Theater Critic Picks
These are the 17 must-see shows in Dallas-Fort Worth theater for February
It's a leap year, and Dallas-Fort Worth theaters are acting accordingly. This month's list is super-sized thanks to that extra day, along with a few concerts from big Broadway performers.
In order of start date, here are 17 local shows to watch this month:
Circle Theatre, through February 24
Artemisia Gentileschi was the most celebrated female painter of the 17th century, yet her name was all but lost for centuries. Attacked at just 17, publicly shamed, and tortured to prove her truth, Gentileschi continues to fight for her art and the freedom to make it on her own terms. Lauren M. Gunderson’s Artemisia, making its regional premiere, is a work of humor and warmth that celebrates the courage, artistry, and humanity of a woman who attacked the glass ceiling with every brush stroke.
I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change
Theatre Three, through February 25
Presented as a series of vignettes, this touching musical comedy is about all of love’s greatest challenges: dating, sex, marriage, and family. The production takes place in the Theatre Too space.
God of Carnage
Theatre Three, through March 3
Two sets of Brooklyn parents meet to deal with a playground altercation between 11-year-old boys and a calm and rational debate between grown-ups transforms into a hysterical night of name-calling, tantrums, and tears.
Instructions for a Seance
Amphibian Stage, February 2-11
Audiences will take a seat at Katie Bender’s “DIY séance party” as she attempts night after night to escape her own life by summoning the spirit of master escapologist Harry Houdini. This theatrical experiment, first workshopped at The Playwrights Center and The Alley All New Festival, transforms Bender’s mesmerizing personal journey into a collective experience that asks the audience: What are you trying to escape?
I Am Delivered't
Dallas Theater Center, February 2-18
This joyful new comedy introduces theater audiences to the world of Church Usher Board culture and celebrates same-gender-loving church folks, and the power and joy of being your authentic self. These are the announcements. Let us govern ourselves accordingly.
Bread N' Gravy: The Songs and Life of Ethel Waters
Bishop Arts Theatre Center, February 2-March 3
This biographical production that explores the captivating journey of legendary singer and actress Waters, delving into her humble beginnings, navigating alongside her entry into showbusiness, and witnessing her extraordinary ascent to stardom. The compelling narrative unfolds the life of Waters, a trailblazing figure who became one of the first African American women to achieve unparalleled success both on Broadway and in Hollywood.
Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Broadway at the Bass, February 6-11
An uplifting comeback story like no other, Tina: The Tina Turner Musical is the inspiring journey of a woman who broke barriers and became the Queen of Rock n’ Roll, featuring her much-love songs. Turner has won 12 Grammy Awards and her live shows have been seen by millions, with more concert tickets sold than any other solo performer in music history. Note: Performing Arts Fort Worth will offer a digital lottery the day before each performance, giving theatergoers a chance to purchase up to two tickets at $35 each.
Feeding the Cat, Incorrectly, Several Times Over
Echo Theatre, February 8-23
Jo and Jen live parallel lives: They study medicine. They pay the rent. They fight with their partners. And they keep big secrets. When Jo's decision to keep a patient's secret backfires, she is forced to reckon with her responsibility to partners, strangers, and enemies alike.
Kitchen Dog Theater, February 8-25
This action-packed feminist comedy, written and directed by Southern Methodist University assistant professor Kara-Lynn Vaeni, offers a forthright look into fitness, body image, and how we define strength. For this production, the audience will be "getting back in the gym," both literally and figuratively, at D-Town Crossfit.
Disney Princess: The Concert
Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra, February 9-10
Susan Egan (original Belle in Beauty and the Beast, Meg in Hercules), Arielle Jacobs (Princess Jasmine in Aladdin), and Syndee Winters (Nala in The Lion King) combine forces in this concert, joined by music director Benjamin Rauhala and prince Adam J. Levy (Moulin Rouge, Waitress).
International Theater Festival
Teatro Dallas, February 10, 17, 24
The 21st edition of this festival welcomes groups from Mexico, Argentina, and Venezuela that will present highly visual works in Spanish with English subtitles, representing current trends in Latin American performance.
WaterTower Theatre, February 14-25
Ann is a no-holds-barred portrait of Ann Richards, the legendary governor of Texas. The inspiring and hilarious play brings the audience face to face with a complex, colorful, and captivating character bigger than the state from which she hailed.
Cara Mía Theatre, February 17-March 3
Jaime Chabaud’s Yanga is inspired by the real-life story of Gaspar Yanga, an enslaved African prince who led a rebellion and successfully negotiated an independent territory with the Spanish crown less than 100 years after the arrival of Hernán Cortés in Mexico. Newly translated to English for the first time, Yanga sheds light on the history of the Afro-Mexican experience.
Broadway Dallas, February 20-March 3
Based on Tim Burton’s dearly beloved film, this hilarious musical tells the story of Lydia Deetz, a strange and unusual teenager whose whole life changes when she meets a recently deceased couple and a demon with a thing for stripes. With an irreverent book, an astonishing set, and a score that’s out of this netherworld, Beetlejuice is a remarkably touching show about family, love, and making the most of every Day-O.
Brian Stokes Mitchell
Eisemann Center for the Performing Arts, February 24
Two-time Tony Award-winner Brian Stokes Mitchell has enjoyed a career that spans Broadway, television, film, and concert appearances with the country’s finest conductors and orchestras. He received Tony, Drama Desk, and Outer Critics Circle awards for his star turn in Kiss Me, Kate. He also gave Tony-nominated performances in Man of La Mancha, August Wilson’s King Hedley II, and Ragtime.
Undermain Theatre, February 29-March 17
Jane holds a knife. It's bloody. Hester lies on a table. She's bloodied. Peregrine blows out a candle. Go back in time. Jane, Hester, and Peregrine work as maids in a 1900s manor, unable to say what they want to say, stealing moments away from work to hold time with each other. Their love bubbles under their words. We hear their thoughts they aren't yet brave enough to tell each other. They can't stop thinking of death. We hurtle toward it. This will be a workshop production.
The Sum of Us One-Act Festival
Bishop Arts Theatre Center, February 29-March 17
This third-annual banned books festival features a collection of short plays by six local playwrights, all inspired by Heather McGhee's brilliant analysis that explores the far-reaching costs of racism and the path to healing as a community. There will be nightly talkbacks that foster meaningful conversations and a stronger sense of unity.