Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Forum for the Arts Community: Crisis and Opportunity, June 7

Received on-line:

Austin Creative Alliance

Austin Creative Alliance and Wyatt Brand Public Relations
sponsor a forum:

Crisis and Opportunity: An open, structured dialogue

Tuesday, June 7 from 6:00 - 7:30 p.m.

(with potential break-out discussions until 8:30 pm)

Mexican American Cultural Center Auditorium,600 River Street (click for map)

In light of recent transitions and critical issues cropping up in some of Austin's nonprofit arts and cultural institutions, Austin Creative Alliance has organized an open, structured dialogue in which any interested community member is invited to participate.

Their goal is to engage in a constructive process to address recent events, underlying issues, national trends, and proposed solutions with a specific outcome: to arrive at an honest and progress-centric document that we will issue to the community at large.

Topics will be collected on their Facebook event page and via email (dialogue@austincreativealliance.org) and then combined in advance to reflect the will and interest of engaged participants and ground-rules will be provided to give us the best chance of a productive process.

Subject to change, here are some initial topics they envision:

Should the current economic climate tighten belts or drive innovation?

What is the role of a trustee?

To what degree should organizations be accountable to the public?

How can non-profits understand and implement a new social/experience economic model?

How does Austin’s creative economy/climate reflect national trends?

What is the future of the non-profit model?

Austin Creative Alliance envisions this format being the basis for an ongoing series to address critical topics as they arise, as well as bringing in expert speakers to facilitate topic-centric discussions.

Images by Kimberley Mead: Lear, Vortex Repertory, May 20 - June 18

Images by Kimberley Mead:

Jennifer Underwood as Lear (image: Kimberley Mead)Vortex Repertory, Austin



by William Shakespeare in a new adaptation by Rudy Ramirez

starring Jennifer Underwood

directed by Rudy Ramirez

May 20 - June 18

Thursdays - Sundays at 8 p.m.

Vortex Repertory, 2307 Manor Rd. (click for map)

Jennifer Coy as Regan, Suzanne Balling as Cordelia (image: Kimberley Mead)

(Jennifer Coy as Regan, Suzanne Balling as Cordelia)

In an age when women hold more power and in a time when the media turns the private into the public a mother divides her empire among her daughters. As her world crumbles and her family turns its back on her, can she face the storm and find love, forgiveness, and peace? A Celtic legend made into a Renaissance masterpiece, The VORTEX now re-imagines William Shakespeare's King Lear as a female leader for the modern world, where globalization blurs the line between governments and corporations and names like Clinton, Palin, Thatcher, Stewart, Wintour, and Winfrey have inspired admiration, contempt and controversy. Jennifer Underwood leads a cast of Austin's finest actors in a story of gender and power, family and business, compassion and betrayal.

Click to view additional images by Kimberley Mead at AustinLiveTheatre.com. . . .

Hill Country Community Theatre Awards Scholarships

Received directly:

Hill Country Community Theatre

HCCT Awards $500 Drama Scholarships to Two Highland Lakes Area Grads

The Hill Country Community Theatre Board of Governors has awarded $500 drama scholarships to two Highland Lakes area students.

Caitlyn Thibodeaux, a 2011 graduate of Llano High School, and Duncan Hicks, a 2011 graduate of Marble Falls High School, will each receive an HCCT Phyl Holbert Memorial Scholarship. Both students have been active in theatre arts and both have performed in HCCT productions. Ms. Thibodeaux is planning to major in theater and business as New York University and Mr. Hicks plans to study vocal performance at Oklahoma City University.

“We are delighted to be able to award scholarships to these two outstanding students,” said HCCT Board President Maris Lynne Long.“HCCT’s Scholarship Program, along with its summer drama camp for youth, are important ways that the theatre gives back to the community. Both programs help HCCT achieve its mission of educating and encouraging participation in support of the performance arts,” she said.

HCCT’s Summer Drama Camp for Kids, open to children ages 6-12, will run June 6-17 at the theatre, 4003 West FM 2147, Cottonwood Shores. Thanks to donations by Pedernales Electric Cooperative employees and by the Highland Lakes Service League, along with individual donations, HCCT has also been able to offer a limited number of summer camp scholarships to children who would otherwise be unable to attend based on financial need.

Read more at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .

Sunday, May 29, 2011

NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman on Art: Necessary Because It's Unnecessary

NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman "I would argue that counter-intuitively, and even counter-logically, the value of art turns not on the notion that it is necessary but rather the opposite: we can live without it, but we don’t want to."

-- Rocco Landesman

From the NEA's blog Art Works:

NEA logo Art Works

Rocco Delivers the Blashfield Address

May 20, 2011
Washington, DC

On Wednesday, Rocco Landesman delivered the prestigious Blashfield Address at the American Academy of Arts and Letters in New York. The speech, which has been given in the past by luminaries such as John Updike, Robert Frost, Helen Keller, and Louise Glück, commemorated the induction of ten individuals into the academy’s ranks. The NEA sends its congratulations to artists Sylvia Plimack Mangold, Malcolm Morley, and James Turrell; authors Louis Begley and Michael Cunningham; U.S. Poet Laureate Rita Dove; composers Martin Boykan and Aaron Jay Kernis; architect Robert A.M. Stern; and sculptor-composer Walter De Maria.

Below is the full text of Rocco’s remarks.

“The Play’s the Thing”

2011 Blashfield Foundation Address
Delivered by NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman

Art is necessary because it is unnecessary. I will elaborate in a minute.

I have not been invited to give the Blashfield Address because I have made significant contributions to scholarship or have created remarkable works of art. To paraphrase Max Bialystock: I couldn’t—I was a Broadway producer.

Instead, I am here today because of my current position as chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. So I will begin by stepping happily into my assigned role, which is to make the case that the arts—most especially the theatrical arts, of course—are vital, important, and in a word, necessary. On the trading floor, this is called “talking your book,” and it’s what I do almost every day. We have a motto at the NEA, which is a two-word sentence with three meanings (and I think this audience might appreciate a triple entendre): “Art Works.”

The term refers first to the works of art themselves—what we fund at the NEA. Secondly, to the way in which art works on people. That is, the experience of art. And finally it refers to art as work, an important part of our economy and communities.

I have especially emphasized this last part, and have been traveling the country to show how a cultural presence in a neighborhood impacts civic engagement, child welfare, and economic growth. Those are especially useful talking points with Congress during the budget process.

But I would conjecture that not one of us in this room has embarked on a career in the arts (or letters) because of data that shows that art in schools reduces truancy by 35 percent, or that art in a city jumpstarts economic development. Most of us who have made a career in the arts did so because at one point in our lives we had an experience with a work of art that was indelible. The career chose us. This was something we had to do.

But why? What is it about this activity that is so compelling? What makes it so irresistible? This is a question for anthropologists, and they’re not exactly sure.

Read more at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .

Friday, May 27, 2011

Upcoming: Anything Goes by Cole Porter, Lee Colee Broadway Bound Summer Camp at Wimberley Playhouse, June 17 - 26

Received directly:

Wimberley Players

Wimberley Players

presentAnything Goes Lee Colee Atwood Summer Camp

Lee Colee's Kids Theater Boot Camp

Anything Goes

Written by P.G. Wodehouse, Guy Bolton, Russel Crouse, Howard Lindsay
Music & Lyrics by Cole Porter

Wimberley Playhouse, 450 Old Kyle Road, Wimberley, TX 78676

June 17 - June 26, 2011
Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday Matinees 2:30 p.m.

Special Ticket Pricing - $15

Tickets available on-line at www.wimberleyplayers.org or through the box office at 512-847-0575; please leave a message if no one answers.

The S.S. American, sailing from New York to England, carries an unusual group of passengers. Included amongst them are a gangster, a wealthy debutante, her mother, a nightclub singer, a wealthy New York businessman...and his stowaway assistant. All are involved in a series of comedic happenings that will leave you laughing and your toes tapping!

Be sure to come and watch these kids take the stage and wow you with their talent!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Arts Reporting: The Austin Lyric Opera in Crisis, by Paul E. Robinson

A thoughtful account and analysis by Paul Robinson at his blog www.theartoftheconductor.com, May 25:

The Austin Lyric Opera in Crisis: No Easy Answers!The Star, Austin Lyric Opera

by Paul E. Robinson

The news just keeps getting worse from opera companies across the United States. As the economy ever so slowly rights itself after a devastating recession, ticket buyers and generous donors are hard to find. Endowments have taken a tremendous hit from the stock market collapse. The New York City Opera has been struggling for years and recently announced that it would have to leave Lincoln Center in order to cut costs and remain in business. David Gockley, the San Francisco Opera’s highly-regarded General Director, said that his company was feeling the heat and needed to do some radical restructuring. While Texas has weathered the recession better than most states, the Austin Lyric Opera (ALO) finds itself in serious financial turmoil. General Director Kevin Patterson handed in his resignation in the face of a growing deficit.

ALO Repertoire: Popular Mix too Much for Austin?

Austin is neither New York nor San Francisco, either in size or in the importance of its opera company; it is, however, a vibrant and growing major population center (the Austin Metro area is about 1.4 million people) and problems facing its opera company are fairly representative of what’s facing cities all over the country.

The ALO’s current budget is $4.3 million and its season is comprised of three main stage productions – presented at the Long Center for the Performing Arts, with each opera given four performances. In addition, there are some smaller events and the ALO also runs the Armstrong Community Music School.

Under Kevin Patterson as General Director and Richard Buckley as Principal Conductor, the ALO has developed a reputation for excellent work and for deftly mixing standard fare with off-beat contemporary repertoire. This past season the ALO offered Jonathan Dove’s wonderful opera “Flight,” and the previous season it mounted a production of Chabrier’s rarely-heard opera, “L’Etoile. In 1997, it presented Philip Glass’ “Waiting for the Barbarians.” One of the AOL’s most enjoyable productions in recent years was an Austin-oriented version of “Die Fledermaus (The Bat).” As travelers to Austin probably know, one of the city’s prime tourist attractions is the daily emergence downtown, at sundown, of something like 1.5 million bats from under the Congress Street bridge.

On the whole, the ALO has given the community a consistently high quality of sophisticated and entertaining repertoire. Although there are few recognizable names among the singers, the mostly young and mostly American singers have been well-chosen and Buckley’s presence in the pit has guaranteed well-rehearsed and well-executed performances. Such quality comes at a price, however, and it is a price that the Austin community apparently is no longer either able to, or prepared to pay.

Several years ago the ALO moved from the Bass Hall on the University of Texas campus to the new Long Center downtown and the move was expected to be a boost for the company. The Bass Hall had 2,900 seats and the Dell Hall in the Long Center only 2,400. With fewer seats to fill, the ALO still averaged only about 45% capacity.

Read more at Robinson's blog The Art of the Conductor . . . .

Upcoming: Curses!, a melodrama, Playhouse Smithville, June 3 - 18

Received directly:

Playhouse Smithville

Curses by john daniels jr Playhouse Smithville

presents the First Annual Smithville Melodrama:


by john daniels, jr.

Fridays & Saturdays, June 3-18 at 7:30 pm

Playhouse Smithville, 110 Main Street, Smithville (click for map)

Tickets are just $10.00 and can be purchased at www.playhousesmithville.com or 512-360-7397.

Evil villains and dashing heroes play tug of war over the heroine. Audience members boo and toss popcorn when the villain appears, ooh and aah when the heroine glides across the stage and cheer when the hero arrives. Who will win the day? Will the heroine meet her dastardly fate tied to the train tracks (of course not!)? Will the hero fail to arrive in time (of course not!)? Will the villain succeed with his heinous plot (welllll....)? Join us for a fun trip through a melodrama with saltwater taffy and sasparilla on tap for all!

Prize-Winner: Mud Offerings by Nathalie Goodnow, RAW: Austin Interactive at Venue 222, June 16

Received directly and followed up on-line:

Natalie Marlena Goodnow Natalie Marlena Goodnow's Mud Offerings has just been awarded the the JANE CHAMBERS AWARD for feminist plays & performance texts created by women writers, presenting significant opportunities for female performers.

From the prize notification:

"We were struck with the feminist Chicana themes, the theatrical poetry, and the complex storytelling that you wove in this solo play. Kudos! And Thank You for sharing this work. Typically the Contest weights toward plays with more roles for female performers in them, so take it as testament to our vivid, shared excitement about your play that it won. We were compelled by this exquisite short work, so embodied and complex in its sense of character, history, sexuality, place, and religion. We are eager to share it with others (theaters and feminists)."
From the committee: Given in memory of lesbian playwright Jane Chambers, who through her plays such as My Blue Heaven, Last Summer at Bluefish Cove and Kudzu became a major feminist voice in American theater, the Jane Chambers Playwriting Contest welcomes experimentations in form as well as subject matter. Feminism is understood variously, and may cross diverse class, sex, race, national, ethnic, theatrical, and/or geographic perspectives. The Jane Chambers Contest winner receives $500 & a rehearsed reading of the winning play at ATHE’s annual mid-summer conference. First given in 1984, the award is sponsored by the Women and Theater Program (WTP) with generous support from the Association for Theater in Higher Education (ATHE), private donors, and university friends.

Mud Offerings

by Natalie Marlena Goodnow

Thursday, June 16, 2011 @ 8:00PM
Venue 222 | 222 East 6th Street | Austin, TX 78701
21+ event. Cocktail attire. Tickets are $10 via presale.

Purchase tickets here.

RAW events are multi-faceted artistic showcases. Each event features a film screening, musical performance, fashion show, art gallery, performance art and a featured hairstylist and makeup artist. These artists are all local, hand-picked talent who have been chosen to feature at RAW.

RAW events feature a cash bar for cocktails while you enjoy the night. Dress code is cocktail attire, so dress the occasion and get ready for an artistic circus of creativity!

And check out the award-winning "Mud Offerings"!

Natalie's blog: http://makinggoodnow.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Upcoming: Twelfth Night, Magick Theatre's Shakespeare in the Park, June 1 - 4

Found on-line:Twelfth Night, Magik Theatre at San Antonio Botanical Garden

Twelfth Night

Magik Theatre's Shakespeare in the Park, San Antonio
June 1-4, 2011

Produced by The Magik Theatre, Shakespeare in the Park is a FREE annual event that brings full-scale productions of Shakespeare's work to the entire community. Shakespeare in the Park brings San Antonians of all ages together in the balmy summer twilight to experience the joys, sorrows, trials, and triumphs of Shakespeare's characters and stories. Since 2005, Shakespeare in the Park has played to over 45,000 people, with vibrant, exciting productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Macbeth, The Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest, As You Like It and Romeo and Juliet. The festival has also provided employment for more than 50 local artists and technicians.

Location: San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston

Times: Gates open at 6:30PM and the performance begins at 8PM.

Tickets: Admission is free and lawn chairs and blankets are recommended for outdoor seating. No outside food or drinks will be allowed inside the gates. Food and drinks will be available for sale.

Contact: For more information call The Magik Theatre at 210.227.2751 or visit www.magiktheatre.org/events orwww.sabot.org

Upcoming: Footloose, Zilker Productions at Hillside Theatre, Zilker Park, July 8 - August 13

Found on-line:Footloose, Zilker Productions, Austin

Zilker Productions, Austin Tx



July 8 - August 13, Thursdays - Sundays
approx. 8:30 p.m. [at dusk]

Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theater
Located in Zilker Park across from Barton Springs Pool [theater info and map]

Admission: FREE! [parking: $3/car]

About Annie

Dancing is not a crime!

When Ren and his mother move from Chicago to a small farming town, he is prepared for the inevitable adjustment period at his new high school. But, what he isn't prepared for is the town's ban on dancing... instituted by the local preacher. When the reverend's rebellious daughter sets her sights on Ren, her roughneck boyfriend tries to sabotage Ren's reputation, and many of the locals are more than eager to believe the worst about the new kid.

The heartfelt story that emerges centers on a father longing for the son he lost, a young man aching for the father who walked out on him, and celebrates the wisdom of listening to young people... with a warm heart and an open mind.

Footloose: The Musical boasts a Tony-nominated score augmented with the rockin' rhythms of the hit songs from the movie, including:

  • Almost Paradise
  • Holding Out For A Hero
  • Let's Hear It For The Boy
  • and the title song... Footloose!

Upcoming: The Wiz, musical by Renaissance Guild, Jo Long Theatre at Little Carver Civic Center, San Antonio, July 8 - 24

Found on-line:

Renaissance Guild, San Antonio

presentsThe Wiz, Renaissance Guild, San Antonio

(Adapted from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum)
Book by William F. Brown, Music and lyrics by Charlie Smalls
Directed by Jonathan Pennington

Very many know the story of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, but in this new musical version it’s a fantasy for today – mysterious, opulent and fanciful – a dream conjured up by a space-age child with Dorothy’s adventures in the Land of Oz set to music in a dazzling, lively mixture of rock, gospel and soul.

While similar in plot to “The Wizard of Oz”, The Wiz (usually) uses an all-black cast to transform the show into a more fun, funky modern version. Dorothy, the little girl from Kansas is blown by a tornado into Munchkinland in the Land Of Oz. While there she meets the Scarecrow, the Tinman & the Cowardly Lion on the Yellow Brick Road. She defeats the evil witch and goes to see the powerful Wizard who turns out to be a phoney. However, he is able to convince Dorothy that she can do anything she wants if she just believes in herself. Dorothy also realizes the importance of home and her family.

“Radiates so much energy you can hardly sit in your seat … Great fun.” New York Post “A carnival of fun … Wickedly amusing.” Time Magazine “One of the most cyclonic blasts to hit Broadway in a long time.” Newsweek “A virtual musical circus … Driving rhythms, soaring songs … Boisterous, exuberant.” WABC

Get your tickets now! They are going fast! Tickets are $16 - $21

Click here to purchase at Ticketmaster or call ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000

Read cast list at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .

Upcoming: Tom Sawyer, the musical, Circle Arts Theatre, New Braunfels, July 7 - 31

Found on-line:

Circle Arts Theatre, New Braunfels, TX

New Braunfels


Tom Sawyer, the musical

July 7 - 31, Thursdays - Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.

Circle Arts Theatre, 124 Elizabeth Avenue, New Braunfels (click for map)

Purchase tickets on-line (tickets $15.75 and $17.85)

This toe tapping musical for the whole family brings new life to Mark Twain's classic story of Tom, Huck, and Becky.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Upcoming: A Yard Sale for the Weird Sisters' Theatre Collective, 109 Mildred Street, May 28

Received directly:

Weird Sisters Women's Theater Collective

Weird Sisters Women's Theater Collective

A fundraiser yard sale

by The Weird Sisters Women's Theater Collective

Saturday May 28th
109 Mildred St. (behind Juan in a Million)(click for a Google map)

Hello Weird Sister Fans!

The Weird Sisters Women’s Theater Collective is revving up for our SEVENTH Annual Production! We’ll be bringing our own twist to Shakespeare’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAMat Center Stage Texas Theater (formerly Arts on Real) the last two weekends in August.

We’re fun(d)raising in our usual ways, one of which is a BIG GARAGE SALE, to be held Saturday, May 28 next to Juan in a Million on Mildred Street. (Another is our DRAG PROM at Mercury Hall in late June–stay tuned for more details about that!) We’ll have all sorts of forgotten clothing, furniture, art, jewelry, knick-knacks, tools, toys, and such for sale, you won’t want to miss it! Thanks for your generosity and support–we do hope to see you at the Garage Sale, the Drag Prom, and the Play!

PS: Can’t make the garage sale or party? You can still help support us by making a small donation via PayPal on our website. See you there!

Keeping Shakespeare Weird since 2004
-The Weird Sisters www.weirdsisterscollective.com twitter.com/weirdsistersatx

Images by Kirk R. Tuck: Suzan-Lori Parks in rehearsal for The Book of Grace, Zach Theatre, June 2 - July 20

Published by Kirk R. Tuck at his blog The Visual Science Lab, May 23:

Kirk R. Tuck by Kirk R. Tuck (The Visual Science Lab at blogspot.com)

Monday, May 23, 2011
Photographing Suzan-Lori Parks at work. Behind the scenes at Zach.

Suzann-Lori Parks (image: Kirk R. Tuck)

Just like 90% of other humans I like to think I'm pretty smart. Reality? Probably right in the middle of the Bell Curve. Smart enough to know about the Bell Curve but not smart enough to make up my own curve. But my profession tends to give me reality checks all the time. Yesterday's reality check came courtesy my friends at Zachary Scott Theatre. They asked me to photograph Suzan-Lori Parks at work. Don't know who Suzan-Lori Parks is? See, we're all sitting right in the middle of the big Bell Curve....together.

Suzann-Lori Parks (image: Kirk R. Tuck)

Suzan-Lori Parks is the first woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for playwriting, is the recipient of a MacArthur Genius Award, won a Guggenheim, nominated for a Tony award, and so much more. She's in town to put the finishing touches and polish on her latest work, The Book of Grace. Here's what the folks at Zach have to say: . . . .

Click to read more and view additional images at Kirk R. Tucks blog The Visual Science Lab . . . .

Auditions for Henry V, Baron's Men, May 25

Found at www.austinactors.net:

The Baron's Men, Austin Texas

Henry V

The Baron's Men will be hosting auditions for their fall production of

Henry V

by William Shakespeare

on Wednesday, May 25,at 7 p.m. at The Curtain Theater - 7400 Coldwater Canyon, Austin, Texas 78730 (Google Map: http://tinyurl.com/TheCurtainTheater)

Performance dates at the Curtain Theatre: Sept. 30 – Oct. 1, Oct. 7-8, 14-15, and 21-22, 2011 at 8 p.m.

The director is Garrison Martt.

All parts are currently available. If you are interested in auditioning or would like more information, please contact Liegh Hegedus, Producer at TBMProducer@gmail.com

Audition sides will be provided or you may perform any Shakespearean monologue. Please keep monologues under 2 minutes. Bring a headshot and resume if you have one, but they are not necessary. We look forward to hearing from you! Contact: Liegh Hegedus TBMProducer@gmail.com

Short Take: Lear by Shakespeare, Vortex Repertory, May 20 - June 18

Jennifer Underwood in Lear, Vortex Repertory

Short take:

The Vortex version of Lear features several accomplished Austin actors, including most notably Jennifer Underwood in the title role, but director Rudy Ramirez trivializes Shakespeare's great epic of royal folly and delusion. Lear's rage against the storm is converted into a confused confrontation with paparazzi, and key narration is projected as sound-bites from MSNBC-style talking heads, proving that style can defeat substance. Cross-gender casting for the roles of Kent and Edda (Edgar) is puzzling; less so for Shannon Grounds as the Fool. Underwood doesn't really get going until the mad scene in Act IV, scene 6. Other standouts in the cast include Micah Goodding as the wily and wicked bastard Edmund, Jen Coy as Regan and Tom Truss as Cornwall. The last third or so of the production -- from the blinding of Gloucester onward -- has impact and conviction.

Upcoming: Peter Pan, Scottish Rite Children's Theatre, July 2 - August 14

Found on-line:

Scottish Rite Children's Theatre


Peter Pan Scottish Rite Children's Theatre
July 2 - August 14
Saturdays at 10 a.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.
Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for children ages one through 12, and $4 for infants under one year of age.
For more information and reservations, call (512) 472-5436 or visit www.srct.org.

Peter Pan, Tinkerbell and Wendy fly to Neverland for the Scottish Rite Children's Theatre summer production of Peter Pan. Created for children ages three to ten, the theatre show plays July 2nd through August 14th at the historic downtown Austin theatre. Written by D.H. Thompson and directed by Karen Jambon, this play will encourage children to "follow the second star to the right and straight on till' morning!" in an original, interactive theatre production set in Neverland - where there are no parents, candy is the breakfast of choice, and no one ever grows up. The audience is enlisted to "think happy thoughts" and help Peter defeat Neverland's biggest bully - the crooked Captain Hook.

Since 2004, the Scottish Rite Community and Children's Theatre has provided year-round, quality and affordable family entertainment for children. Since construction in 1869, the building - previously a Masonic Temple - has enjoyed a vibrant history hosting decades of theatrical productions and social events.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Video: The Mikado, Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Austin, June 9 - 19

Found on-line:

Gilbert and Sullivan of Austin

presents its summer 2011 grand production

The Mikado; or, The Town of Titipu

by Sir W. S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan

directed by Ralph MacPhail, Jr.

musical direction by Jeffrey Jones-Ragona

June 9-19 -- 9 Performances

Evening performances Thursdays, Fridays, & Saturdays at 8 p.m.

Matinees at 3 p.m., June 12, 18 & 19.

Special Children’s Activities Sunday, June 12 at 2 p.m.

Travis High School Performing Arts Center / 1211 E. Oltorf (click for Google map)

For information, visit www.gilbertsullivan.org or call (512) 472-4772

Click here to purchase tickets on-line

For group sales of 10 or more, contact Michael Meigs at(512) 420-0888 or michael@gilbertsullivan.org

The Gilbert & Sullivan Society of Austin is proud to present its Summer 2011 Grand Production of The Mikado; or, The Town of Titipu. The Mikado has delighted audiences for more than a century and is perhaps the most popular comic opera ever written. This quintessential satire of human nature represents Gilbert and Sullivan at the height of their creative geniuses. The Mikado is filled with masterful Gilbertian lyrics and magnificent Sullivanian musical “hits,” conveyed with orchestral brilliance. Populated with memorable characters and colorfully exotic costumes and sets, The Mikado is wildly funny. Audiences of all ages will be captivated by its hauntingly beautiful tunes and its colorful pageantry.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Images by S. Ragnar for The Irish Curse, Attic Rep at Trinity University, San Antonio, May 12 - 29

Images by www.sragnar.com



A Comedy About Guys With a Tiny Problem

by Martin Casella

directed by Roberto Prestigiacomo

May 12 - 29, Thursdays - Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2:30 p.m.

Attic Rep at Trinity University
1 Trinity Pl, Ruth Taylor Theatre Building (#3 and #3A on campus map - click to view)
San Antonio, TX 78212

THE IRISH CURSE is a revealing portrait of how men, and society, define masculinity. In doing so, it dares to pose the fundamental question that has been on the minds of men since the beginning of time: “Do I measure up to the next guy?” Size matters to a small group of men that meets every Wednesday night, in a Catholic church basement, at a self-help group for men with small penises. This allegedly Irish trait is the focus of their weekly whining and bitching as they feel this “shortcoming” has ruined their lives. One evening, when a twenty-something blue-collar guy joins the group, he challenges everything the other men thought about “the Irish curse” …tackling their obsession with body image and unmasking the comical and truthful questions of identity, masculinity, sex, relationships, and social status that define their lives.

Click to view additional images by S. Ragnar. . . .

Friday, May 20, 2011

Upcoming: Hedda Gabler, Classic Theatre, San Antonio, May 12 - 29

Hedda Gabler, Classic Theatre San Antonio, Asia Ciaravino

Mr. and Mrs. George Tesman return to Norway after six months of honeymoon in Europe. In their absence family friend Judge Brack has arranged the purchase of a city mansion at great expense and furnished it lavishly. Ibsen's Hedda Gabler opens on the morning after their arrival at the new residence and a new domestic life.

Allan S. Ross designed this set with meticulous detail. The audience has the time to study the heavy furniture, carpets, framed engravings, views into three additional rooms and a barely glimpsed horizon through the windows. As one listens to a querelous duet between piano and cello, the roseate illumination brings out the reds and purples. At stage right, rear, in his own pool of light, bearded and wearing his military decorations, the late General Gabler stares serenely out from his portrait.

This is a house, not a home. Everything is in its place, according to good taste, discreet expenditure and bourgeois standards. In the action that Ibsen unfolds for us, Hedda Gabler as the new mistress of the house is guarded in her reactions to everyone in these new circumstances. Having passed the age of coquettery, she married George Tesman for lack of anything better to do; now, having involuntarily made her nest with a passing comment about this particular manor, she finds herself obliged to live in it.

Asia Ciaravino is haunting in the title role. That quiet, watchful oval face is almost unblinking, She has the unconscious beauty of a woman who little cares whether others look at her or not.

In one sense, in Hedda Gabler Ibsen wrote a great thumping melodrama and resolved all the conflicts with a couple of pistol shots. One occurs far from the house and is described for us as the Greeks used to do at the conclusions of their tragedies. The second takes place in the final moments just behind a curtain in one of those alcoves as Hedda takes her own life. That's hardly giving anything away -- although the program states that Hedda Gabler was first presented in Dublin in 2008, that's referring to this adaptation by Brian Friel for the Gate Theatre. Hedda has been putting the pistol to her head since 1891, and many spectators echo the scandalized reaction of Judge Brack: "But people just don't do things like that!"

Click to read more at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .

Upcoming: The Little Dog Laughed, City Theatre, June 9 - July 3

Received directly:

City Theatre Austin

presentsThe Little Dog Laughed, City Theatre Austin

The Little Dog Laughed

by Douglas Carter Beane

June 9 - July 3, Thursdays – Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 5:30 p.m.

The City Theatre, 3823 Airport Blvd. – east corner of Airport Blvd. and 38 ½ Street (click for map)

Tickets $15 - $20. Guaranteed Front/2nd Row Reserved $25.

Students $12. Thursday all seats $10. Group discounts are available.

Reservations 512-524-2870 or info@citytheatreaustin.org


The Little Dog Laughed, City Theatre, Austin“Hell hath no fury like an agent scorned” seems to be the enduring message of Douglas Carter Beane’s The Little Dog Laughed, a sharp comedy that fiercely satirizes Hollywood wheeling and dealing and probes issues of gay identity in the popular media. The Tony-nominated play makes its Austin premier at the City Theatre, starring power-house actors Michelle Cheney and Victor Trevino, directed by Andy Berkovsky and Bridget Farias and running June 9 – July 3.

Yes, we love the cinema for its great film makers, its beautiful faces and its daring images. But in this tabloid age where big stars go on Oprah and jump around like heartsick schoolboys, what we really love is all that dish! The players here include a hard-driving Hollywood agent, her budding screen idol client, a sexy young drifter, and the drifter's naive, needy girlfriend. The Little Dog Laughed follows the adventures of Mitchell Green (Victor Trevino), a movie star who could hit big if it weren't for one teensy-weensy problem. His agent, Diane (Michelle Cheney), can't seem to keep him in the closet. Trying to help him navigate Hollywood's choppy waters, the devilish Diane is doing all she can to keep Mitchell away from the cute rent boy (Micah Sudduth) who's caught his eye and the rent boy's girlfriend (Keylee Koop)… wait, the rent boy has a girlfriend? Will there be a happy ending as the final credits roll?

Douglas Carter Beane is considered one of the best new American playwrights writing for the stage today. His works include the screenplay of To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar, and several plays and musicals including As Bees in Honey Drown, Sister Act, the musical, Xanada and Little Dog which was nominated for the 2007 Tony Award for Best Play. The City Theatre is very excited to have two phenomenal performers lead the cast of the show. Victor Trevino has been working professionally as an actor for over twenty years with performances in major theatres across the U.S. and with roles in films and television including American Me, Big City, The X-Files, Pee-Wee’s Playhouse and General Hospital. And enough can’t be said about Michelle Cheney, a veteran of the CTC stage and countless Austin theatre companies. She has starred in Into the Woods, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, Guys and Dolls, Noises Off and is a recent Austin B. Iden Payne theatre award winner. Rounding out the cast are two young and talented actors Keylee Koop (City Theatre’s Buried Child) and Micah Sudduth (Zach Scott’s Take Me Out). The production is directed by Bridget Farias, Artistic Director of the EmilyAnn Theatre and Andy Berkovsky, City Theatre Artistic Director and three-time B. Iden Payne theatre award nominee for outstanding director.

The City Theatre Company is a non-profit arts organization and is sponsored in part by the Greater Austin Creative Alliance, the Austin Cultural Arts Division and the AMD Foundation. CTC is dedicated in providing quality theatre experience and entertainment for Austin artists and its community.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Upcoming: Seller Door by Larry Mitchell, Sustainable Theatre at East End Flats, June 3 -

Found on-line:

Sustainable Theatre Project, Austin

Seller Door by Larry Mitchell, Sustainable Theatre Project


Seller Door

by Larry Mitchell

June 3 - June 19

Fridays & Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 5 p.m. Monday, June 13 is Industry Night.

East End Flats, 2931 E 12th Street (click for map)
Tickets: $10 - $20 per person
Info Phone: 512-534-0692

Seller Door is a play about a barker, and the people he gets to go through a door and what happens to those people once they go through. A careful and crafted blend of sharp, concise movement with a strong focus on the precision of the words. Approached through the lens of the silent comedy masters, Chaplin and Keaton for the specificity of movement. Seller Door carries a quick wit and much of the humor comes from a specific focus on pace and rhythm.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Budget Update from Texas Commission for the Arts, May 17

Just received via a non-profit arts organization:Burning of the Theatre in Richmond

Texas Commission on the Arts
May 17, 2011
TCA Legislative Update

Late yesterday, the Joint Conference Committee adopted the Senate's version of the budget regarding the Texas Commission on the Arts. This includes a budget of $3.7 million annually (a reduction of approximately 50%) and a 30% staff reduction (down to 12 employees).

The other option under consideration that did not pass was the House version of the budget which would have resulted in the transfer of an additional $3.5 million from TCA to the Department of Aging and Disability Services. Passage of that version of the budget could have resulted in TCA's closure.

Next steps are adoption of a final budget which must then be signed by Governor Rick Perry. Governor Perry has up to three weeks following the end of session on May 30th to veto specific aspects of the budget.

TCA will continue to provide updates on the legislative process. In the meantime, questions should be directed to Gary Gibbs, TCA executive director, at <gary.gibbs@arts.state.tx.us> or Gaye Greever McElwain, TCA director of communications at <gaye@arts.state.tx.us>.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Love's Labor's Lost, Austin Shakespeare at Hillside Theatre, Zilker Park, May 5 - 29

Love's Labor's Lost, Austin Shakespeare

Robert Faires' imaginative staging of Love's Labor's Lost takes place at the Sheffield Hillside Theatre in Zilker Park, literally a stone's throw away from Barton Springs pool. Spectators spread out blankets or set up lawn chairs in the sloped meadow above the playing area and settle in for the pleasures of free entertainment for a Texas evening in May.

Love's Labor's Lost is one of Shakespeare's earliest comedies and not one of the world's favorites. The language is rich and strange, certainly to a contemporary ear, with lots of quibbles, puns, and references that might have knocked 'em over back in the late 1500's but today come across as dense and obscure.

The concept seemed to be a stretch. How were director Faires and that energetic young cast going to fit the King of Navarre, the Princess of France, fantastical Spaniard Don Adriano de Armado and sundry counselors and ladies in waiting into an Annette Funicello-Frankie Avalon 1963 beach blanket bingo world?

Having made his reputation with the histories of Henry VI and Richard III, Shakespeare was drawing on events of recent history for this lighthearted comedy. He was parodying Henri of Navarre, a contemporary and an English ally in the religious wars until Henri abruptly converted to Catholicism in 1593, shortly before Shakespeare wrote this piece. Henri was reported to be of an intellectual turn of mind and he had received visits from a French princess and the French queen, celebrated with festivities and entertainments. References to other current topics and events are frequent. Shakespeare's characters both noble and common obsess with words and elaborate wordplay.

Read more at AustinLiveTheatre.com . . . .

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Upcoming: Silent No More breast cancer benefit performance by CheVonceil Echols, Renaissance Guild, San Antonio, May 20-21

Received directly:

This evening of poetry, movement and sign language will help you feel, embrace, learn and celebrate the honor of those who fight against breast cancer.

May 20 & 21 at the Little Carver Civic Center, Sasn Antonio, 8 p.m.

Click for further information and to purchase tickets

Friday, May 13, 2011

Upcoming: The King and I by Rodgers & Hammerstein, Tex-Arts Youth Production, June 24 - 26

Found on-line:

The King and I, Tex-Arts Youth Production, Lakeway, TexasTex-Arts Youth Production

The King and I

June 24 - June 26
Friday, June 24 - 6 pm
Saturday, June 25 - 4 pm & 7 pm
Sunday June 26 - 1 pm and 4 pm
TexARTS Kam and James Morris Theater, 2300 Lohmans Spur, Lakeway (click for map)
Tickets are $15 each.

East meets west in the timeless story of “The King and I.” Based on the real life adventures of English widow Anna Leonowens, “The King and I” follows the stubborn, autocratic King of Siam and a determined governess on a mission to tutor the King’s many children and wives. A fascinating tale about a clash of customs set in Bangkok in the 1860s, this Tony Award® winning musical features a dazzling score by Rodgers and Hammerstein and amazing choreography that will thrill audiences young and old!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Upcoming: Hairspray, Zach Theatre, June 16 - August 28

Found on-line:

June 16 - August 28

Book by MARK O'DONNELL & THOMAS MEEHAN | Music by MARC SHAIMAN | Lyrics by MARC SHAIMAN & SCOTT WHITTMAN | Based on the 1988 JOHN WATERS film | Directed by DAVE STEAKLEY | Musical Direction by ALLEN ROBERTSON | Choreography by ROBIN LEWIS

ZACH's GLBT Hairspray Wilde Party is July 7th.

Move over Baltimore! Austin is the new home for Hairspray -- the soultastic, hair hoppin’, dance-til-you-drop musical! Big girl Tracy Turnblad has big ideas about teasin’ to stratospheric hairdo heights while dancing on the Corny Collins TV record hop countdown, and instigating a change that’s gonna come. When this equality cutie starts back-combing and bee-bopping across the racial divide, the bigots can’t stop the beat. John Waters’ campy film inspiration and ZACH Artistic Director Dave Steakley are a match made in ozone-depleting, the higher-the-hair-the-closer-to-God, Beehive heaven!

Upcoming: I Saw Fire, a Texas tall tale by Freddy Carnes, City Theatre, July 9 - 17

Found on-line at www.FreddyCarnesProductions.com:

Freddy Carnes (www.freddycarnesproductions.com)

I Saw Fire: The Story of Cowboy Chris
A Texas Tall Tale by Freddy Carnes,

recommended for ages 5-up
Summer Acts! Theater Festival, City Theatre 3823 Airport Blvd. (behind the Shell station - click for map)
Tickets: $10/Adults $7/Children under 12
For tickets and info email: freddycarnes@yahoo.com

A young boy loses his pa and sister in a fire. He is raised by wolves and is finally reunited with his family. A funny and heart-warming musical of hope and family starring Freddy Carnes as Cowboy Chris. 10 new original songs including "I Saw Fire" and "Old Paint"!!

Sat. July 9, 2011 - 12:00 p.m. (Noon)
Sat. July 9, 2011 - 2:00 p.m.
Thurs. July 14, 2011 - 7:00 p.m.
Sat. July 16, 2011 - 12:00 p.m.(Noon)
Sat. July 16, 2011 - 2:00 p.m.
Sun. July 17, 2011 - 8:00 p.m.