Come with me to the theater? Play productions are beginning to sprout like colorful weeds all over the region. Here’s what’s opening soon or playing now:
THE EXECUTIONER’S SONS by Catherine Bush
Directed by Terri Ferguson
Runs February 5-19, 2011
Echo Theatre Bath House Cultural Center Dallas TX
Set in 1483, this play revolves around the King’s Executioner, who lives in the Tower of London. A dark comedy about love, family, loyalty … and disembowelment! says Echo Theatre’s promo.
What intrigues me about this show is it features four children under age 9, all of whom have theatre juice throbbing in their veins. Lily McCollum’s mom is Echo regular Kristin McCollum and dad is Rob McCollum, who just wowed regional audiences as “Man in the Chair” in Theatre Three’s The Drowsy Chaperone. He’s also anchor for Good Morning, Texas. Marlhy Murphy broke hearts as one of the Tiny Tims in Dallas Theater Center’s recent A Christmas Carol and tours with her own rock band. Father and son duo Wm. Paul and Stuart Williams get to enact their off stage relationship, with Wm. Paul portraying The Executioner.
- Jaxson Beeson rounds out the youthful foursome, the son of versatile, respected, regional actor Shane Beeson. With that much theatre-savvy juvenile energy on one stage something dynamite is sure to happen. Ensemble includes: Jessica Cavanaugh, Kevin Moore and Jack O’Donnell.
Broken Gears Project Theatre
CREDITORS by August Strindberg
directed by Rene Moreno
Runs February 14 through March 3, 2011
3819 Fairmount St., near Dallas Observer Building www.brokengearstheatre.com
Photo by Daylon Walton
One heck of a nasty lovers’ triangle! Its unexpected venomous depths and lethal twists and turns only a mad genius wordsmith like Strindberg could make stage-worthy. Features a highly combustible, intriguing trio of experienced actors with equally compelling personas: Evan Fuller, Meredith Morton and Elias Taylorson. Bringing in leading regional artist Rene Moreno to direct ups the ante for youngish troupe Broken Gears. This could be one of the performances of the year. An original adaptation that respects the historical tenor of the work while lending it modern accessibility.
“But they felt that there was one-whose eye could see them in the darkness-and they grew frightened-and their fright raised the specter of the absent one-his figure began to assume immense proportion-it metamorphosed: turned into a nightmare that …had the power to disturb their slumber…he became the creditor knocking at all the doors.” CREDITORS, August Srindberg
MEMPHOS! by Matthew Posey
Feb. 19 through March 5, 2011
@ The Ochre House 825 Exposition Avenue, Dallas
Ginger Barry photo, Ross Mackey Poster
“You’ll laugh so hard you’ll hate the world.”
That devilish Mastermind Matt Posey is at it again, with his own amazing brand of theatrical absurdity stirred ‘til smooth with a pinch of commentary on human fallibility. This time it plays out in a 1930’s Vaudeville act on the skids. Impresario clown Memphos “is obsessed with the notion of actually being able to transcend, through ancient rituals, to defy death, reach “the other side”, and return to the living unscathed…This obsession blinds him to the realities of the world around him.” The future is about to leave him in another universe. Brimming with magic, romance, dreams and unfulfilled longing this dark, quirky comedy will explore inner depths and soar to unimagined heights. Features Ross Mackey’s original music influenced by jazz styling. Cast includes all Matt’s reg’lars: himself, Elizabeth Evans, Trenton Stephenson, Ross Mackey, Mitchell Parrack and Kevin Grammer as an opportunistic business manager with his sights firmly set on 1930’s Hollywood.
RED HOT PATRIOT: THE KICK-ASS WIT OF MOLLY IVINS
photo by Kirk R. Tuck
Runs January 25, 2011 – March 13, 2011
Kleberg Stage: Zachary Scott Theatre Austin TX
Austin’s Barbara Chisolm stars in the Texas premiere of this tribute to unstoppable, irreverent Texas journalist, populist heroine and original truth-teller Molly Ivins, which featured Kathleen Turner at its opening in Philadelphia last year. “The play, written by the twin sisters Margaret and Allison Engel, centers on Ms. Ivins’s efforts to write a column about her father, a powerful Houston oil and gas executive. This proves difficult, revealing much about her personal and professional life. “Playing Molly is balls-out fun,” Ms. Chisholm said. “With this play, I have to go to a place where my heart and mind are wide open.” The challenge, she added, is to honor Ms. Ivins’s memory and convey her “extreme generosity and unapologetic love of people” to a hometown audience that will probably include many people who knew and were influenced by her.” 1/20/2011 NY Times Molly, who gave the nickname Shrub to a Texas governor who occupied the White House for a spell, has been my long-time journalist idol and hero. It will be an honor to review this play in its Texas production premiere. I’ll probably cry like Boehner.
Anybody dare to join me for some small house theatre that aspires to create real art? I almost always have an extra seat to spare…you’re welcome to join me as long as you pick no fights in the line to the bathroom at intermission….