Five Reasons to Leave the House This Weekend

Including a Marc Maron show, an Emma Donoghue reading and a revival of Matt & Ben.

Photo by Nina Subin

Photo by Nina Subin

Emma Donoghue at Harvard Bookstore

A fan of psychological thrillers? Irish-Canadian author Emma Donoghue might have your next fix. Donoghue, who is best known for her 2010 novel Room (made into last year’s acclaimed film, which earned her an Oscar nomination for her script adapting the book), will be reading from her newest novel this Friday. The Wonder takes place after the Great Famine in Ireland, centering on an 11-year-old girl who refuses to eat. A book signing will follow the reading, and for those who read Room but never got to see the movie, the Brattle will also be screening the film after the event (ticketed separately). Donoghue will also be back next month, when she takes part in a panel at the Boston Book Festival.

 $5–$28, Friday, September 23, 6 p.m., Brattle Theatre, 40 Brattle St., Cambridge, 617-661-1515,

Marc Maron

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Marc Maron at The Wilbur

If you’re unfamiliar with Marc Maron’s dry humor (and missed seeing him during the years he lived in Boston), it’s time to get acquainted. With a handful of published essays and books, an acclaimed podcast (WTF with Marc Maron, proclaimed a “cult hit and a must-listen in show business and comedy circles” by the New York Times, with enough cultural cachet to earn a visit from the president), a TV show on IFC and two decades of writing and performing under his belt, Maron’s bound to leave an impression. After all, he was once shortlisted for TIME’s 100 Most Influential People.

 $29–$42, Saturday, September 24, 7 p.m., 9:45 p.m., The Wilbur, 246 Tremont St., 617-248-9700,

Courtesy of Lauren Chapman and Libby Schap

Courtesy of Lauren Chapman and Libby Schap

Matt and Ben at Riot Theater

How did Matt Damon and Ben Affleck come up with Good Will Hunting? In 2004, Dartmouth graduates Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers answered with a sketch that purportedly launched Kaling’s writing career. Their hypothesis: The script fell from the sky and into the laps of two friends in Somerville. Starting this weekend, Matt and Ben returns to Boston for one Saturday a month until December, this time performed and produced by Massachusetts natives Libby Schap and Lauren Chapman. Schap says that one of the reasons behind the revival was due to its setting. “We loved that the play was written by two people from Mass, about two people from Mass, performed by two people from Mass,” she says. Chapman adds, “One thing I love about this show is [that] we don’t get a traditional ‘theatre crowd.’ This show is for people who love comedy, love Boston or just love laughing for an hour.”

$15, September 24–December 17, 8 p.m., The Riot Theater, 146A South St., Jamaica Plain, 617-942-0294,

Lloyd Cooney (Lieut. Langon) and Liam Heslin (Capt. Brennan) in The Plough and the Stars. Courtesy of American Repertory Theater.

Lloyd Cooney (Lieut. Langon) and Liam Heslin (Capt. Brennan) in The Plough and the Stars. Courtesy of American Repertory Theater.

The Plough and the Stars at Loeb Drama Center

Loeb Drama Center is bringing Ireland in 1916 to Cambridge in 2016 with Sean O’Casey’s The Plough and the Stars, which follows the lives of a family in a tenement in Dublin during the Easter Rising, when an armed insurrection in Ireland strove to overthrow English rule before being brutally suppressed. Staged by Olivier Award-winning Sean Holmes, the production has been widely praised, with the Washington Post saying, “It’s a grubby milieu that screams poverty and hardship, yet as always the O’Casey characters are joltingly alive.”–a timely commemoration during the centenary of the play’s historic events.

$25, September 24–October 9, Loeb Drama Center, 64 Brattle St., Cambridge, 617-547-8300,

Photo by Marco Borggreve

Photo by Marco Borggreve

Andris Nelson and Lang Lang at Symphony Hall

Boston Symphony Orchestra’s renowned music director Andris Nelsons will be conducting Chinese pianist Lang Lang in an all-Russian program this Saturday night. The performance will feature Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No.3, one of the most popular twentieth century concertos, along with pieces by composers Dmitri Shostakovich and Modest Mussorgsky.

$95–$300, Saturday, September 24, 6 p.m, Symphony Hall, 301 Massachusetts Ave., 617-266-1492,