It's impossible to guess the content of Roger Karshner's The Man with the Plastic Sandwich by its title. Is the setting a cooking show? Is the "man" a toy-maker creating plastic food for those miniature ovens lining the aisles of local toy stores? One certainly won't expect the play to be about a man suffering through a midlife crisis brought on by being fired from his job after 20 years of loyal service.

What a weekend it was for battles in the Quad Cities. Professional golfers matched strokes at the John Deere Classic. WCW wrestlers brawled at The MARK. But a battle of wits - a wrestling match of a subtler kind - was found at Rock Island's Lincoln Park on Saturday night in the Genesius Guild production of Shakespeare's Richard III.

One of the most difficult challenges directors face when working with a classic - particularly one such as The Wizard of Oz - is maintaining their vision while honoring the cherished memories every audience member holds. Georgia Jecklin, the director of Countryside Community Theatre's production of The Wizard of Oz, accomplished this difficult challenge in a delightfully creative way.

Seascape, the final production of the University of Iowa's Summer Rep season (called "Making Waves: An Edward Albee Festival"), is an interesting variation on a well-worn theme of the playwright: introspection.

The Show. Once upon a time long, long ago (over a half century), in a far away fantasy land (innocent, simple Iowa) there was a wonderful family (the completely believable, wholesome Frakes) who looked forward to a magical event (the yearly state fair) each summer that made a lot of their hard work (putting up pickles, making mince meat, raising livestock, etc.) seem like something special.

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