Theater Critic Picks
I know, I know, we were all hoping for a scary 13 this month. But each one of these shows looks so good, I couldn't bear to leave any of them out. It's spooky season onstage, with creepy takes on the classics and frighteningly good new works.
Here are the 14 shows to see in order by start date:
Eccentric Bear Theater Co., October 3-6
Tensions are running high at a sleepy country estate as esteemed actress Irina Arkadina introduces her son to an unexpected new lover in Anton Chekhov's classic play about jealousy, unrequited love, and large birds.
Shakespeare Dallas, October 3-13
While keeping true to Shakespeare's original bloody script, this classic tale of power, ambition, and tragic downfall moves to an alternative near-future Silicon Valley, where tech companies bid for ultimate control in a dynamic and changing industry. Following a prophecy from three witches that he will be king, Macbeth — at the urging of his wife — plots King Duncan's murder to secure the throne.
Two By Beckett: Footfalls and Not I
WingSpan Theatre Co., October 3-19
These hauntingly beautiful plays investigate the "undiscovered country" that Samuel Beckett and his characters yearn for and how we all must go on. Jennifer Kuenzer stars in Footfalls and Susan Sargeant in Not I — Sargeant also directs.
A Love Offering
Kitchen Dog Theatre, October 3-27
Jonathan Norton's newest play follows T'Wana Jepson and Miss Georgia, two nurse's aides who care for patients with Alzheimer's and dementia. It's not a glamorous job, but the women find support in each other — until T'Wana is attacked by the patient in E 204.
Theatre Three, October 3-November 3
Vampires, but make it feminist. This fresh adaptation of the Bram Stoker Gothic horror novel takes a deeper look into the Romanian folklore with an update on the undead. You've long heard the story of Dracula, everyone's favorite blood-sucking Transylvanian; but what stories might we learn through the eyes of his mysterious mistress Mina?
Sweet Tooth Hotel and Arts Mission Oak Cliff, October 4-26
Each Friday and Saturday night in October, you can party like it's 1999 at a Y2K New Year countdown with the permanent residents of Sweet Tooth Hotel. This immersive theater experience (that means you're part of the show, too) challenges you to alter the show's ending or become trapped in a never-ending enigma while you solve different pieces of the puzzle.
Teatro Dallas, October 11-November 2
In this slyly surprising and gripping play, Guillermo Calderon puts the audience in the room with three women charged with deciding the future of the Villa Grimaldi, an infamous detention camp of Chile’s Pinochet government.
Dallas Theater Center, October 15-November 10
Written by Emmy Award-winner Holland Taylor and starring Friday Night Lights' Libby Villari, Ann is a no-holds-barred portrait of Ann Richards, the legendary governor of Texas.
Bright Colors and Bold Patterns and Cooties
Uptown Players, October 18-27
For Gay History Month, Uptown Players is presenting two special shows. The first, Bright Colors and Bold Patterns by Drew Droege, is a solo play starring Paul J. Williams as Gerry. It’s the On the eve of Josh and Brennan's picture-perfect Palm Springs wedding, and their old friend Gerry arrives car-cranky and a few beers in, furious that the invitation demands that he "refrain from wearing bright colors or bold patterns." The second, Cooties by Alexandrew Recore, is a fast-paced-sitcom-romcom variety show about truly ugly love, examining all the things we'd rather not talk about when it comes to sex, love, and happiness.
Amphibian Stage Productions, October 18-November 10
Despite being taken prisoner of war, then ransomed off by her father to the feckless king of a foreign country, Margaret of Anjou went on to command armies. Shakespeare was so entranced with her that he included her in four of his plays. Stephan Wolfert used Shakespeare as his inspiration for this play.
The Firehouse Theatre, October 24-November 10
Based on the true story of conjoined twins Violet and Daisy Hilton, who became stars during the Depression, Side Show is a moving portrait of two women joined at the hip whose extraordinary bondage brings them fame but denies them love. Told almost entirely in song, the show follows their progression from England to America, around the vaudeville circuit and to Hollywood on the eve of their appearance in the 1932 movie Freaks.
WaterTower Theatre, October 24-November 10
After witnessing a murder, disco diva Deloris Van Cartier is put in protective custody in the one place the cops are sure she won't be found: a convent. Finding herself at odds with a rigid lifestyle and the uptight Mother Superior, Deloris uses her unique flair and singing talent to inspire the choir, breathing new life into the church and community. In doing so, however, she blows her cover and soon her gangster boyfriend and his cronies are giving chase.
The Bippy Bobby Boo Show
Theatre Too and Danielle Georgiou Dance Group, October 25-November 2
Dazzling with glitz and glamour of a 1960s musical variety show, this new work is a two-week haunting of Theatre Too, the delightful downstairs space at Theatre Three. Bippy Bobby, the crooning, cocktail-toting ne'er-do-well, hosts this late-night limited engagement featuring performances by the six ghosts living in the belly of the Uptown basement. Inspired by the plays they saw performed by Norma Young, Esther Ragland, Robert Dracup, and Jac Alder, the ghosts of Theatre Too bring the works of Pirandello, Pinter, Albee, and Beckett into their acts.
Ochre House Theatre, October 26-November 16
Hot on the heels of Fosse/Verdon's big Emmy win, this season opener follows the life of Bob Fosse, who finds himself fighting for life after his third heart attack. Wrapped in song, dance, vaudeville, and spectacle, Razz explores how artists survive in a fickle world.