Sunday, January 19, 2014

End of the Road for the Austin Live Theatre Blog

This post at is #5247 in a series that started in June, 2008.   It's the last one that will appear.

The new site is Central Texas Live Theatre (  Click to go the new site:

Austin Live Theatre began here at  I kept this blog alive even after my family gave me the Christmas present of a .com website for my theatre musings, principally because Blogspot's connection to Google promised enhanced web visibility.  Starting sometime in 2010, I put everything up at the blog, including all those inside pages at that I was creating whenever I got word of another live theatre production in the greater Austin area.

In late 2012 I extended the sites' coverage to San Antonio and nearby towns.  I found I'd bitten off more than I could comfortably chew.  With much more information to gather and process, creating a new page for every production became more tedious and time consuming.  

I decided last October that I would instead simply link theatre companies' websites and Facebook postings to the listings in the Central Texas theatre calendar. Since that time the content of this blog has been essentially the same as that of 

At about the same time the firm that hosts my site began admonishing me to upgrade my content management software, still in its 2009 version.  Since late November I've been operating a 'beta' site with up-to-date software and security at  It still needs some fixing, polishing and improved formatting, but as of today that site is the principal -- and only -- location for this ongoing coverage of theatre art in Central Texas.  My various URLs all now redirect to

I greatly appreciative those who've followed this blog, especially the 28 who subscribed to to it.  I invite you to use the RSS feed for the new site. Here it is:


One of the principal lessons I've learned over the past 5½ years is that theatre is about community.  

That's not true of big media.  Films are not community; Broadway touring shows are not community.  A live theatre production in your own town is an event that enhances empathy, concern, and a sense of belonging, whether you're a theatre artist, a technician or an audience member.  

I concluded some time ago that my original goal of increasing the audiences for live theatre was quixotic.  This undertaking is unlikely to move those who don't already know live theatre very far off their couches or out of their bars.  

Instead, with Austin Live Theatre and its successor Central Texas Live Theatre (CTXLT) I aim to inform artists and potential artists, to provide informed commentary, and to help bridge the distances between the many theatre communities active across the region.  

After all, knowing more about one another reminds us of what we have in common.  That includes not only the art form itself but also the shared emotions and human concerns that give theatre its relevance and vitality. 


Michael Meigs

Saturday, January 18, 2014

True West by Sam Shepard, Weird Rodeo at the Off Center, January 9 - 25, 2014

Weird Rodeo Austin TX
(image: Weird Rodeo)

CTXLT review


by Dr. David Glen Robinson

The question one could ask is why a brand-new theatre company would challenge a play as complex and difficult as Sam Shepard’s True West for its premier production. And the question contains the answer—because it is a challenge, and all who see it can measure the company’s skill in their upward progress climbing the monument. That's the first reason to shout “Bravo!” at this show, one of the few.

Weird Rodeo wisely short-circuits some of the difficulties by assembling a highly talented cast and crew. The first stand-out is David Boss as Lee. He is superbly costumed and styled by Lindsay McKenna for his role, and he's an actor who has shown us he can easily learn and spout thousands of lines while physically stomping through any number of flaming sets. His role clearly drives the dialogues and action of the play, and Boss is easily capable of doing this in True West. But here is a note for director Jerry Fugit: Boss and all the actors need clear pause points for reactions and heightened intensity. Boss can fire daggers and poniards from his eyes, but he needs a few more opportunities in this play to do so. It’s not all machine-gun mouth and phone cords. The weaponry metaphors are apt.

Bob Jones as the movie producer Saul Kimmer matches his subtlety to Boss’s power. Lee addresses Saul with the predatory look of a coyote eyeing a rabbit. But Saul’s instincts are those of a rattlesnake, not a rabbit, and he correctly sees the brothers Austin (Chris Hejl) and Lee for who and what they are. Saul slithers through the story with complete control, a fact we notice only later. Bob Jones does excellent work, making his reactions and taking his silences as needed to flesh out his character.

The story of True West is well known: after years of separation family members come back together with the intensity of hypergolic solid rocket fuel, a trope perhaps invented by Sam Shepard. The biblical Prodigal Son parable it ain’t. The father is absent, said by Saul to be “destitute” which the entire audience takes to mean “insane.” Dad fled to the Desert, and here we see the first layerings of meaning on Shepard’s conception of Desert. The meanings Shepard gives it are largely chthonic, steeped in desolation and darkness. Mom (Bobbie Oliver) is in the Far North touring Alaska, a desert of another sort. The criminal but romantic seeker Lee sees the Desert as a refuge from authority and control, while Austin, educated and tame, fears it. Between scenes coyote voices on the soundtrack howl songs of death.

The Desert underlies the more surficial titular theme of the West. And here's where Weird Rodeo succeeds in the task it set for itself. We see clearly the distinction between brother Austin’s real West (freeways, palm trees and golf courses) and Lee’s unstated but described True West. All is made plain by Lee’s verbal homage to Kirk Douglas as the last cowboy on earth in the movie Lonely Are the Brave. Lee would have given his life to have worked in that film in any capacity, but Austin, the Ivy League screenwriter, has never seen the movie. The production ultimately accomplishes its theatrical and literary goals by making the West distinctions clear and dealing with their implications.

Read more at . . . .

(*) Call for Scripts by Writers 21 and under, Say Sí, San Antonio, Deadline February 3, 2014

Joy Jimenez @ Say Sí
Submission must be before February 3rd

Say Sí is currently accepting submissions for its 4th Annual Young Playwright's Festival, Wings to Fly. The ALAS Youth Theatre Company will select and produce and evening of short plays written by emerging young writers from the San Antonio area. The selected scripts will culminate into a weekend-long festival where local audiences will enjoy a diverse collection of new works written by San Antonio's next generation of playwrights.

High school students and young adults have a chance to get their new and original script produced by Say Sí's ALAS Youth Theatre Company. San Antonio is full of talented young playwrights, and ALAS wants to take their work from the notebook to the stage!

Qualifications: Scripts must be suitable for all audiences. There is no restriction on subject matter or style. Scripts must be written by individuals or groups ages 21 and under. The script can be submitted by the playwright themselves, a parent/guardian or a teacher. The selected scripts will be fully produced at Say Sí's Black Box Theatre on April 4-6, 2014.

Scripts must be submitted by February 3, 2014 via email to or as a hardcopy to: Joy Jimenez @ Say Sí, 1518 S. Alamo St., San Antonio, TX 78204

Please attach a cover sheet with your contact information. If you have questions please contact Joy Jimenez at 210.212.8666 --

Friday, January 17, 2014

THE WHIPPING MAN by Matthew Lopez, City Theatre, February 7 - March 2, 2014

The Whipping Man Matthew Lopez City Theatre Austin TX
(Click poster to go to show info at

AIN'T LOVE A DRAG, Subterranean Supper Series, Present Company, February 14, 2014

Aint Love A Drag Present Company Austin TX

Present Company Theatre is pleased to announce the maiden voyage of our new Subterranean Series--immersive & unique theatrical experiences in unexpected locations…
Join us this Valentine's day at The Historic Victory Grill for a one-of-a-kind-fierce-and-flawless-(sort of)-one-night-only event: AIN'T LOVE A DRAG!

Present Company Subterranean Supper Show Austin TX

Getcher tickets, getem NOW!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

The Language Archive by Julia Cho, Different Stages at City Theatre, January 10 - February 1, 2014

The Language Archive Julia Cho Different Stages Austin TX

CTXLT review

by Michael Meigs

Julia Cho's The Language Archive is a gently sentimental tale built inside a concept, similar to the way nesting birds inhabit a hedge. The theme is the failure of communication, and the metaphor is a collection of recordings and documents describing extinct languages curated by George, a fussy, white-coated linguist who's tongue-tied when it comes to expressing any sentiment.

Cho writes her characters as variations on that theme. The gulf between George and his wife Mary is so unbridgeable that Mary tucks cryptic notes into his belongings and denies having done so. George babbles frantically of what's on his heart -- but he addresses the audience instead of Mary. Alta and Resten are the last speakers of an obscure, apparently Central European language, but they're constantly furious with one another and refuse to use that language of intimacy, to the dismay of George the archivist. George's assistant of five years, Emma, loves him beyond reason but also, unfortunately, beyond telling. Esperanto, the completely artificial world language, turns up repeatedly, principally because of its perpetual failure to flourish.

The Language Archive Julia Cho Different Stages Austin TX
Jennifer Underwood, Norman Blumensaadt (photo: Bret Brookshire)

There's a lot of quiet desperation here, confirming the conventional wisdom that effective comedy is really built on pain. How glad we all are -- playwright, actors and audience -- that by the very action of participating in this evening's performance, we're confirming our own attachment to communicating and to receiving the messages of this story.

Comedy there is, too. Different stages regulars Jennifer Underwood and Norman Blumensaadt as the feisty, querelous and mutually scornful old couple in tribal dress get off one zinger after another, both verbal and mimetic. Their vivid tussles are all the more amusing for those who know that Blumensaadt the company founder has often directed Underwood in her leading roles. Each time she's eloquent and expressive, but her grumpy, silent fury and glowering in this piece remind us that she's a knockabout comedienne, as well.

Read more at Central Texas Live Theatre. . . .

Auditions in Wimberley for Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean, by Ed Graczyk, February 6, 8 and 9, 2014

Wimberley Players TXThe Wimberley Players are holding auditions for "Come Back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean", a comedy-drama by Ed Graczyk, produced by special arrangement with Samuel French, Inc.

Come Back to the Five and Dime Ed Graczyk Wimberley Players TX"Come Back..." takes place in 1975 as a group of women, quirky high school friends, who honor their promise to reunite 20 years after the death of their idol, Jimmy Dean in their hometown of McCarthy, Texas, a dustbowl remnant of days gone by. Their reunion reveals not only the depth of their friendships, but reveals the secrets they have guarded and built their lives around. Funny, intimate, dramatic... a great show for audiences and the ensemble cast of five women, ages 35-40 years.

Auditions will be scene readings from the play at these date/time/locations:

February 6th, Thursday, from 7-9PM, Room 206 at the Theater Building of Texas State University, 601 University Drive, San Marcos. The Theater Building is a round red brick building located at the corner of University Drive and Moon Street.

February 8th, Saturday from 2-4PM, at the Wimberley Playhouse, 450 Old Kyle Road, Wimberley; and

February 9th, Sunday from 7-9PM, at the Wimberley Playhouse

You are invited and encouraged to attend!

Show Dates: April 11, 2014 – May 4, 2014, Friday and Saturday at 7:30 pm, Sundays at 2:30 pm

Long time Wimberley Player David Bisett is directing. His directing credits include: Steel Magnolias, Crimes of the Heart, Leading Ladies, Divorce Southern Style, Da, All the Way Home, Marvin's Room, and Blythe Spirit. For questions about the play, contact David Bisett at

Contact Adam Witko for info about scripts (512) 632-7638 or

Click to view cast list and descriptions at

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Auditioning for Teenage Girl Who Speaks Spanish, Plane Pretend at MACC, January 18, 2014

Posted by

ALTA Austin TX
ALTA Audition 2014 01 16

THE RELENTLESS PURSUIT OF ICE by Max Langert, Punchkin Rep, January 25 - February 1, 2014

Relentless Pursuit of Ice Max Langert
Punchkin Rep is producing a new play by Austin playwright, Max Langert, entitled “The Relentless Pursuit of Ice” for FronteraFest 2014!

Friday, January 24 at 8pm

Saturday, January 25 at 8pm

Friday, January 31 at 8pm

Saturday, February 1 at 8pm

The Relentless Pursuit Of Ice is set in the impending desolate future, where we focus on a couple. We follow their daily life of enduring the never ending, increasingly miserable hot sun. With the weather getting hotter, and more unbearable, a special delivery is brought to their door. Choices must be made. Will this new adventure tear them apart, or bring them together?


Liz: Candice Carr Tom: Adam Foldes Frankie: Jonathan Itchon

We are pleased to welcome Kyle Zamcheck to our team as our Director for this production!

Venue: The Museum of Human Achievement (please email us at for the venue address). If you purchase tickets online, you will be sent a confirmation email from Frontera Fest with the venue address. Bring a blanket!

Follow us on Facebook!

45 DEGREES, TILT Performance Group, Murchison Chapel, First United Methodist Church, FronteraFest BYOV,January 24 - February 1, 2014

TILT Performance Group Presents Inaugural Production as part of FronteraFest's BYOV:


Friday, January 24th; Saturday, January 25th; Thursday, January 30th; Saturday, February 1st
All performances at 8 p.m. at Murchison Chapel, First United Methodist Church, 1201 Lavaca (click for map)
All tickets are $10.00.

Garret Rodin (photo: TILT Performance Group)

Just two weeks ago, TILT Performance Group -- Central Texas' newest theatre company -- wrapped up its devising process for 45°. This fresh, experimental performance piece debuts at Austin's FronteraFest on January 24th, and the company is charging full-steam ahead. During the process of creating 45°, company members wrote multiple songs and scenes, choreographed myriad gestural phrases, and generated loads of fruitful discussion surrounding topics ranging from poverty to technology and everything in between. Any observer familiar with devising work in the theater might have found this an exciting but "typical" process. Beneath the surface, however, TILT is anything but typical. It's a company at the cutting edge. It's innovative, pioneering and groundbreaking. Join TILT as it takes a giant leap onto a slippery, sloping surface of 45°.

For more information on TILT Performance Group, visit

  (poster: Tilt Performance Group)

Video Promo: Der Bestraffte Brudermord, Hidden Room Theatre, January17 - February 9, 2014

Video by Lowell Bartholomee:

Revised 2014 Season for Austin Theatre Project

Austin Theatre Project is revising its theatre calendar because of various unexpected events, including improvements to its performance venue:

Austin Theatre Project TX

The following shows and dates will now form our 2014 season:
  • April 10 to April 27 - Company (Dougherty Arts Center)
  • June 12 to June 29 - 'S Gershwin (Dougherty Arts Center)
  • August 14 to August 31 - Godspell (Dougherty Arts Center)
  • October 23 to November 9 - Carrie: the Musical (Dougherty Arts Center)
  • December 31 - Bending Broadway 3: Dirty Rotten Divas (Venue TBA)
As you can see, we have added Bending Broadway 3: Dirty Rotten Divas to our Season Ticket Package so our subscribers will still have five shows to choose from. Subscribers will still receive five tickets that they can use in any combination for any show.

Because of the delay in our 2014 season, we will be offering our season ticket packages through March 31 instead of January 31. For more information and to purchase season tickets through our safe and secure form, click HERE.

All of us at Austin Theatre Project would like to thank you for your understanding, well-wishes, and continued support. We are so proud to have won the hearts of the Austin theatre community and pledge to continue to raise the bar for many season to come!
Copyright © 2014 Austin Theatre Project, All rights reserved.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Illuminate! Video: Vortex Rep's Kickstarter Appeal: $25k for a New Lighting System

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Austin's Vortex Repertory Theatre, Artistic Director Bonnie Cullum, Lighting Director Jason Amato and Stage Manager Tamara L. Farley appeal for $25,000 contributions via Kickstarter to fund a new lighting system by February 15 (5 min.) and share 15 minutes of "happy birthday" wishes, a selfie-video compendium of supporters from Austin, across the country and around the world.

Click Vortex sign or Kickstarter logo to go to the Kickstarter page for info and to contribute (deadline: February 15, or it all goes away).

(*) Video Promo: Woodlawn Theatre's 2014 Season, San Antonio

Greg Hinojosa and the Woodlawn rock it in CGI:

Monday, January 13, 2014

Auditions in San Antonio for Carmen de la Calle,

Published by San Antonio Latino/Latina Theatre Alliance:

San Antonio Latino-a Theatre Alliance TX
CALLING ALL ACTORS ! Colectiva Arts & Culture is holding auditions for "Carmen de la Calle", a New Latino musical written by nationally recognized writer/poet and performing artist Amalia Ortiz. The Latino Cultural Center in Dallas,TX will be presenting 'Carmen' March 14th and 15th, 2014. This is a wonderful opportunity to be a part of an amazing show created here in South Texas, it is our chance to take San Antonio Teatro on the road and beyond. Actors with experience and training in musical theatre and cDance are highly encouraged to Audition. I will be waiting to hear from you San Anto.
Carmen de la Calle Colectiva Arts & Culture TXDirector: Joel C. Settles Producer: Colectiva Arts & Culture
Presenting Organization: The Latino Cultural Center Dallas,TX

Auditions are by appointment only. To request an appointment please email Joel Settles at or call 210.440.2753. Please submit a photo of yourself ( any kind of photo is sufficient ), resume, and indicate the role(s) in which you are interested. Please prepare a one minute musical selection of your choice. Please choose something appropriate for the show.

On the day of your audition please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to your scheduled audition appointment. Bring a CD of your musical selection. A cappella is allowed.

Audition Location: The Cameo Center, 1123 E. Commerce St. SA,TX (click for map )

Performance Dates: March 14th & 15th at Latino Cultural Center Dallas,TX (meals and lodging will be provided )
Rehearsals Feb 3rd – March 13th

Carmen de la Calle” is a new Latino musical written by nationally recognized and award winning poet and performer Amalia Ortiz (Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry HBO, the prestigious Hedgebrook writers residency program, 2011 IC3 Residency at the National Hispanic Cultural Center) .This full length musical will feature the diversity of Texas music including Latino Hip-Hop, Tex-Mex Conjunto, country music, and adaptations of traditional Mexican standards. From the pulsating beat of hip-hop and rap to the dance hall sounds of George Strait and Doug Sahm, “Carmen de la Calle” will have it all. Set in 1989 San Antonio and the present, this adaptation of Georges Bizet’s classic opera dives deep into the themes of passion and envy in portraying the lives and struggles of the marginalized and working classes of South Texas. “Carmen de la Calle” highlights the hibridity of Tex-Mex culture by incorporating the melodrama of novelas (Mexican soap operas), spoken word, bilingualism, and the musical confluence of Mexican standards, modern Tejano, Hip-Hop and the music of 1989 pop culture.

The story begins in present day with Mercedes behind her bar. After witnessing a scuffle between a young patron and her boyfriend, Mercedes is reminded of the tragic story of her friend, Carmen. With the musical help of a local DJ and the house band, Mercedes guides the audience through a flashback of her youth in San Antonio. Audiences will be swept up in the lives of Carmen, a gorgeous and tenacious femme fatale factory worker and Queen of the Theo Avenue Gs, her lover Joe, a strait-laced all-American military police officer who grew up in the Valley, and neighborhood homies like Frasquita, a female emcee with big hair, big earrings and big attitude, and Don Cairo, Carmen’s macho equal, aspiring rapper, and leader of the Theo Avenue Gs.

Click  to view role descriptions at

DEATH OF A SALESMAN by Arthur Miller, Classic Theatre at the Woodlawn, February 7 - 23, 2014

(photo: Siggi Ragnar)

Our debut production in our own space, located at the Woodlawn Theatre!!
— with Felice Garcia, Joseph Travis Urick, Kenneth Miles Ellington Lopez, Ronald Watson, Morgan Clyde, Diane Benham Malone, Jared Stephens, Byrd Bonner, Allan Ross, Jim Mammarella, David Rinear, John Stillwaggon, Rick Malone, Meredith Bell Alvarez, Christie Beckham and Rex Harder at Classic Theatre of San Antonio.

Video Promo: W.K., devised by Gale Theatre Company, January 17 - February 2, 2014

Video by Zoey Cane Belyea


Coming to the Vortex January 17-February 2!

2803 Manor Rd - click for map

Directed by Katherine Wilkinson
Text by Zoey Cane Belyea
Choreographed by Celina Chapin
Original Music by Mobley
Dramaturgy by Sarah Loucks

Performed by Celina Chapin & Aaron Alexander

brown paper tickets

KVUE Visits Ken Webster at Hyde Park Theatre for FronteraFest 2014

Video Promo: I Didn't See That Coming, an evening of short plays by Mark Harvey Levine, Oh Dragon Theatre Company, February 20 - 22, 2014

Video promo by Jim McKay (

Didn't See That Coming is a collection of ten short stories featuring ordinary people in not-so ordinary situations. All written by playwright, Mark Harvey Levine.
LIMITED RUN! FEB. 20TH, 21ST, & 22ND @ 8 p.m.!!
Directed by Phil Morin, Michael Floyd.
Location: Brave New Books - 1904 Guadalupe Suite B, Austin, Texas 78705
Starring: Tatiana Artis, Ryan Campbell, Lara Christie, Michael Davis, Shelby Graham, Chelsea Hockaday, Ben Howell, Alex Kiester, Tim McCarter, Crystal J. Ramirez and Bailey West.

Ann Pittman's Austin Theatre Favorites in 2013

From her blog aNNpITTMAN, posted January 12:

Ann Pittman (via Blogspot)
Everyone has their favorites. And everyone's weighing in (Chronicle critics: AdamRoberts, Robert Faires ... a cat).

Of course, I have my own opinions :)
So here's my credential-free pick for Austin's Top Ten 2013 Theatre Experiences (p.s. I don't include national tours or shows I was in on this list... tours obvs. aren't Austin, and despite my first girl-on-girl kiss this year, its probably biased to nominate performances I was a part of). Of the over twenty shows I saw this year, here's some moments, people and experiences that I loved (in no particular order)...

1. Barbara Chisholm in Fixing King John. This was a fun, smart show by the Rude Mechs, and pulling her hair out in the middle of it was a brilliant Barbara Chisholm.

2. The amazing set of Nursery Crimes (the DAC has never been better utilized) and the supporting characters trio of Travis Bedard, Bobby DiPasquale, and Heath Thompson. Kudos to Last Act's Will Snider for some great choices.

3. Ryan Crowder's big fat crocodile tears (in addition to the rest of his performance) in Penfold Theatre's Red.

4. Martin Burke's final monologue in Harvey. Lovely.

5. Kristi Brawner in general. From Sally in Reefer Madness to Lucy in Charlie Brown, she is quickly becoming Austin's most versatile 20 Something (sorry guys, she's taken).

6. HPT's Ken Webster as Thom Pain. Again.

7. Mad Beat Hip & Gone. I cannot understand why this didn't get more critical attention. Whatev. You guys, it was great. And those lightbulbs...

8. The Drawbridge/Gangplank lowering and raising set piece thing in Austin Playhouse's Man of La Mancha. Awesome and daunting. Broke up the play and the mood perfectly appropriately.

9. Little Shop of Horrors' colorful costumes at Zilker Park.

10. ZACH's A Christmas Story set. You'll shoot your eye out.

AND what I really, really wanted to see (which might have influenced the above list), but, alas, life had other exciting adventures...

1. Mical Trejo in Teatro Vivo's Confessions of a Mexpatriate

2. And Then There Were None by Austin Playhouse

3. Tongues (in the swimming pool!) by Theatre at the J

4. Fat Pig by Theatre En Bloc

So there you have it! Of the Austin theatre events I saw, these were the most super-duper. Maybe next year I'll be brave enough to give you The Worst Of... who knows! In the meantime, here's looking forward to more great, funny, meaningful, important, silly theatre in the heart of Texas in 2014!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

(*) 2014-2015 Theatre Season at Playhouse San Antonio

Playhouse season focuses on women

By Deborah Martin : January 9, 2014

The Playhouse San Antonio is starting the new year by looking ahead to next season.

The theater's 2014-'15 season focuses heavily on women, featuring several pieces written by female playwrights, including a world premiere, and a number of juicy roles for actresses.

Here's the lineup for the Russell Hill Rogers stage upstairs:

The Wizard of Oz, Oct. 3-Nov. 2: Odds are, you know the story — tornado-displaced Dorothy tries to make her way home — as well as the music, including “Follow the Yellow Brick Road” and “Over the Rainbow.”

Fiddler on the Roof, Dec. 5-22: Patrons frequently request the musical, said Playhouse President and CEO Asia Ciaravino. It follows a family in a time of transition, as the parents cleave to tradition and their daughters start to venture into a changing world.

Gypsy, Feb. 13-March 15: The musical is based on the childhood of burlesque queen Gypsy Rose Lee, who was raised by a stage parent who went by the handle Mama Rose.

Drood (The Mystery of Edwin Drood), May 29-June 21: The musical is based on Charles Dickens' unfinished novel “The Mystery of Edwin Drood.” The audience determines the ending.

Grease, July 17-Aug. 16: The final audience fave of the upstairs season looks at the greasers and their gals at Rydell High in 1959.

Sheila Rinear (via Express-News)
And here's what the Cellar Theater lineup holds:

End of the Rainbow, Oct. 10-Nov. 2: The piece, which looks at Judy Garland's final days, will run concurrently with “Wizard of Oz,” Ciaravino said. The film version of “Wizard” helped establish Garland's place as a pop culture superstar, so offering the two shows will allow audiences to explore her work from two perspectives.

Merry Gentlemen, Dec. 11-14: San Antonio-based playwright Sheila Rinear will spend this year working with students and community members to develop this piece, a holiday-themed work that will premiere in the Cellar.

The Last Five Years, Jan. 30-Feb. 22: Jason Robert Brown's musical about the end of a relationship is built around a nifty gimmick: The wife tells her version of events beginning at the end and moving backward through time, while her soon-to-be-ex-husband tells things in chronological order.

Crime and Punishment, March 13-April 5: Marilyn Campbell's and Curt Columbus' script boils the Dostoyevsky novel into a taut 90 minutes.

4000 Miles, May 15-June 7: Amy Herzog's play is about a young man who suffers a loss and recovers by moving in with his 91-year-old grandmother.

Water by the Spoonful, July 3-26: Quiara Alegría Hudes's Pulitzer Prize winning drama is about an Iraqi war veteran trying to forge a life for himself stateside.

In addition, plans are afoot for Motherhood Out Loud, a Vagina Monologues-like look at parenting; it's slated to run May 8-10. Ciaravino is making plans to present it away from The Playhouse. The production will be a fundraiser for the theater's education programs.

THE WEDDING or THE REBELLION by Becca Plunkett, FronteraFest at Salvage Vanguard Theatre, January 25 - February 1, 2014

The Wedding or The Rebellion Becca Plunkett FronteraFest 2014 Austin TX

Written and Directed by Becca Plunkett. Scenic, Costume, & Properties Design by Leslie Turner. Original Music by Griffen McDonald. Stage-managed and Assistant-directed by Chris Weihert.
Saturday, January 25th at 12:00 p.m.

 Monday, January 27th at 9:15 p.m.
Friday, January 31st at 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 1st at 10:45 p.m.

Live Music. A hilarious Performance. Free Champagne.
Don't be a boochie barbarian, buy your tickets! Online tickets are $12. You can buy them from BUYPLAYTIX. Or you can be super hip and pay $10 for a cash pre-sale ticket. Just contact any of the above-mentioned, and we will get the tickets to you. Yes. Yes, we will.

THE WEDDING, OR THE REBELLION tells the story of an arranged marriage between a balding orthodontist and a shanghaied lesbian, orchestrated by the Botox-addicted mother of the bride-to-be. The day of the wedding is a happy, happy day, indeed!


Lee Corkran as MARIELLA (a pussy gopher struggling against the forces of her overbearing mother)

Lindsey Greer Sikes as CAROLINE (Mariella's overbearing mother. A Botox-addict obsessed with finding a husband for her daughter. She has arranged 9 failed marriages.)

Zac Carr as TODD (arranged husband number 10. A non-smoking, balding orthodontist. His winky is not large.)


Kent Harral as PASTOR FRANK (also a non-smoker. A pastor. He enjoys parties and such.)


A complimentary wedding brunch with champagne and breakfast tacos at the 1/25 matinee.

Complimentary champagne and wedding cake for performances on 1/27 and 1/31.


Complimentary champagne and an invite to a late-night wedding reception and party after the show on 2/1. Hip.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Video Promo: River of Gruel, Pile of Pigs: The Requisite Gesture(s) of Narrow Approach by Sibyl Kempson and Rude Mechs at the Salvage Vanguard, opening April 3, 2014

From via Salvage Vanguard Theatre:

From the Pig Pile:
The Requisite Gesture(s) of Narrow Approach opens April 3

by Sibyl Kempson

For three {hundred thousand} years now the Pig Pile has squirmed and squealed its way across a vast landscape of deep associations and histories between seemingly unrelated objects. The closer we get to the complicated, complicated porcine truth of what it means to be human, the more our numbers have dwindled, to where we now begin to fear we are on the brink of extinction. Only you can help us to piece these pieces together so that we may know what we have learned, before it’s too late. Note: If you have any wooden items that you wish to be preserved for all eternity, you may please to bring them with you to the occasion.

Trailer with scenes from Fusebox Festival workshop performance at the Off Center, April, 2013

This is a collaboration between Austin-based theater companies Rude Mechs and Salvage Vanguard Theater, and a New Dramatists resident playwright. The group has gathered four times a year for three years in a chaotic work format known as a Pig Pile, with little discernible leadership or centralized structure - neither of narrative nor of process – and has assembled an unwieldy and highly associative collection of seemingly unrelated imagery, geography and aromas, that over time and layers of work has revealed an emerging, intimately connected web of enfolded and implicate mythology.

This project is one of five institutional New Dramatists/Full Stage USA Commissions for new work at an eclectic mix of producing organizations across the country. The Full Stage USA initiative, conceived by New Dramatists and underwritten by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, addresses the field-critical issues of new works “stalling” in development with no resulting full production and the special challenge of securing subsequent productions after a world premiere. Each partnership provides a $25,000 commission to a writer; supports two years of enhanced writer-driven development in New Dramatists’ Playwrights Lab; and culminates in the full production staged by the partner theater.

Auditions in San Antonio for The Fantasticks, Vexler Theatre, January by appointment

Sheldon Vexler Theatre San Antonio TX

The Fantasticks

The Vex will be holding auditions for "The Fantasticks" toward the end of January. If you are interested in auditioning, please email The Vex at and include a good contact phone number. We will send you more detailed information, including dates and audition requirements.

Location: Weinberg Campus JCC, 12500 N.W. Military Highway, San Antonio, Texas, 78231 - click for map