It seems that every day, a different Dallas theater announces a world premiere of a play or musical. This is nothing new for WaterTower Theatre, where the Out of the Loop Fringe Festival has been premiering new work for more than a decade. WaterTower just released the 2014 line-up, which includes 18 artists and performing arts organizations, 12 of whom make their festival debut.
From March 6 - 16, the festival occupies all three performance spaces in the Addison Theatre Centre. The varied 10-day line-up includes dance, theater, cabaret and visual artists. Returning favorites include Audacity Theatre Lab, Contemporary Ballet Dallas, Diana Sheehan and Muscle Memory Dance Theatre. WaterTower Theatre will also participate in the festival by staging a MainStage show.
Although it can be difficult to predict the caliber of the companies at the festival, here six of the shows that we're already excited about.
Aztec Economy's Butcher Holler Here We Come This Brooklyn-based theater group uses the setting of a West Virginia coal mine in 1973 for Butcher Holler Here We Come. The play explores, "family histories, complicated friendships, crooked politics, childhood visions, audacious hopes, eerie dreams, criminal addictions and fervent spirituality in this run-of-the-mill Appalachian community." That's a lot to pack into one show.
Sihk Brothers' Playing with Myself We've got an interested eye on the Sihk Brothers, a Dallas-based art collective, which is why we're curious about Playing with Myself. The company describes this show as an "action-packed tour de force [that] explores one man's dark subconscious -- via pickles, homicidal puppetry, dick jokes and a brawl against himself."
Sossy Mechanics' Trick Boxing Immigrant apple-seller, Dancing Danny David is bamboozled by hustlers, bookies and a dance hall girl into becoming a championship boxer in this 1930s romantic comedy told through rapid-fire dialogue, high-energy dances, ridiculous puppetry, true love and, of course, boxing. The London Observer described the performances as "the Fred and Ginger of the prize-fight circuit." Jenn Dodd's No Show: A One Woman Show It's a one woman show about not showing up to perform in a one woman show. In this quirky show about pressures of the comedy industry, New York City comedian Dodd plays all the characters. And, we presume, she will show up.
Cynthia Scott's One Raelette's Journey As a former member of The Raelettes, the backup group for Ray Charles, Cynthia Scott is bound to have some interesting stories. In her music-filled show, Scott shares tales of her family and growing up during the civil rights movement, as well as her journey with Ray.
Risk Theater Initiative's Antarctica After a six year hiatus, the critically acclaimed company returns to the stage with an absurdist fairy tale about growing up. Playwright Carolyn Raship's dark comedy about friendship stars local stage veterans and Risk company members Jessica Cavanaugh, Chad Gowen Spear and Marianne Galloway. We can only hope this is the beginning of more theater.
Single tickets to all events go on sale February 18. Festival Passes, now on sale, include one admission to each festival event and are $65. WaterTower Theatre subscribers receive $10 off each festival pass. Individual ticket prices for each event are $10 or $15. Loop passholders may make reservations starting February 11.