 Urbanite Theatre
The Burdens (Oct. 21-Nov. 27)
1487 2nd St., Sarasota
Have you ever had a life-changing, earth-shattering conversation with someone over text? Watch that come to life on the Sarasota stage during Urbantite Theatre’s The Burdens. Brother and sister duo, Mordy and Jane decide to scheme up a plan to murder their cranky, unlikeable, and finanically burdersome grandfather. A plot such as this is disturbing, to say the least. However, it’s made light through a series of gasp-worthy and misspelled text messages. In a world where so much of our relationships are played out over a screen, this could provide some context to how we live.
Florida Studio Theatre (FTS)
The ‘70s: More Than a Decade (Oct.5)
1241 North Palm Ave., Sarasota
Studio @ 620
Ann by Holland Taylor: An Encore Production (Oct. 5-16)
620 1st Ave S.., St. Petersburg
American Stage First Mondays
Staged reading of Homecoming ‘92 by John Bavoso (Oct.10)
163 3rd St. N., St Pete
Asolo Repertory Theatre
Looking for Ithaca: An Odyssey (Oct. 3-Nov. 2)
5555 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota
Studio Grand Central
Vino Veritas (Oct. 6-9)
2260 1st Ave. S., St. Pete
Stage West Playhouse
All My Sons (Sept. 30-Oct. 9)
8390 Forest Oaks Blvd., Spring Hill
Francis Wilson Playhouse
The Drowsy Chaperone (Oct. 13-30)
302 Seminole St., Clearwater
The Drowsy Chaperone (Oct 14-30)
1010 N. W.C. MacInnes Place Tampa.
Bits 'N Pieces Puppet Theatre
Rumpelstiltskin (Oct. 14-15)
12904 Tom Gallagher Rd., Dover.
St. Petersburg City Theatre
The Addams Family (Oct. 14-23)
4025 31st St. S., St. Pete
Think Tank Theatre
The Lightning Thief - The Percy Jackson Musical (Oct. 15-23)
1120 East Kennedy Blvd, Tampa
Studio Grand Central
A Haunted Cabernet (Oct. 21-23)
2260 1st Ave. S., St. Pete
West Coast Players
I Ought to Be in Pictures (Oct. 21-27)
21905 US-19, Clearwater
Carrollwood Community Players
Krazy Karaoke Black Box – Interactive Musical Cabaret (Oct. 28-29)
4333 Gunn Hwy, Tampa
Eight O'clock Theatre
The Wedding Singer - The Musical (Oct. 28-Nov. 6)
105 Central Park Dr, Largo
Early Bird Dinner Theatre
Beau Jest (Sept. 11th – Oct. 23rd)
13355, 49th St, N, Clearwater
The Lab Theatre Project
The Abbey of the Holy Lonesome (Oct. 20-Nov. 6)
812 E Henderson Ave., Tampa