Wednesday, November 30, 2011

American Bear by Larry Mitchell, Theatre en Bloc at the Hideout Theatre, November 25 - December 17

American Bear Larry Mitchell

Larry Mitchell's American Bear has an undeclared kinship with the 'kitchen sink' school of drama of 1950s Britain, grim depictions of working class life pioneered by John Osborne's Look Back in Anger (curiously enough, also playing in Austin this week and next). Sam Shepard has explored similar terrain and Tracy Letts followed him there with sardonic tales you might call the Grand Guignols of Trailer Park Trash.

American Bear offers a world that is more credible than those. Mitchell's characters are from America's white underclass -- a waitress, a truck driver, and an unemployed layabout whose world is starkly delimited by the one-room set littered with beer cans and positioned between the parentheses of a senseless, ever-running television and a telephone that's the emblem of the lack of communication. The set by Derek Kolluri is eloquently claustrophobic.

Deven Kolluri, Jenny Lavery (image: Theatre en Bloc)Eddie's a regular at a Memphis truck stop. We meet this inarticulate man at the lunch counter where waitress Lonnie is wrapping the flatware in paper napkins. The communication between them is not conversation -- it's more like random semaphore signals. These two have seen one another again and again. This time, however, Eddie asks her to come home to Kansas with him. His parents have died in an automobile accident. Without thinking about it too much, and with little to anchor her at the truck stop, Lonnie agrees. In Kansas, Eddie's brother Jules is cocooned away on the sofa, huddled under a rumpled blanket.

Read more at . . . .

Upcoming: Getting Betta by Don Fried, Paradox Players at FronteraFest and Howson Hall, January 24 - February 4

Received directly:

Paradox Players

present the regional premiere of the futuristic comedyGetting Betta Don Fried Paradox Players

– Getting Betta –

by Don Fried

directed by the playwright

at the Blue Theatre, 916 Springdale Rd. (click for map)

for the 2012 FronteraFest Long Fringe

Tuesday, January 24 – 7:00 pm; Tuesday, January 31 – 9:15 pm; Thursday, Februrary 2 – 7:00 pm; and Saturday, February 4 – 1:15 pm

Tickets for the Fringe are $15 and are available at or by phoning 512-479-7529.

3 additional performances will be at Howson Hall Theater, UU Church, 4700 Grover Avenue, Austin, TX 78756 (click for map)

Friday, March 2 – 8:00 pm; Saturday, March 3 – 8:00 pm; and Sunday, March 4 – 3:00 pm

Tickets for the Howson performances are $15 and are available at the door.

Paradox Players presents the regional premiere of Don Fried’s futuristic comedy Getting Betta at the 2012 FronteraFest Long Fringe, January 24 – February 5, at Austin’s Blue Theater. Playing the title role of Betta is award-winning Austin-based film and stage actress Lana Dieterich, who starred in the 2011 Long Fringe production of Fried’s Senior Moments. Also featured are long-time Austin actor Craig Kanne and recent Texas State theatre graduate Brittany Flurry.

In the play, Michael is a technologically-challenged senior citizen living in a retirement home. Betta, a virtual computerized assistant, is assigned to him against his wishes by the administration of the facility. After a brief period of conflict, Michael and Betta reach a truce and settle down to live together. However, as Betta acquires technology upgrades to make her more human, she becomes paranoid and schizophrenic, and things spiral out of control.

The San Juan Capistrano (California) Patch review of Getting Betta had this to say: “What is love? What is family? Does technology serve us, or do we serve technology? Do you have to be a human to be human? You’ll laugh at, as much as ponder over, some of the answers suggested in Getting Betta.

Getting Betta premiered simultaneously in Colorado and California in March, 2011. Fried, who also directs the production, has had his work performed throughout the U.S., in Canada, and England. In March, he travels to London to work on the world premiere production of his play Phoenix, which was inspired by the life of British singer/songwriter Nick Drake.

Upcoming: Choregraphers' Showcase, Austin Community College, December 2 and 3

Received directly:

Austin Community College Department of Dance

Austin Community College Department of DanceThe Austin Community College District’s Dance Department will present the fall 2011 Choreographers’ Showcase Friday, December 2, and Saturday, December 3. The performances will take place at 8 p.m. in the Mainstage Theater at Rio Grande Campus (1212 Rio Grande St.) (click for map).

The event will feature 28 students performing 12 new dance works, choreographed by faculty members Darla Johnson and Catherine Solaas as well as students enrolled in DANC 1212 (Practicum/Principles of Choreography).

Proceeds from the Choreographers’ Showcase will benefit the drama and dance scholarship fund. Suggested donations are $10 for the general public and $5 for students and seniors.

About the Austin Community College District ( ACC, Central Texas’ community college, is the primary gateway to higher education and career training for residents in eight counties. The college provides access to affordable, quality education. ACC enrolls more than 45,000 credit students, offering university transfer courses, two-year associate degrees, certificates, Early College Start, access programs that get students “college-ready,” and continuing education. At ACC you can “Start here. Get there.”

Upcoming: The What-Cracka?!, McCallum Fine Arts Academy, December 8 - 11

Received directly:

MacTheatre, McCallum Fine Arts Academy, Austin TX

presentsWhat-Cracka McCallum Fine Arts Academy


December 8 - 11, Thursday - Saturday at 7 p.m., Sunday at 2 p.m.

MacTheatre, 5600 Sunshine Drive (click for map)

TICKETS online at Adults $15 | Students $6 | Seniors $10

Start off your holiday season all merry and bright with an evening of music and dance that is not to be missed. The WHAT-CRACKA?! roars onto center stage Dec. 8 – 11 at the new McCallum Arts Center Theatre.

A collaboration of the Dance and Theatre departments at the McCallum Fine Arts Academy, this ain’t your grandmother’s Nutcracker!

It’s an innovative, G-rated urban take on the Christmas classic about a girl, a prince, and how they solve their rat problem.

Featuring a score mixed and mastered by Brian Ramos — of Grammy Award winning Grupo Fantasma fame — and choreographed by a slew of hip hop, latin, and modern dancers, this new twist on the Tchaikovsky favorite will have you dancing in the aisles.

Come see why the WHAT-CRACKA?! just might become a new Austin tradition!

Upcoming: Of Mice and Music, A Jazz Nutcracker, Tapestry Dance Company at Boyd Vance Theatre, Carver Center, December 8 - 18

Found on-line:

Tapestry Dance Company Austin TX

presentsOf Mice and Music Tapestry Dance Company Austin TX

Of Mice and Music

A Jazz Nutcracker

December 8 - 11 and 13 - 18 at 7 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday matinees December 10-11, 17-18 at 2 p.m.

Boyd Vance Theatre, George Washington Carver Center, 1165 Angelina Street (click for map)

Click to buy tickets on-line through the Long Center (students $15 and no additional fee, general admission $25 and $5.50 fee)

The sounds of hoofs ain't just for roofs: Child and adult dancers hoof it to a jazz trio's take on Tchaikovsky in "Of Mice and Music: A Jazz Nutcracker." Dec. 8-18. Boyd Vance Theater at the Carver Museum and Cultural Center, 1165 Angelina St.

Upcoming: Beneath the Yellow Wallpaper, staged reading at Neill-Cochran House Museum, January 15

Found online:

Neil-Cochran House Museum, Austin, TX

presentsBeneath the Yellow Wallpaper, Neill-Cochran House Museum

Beneath the Yellow Wallpaper:

Writers, Workers, & Freud Discover the Self,

staged reading with Pamela Christian & Ev Lunning, Jr.

January 15, 2012, 2 p.m.

Neill-Cochran House Museum, 2310 W. San Gabriel Street, 78705 (click for map)

The 1890s saw a shift in the way we see ourselves. Freud did his seminal work during this decade, publishing Studies on Hysteria (1895) and The Interpretation of Dreams (1899), and Charlotte Perkins Gillman wrote The Yellow Wallpaper (1892), a beautifully crafted novel that critiqued the 19th-century approach to the treatment of mental illness, along with Women and Economics (1898). Workers examined their individual situations and joined collectively to protest their conditions. The ‘90s’ transition from Victorian styles to modernity permeated literature, painting, music, politics. To explore the fin de siècle Equity actors Pamela Christian and Ev Lunning, Jr. make their second Modern Times appearance with their popular staged duet. Dr. Christian, Director of Graduate Studies and Associate Professor of Voice and Speech for Performance in U.T.’s Department of Theatre and Dance, was recently voted Austin’s best actress for her role as Elizabeth I in Mary Stuart. Mr. Lunning, a veteran film actor and voiceover performer, is artistic director of the acclaimed Mary Moody Northen Theatre at St. Edwards University. Explore with them the new introspection that set the stage for the 20th century.

Upcoming: Noel, PAIYH Dance Studios at Waldorf School, December

Found on-line:

PAIYH Dance Studios, Austin, TX

presentsNoel, PAIYH Dance Studios, Austin, TX

NOEL, An Original Holiday Musical

Sunday, December 11th 2011, 2pm & 5pm

Austin Waldorf School's Performing Arts Center, 8700 South View Rd, Austin, TX 78737 (view map)

Show lasts approximately 45 minutes. Doors open 30 minutes prior to each show.

Purchase tickets at PAIYH Dance Studios in the Hill Country Galleria or by phone at 512-291-2179.

Adults $15; children (ages 3-17) and seniors (ages 55+) $12; free for 2 and under on lap.

Create a new Christmas tradition! NOEL is an original holiday musical featuring some of Austin's brightest talents. A heart warming story about a little girl who has a big dream, NOEL is filled with a variety of hip hop, jazz, and ballet dances, as well as familiar holiday songs. Children of all ages are bound to be singing and dancing in their seats!

Ongoing: Holiday Heroes, Zach Theatre, November 28 - December 16

Found on-line:

Zach Theatre Austin TX

presents in its series 'Theatre for Youth, Shows for Schools'Holiday Heroes, Zach Theatre

Holiday Heroes

Created by & Starring Jerome Schoolar and Shaun Wainwright-Branigan

Live on Stage Monday-Friday, November 28 -December 16, 2011
: Weekday mornings at 9:45am and 11:00am
: $7 per child Two teachers per class are free!

Reservations are required as space is limited. (512) 476-0594 x236

Ernie and Rufus have finally finished building a display for the Big Holiday Show using symbols of different holidays they found in the box of props. It is the best display ever, until disaster strikes and there are only 30 minutes until people arrive! Will they have time to get the display back together? Come see them race against the clock to get the Holidays started!

Click here to download the Holiday Heroes study guide.

Upcoming: You're What's Wrong with the Holidays, fundraiser by Spike Gillespie and friends for the Hyde Park Theatre, December 18

Received directly from

Hyde Park Theatre, Austin, TX

Last sweet, sweet chance:

Spike Gillespie and The Dick Monologues Gang are doing one more fundraiser for Hyde Park Theatre, at 6 pm on Sunday December 18. It's called You're What's Wrong With The Holidays, and features a whole collection of readings, stories, monologues, and more.

Already there are only a handful of tickets left, so email right away to secure your seat.

Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd Street at Guadalupe (click for map)

Upcoming: The Black Nativity, Renaissance Guild, San Antonio, December 9 - 11

Found on-line:

Renaissance Guild San Antonio


Black Nativity

by Langston HughesBlack Nativity 2011 Langston Hughes Renaissance Guild San Antonio

directed by Danielle King

December 9-11, 2011 -- 3 performances only!

The Renaissance Guild with The Carver Community Cultural Center

at The Carver Community Cultural Center - Jo Long Theatre, 226 N. Hackberry, San Antonio, Texas, 78202

Friday, Dec 9 and Saturday, Dec 10, 8 pm; Sunday Matinee, Dec 11, 4 pm
Tickets: $21 - For more information contact The Carver (210) 207-2234, visit our website or call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000

The Renaissance Guild and The Carver Community Cultural Center present their annual production of the hit Gospel Song Play Black Nativity - a retelling of the Christmas story with a predominately black cast, with narrative, dance, gospel songs and folk spirituals, a unique creation of the prolific poet and playwright Langston Hughes.

Speaking Roles: Male Narrator #1~Garfield Swaby, Female Narrator #1~Ella Nathaniel, Joseph~Gabriel O. Ume II, Mary~Maddison Krueger, Inn Keeper~Vianne McKinney, Angel #1~Scharlett Donald, Angel #2~TBA, Angel #3~Evonne Nathaniel, Angel #4~Tori Foutz, Old Woman~Beverly Hurston, Woman #1~Katrina Webber, Female Narrator #2~LaSandra Dolberry, Male Narrator #2~Thomas Givens, Shepherd #1~ Garfield Swaby, Shepherd #2~Harlon Ume, Shepherd #3~Isaiah Cosey, Shepherd #4~Blake Willeford, Shepher#5 Dewitt Walker, Female Narrator #3~KC Onwuchekwa. Male Narrator #3~Andrew Johnson, King #1~Robert Young, King #2~Edward Burkley, King #3~Kenny Patterson, Elder~Kevin Majors, First Lady~TBA, Youth Choir Director~Anitra Little, Youth Song Leader(s)~TBA, Church Woman ~Shaundra Lamkin
Praise Dancers: Anthony Hall, Jr., Aishiana Thomas, Cathy Maduro,Courtney Hansford, Jamiza Manous, Oletha Vicks and S'Keyah Mackey, TBA
Ensemble: Aaliyah Frazier, Andres Miles, Ayanna Milbry, Allonia Nathaniel, Anquinette Thomas, Briana Foster, David Gibson, Deandre Alexander, Ella Edwards, Gwen Page, Jamizia Manous, Jessica Givens, Lindsay White, Marcus McPeters, Michelle M. Willingham, Renee Brooks, Sherrie Wilson, Stephanie Bankston, Tamika D. Davis, Tori Foutz and Veloria Turner, TBA
Director: Danielle King; Asst. Director: Sharon Lisa Smith

Upcoming: Ten-Minute Play Festival, St. Edward's University, December 6 and 7

Found in Hilltop Views, St. Edward's University, November 29:

Students in theater major to direct 10-minute plays at MMNT

By Jenna Jaco

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The St. Edward's University theater department has yet another production currently in the works. The Ten Minute Play Festival is a free-admission collection of short plays showing at the Mary Moody Northen Theater Dec. 6-7.

All of the 10-minute plays are student-acted as well as student-directed. Instead of having a faculty member as the director like a typical MMNT production, the plays are headed by undergraduate theater majors in the directing class offered by the St. Edward's theatre department.

The directing class is comprised mostly of seniors, and the plays they direct are part of the Ten Minute Play Festival and serve as a kind of final project for the class. This annual event allows students to apply everything they have learned in class and exhibit their own work and directorial style.

Unlike the New Works Festival put on by Transit Theatre Troupe in October, the Ten Minute Play Festival consists of student directors working with short plays that are already published and that do not necessarily share a common theme. Also, the Ten Minute Play Festival is performed on the St. Edward's main stage — in the round at the Mary Moody Northen Theater.

Read more at Hilltop Views, online . . . .

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Auditions for Woodwork by Hank Schwemmer, Paper Chairs, December 5

Received via Twitter:

Paper Chairs Austin TX
for Woodwork

Monday, December 5, 5 until 9 p.m.

Woodwork, Paper Chairs, Hank Schwemmer

paper chairs' next production will be an evening of plays by local playwright Hank Schwemmer entitled Woodwork.

Production dates are tentatively Feb. 23 - Mar. 11. Rehearsals begin around the end of January.

We are holding an open casting call for our ensemble of 8! We will be seeing people to read different things in hour slots.

We are looking for people of all ages and ethnicities! Email to snag a spot.

Auditions for Hamlet, Sam Bass Community Theatre, Round Rock, December 5 and 6

Found on-line:

Sam Bass Community Theatre, Round Rock, TX

announces Auditions for Hamlet by William Shakespeare

adapted and directed by Lynn S. Beaver

Auditions December 5 and 6, 7 p.m. at Sam Bass Theatre, 600 Lee Street, Round Rock (click for map)

Treachery. Madness. Murder. Shakespeare's masterwork Hamlet comes to the Old Depot Stage! Something is rotten in Denmark and a king is dead. His brothe, Claudius has snatched the throne and the widowed queen. Life goes on - for everyone but Hamlet. The prince, fixated on his uncle as the murderer, is charged by his father's ghost to avenge the wrong. Disconnected from the foul world around him, Hamlet strains under the weight of his task. SBCT's production of Shakespeare's disturbing and psychologically rich masterpiece digs into the enigma of a maniac's mind.

Rehearsals January 2 thru February 9, Monday thru Friday - Performances February 10 thru March 3 (14 performances)

Needed are 12 men ages 20 thru 70 and 3 women ages 18 thru 60; there are also non-speaking roles for males and females available.

Upcoming: The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Sam Bass Community Theatre, Round Rock, December 2 - 17

Found on-line:

Sam Bass Community Theatre

presentsThe Best Christmas Pageant Ever

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

based on the award-winning book by Barbara Robinson

directed by Veronica Prior

December 2 - 17, Thursdays - Saturdays at 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.

Sam Bass Community Theatre, 600 Lee Street, Round Rock (click for map)

Tickets $13 - $18; click to purchase on-line

Just in time for the holidays comes a wonderful story about the beauty of the season and the true meaning of Christmas...Wrong! When two well-intentioned parents decide to direct the school play, they make the terrible mistake of casting the Herdman kids; probably the most inventively awful kids in history! Chaos and hilarity results as the cast and crew collide with the Christmas story head on!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Upcoming: Miss Evers' Boys by David Feldshuh, Renaissance Guild, San Antonio, February 10 - 26

Found at the Renaissance Guild website:

Renaissance Guild San Antonio

presentsMiss Evers' Boys Renaissance Guild San Antonio

Miss Evers' Boys

by David Feldshuh

directed by Antoinette Winstead

February 10 - 26, performance dates and times to be announced

Little Carver Civic Center, 226 N. Hackberry Street, San Antonio (click for map)

In an effort to get medical help for Alabama tenant farmers, their nurse, Miss Evers, convinces them to join a government study to treat venereal disease. When the money runs out, Nurse Evers is faced with a difficult decision: to tell the men that they are no longer being treated and that they are now part of a research study to see what untreated syphilis will do to them, or follow the lead of the doctor she respects and the tenets of the nursing profession.Miss Evers' Boys Renaissance Guild San Antonio


Eunice Evers ~ Vanessa White
Dr. Eugene Brodus ~ John Martin Fitzhugh
Dr. Dr. John Douglas ~ Michael Burger
Willie Johnson ~ Edward Lawrence Burkley IV
Caleb Humphries ~ Charles Riley
Hodman Bryan ~ Russell B. Jordan Jr.
Kevin Majors ~ Ben Washington
Clifford Ross ~ US Ben Washington & Caleb Humphries

Nurse Evers follows the advice of her advisors, and with the understanding that the study can help thousands more, she does not tell the men they are no longer receiving medication. She does this with the assurance that as soon as medication becomes available, her men will be the first to receive it. But after fourteen years of caring for her patients as if they were family, when medication is finally available, it is denied to her study group. Nurse Evers, devastated at the news and starting to watch her men die, can no longer keep silent.

Shunned for her silence of fourteen years, Nurse Evers holds her head up and explains the reasons and emotions that kept her in the study and kept her caring for her men. Some of them forgive her, others do not, as Nurse Evers tries to put back a world broken by prejudice, disease, time and trust.

Miss Evers' Boys Renaissance Guild San Antonio

Video 3: Burn This by Lanford Wilson, 7 Towers Theatre Company, December 2 - 18

Found on-line:

Posted by

7 Tower Theatre Company AUstin TXforBurn This Lanford Wilson 7 Towers Theatre Company

Burn This

by Lanford Wilson

December 2 - 18

City View Terrace, Ballet Austin, 501 W. 3rd Street (click for map)

BURN THIS - "Anna" (Suzanne Balling) from Matt Latham on Vimeo.

[Apple users: can't see the video? Click to go to Vimeo]

Position Advertised: Austin Program Director for Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA)

Included in the current e-newsletter from TALA:

TALA Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts OPEN POSITION: TALA seeks Program Director for its Austin Office

Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (TALA) is seeking a Program Director to be based in Austin and represent us in Central Texas. This is a part-time, hourly position (15-20 hours per week). The main responsibility will be to raise awareness of TALA and its services in Central Texas. The person will interact with all aspects of the local arts community, volunteers and potential donors. Must have a strong interest in The Arts and a good knowledge of the marketplace. Must be able to work with a wide variety of types of people. For consideration submit a resume to: or Fax to 713-526-1299.

Video and Culturemap Feature: Changing Lives Youth Ensemble, Theatre Action Project, Austin

Feature published by, November 28:

This youth theater is Changing Lives

Advice crafted for and by teens, onstage at a school near you

By Erica Lies, 11.28.11

Early on a recent Saturday morning, eight students from the Changing Lives Youth Theater Ensemble performed at the We Are Girls conference in an Austin High classroom packed with middle school girls. One by one, the actors stepped into the spotlight to introduce their characters.

"Just because I'm a slut doesn't mean I don't deserve respect."

"Just because I'm into academics doesn't mean I don't know how to have fun." The honest, frank language is characteristic of a Changing Lives show.

A joint program of Theatre Action Project and Safe Place, CLYTE is a theatre arts program comprised of paid 14-18 year old actors who tour to middle schools and community events in Central Texas, presenting original plays focused on teen social issues like bullying and relationship violence.

A documentary feature on Changing Lives by Sean Schiavolin and Christopher Morse for inCONTEXT (12 min., 40 sec.) :

[Apple users: can't see the video? Click to go to YouTube]

[ . . . . ] A number of initiatives and media campaigns to draw attention to the detrimental effects of bullying have sprung up in recent years, but most focus only on the bully and the target, turning primarily to adults to stop the harassment. Changing Lives, however, employs a unique model that uses theater to teach kids strategies for interrupting destructive patterns.

The ensemble spends a semester conceiving of and writing a play with the help of TAP and Safe Place program directors, Nitra Gutierrez and Susie Gidseg. Beginning with image-based games and exercises from Theatre of the Oppressed, the ensemble often shows a problem and then a moment of intervention where that problem can either be solved or exacerbated. [ . . .]

Click to read more at . . . .

Call for Latino Plays, Teatro Vivo's Austin Latin New Play Festival, deadline of January 10

Found on-line:

Teatro Vivo Austin TX
Teatro Vivo Call for scripts for the Austin Latino New Play Festival
Deadline for submission January 10, 2012

In April, 2012 Teatro Vivo de Austin, Texas will present the Austin Latino New Play Festival (ALNPF) dedicated to inspire and support the creation of new Latino plays. What is a Latino play? Teatro Vivo defines this as any play that reflects our mission: "Teatro Vivo is dedicated to producing quality bilingual theater accessible to all theater audiences and artists. Teatro Vivo reflects the heart and soul of the Latino reality by opening a unique window for all to share in this experience."

The scripts chosen will be in workshop/rehearsals for two weeks and then presented as staged readings. The two-week workshop includes work with a director, dramaturg, and actors. Actors will be selected through an audition process. Each play will be showcased in a single staged reading performance on April 5, 6 or 7th. The workshop/rehearsal period will begin with an initial reading of the script on Saturday, March 24 followed by rehearsals over two weeks. Staged readings will be held at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Culture Center. Readings are free to the public. Each staged reading will be followed by a facilitated talkback with the playwright and the audience.

Call for scripts Please submit a PDF of the first 25 pages of your full- length script by January 10, 2012 via email to . Include your name, address, contact number and email address. Plays selected for the ALNPF will be announced January 25, 2012.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

She Loves Me, Wimberley Players, November 18 - December 11

She Loves Me Wimberley Players TX

by Michael Meigs

The Wimberley Players' production of She Loves Me directed by Dawn Youngs delivers a serene and intricately musical vision of a 1930s fairy tale. Preserved as if in one of those snow globes awaiting a gentle shake to send the flakes whirling, a perfume shop in Budapest is a holiday setting where affairs of the heart predominate. The elegant ladies of the city come seeking their creams, perfumes and philtres; the clerks of the shop, good earnest working folk, do their best to please. Love will not be lured by artifice, of course, but it does thrive on mystery.

Jim Lindsay, Ann Pittman (image: Wimberley Players)This gentle musical comedy uses one of the oldest comic plot devices in the book: the anonymous love letter. The audience's fun is doubled as it watches as both participants in this courtship by mail just happen to become employees of the shop and quickly become annoyed rivals.

Ann Pittman is new arrival Amalia Balash who won't take 'no' for an answer, brashly outdoing shop manager Georg Nowack (Jim Lindsay), gaining a job and causing Nowack to lose a wager with the boss. Pittman and Lindsay have paired before, as Juan and Evita Perón in the Georgetown Palace's Evita last February, where each demonstrated stature and dignity along with fine singing voices.

She Loves Me you can enjoy a different take: they're lively, self-assured and assertive in their in-store rivalry but vulnerable and sentimental in the imaginings of their correspondence, each writing letters to the anonymous 'Dear Friend.'

Click to read more at . . . .

Upcoming: Elf Employment, Improvised Puppet Musical, Puppet Improv Project at Salvage Vanguard Theatre, December 2 - 17

Found on-line:

The Puppet Improv Project

presentsElf Employment Puppet Improv Project Austin, Tx

Elf Employment - Improvised Puppet Musical

December 2 - 17, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m.

Salvage Vanguard Theatre, studio theatre, 2803 Manor Rd (click for map)

This show is for General Audiences (rated "G") Tickets $10 available online through

This holiday season, the Puppet Improv Project merrily brings to the stage an improvised puppet musical set in the magical landscape Santa's Workshop! The show will feature a new Special Guest Star each night playing the role of "Santa". Your suggestions lead our cast of puppet elves and woodland creatures through a magical adventure.

The performance runs 8pm Fri/Sat during the first three weekends in December at the Salvage Vanguard Theater, in the Studio Theater.


12/2 Deano Jones - 12/3 Tom Booker - 12/9 Akina Adderley - 12/10 Buzz Moran - 12/16 Les McGehee - 12/17 John Ratliff


Kate Bojanek, Sara Farr (dir), Topping Haggerty, Howard Katz, Patrick Knisley, Amy McKenna, Jesse Overright, Chadwick Smith


Ammon Taylor

Auditions for Happy Birthday, Wimberley Players, November 28 and 29

Found on-line:

Wimberley Players Audition Notice for Happy Birthday, a comedy by Marc Camoletti; adapted from the French by Beverly Cross; directed by Tysha Calhoun

Monday, November 28, 7 p.m., Tuesday, November 29, 7 p.m.
Wimberley Playhouse, 450 Old Kyle Road, Wimberley, Texas (click for map)
Performance dates: February 3 - February 26, 2012, Friday and Saturday Evenings 8 p.m., Sunday Matinees 2:30 p.m.

3 Women: Jacqueline - the wife; Brigit - the mistress, Brigit - the maid
2 Men: Bernard - the husband; Robert - the friend
Contact: Contact Adam Witko @ 512-632-7638 or e-mail

Happy Birthday is a comedy for two men and three women. Bernard has somewhat foolhardily asked his mistress, Brigit, to his home on her birthday despite the fact that his wife Jacqueline is present. To lull Jacqueline's suspicions he has also invited his oldest friend, Robert, and asks him to complete the cover-up by pretending that Brigit is his own mistress. Robert refuses, since he has been having an affair with Jacqueline, but Bernard involves him by low cunning. By chance, a temporary maid Jacqueline has engaged for the evening arrives when Jacqueline and Bernard are out and, her name also being Brigit, Robert mistakes her for Bernard's girl friend. Thus are laid the foundations for a shaky edifice of frantic complications, in which identities, plots and counterplots—and bedrooms—are changed round with ever increasing confusion until an unexpected ending is reached which leaves everyone happy—not least the "temporary" Brigit who has acquired a mink coat and a wad of cash.

Upcoming: Sam and Laura by Ron Powers, staged reading at the Blue Theatre, November 30

Found on-line:

The Blue Theatre Austin TX

presents a staged reading ofBlue Theatre Austin TX new plays series

Sam and Laura

by Ron Powers

Wednesday, November 30 at 7:30 p.m.

at the Blue Theatre, 916 Springdale (click for map)

The BLUE Theatre New Play Series continues its monthly, staged readings of new theatre works by emerging playwrights with Sam and Laura, by Pulitzer Prize-winning and Emmy Award-winning journalist, novelist and non-fiction writer, Ron Powers. Powers will be in attendance the night of the staged reading to speak about the play on Wednesday, November 30th.

An imaginative extension of a true relationship in the life of Mark Twain, Sam and Laura is set in the present, and the action takes place in Laura Wright’s threadbare Los Angeles apartment and a Hollywood speakeasy in 1925. The staging features performances by Justin Scalise and Kathy Rose Center.

The free reading begins at 7:30 p.m., followed by a reception with the playwright and cast after the reading. The BLUE Theatre is located at 916 Springdale Road. For more information, visit

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Opinion: Robert Faires on Being Named An 'Influential' Theatre Critic, Austin Chronicle, November 24

Robert Faires reflects on the significance of being credited as one of twelve of" the nation's most influential theatre critics":

Austin Chronicle, Austin, TX

All Over Creation

Under the Influence

So what does being named one of the nation's most influential critics really mean?

by Robert Faires

[. . . ] For the nonprofit productions that dominate our nation's stages (certainly Austin's), a pan has no power to shut a show down; the run is fixed before the curtain goes up. Still, some argue, a review can influence a local show's attendance. Possibly, though the only evidence I've been given is anecdotal, and I've just as many anecdotes about raves that put no butts in seats and negative notices that did nada to shows doing boffo at the box office. And I apparently have no more clout with the companies than with their audiences, as I've yet to be consulted about what plays they should mount, despite my having no shortage of opinions. All of which leaves me wondering where this alleged critical influence lies. [ . . .]

Read the full text in the Austin Chronicle on-line . . . .

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Auditions for Precious Little Talent, Capital T Theatre, November 27

Received directly; this information is also posted at the Capital T website:

Capital T Theatre, Austin

Auditions for Precious Little Talent, November 27, 2 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Precious Little Talent Ella Hickson Capital T Theatre, Austin TX

Capital T is excited to announce auditions for its next production Precious Little Talent by Ella Hickson. We are having open casting for all 3 roles. All actors will be paid.

Precious Little Talent is the story of two 20-somethings graduating into a world that’s sold them down the river. Londoner Joey’s got a first class degree, 20K worth of debt and works in a pub. It’s Christmas and she flees to New York in a bid to find comfort with her estranged father. Just as the world seems to have shunned her, so will he. Yet in the face of such rejection, world-weary Joey falls in love with an idealistic young American and learns what it is to have hope in the future.


Joey – Female – 24 years old – British Accent. Joey’s got a first-class college degree, 20k worth of debt and works in a pub. Shunned by the world, rejected by her estranged father, she finds herself falling in love with an idealistic young American…

Sam – Male – 19 years old. The idealistic young American that Joey falls in love with. He currently is George’s caregiver, but has big plans for his future.

George – Male 50-60 years old – British Accent. Joey’s father and Sam’s employer. A former world class academic who is suffering from early onset dementia.

Rehearsal will begin in December with performances in the last two weeks of January and the first weekend of February. We anticipate working around actors' holiday plans.

Auditions by appointment. Auditions will consist of cold readings from the script.

Contact us at with a resume and recent pic.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Arts Reporting: Seven NEA Grants to Austin Area Arts Groups

From the Statesman's Austin360 Seeing Things blog of November 22:

Austin arts groups net seven NEA grants

By Jeanne Claire van Ryzin | Tuesday, November 22, 2011, 12:32 PM

National Endowment for the Arts chairman Rocco Landesman recently announced the latest round of grants from the federal agency to organizations and individual writers across the country. Some 863 awards totaling $22.54 million and encompassing 15 artistic disciplines and fields were awarded.

Austin area arts groups received seven grants. Texas netted 29 for a total of $653,000.

The Austin grants are:

  • Austin Film Society, $20,000 for its curated film and video series.
  • Badgerdog Literary Publishing, $7,500 for the publication, promotion, and distribution of the quarterly journal American Short Fiction.
  • Blue Lapis Light, $10,000 for the creation and presentation of a site specific aerial dance, titled Swan Nebula, choreographed by Sally Jacques
  • EmilyAnn Theatre Inc., $10,000 for Shakespeare Under the Stars, a summer youth theater program for high school students.
  • Puerto Rican Folkloric Dance, $10,000 for Celebrando 2012: Bomba de Loiza with Los Hermanos Ayala.
  • Tapestry Dance Company, $10,000 for the 12th annual Soul to Sole Tap Festival.
  • Vortex Repertory Company, $15,000 for the creation and presentation of “The Elementals: Water,” an original theatrical work with music and dance, conceived and directed by Bonnie Cullum, an original score by Chad Salvata and choreography by Toni Bravo.

Upcoming: Bah, Humbug! with Damian Gillen, Dougherty Arts Center, December 19

Found on-line:

J. Damian Gillen in Bah Humbug The Company Theatre San Antonio

The Company Theatre, San Antonio

presents J. Damian Gillen in

Bah, Humbug!

a one-actor production of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol

December 19, time to be announced

Doughery Arts Center, 1110 Barton Springs Rd (click for map)

Now in its 9th year! It's Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol with an amazing twist — one actor plays all the roles in this powerful tale of hope & compassion! Award-winning stage actor J. Damian Gillen transforms before your eyes into all those beloved characters...from Scrooge to tiny Tim, in this magical and imaginative re-telling of the holiday classic! Complete with numerous costume changes, special effects and traditional Celtic Christmas tunes! Great fun for the whole family! This tour willbreak last years record of 30 shows in 30 days!

"He is truly amazing" and "…a holiday treat.”
--San Antonio Express News.

"Bah Humbug is an affirmation of charity, redemption and Christianity that the world needs right now!" --Dr. Samara Cahill, University of Notre Dame

"Bah Humbug is sure to delight audiences the world over." --Rave Reviews Magazine

Upcoming: Bacha Bazi (Boy Play) by Gabriel Jason Dean, University of Texas, February

Found on-line:

University of Texas Theatre and Dance


Bacha Bazi (Boy Play)

by Gabriel Jason Dean

Oscar Brockett Theatre, Winship Drama Building (WIN), University of Texas, near 23rd and San Jacinto (click for map)
February 16, 22, 24, 25 at 8 p.m.; February 19 at 2 p.m.

Tickets: $10, available 90 minutes prior to curtain at the Winship Box Office. Only Cash or checks will be accepted.

Parking is available in the San Jacinto Garage on San Jacinto near Dean Keeton.

The eve of Obama's election finds Aaron, a documentary filmmaker from Texas, in Northern Afghanistan. He's there to shoot a film about the poppy trade, but changes his mind when he encounters bacha bazi (boy play), an ancient Afghan tradition where young boys dance in women's clothing and are sold for sex to the highest bidder. Both fascinated and offended by the practice, Aaron meets Hafiz, a young dancer, and his investigative journalism turns personal.

Alternating between Dari and English, dance and language, fear and desire, Bacha Bazi (Boy Play) written and directed by Gabriel Jason Dean brings a critical lens to American altruism and explores the often fatal consequences of intercultural misunderstanding. At its core, it asks, "What are the consequences of good intentions?"

For further information contact Theatre and Dance Info Line at or telephone 512-471-5793

Upcoming: Oliver!, Austin Children's Theatre (ACT) at the Vortex Repertory, December 9 - 17

Found on line:

Austin Children's Theatre

presentsOliver Austin Children's Theatre Austin TX


Join Oliver as he sings and dances his way through London, meeting a variety of characters along the way, including the Artful Dodger, Fagin, and Nancy. With well-known and catchy songs, such as “Food, Glorious Food”, “I’d Do Anything”, & “Consider Yourself”. this fun and charming musical is sure to have everyone singing along!

OLIVER! Performance Schedule

  • Performs at The VORTEX, 2307 Manor
  • Friday, December 9, 2011 7:30pm
  • Saturday, December 10, 2011 7:30pm
  • Sunday, December 11, 2011 2:30pm
  • Friday, December 16, 2011 7:30pm
  • Saturday, December 17, 2011 2:30pm

Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Call 512.927.6633 to purchase tickets.

Monday, November 21, 2011

The Stranger, Jump Start Theatre of San Antonio and Divadlo z Pasáže of Slovakia

by Hannah Bisewski

Stranger Jump-Start Theatre San Antonio

The Salvage Vanguard Theatre played host this past weekend to a single performance in Austin by two acting troupes from very different corners of the world. San Antonio’s Jump-Start Performance Company spent the last five weeks in intensive collaboration with a troupe known as Divadlo z Pasáže, or “Theatre from the Passage” from, of all places, the Slovak Republic. The product of this challenging and exceptional cooperation was Stranger, a heavily allegorical and visually stunning telling of human history.

The show, created and directed by Viera Dubacova of Divadlo z Pasáže, took advantage of the Salvage Vanguard’s large black box space to create a dark and void atmosphere. The opening moments were perhaps the most disorienting: ten or so adult performers in dark, oddly anachronistic clothing, moving in pairs back-to-back, slowly and uncertainly, until an apple falls from each of them. A naïve fascination with the fallen apples ensues, beautiful pantomimed, until they each take a bite from an apple, beginning the long history of human vice and error. Using an ever-growing pile of apples as a symbol for depravity of every kind, the actors moved fluidly from moments of prosperity and kindness to moments of vicious, brutish hatred for all others.

One detail that made this performance more striking than most was the fact that not only did half the actors travel from Slovakia to collaborate with performers who didn’t speak a word of Slovakian, but all of the performers from Europe had some degree of mental handicap. Audiences could feel the gap in culture and experience between the two troupes, and yet the actors had managed to articulate together a consolidated vision of universal patterns of human nature. The enormous disparities between their human experience as they all wore timeless, placeless clothing and appeared in a dark and characterless room, underlined the universality of the story they told. As the intensity of the performers’ movements grew, the understanding of our need to embrace the “strangers” of our societies and ourselves became urgent and apparent.