behanding picTheir last offering may have offered a Woolf, but this one’s going to really have some sharp teeth.

After rolling out a well-executed and stylish take on a classic, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”, the District Theater is offering a local debut by a notoriously darkly hilarious theatrical genius.

“A Behanding in Spokane,” offered next up by the Rock Island hot spot from May 13-21 is by the award-winning Irish playwright Martin McDonagh, author of such masterworks as “The Pillowman,” which the District did a fantastic job producing, and “In Bruges,” which was made into a successful and critically acclaimed film with Colin Farrell.

“Behanding” will have showings Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 2p.m. at District Theatre in the former Rock Island Argus Building, 1724 4th Ave, Rock Island, IL 61201.

Tickets $20 on Friday, Saturday and Sunday  (groups rates available), $10 special on Thursday. For tickets, see www.districttheatre.com.

Directed by Michael Turcynski, the play offers an intriguing path to brilliant dark comedy. The title is just the starting point; take a man searching for his missing hand (Brant Peitersen), two con artists out to make a few hundred bucks (Liv Lyman and Jordan McGinnis), and an overly curious hotel clerk (Aaron Lord), and the rest is a dark recipe for an evening of awkward yet boisterous laughter.

The New York Times lauded the show, writing that it was “A perfect, demented marriage of character and environment… you can’t help grinning like a fool.”

You’ll be grinning too. Definitely check it out. It’ll be unlike anything else you see on stages this summer – in a very good way.

Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written almost 30 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.