Theater Preview

These are the 13 can't-miss shows in Dallas-Fort Worth theater for April

13 can't-miss shows in Dallas-Fort Worth theater for April

Second Thought Theatre presents The Great God Pan
Drew Wall, Alex Organ, and Natalie Young in The Great God Pan at Second Thought Theatre. Photo courtesy of Second Thought Theatre
Ochre House Theater presents Morphing
Morphing at Ochre House Theater. Photo by Karlo Ramos
Soul Rep Theatr Company presents Topdog/Underdog
Topdog/Underdog at Soul Rep Theatre Company.  Photo courtesy of The South Dallas Cultural Center
Ghost Quartet
Off Broadway on Flora presents Ghost Quartet. Photo by Ryan Jensen, courtesy of AT&T Performing Arts Center
End of the Rainbow at Uptown Players
Janelle Lutz in End of the Rainbow at Uptown Players. Photo by Mike Morgan
Firehouse Theatre presents [title of show]
[title of show] at The Firehouse Theatre. Photo by Jason Anderson, Pendleton Photography
Undermain Theatre presents Jonah
Jonathan Brooks in Jonah at Undermain Theatre. Photo by Ashley Randall
Dallas Opera presents Show Boat
Show Boat at Dallas Opera. Photo courtesy of Dallas Opera
Wicked Austin tour featuring Jennifer DiNoia and Hayley Podschun
Dallas Summer Musicals is bringing Wicked back. Photo by Joan Marcus
Garret Storms and Kia Boyer in The Big Meal at WaterTower Theatre
Garret Storms and Kia Boyer in The Big Meal at WaterTower Theatre. Photo by Kelsey Leigh Ervi
Echo Theatre presents Temple Spirit
Temple Spirit at Echo Theatre. Photo courtesy of Echo Theatre
Dallas Theater Center presents Deferred Action
David Lozano directs Deferred Action. Photo by Karen Almond
PrismCo presents Animal vs Machine
Animal vs. Machine at PrismCo. Photo by Adam "Ace" Anderson of the Striped Heart
Second Thought Theatre presents The Great God Pan
Ochre House Theater presents Morphing
Soul Rep Theatr Company presents Topdog/Underdog
Ghost Quartet
End of the Rainbow at Uptown Players
Firehouse Theatre presents [title of show]
Undermain Theatre presents Jonah
Dallas Opera presents Show Boat
Wicked Austin tour featuring Jennifer DiNoia and Hayley Podschun
Garret Storms and Kia Boyer in The Big Meal at WaterTower Theatre
Echo Theatre presents Temple Spirit
Dallas Theater Center presents Deferred Action
PrismCo presents Animal vs Machine

Just like 2016 brought you an extra day we're giving you an extra show this month, a baker's dozen of plays and musicals you should really just buy your tickets to already. They run the gamut from dark and existential to goofy and easy to sing along to, but these shows all personify the variety of theater available in Dallas.

Here's are the 13 shows in order by start date:

Temple Spirit
Echo Theatre, March 31-April 16

A world premiere recently developed in Chicago, this ghost story involves demons and Japanese folk legends. It continues Echo's mission to produce plays written by women (Susan Felder, in this case) and also travels to a new venue: The Creative Arts building at Fair Park, a place that's normally only used during the fair.

End of the Rainbow
Uptown Players, April 1-17

Janelle Lutz practically stole the show two summers ago in Uptown's The Boy From Oz with her cameo as Judy Garland. Now audiences can have more than two hours of Lutz as Judy in this dark yet hilarious play with music about the legendary entertainer near the end of her troubled life. And Lutz doesn't just channel Garland's signature singing style — she improves upon it, making the big numbers even more exciting.

Ghost Quartet
Off-Broadway on Flora, April 7-9

Dave Malloy's Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812 may be prepping for its Broadway debut this fall with Josh Groban, but Dallasites can hear the composer's offbeat music in this chamber musical about death and drinking. It's not as depressing as it sounds, but definitely don't go in to the immersive show looking for a rollicking good time.

Topdog/Underdog
Soul Rep Theatre Company, April 7-17

Suzan-Lori Parks scored the Pulitzer Prize for drama nearly 15 years ago with this work, which examines for two brothers what it's like to be male and African American.

Jonah
Undermain Theatre, April 13-May 7

Len Jenkin returns to his beloved Undermain, which has produced five of his previous world premieres. This time we're following the titular character as he skips across the world, meeting fascinating characters along the way.

[title of show]
The Firehouse Theatre, April 15-May 1

Talk about meta. The four-person show-that-could began as a joke, when the writers were trying to meet the deadline for a musical theater festival. The resulting work about the road to creation, which is littered with ego, crippling self-doubt, and friendship, ended up playing Broadway and now it lives again in Carrollton with a stellar cast.

Show Boat
Dallas Opera, April 15, 17, 20,  23, 29 and May 1

This is the musical that changed musicals, making them the plot-driven experience we know today. Dallas Opera's version promises to be big and lush, bringing in talent from all over the world to sing iconic songs such as "Old Man River" and "Why Do I Love You."

The Big Meal
WaterTower Theatre, April 15-May 8

Family stories usually happen around the dinner table, and playwright Dan LeFranc uses that conceit as the setting for his play. We see two people meet as a suburban restaurant, fall in love, build a family, and say goodbye, all throughout one meal.

The Great God Pan
Second Thought Theatre, April 20-May 14

After giving us the haunting Belleville last season, Second Thought revisits Amy Herzog and her penchant for seemingly happy yuppies who are really anything but. Drew Wall returns here, joined by STT artistic director Alex Organ and Natalie Young.

Wicked
Dallas Summer Musicals, April 20-May 22

You can't defy this one — the blockbuster musical flies back into Dallas again, bringing with it the powerhouse score by Stephen Schwartz and more than a few flying monkeys. The backstory to Glinda the Good and Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West, is still just as captivating as it was when the show premiered on Broadway more than a decade ago.

Animal vs. Machine
PrismCo., April 23

The dancers and movers over at PrismCo. are always looking for a new way to wordlessly tell a story, and this time that involves MMA fighting. Two female mixed martial artists will duke it out over three rounds for dominance in the ring, all without speaking.

Deferred Action
Dallas Theater Center/Cara Mia Theatre Co., April 29-May 14

It was big news when Cara Mia announced its collaboration with Dallas Theater Center on the next installment of the "Dreamers" series. These powerful plays are shedding light on the reception immigrants receive when entering and living in America, focusing here on one man's experience as he grows up undocumented. Resident actors from both companies populate the cast list, with Ivan Jasso starring.

Morphing
Ochre House, April 30-May 21

If you missed it five years ago, get yourself to Deep Ellum this time for Matthew Posey's unique take on Long Day's Journey Into Night. As with everything Ochre House does, it's weird and wonderful, and something you definitely can't see anywhere else.