RENT: THE BROADWAY TOUR | No kidding: Adam Pascal and Anthony Rapp were Broadway's original Roger Davis and Mark Cohen, and they played those roles in the 2005 film, as well. There's also Gwen Stewart as the original Broadway "Seasons of Love" soloist and Justin Johnson and Michael McElroy from the final Broadway company of Rent, which closed in September of last year. Jonathan Larson's hit musical about a New York City artist community in the late 1980s is a loose modernization of Puccini's La bohème, so the deal, of course, is that none of the eight central characters, half of whom are HIV positive, can afford to pay the title commodity. But they're a potent potpourri of personalities who evoke sympathy even though they're essentially deadbeats and drug addicts. If you've seen Hair or Tommy, then you know the drill — fight the power and sing some snazzy tunes along the way. Michael Greif, who in 1996 received an Obie for Rent as well as Tony and Drama Desk nominations, directs. | Colonial Theatre, 106 Boylston St, Boston | 800.982.ARTS | Through July 26 | Curtain 7:30 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri | 2 + 8 pm Sat | 2 + 7:30 pm Sun | $40-$70

SHH! | Naming itself after a theater built in Boston in 1792, when the stage was frowned upon, New Exhibition Room offers as its first project this "world premiere exploring the role of censorship in a free society in all its contradictory, offensive, cheeky, and constitutionally questionable gore . . . er, glory." The production, we're advised "will likely contain nudity, violence, and adult language and content." | Boston Playwrights' Theatre, 949 Comm Ave, Boston |www.brownpapertickets.com/event/69085| Through July 25 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | Free

STONES IN HIS POCKETS | Sean Dillon and Seton Brown star in Marie Jones's 1998 comedy about two men in County Kerry who get jobs as extras for the shooting of a Hollywood film that's looking to perpetuate the usual Hollywood stereotypes about Ireland. In the course of the play, our heroes portray all 15 characters, who include the film's snooty British director and its prima donna American star. Kennedy Center Gold Medallion recipient Steve Reynolds directs. | Cape Rep Theatre, 1772 Main St, Brewster | 508.896.1888 | Through July 25 | Curtain 8 pm Thurs-Sat | $22

TRUE WEST | The Williamstown Theatre Festival continues its Mainstage season with Sam Shepard's 1980 mythic comedy about disparate brothers — one an Ivy-League–educated screenwriter, the other a petty thief and desperado — encroaching on each other's territories until their identities bleed into a tragicomic pool of home wreckage and violence. Also on Shepard's plate: the loss of the authentic West and a whole lot of toast. Daniel Goldstein directs; Nate Corddry, Paul Sparks, Stephen Kunken, and Debra Jo Rupp make up the cast. | Williamstown Theatre Festival Mainstage, 1000 Main St, Rte 2, Williamstown | 413.597.3400 | Through July 26 | Curtain 3 + 8 pm Thurs | 8 pm Fri | 4 + 8:30 pm Sat | 2 pm Sun | $45-$59

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Related: Play by play: July 17, 2009, Play by play: July 31, 2009, Year in Theater: Staged right, More more >
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