By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
Insider references are in great abundance and much appreciated by the Uptown crowd at Broadway Our Way. When Tony Martin comes out in a bouffant wig and formal ensemble worn by B.J. Cleveland in last season's men-in-dresses comedy Legends, the audience roars. When Martin then imitates Cleveland's acting—all rolling eyes and soupy S's—they get it instantly. And it is hilarious.
Maybe the best aspect of this show is that even though it's a fund-raiser—and more than ever, theaters are in need of cash donations just to get their next plays up—it's really a celebration of Uptown's connection with its fans. Look around the rows of seats at the KD Studio Theatre, and what you see are lots and lots of happy gay men, mostly middle-aged, who come to Uptown because of the deep rapport that they feel with this company. Producers Craig Lynch and Jeff Raine choose their season lineup to present a cross-section of contemporary gay drama and comedy. This spring they're doing the latest script by Dallas-raised Sordid Lives playwright Del Shores, a "play with music" called The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife. That's followed by the Tony-winning drama The History Boys. Nice mix of the outrageous and some smart art.
If you've never been to Uptown, Broadway Our Way is a way to make this company's acquaintance and get a preview of what they're all about. And because the huge cast includes so many actors who populate other Dallas stages, it's also an all-star party. And get this, they're all performing for free as their way of supporting Uptown Players. All together now: BOW, wow.