Party Bard-y

Shakespeare's greatest guffaws and ha-has

 6/19

Enjoy an evening of outdoor theater, mirth and merry-making this summer with the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas, which hires local actors to sweat in period costumes and gesticulate through some of the finest--and this year, the funniest--plays ever written. Performances are held in East Dallas' Samuell Grand Park in a nice amphitheater beneath a grassy hill. Your kids can play there early and pass out on your blankets before the curtain goes up at 8:15 p.m. Festival artistic director Raphael Parry thinks you'll have a better time if you know something about this summer's two alternating Shakespeare comedies. Parry says Comedy of Errors is slapstick à la the Three Stooges and the Marx brothers. Pandemonium, he says, ensues when two sets of twins, separated at birth in a shipwreck, hook up 25 years later for confusion, mistaken identities and mass hysteria. As You Like It, directed by Lisa Holland, is funny, too, a story of love, families, marriage, tolerance and optimism in the face of adversity. Before the Friday and Saturday plays from 7 p.m. to 7:45 p.m., the festival features Sammons Jazz and local musicians including Roberto Moreno. Concessions include picnic food, beer, wine and ice if you don't BYO. Seating is first-come, first-served, with blankets and low beach chairs (available for rent) closest to the stage; lawn chairs toward the back. The festival runs June 19 through July 24 with As You Like It each Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and Comedy of Errors each Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday. Admission is $7 on Friday and Saturday, and they'd like the same as a donation on other nights. Call 214-559-2778 or visit www.shakespearedallas.org. --Annabelle Massey Helber

Boys of Summer
6/23

The cast of Comedy of Errors
The cast of Comedy of Errors
Mark Oristano

Ever since Stevie Ray's plane went down, Texas has been searching for his musical heir. Someone who captures the sound and grit of the state, with its legacy of blues, rock and Tejano. Someone who has his technical proficiency but also his fire. Texas has finally found the right men--well, boys, if you seek consistency. Los Lonely Boys is made up of the brothers Garza--Henry on guitar, Jojo on bass and Ringo on drums (how perfect is that?)--and everyone from Willie Nelson to Carlos Santana has crowned them the buzz band of Texas rock. On Wednesday, they play a free outdoor concert at Pegasus Plaza as part of the Main Street Live series, which starts at 5 p.m. If you don't catch them, they'll be back--but next time, you'll have to pay. Call 214-742-5400, ext. 302, or visit www.downtowndallas.org. --Sarah Hepola

Shiver Thee Timbers
6/18

To a kid, nothing is cooler than a ship full of swashbucklers (well, except dinosaurs), but up until the shocking quality of last year's Pirates of the Caribbean, the charming plunderers have been pathetically represented on the big and small screen. Thanks to Johnny Depp, the salty outlaws are "in," and don't ever say the Dallas Children's Theater doesn't know when to strike while the iron is hot. The organization is presenting a five-week stage run of Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island at the El Centro College Performance Hall beginning Friday evening, so now's the time to introduce the little ones to a classic. After all, Depp might not sign on for a sequel, and then he'll be replaced by Richard Grieco. The El Centro Performance Hall is at 801 N. Main St. Call 214-740-0051. --Matt Hursh

Swing Low
This tribute rocks, er, jitterbugs
6/20

Inside of all of us, there's a school marm, a real pain in the ass. She serves many functions, but one of them is to remind you, while accepting nostalgia's warm glow, of the troublesome facts that suck the life out of The Way Things Were. Take Ronald Reagan. Actor. Two-term president. Guy probably ended the Cold War. But dammit if there wasn't the Iran-Contra Affair, the savings-and-loans scandal and the popularity of Def Leppard, too. But for two nights, let's try, let's really try, to shut that old bitch up. The Turtle Creek Chorale on June 20 and June 25 presents the KTCC Radio Show, which will re-create moments from 1940s radio. Because, sure, there was Hiroshima (which shouldn't be forgotten), but there was also "The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy." Tickets range from $15 to $48. The show starts at 8 p.m. at the Meyerson Symphony Center, 2301 Flora St. Call 1-800-494-8497. --Paul Kix

Get a Clue
Figure out who did it during this whodunit
6/17

Parker Bros. did a fabulous thing when it introduced Clue, the whodunit board game in which the characters kill one another. Why fight over who's going to be the race car when you can solve the murder of someone named Miss Scarlet who meets her demise in the drawing room with a candlestick? That's hard-core...and fun, evidenced also by the fact that a 1985 movie was based on the game. How many board games can say that? Now Theatre Arlington has one-upped even Clue's movie version. Starting June 17 and continuing through July 18, the theater will present Clue: The Musical. As if a musical version of Clue weren't super freaking awesome already, it's also interactive. That's right: The audience gets to solve the murder. Clue plays Thursdays at 7:30 p.m., Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets are $17 to $19, and there is no performance July 4. Call 817-275-7661. --Rhonda Reinhart

 
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