Go the Distance


A drag queen in Addison? Who'd a thunk it? WaterTower Theatre is once again trying to get theatergoers out of downtown with its fourth annual Out of the Loop Festival. Considering most theater snobs won't travel beyond Loop 12 for a show, much less the other side of Belt Line Road, the Addison arts group is pulling out the "big guns." Make that "big gams" as this year's anchor attraction is Varla Jean Merman, aka Jeffery Robinson, star of a slew of one-(wo)man off-off-Broadway shows as well as the direct-to-video Girls Will Be Girls. But she's probably best known for her recurring role as Rosemary Chicken on All My Children. Her latest show is Under a Big Top. Note that it's Under a, not Under the, so don't expect any old pink-haired Australian drag queens your mother would find quaintly amusing. Performances of Under a Big Top are Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The Out of the Loop Festival starts Thursday and runs through March 13 at Addison Theatre Centre, 15650 Addison Road. Tickets are $5 to $15 per performance; a festival pass is $40. Call 972-450-6232 or visit www.watertowertheatre.org. --Jay Webb

Prince Charming

Traditionally in The Frog Prince, a princess unwillingly befriends a wart-ridden frog and, after he becomes a hot dude, marries him. But in Kathy Burks Theatre of Puppetry Arts' production presented by the Dallas Children's Theater, the audience helps pick the ending. Happily ever after? Performances are March 4 through April 3 at the Rosewood Center for Family Arts, 5938 Skillman St. Tickets are $15 for adults and $13 for children. Call 214-740-0051. --Mary Monigold

Back in Black

Come for the debauchery; stay for the songs. That could be the tagline for Bat Boy: The Musical, which should appeal not only to its original audience (the readers of a series of "Bat Boy" stories in the Weekly World News) but to anyone with a decent sense of humor and hefty moral equivocations--or an interest in incest, murder, animal orgies and religious frenzy. C'mon, the songs are really quite catchy. Bat Boy is playing in the John Anthony Theatre at the Quad C Theatre at Collin County Community College, 2800 E. Spring Creek Parkway, Plano, from March 3 through March 13. Tickets are $15 or $10 for students and seniors. Call 972-881-5100 or visit www.quadctheatre.org. --Mary Monigold

Blue Collar

I hope to never meet people who like Larry the Cable Guy. It's not because these people are, more than likely, Republican. I have no problem with that. Hey, I voted for Dubya in 2000. It's because these people are, more than likely, boring and dumb. How else to explain Larry's social satires--the ones that rest their merit on one reductive phrase: git-r-done? Larry's the ugly spawn of Jeff Foxworthy, only cruder, fatter and less talented. To read his Web site--www.larrythecableguy.com--is to wince at what passes these days for comedy, let alone grammar usage. I saw him last year at Willie Nelson's Fourth of July celebration. He wasn't funny. In fact, it was painful to watch how not funny he was. Larry's in Dallas on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the American Airlines Center, 2500 Victory Ave. Tickets, somehow, cost $38.75. Go to www.ticketmaster.com or call 214-373-8000. --Paul Kix