Theater Critic Picks
These are the 7 can't-miss shows in Dallas-Fort Worth theater for August
Besides Dallas making history as the first venue in the U.S. to host a big Broadway touring show following the COVID-19 shutdowns, there are still a handful of other impressive debuts happening.
From an Edinburgh Fringe participant to free community performances, there's a show for every taste during August.
In order of start date, here are seven local shows to watch this month:
12th Night: A Rock Musical
Junior Players and Shakespeare Dallas, August 3-8
Illyria is the new Coachella as The Bard's poetry is mixed into original infectious rock/pop style melodies in a new production of this classic gender-bending comedy. The madness for love unfolds after a shipwrecked Viola falls onto the Illyrian Shores.
Dallas Summer Musicals, August 3-September 5
The first national Broadway tour post-pandemic has flown into the Music Hall at Fair Park, bringing with it an extraordinary green-skinned woman, her bubbly best friend, and a different angle on The Wizard of Oz.
Death on Delivery!
Pegasus Theatre, August 5-21
The setting is City Hospital, where Lt. Foster’s wife (Beverly, a.k.a. Bubbles) has just given birth to their first child, Harriet. But danger lurks around every corner, so the intrepid trio (Harry, his paid-by-the-hour assistant Nigel Grouse, and Lt. Foster of the “real” police) must solve a mysterious string of murders before a madman claims one of their own. RadioVizion is an alternative technique devised by Pegasus Theatre for the presentation of the Living Black & White series of Harry Hunsacker adventures. While RadioVizion does not employ the trade-secret makeup, it instead focuses on evoking the experience and glamour of being in a live radio studio of the 1930s and 1940s (though in this case you'll be at the Bath House Cultural Center). Live sound effects, actors at period-style live microphones, and costumes suggestive of the era complete the effect.
The Little Glass Slipper as Performed by the Queen of France and Her Friends
Cara Johnston, streaming August 6-30
France: 1789. Tensions are high and whispers of revolution fill the halls of Versailles. We are at the Queen’s Theatre attending a performance given by Marie Antoinette and her aristocratic friends. It is the 14th of July and today the Bastille will be stormed. Chaos ensues as both play and Ancien Régime fall apart. Follow as actors flee, assassination is attempted, and the age-old saying “the show must go on” is pushed to the limit. The show was recorded at Dallas' Majestic Theatre on July 14, 2021, in front of a small audience and is being streamed as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Your Healing is Killing Me
Cara Mía Theatre Co., August 19, 21-22
Playwright-in-residence Virginia Grise is performing her manifesto in the neighborhoods of Pleasant Grove, Oak Cliff, and Bachman Lake for free. Part performance, part writing and movement workshop, this interactive community tour asks audiences to come in comfortable, ready-to-move attire as they will become part of Grise’s performance. The script is based on Grise’s lessons learned in San Antonio free health clinics and New York acupuncture schools; from the treatments and consejos of curanderas, abortion doctors, Marxist artists, community health workers and bourgie dermatologists.
Uptown Players, August 20-28
Based on Alison Bechdel’s 2006 graphic memoir of the same name, Fun Home, developed by Lisa Kron (book/lyrics) and Jeanine Tesori (score), is hailed as the first mainstream musical with a lesbian protagonist, and it explores themes of family, sexuality, and secrets. Originally postponed from last season, the musical is finally making its debut at the Kalita Humphreys Theater.
Second Thought Theatre, streaming August 20-September 4
Commissioned as part of the 2020 S.T.E.P. Program (Second Thought Emerging Playwrights), Libra Season has been in development for the past year specifically for zoom by Erin E. Adams. This play will be performed live each night and streamed via Zoom webinar from each actor’s own home. The employees of Libra Ltd. are having a bad autumn. After several stressful months of working from home, they now face a leaked memo with possible disastrous consequences. Plus, an impending public nervous breakdown from their teen spokesmodel.