Weird Rodeo Theater Company
For Sam Shepard's TRUE WEST we're seeking an actress who can play 50s or 60s for the role of the Mother
Performance Dates: January 9 - 25, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. at the Off-Center in Austin (click for map) Tech rehearsals: January 5-8
*Rehearsals will accommodate holidays.
For more information and to schedule an audition, please send headshot and resume to:
Cheers, Chris Hejl, Producer
(image via www.kdhdance.com)
by Dr. David Glen Robinson
The Kathy Dunn Hamrick Dance Company (KDHDC) is said by many to be the best modern dance company in Austin, and it also receives notable positive mentions statewide. Part of this reputation is built on the company’s athletically powerful performances and embrace of abstract communication, a hallmark of all modern dance inherited from Martha Graham. And while much of modern, or contemporary, dance in the 21st century has moved more toward narrative story dances or drifted into performance art, Kathy Dunn Hamrick Dance Co. remains rooted in abstraction for its core inspirations. The contrast between this form of performing art and narrative, discursive plays is the very reason I recommend this show to the theatre-going public. Here is something the theatre fan doesn’t often see and may find unexpectedly enjoyable.
The commitment to the abstract does not at all suggest that KDHDC performances lack affect or fail to address human feeling. Their current show, The Undoing of Nonet, is a case in point. It's a meditation, or riff, on the power of abstraction to enlighten, inspire and redirect thought and feeling.
The first encounter with The Undoing of Nonet is with its title. It suggests a story of the misfortunes of a female named Nonet. But is anything as it seems? A nonet is an ensemble of nine, one more than an octet. And whether person or thing, what is undoing or coming apart here?
The first few minutes of the dance refuse to resolve the matter. An ensemble of nine dancers steps onstage as the lights fade up. Their costumes lack uniformity; instead, they show great variety. One dancer in particular is garbed in a floor-length dress and old-fashioned flowered bonnet. She is very much a character. Nonet?
(image via www.kdhdance.com)
The ensemble forms a line, and multiple canons ripple through the group. The line moves upstage and downstage, breaks apart, aligns on the diagonal, and suddenly the character dancer is gone. Nonet is undone. The balance of the hour-length performance is left to a group of eight dancers who perform in various combinations, entering and exiting as needed to accomplish their work.
The first half of the performance is immensely physical, the dancers demonstrating the KHDC trademark athleticism. They perform multiple lifts, carries, and inversions, mastering every level from the floor to the lighting grid (more about the lighting design later). The first half has a vertiginous and lightning-quick dynamic. Its powerful qualities are built partially on the live music accompaniment by line upon line percussion (no, they don’t capitalize their name), an ensemble of three percussionists. In the show, each plays mixed sets of percussion instruments. They begin with an explosion of sound, followed by complex rhythms streaming across the stage, keeping pace with the dancers.
Spectacular partnering marks the strong section of the piece. Shari Brown and Alyson Dolan are well matched, slender as whips and with the same cabled strength. They move together and exchange lifts, then engage in seemingly effortless carries that create starlike shapes with spoking arms and legs. Just when I told myself I wanted to see more, they stopped. Later in the show, the two dancers surprised me again by performing another partnering sequence, albeit one with different gestures.
Steven Pruitt's lighting design serves the purposes of the dance but stands additionally as an artistic work in its own right. Standard flood lighting bulbs hanging from flexible cords point straight down. The instruments are arranged in a square of from 80 to 100 bulbs. They form a plane above the stage, one that has the illusory effect of lowering the ceiling of the dance space. Dancers can and do reach up to jostle the bulbs from time to time, and these actions activate and randomize the illumination on the stage. That's not all -- designer Pruitt can alter the luminosity of each bulb to create a multitude of lighting sets. This design interacts strongly with the performers.
I have seen one similar design in the past year, that of Steven Shirey for Breaking String Theater’s production of Timothy Braun’s Three, or the Sound of the Great Existential Nothingness. I’m wondering if such interactive lighting designs may be an emerging trend. If so, you read it here first. Be that as it may, Pruitt’s design drapes layers of light and shadow across the dancers, like multiple layers of tulle or lace over a figure, and then shifts the layers through time and across space. This work is certainly worthy of a B. Iden Payne award nomination.
The second half of the performance is more emotional. The dancers slow a bit. Their partnering and group work become more sinuous. Their faces become more expressive. When they look at each other, they see things. What things? In the welter of abstraction they have built around us, that is difficult to say. I am the kind of audience member who, when flooded with abstract images, forms his own impressions out of the mass. This is a valid response and one welcomed by any creative artist. Art very much should motivate us and point out new pathways. The Undoing of Nonet launches us in new directions of mind and heart.
Line upon line percussion shifted to xylophone strike plates set across cords and wooden panels. This gave the strike plates a softer and flatter quality when struck. The dance wound down softly, as well. One after another, performers exited, not to return, after increasingly lyrical passages that all seemed to be long, lingering farewells. The movement all ended with Shari Brown melting to the stage to form an exquisite shape of encircling arms that seem to hold and bid the departed to tarry and yet remain with us in the fading light.
And to be too meta by half, The Undoing of Nonet is the farewell dance of longtime company member Roxanne Gage. Roxie leaves to “retirement,” she says, after a national career centered in Texas. In addition to lengthy and highly regarded stints with top rank repertory companies such as Sharir Dance Company and, of course, KDHDC, Roxie claims academy teaching in every dance form, including cheer. She may leave the stage, but she surely remains on the scene.
People sometimes say to me that they don’t “get” a dance, or what it is that the choreographer is trying to say. It's generally less important to “get” the performance, although specific important messages may be conveyed, than it is to make something of it meaningful to oneself. That engagement is the evidence that a performance has resonated with its audience.
For that reason I recommend The Undoing of Nonet to all, and especially to the theatre-going public. People who buy tickets to live performances are already open to the unfettered enjoyments of this show. People new to live performance have in The Undoing of Nonet an excellent opportunity to begin a most artistic and pleasurable journey.
Hurry to The Undoing of Nonet. It runs only one weekend, Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday, December 7, at 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. Find it at Salvage Vanguard Theatre on Manor Road in east Austin, 2803 Manor Rd (click for map). Tickets are $17 general admission, $12 for students and seniors, available via the KDHDC website.
EmilyAnn Theatre & Gardens will be having auditions for our outdoor summer musical, Disney's Beauty and the Beast, on Saturday, January 18th and Sunday, January 19th in the Burdine Johnson Studio Theatre on the EmilyAnn grounds, 1101 FM 2325, Wimberley (click for map ). Please email bridget AT emilyann.org to sign up for an audition time. All those auditioning need a memorized one to two minute monologue of their choice and have prepared 12-16 measures of a song of their choice. An accompanist will be present. You can sing with a karaoke style CD or with sheet music.
Callbacks will be held on Monday, January 20th.
The roles of Mrs. Potts and Chip are cast. ALL OTHER ROLES OPEN! So many wonderful roles available in this show.
Beauty and the Beast will be performing on our outdoor amphitheatre mainstage all Friday and Saturday evenings in June.
Call for Scripts for the Austin Latino New Play Festival
Submission Deadline Friday January 17, 2014
The 2014 Austin Latino New Play Festival (ALNPF) takes place May 8-10, 2014 8 pm 3 nights, 3 new plays at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Culture Center, 600 River Street, Austin TX.
The Austin Latino New Play Festival, produced annually by Teatro Vivo, brings together playwrights and audience members for staged readings of new works and rich conversation, each running just one night. After each reading, the playwright, director and actors participate in moderated talkback sessions with the audience.
What is the process for Austin Latino New Play Festival (ALNPF)? The ALNPF provides an opportunity for Texas playwrights to hear, see, and receive feedback on their original works. The festival format brings together the playwright to work with a dramaturg, director, and actors to bring their play to life as a staged reading in front of an audience. The rehearsal process for each staged reading is approximately one week.
Guidelines for ALPNF scripts:
* The script is a work by a Latino(a) playwright or focused on the lives of Latino(a)s.
* The script is an original work.
*The script utilizes both the English and Spanish language.
* Scripts cannot have been produced or scheduled for full production before July 2014.
Playwrights selected will:
*be available and willing to collaborate with the dramaturg and the director that are selected to work with your play.
*be available on to attend the reading of their play, and participate in a facilitated talk back with the audience immediately after the reading. We encourage playwrights to attend all three readings of the festival, if possible.
*Playwrights will submit their script in a pdf file via email by Friday January 17, 2014 by midnight, with the submission information requested below.
*Teatro Vivo will select scripts to be read in the play festival.
*No payment, fee, stipend, actual or implied will be paid to the playwrights. Selected playwrights incur their own travel expenses. Possible housing in the homes of Teatro Vivo company members.
*Plays will be announced on or before midnight Friday March 7, 2014
Submit in a separate word doc: a brief biographical sketch and playwright background, Email address, Phone Number and Home address Include a brief response to two questions in 200 words or less:
-What areas of your script are you still eager to explore and develop? What are your goals for this play festival process?
Photos by Siggi Ragnar for
Miguel Ochoa, Chris Berry (photo: Siggi Ragnar)
Paige Blend (photo: Siggi Ragnar)
Chrs Berry, Caroline Kittrell (photo: Siggi Ragnar)
Paige Blend and chorus (photo: Siggi Ragnar)
Chris Berry, Caroline Kittrell, Paige Blend, Miguel Ochoa (photo: Siggi Ragnar)
ZACH Theatre announces local auditions for selected Principal Roles, and an ensemble of 30 for Chorus and Dancers in THE GOSPEL AT COLONUS on Tuesday and Wednesday December 10th and 11th between 6:00pm and 11:00pm in ZACH’s Nowlin Rehearsal Studio at 1426 Toomey Road. Callbacks will be held during Wednesday’s session as well as on Thursday, December 12th between 8:00pm and 11:00pm in ZACH’s Kleberg Theater.
The acclaimed ZACH theatrical landmark returns in an all-new production. Based on Sophocles’ Greek myth “Oedipus” and set in a contemporary African-American gospel church service, this soul-stirring event will move and thrill you with electrifying vocals by Austin’s most acclaimed gospel singers. The production is being directed by ZACH’s Producing Artistic Director Dave Steakley. The Musical Director of the production is Allen Robertson, and the Choreographer is Christa Torres.
Rehearsals begin February 17th, 2014 and Performances begin April 2nd, 2014 and run through April 27th, 2014 with a possible extension to May 4th, 2014. Performances will be Wednesday through Sundays weekly. ZACH may add performances on Tuesdays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Audition materials will be posted on the website at www.zachtheatre.org/about/auditions for all available roles. Please be prepared with the sides posted for the role for which you would like to be considered.
NOTE: All actors will be considered for all roles. We are seeking both AEA and non-AEA actors.
AUDITION APPOINTMENT INSTRUCTIONS: Actors will be seen BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. To schedule an appointment, please send an email with a resume and headshot attached in PDF or Word Document format to
. Please indicate in the email the character for which you will be auditioning. All actors should bring a hard copy headshot and resume to the audition.
All singers should prepare an additional gospel song of their choice, and bring sheet music for the accompanist. If you do not have a song you would like to perform, you may sing “Amazing Grace.” Click here to download "Amazing Grace."
For general information about ZACH please visit us at www.zachtheatre.org. All AEA members will be seen, and all non-union members will be seen while appointments slots are available. If you are not able to be seen at this audition, ZACH will make all best efforts to schedule you for a later audition date.
Click for full details of roles to be cast and links to sides at www.CTXLT.com
University of Texas Lab Theatre (LTH) between Jackson Geological Sciences Building (JGB) and the Winship Drama Building (WIN), near 24th and San Jacinto.
(click for map)
UTNT (UT New Theatre), the annual showcase of new plays from The University of Texas at Austin M.F.A. Playwriting Program, returns this spring with five dynamic works by emerging playwrights.
Now in its seventh iteration, UTNT 2014 presents the following:
Written by Reina Hardy
Directed by Natalie Novacek
February 27, March 1, 7 at 8:00 p.m.
March 9 at 5:00 p.m.
Annie Jump is a 13-year-old science genius whose alien-obsessed father is the laughingstock of Strawberry, Kansas. One night in August, a meteor falls, and Annie meets Althea, an intergalactic supercomputer that manifests itself in the form of a mean girl with really nice hair. Althea’s here to help Annie take humanity from the earth to the stars, but being the Chosen One isn't all glory. What is Althea hiding? And what will Annie have to sacrifice to fulfill her destiny?
Written by Abe Koogler
Directed by Will Davis
February 28, March 6, 8 at 8:00 p.m.
March 2 at 5:00 p.m.
Bear Creek is a small town. So when rumor spreads of an impending visit from the President himself, everyone gets very excited. There's just one problem – no one knows when he's coming, or why. And who's that mysterious man in a dark suit, asking all those questions? A dark comedy about the way we live now.
Individual tickets and ticket packages for these preview productions go on sale early January 2014.
Visual Narrative by William Anderson
Text Narrative by David Turkel
Directed by Jess Hutchinson
March 1 at 11:00 a.m.
March 8 at 2:00 p.m.
In the weeks following Hamlet’s death, Horatio navigates a harrowing regime change at Elsinore under the rule of bloody-minded prince Fortinbras.
Written by Katie Bender
Directed by Rudy Ramirez
March 2, 9 at 2:00 p.m.
After witnessing the fall of the twin towers, Annie heads to Japan to study Butoh, looking for a dance form that expresses the destruction she can’t comprehend. Ten years later, Annie is diagnosed with stage four cancer and returns to Butoh to prepare for her final dance. Still Now confronts us with the accelerated motion of a woman learning and losing her body, accompanied by the doctors, teachers, friends and lovers that become her partners in movement, to ask the question: what can our bodies teach us that our minds cannot fathom?
Or, “The One with the Dogs”
Written by Briandaniel Oglesby
Directed by Jeremy Lee Cudd
March 1 at 2:00 p.m.
March 8 at 11:00 a.m.
In a crappy house surrounded by a dead walnut orchard, brothers Boomer and Dirt struggle with each other, with themselves, and with their dog-breeding business. As their prized pregnant pooch swells, they seem on the way to strike it big. Their dreams are disrupted when Boomer brings home Marisol, who should be a one-night stand, and Dirt finds a boy who will never grow up.
UTNT (UT New Theatre) is curated by Steven Dietz and Gia Marotta. Performances are February 27 through March 9 in the Lab Theatre. Ticketing information will be available in December 2013.
Classic Theatre San Antonio is moving to the Woodlawn Theatre black box in January, 2014, and needs $4000 to renovate that space, especially for relocation of the air conditioning ducts. They've appealed via Indiegogo for contributions of funds, under the difficult-to-locate title 'Expand the Box for Classic.' Click either logo to go to that page, which features a video about the Classic's five-year history (inexplicably, with no mention of the relocation project).
will present 600 pounds of amazing theatre with
by Samuel D. Hunter.
February 20 - March 15, 2015
at the Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd St. at Guadalupe - click for map
The haunting Off-Broadway smash-tragicomedy The Whale will receive its fifth production worldwide in Austin, following successful runs at The Denver Center, Victory Gardens, South Coast Rep, and Playwrights Horizons in NYC. Austin’s own A Chick & A Dude Productions will present the show at Hyde Park Theatre (511 W. 43rd St.) Thursdays through Saturdays, February 20-March 15, 2014. For more information, tickets or reservations, please visit www.achickandadude.com
This production contains very mature themes and strong language.
THE WHALE tells the story of a 600-lb. man—Charlie—as he slowly eats himself to an early grave over the death of his boyfriend, an ex-Mormon named Alan. His caretaker—Alan’s sister, Liz—has been trying to get Charlie to see a doctor for years, to no avail. Charlie, an online teacher of English, is searching for answers and meaning in his life. He begins to find some with the arrival of Elder Thomas, a mysterious young Mormon on his mission, who may know what happened to Alan at the Mormon Church on the highway next to the U-Haul. Charlie also discovers a small measure of honesty with his daughter Ellie, who he hasn’t seen since she was a baby, and who is a bit of a teenaged terror. Add to this Charlie’s alcoholic ex-wife Mary, and we complete a cast full of damaged characters who literally orbit Charlie in what could very well be the last week of his life.
Award-winning Melissa Livingston-Weaver directs an all-star cast, including Erin Barlow (Mad, Beat, Hip & Gone) as Liz, Jon Cook (Mad, Beat, Hip & Gone; The Aliens) as Elder Thomas, Elizabeth Mason (Reefer Madness; Hamlet) as Mary, Kayla Newman (Dog Sees God; We Were Nothing) as Ellie, and Shanon Weaver (HIT.; Glengarry Glen Ross; Dial M for Murder) as Charlie, the Whale.
The design team includes Michael B. Raiford on scenic design, Jason Amato on lighting design, Katy Billik-Hogge on costume and prop Design, and Kelly Ruiz designing and building the 600-lb. fat suit.
The Whale is the winner of the 2013 Lucile Lortel Award—Best Play, the 2013 Drama Desk Special Award for Significant Contribution to Theatre, and the 2013 GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding New York Theatre. It also received nominations for the 2013 Drama League Award for Outstanding Production of a Play, the 2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards for Outstanding New Off-Broadway Play, and the 2013 John Gassner Award for Oustanding New American Play.
Praise for The Whale:
"Vibrant and provocative...Hunter explores his material with sharp-eared skill and sensitivity." - Village Voice
" Wonderful...You feel as if you’ve met real people, made of flesh and blood" - New York Post
"Compelling, funny, and unexpectedly impactful...No holds barred." - Associated Press
About A Chick & A Dude Productions Now in its eleventh year, A Chick & A Dude Productions is an award-winning Austin theatre company. The ‘chick’ is Co-Artistic Director Melissa Livingston-Weaver; the ‘dude’ is Shanon Weaver, Co-Artistic Director and Resident Playwright. Company members include Technical Director Shawn Ferrell, Art & Media Director Dan Price, Production Manager Katy Billik and Artistic Associates T. Lynn Mikeska and Gary Livingston-Weaver. For more information, visit www.achickandadude.com.
Communicated by Deborah Martin at Arts Beat at the
World Theatre Day open call
The San Antonio Latino/a Theatre Alliance is looking for projects for its World Theatre Day celebration, slated for March 27-29 at Palo Alto College.
The call for entries states that “SALTA welcomes applications for projects at any stage of development, previously produced or new works. SALTA is interested in both established and emerging theatre artists, as well as artists making a transition from areas outside of theatre. Staged readings may be accepted. We welcome ensemble works, solo performers and projects for young audiences.”
The deadline is Dec. 28. Applications can be obtained by emailing
. Call 210-316-3980 for more information.
(*) Video: A Christmas Story, the musical, at Woodlawn Theatre, December 6 - 29, 2013
Auditions for Paramount Theatre's Story Wranglers, December 11, 2013
Open Auditions at the Vortex Repertory, Austin, December 8, 2013
Trinity Street Players' 2014-2015 Theatre Season, Austin
Of Mice and Men 2013, Tapestry Dance Company at the State Theatre, December 13 & 14, 2013
University of Texas Workshops Zombie Musical, fall 2013 semester
Arsenic and Old Lace by Joseph Kesselring, Different Stages at the Vortex Repertory, November 15 - December 14, 2013 (Dr. Dave's review))
Arsenic and Old Lace by Joseph Kesselring, Different Stages at Vortex Repertory, November 15 - December 14, 2013 (MM's review)
A SHEPERDELA'S STORIA, Austin Latino Theatre Alliance at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican-American Cultural Center, December 12 - 22, 2013
Auditions for two actors for Little Mother: a paid performance opportunity, December 12, 2013
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