Theater News

Fort Worth's Stage West gets creepy and bootylicious in upcoming season

Fort Worth's Stage West gets creepy and bootylicious in next season

"Bootycandy" Off-Broadway
A scene from the Off-Broadway production of Bootycandy. Photo by Joan Marcus

Fort Worth's Stage West has announced its 2015-16 season, an intriguing lineup of provocative regional premieres (five of the six main stage plays, to be exact) and a couple bonus shows for the smaller Studio space.

It starts with Bad Jews, a sharp, short comedy about cousins fighting to inherit a religious ornament left behind by their concentration camp-surviving relative. Yes, concentration camp and comedy can be used in the same sentence, especially if it's Joshua Harmon who wrote the script.

This was the first show the critically acclaimed young playwright had produced, and his current stage work, Significant Other, is garnering even more great reviews. (It closes this weekend at Roundabout Theatre Company.) Watch these Bad Jews October 1 through November 1.

David Ives tackles an 18th century French classic by Jean-François Regnard in The Heir Apparent. In traditional farce fashion, everyone is lusting after someone they shouldn't be and lies are being spun faster than a top. It runs November 12 through December 13.

Wendy Welch and Bob Hess ring in the New Year December 31 through January 31, 2016, with Sexy Laundry, Michele Riml's topical comedy about a mature couple trying to rekindle the spark in their marriage. This is the Fort Worth premiere, though this production played at WaterTower Theatre this past February and will be remounted there again immediately preceding this staging.

The creepy crime mystery The Nether went over big in London, was produced Off-Broadway earlier this year, and now comes to Fort Worth. To describe it much more would be spoiling things, but virtual reality definitely plays a part in this disturbing drama. Step into their world March 10 through April 10, 2016.

Contemporary Theatre of Dallas produced a pretty unsettling version of Wait Until Dark last summer, but the intimacy of Stage West's play space and its lack of windows are sure to up the tension on this 1960s home-invasion thriller.

This is a new adaptation by Jeffrey Hatcher moves the setting to the 1940s, with the invaders seeking diamonds instead of heroin, but the biggest change is how capable Susan, the blind housewife who must deal with the thieves, has become. This runs May 26 through June 26, 2016.

Right now we're experiencing a Playwrights Horizons hit, Mr Burns: A Post Electric Play, at Stage West (review coming soon, but spoiler, it's terrific). The Fort Worth company pulled again from the revered Off-Broadway theater's past productions, putting Bootycandy on the calendar for August 11 through September 11, 2016. Robert O'Hara's odyssey through growing up black and gay has been called "outrageous," "uproarious," and "subversive." Can't wait.

The Studio space will host three shows: Jacob Marley’s Christmas Carol (November 27-December 20), Buyer & Cellar (March 17-April 10, 2016) and An Iliad (August 25-September 11, 2016). Plano boy Michael Urie came through town almost a year ago with the hilarious Buyer & Cellar, a one-man show about a struggling actor who works in the rumored mall built beneath Barbra Streisand's home.

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