There’s no doubt that Austin is flush with creative, artistic individuals. Beyond the live music shows that we’re so well-known for, Austin is also home to a thriving performing arts scene. While it make take extra planning and prepping for us busy moms to get a night out at the theatre, it’s such a worthwhile and emotionally satisfying activity. So get out there in 2015! Take advantage of our city’s “culture of creativity”. Enjoy some singing, dancing, and storytelling that will move you, entertain you, and inspire you.
Children’s Theatre Roundup for May:
What’s the Story, Steve?
Help Steve and his cast of improvisers bring original stories to the stage! These 50 minute live performances feature Steve the improvising poodle. Each show is a unique story inspired by audience suggestion. All ages welcome. Tickets at the door. Volunteer to be a part of the show or enjoy from your seat.
Special shows in May!
Steve Scott Solves Them All – A Small Dog Mystery – May 2nd
Classic Steve – May 9, 16 and 23
Shows at 10am, pay as you wish
The Flying Theater Machine
Three Wishes uses suggestions from audience members to inspire the story of a group of kids who happen upon a playfully mischievous genie. Will they get what they’ve always wished for or will they discover they had what they wanted all along? Please join us for Three Wishes and see what happens when our wildest dreams come true! In these fully improvised stories, we’ll find many opportunities for the children in the audience (and sometimes their adults!) to participate and guide the story and even play on stage! And really, what more could you wish for?
Shows at 2pm, $5
Shakespeare at the Market: Love’s Labour Lost
Whole Foods Market Rooftop
Present Company, in partnership with Whole Foods Market, presents the second annual Shakespeare at the Market: Love’s Labour Lost. Seating (and music!) begins at 6:30 for a 7pm performance. Guests are encouraged to bring a blanket or short chair, and grab picnic goodies from Whole Foods before the show. Promoting the philosophy of “accessible & sustainable art,” this is a free event; however, a $15-20 donation is suggested for guests able to support. RSVP here.
April 17-May 10, seating (and music) begins at 6:30pm for a 7pm show, FREE
Cenicienta is a bilingual stage-adaptation of the tale of Cinderella, infused with puppetry, Mexican culture, and humor. Cenicienta learns to embrace her culture, familia, and the power of language to unlock her true potential. This production is in collaboration with Teatro Vivo.
April 18th-May 23rd (April 18th & 25th, May 2nd, 9th, 16th & 23rd at 11am & 2pm, April 18th at 6:30pm, May 3rd at 2pm & 4:30pm, May 17th at 2pm), $12+
Into the Woods Jr.
Kam & James Morris Theatre at TexARTS (Lakeway)
Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack (and his beanstalk), and the Witch all meet in this whimsical Stephen Sondheim musical. Featuring members of the TexARTS Youth Musical Theatre Academy.
April 25-26 & May 2-3 at 2pm and April 25 and May 2 at 6pm, $15
The Taming of the Shrew
Zilker Hillside Theatre
The City of Austin, in coordination with Austin Shakespeare presents Austin Shakespeare’s production of William Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Now in its 31st year of Free Shakespeare in Zilker Park, Austin Shakespeare transforms the Romantic Comedy The Taming of the Shrew to 1890’s Austin, at the Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theater. Audiences bring picnics, blankets and children to enjoy a Western style reimagining of this popular show, where cowboys and city folk collide.
April 30 – May 24 (Thursdays-Sundays) at 8 pm, FREE
Excused Absence Improv Festival
The Festival is an opportunity for students ages 11-18 and educators to take Improv Comedy workshops, see quality performances and participate in a number of Improv-related social events, including a guided student Improv Jam where the students have the chance to apply their lessons with other attendees. Read more here.
May 1-3, $25+
Once Upon a Mattress
Dougherty Arts Center
If you thought you knew the story of “The Princess and The Pea”, you may be in for a walloping surprise! Did you know, for instance, that Princess Winnifred actually swam the moat to reach Prince Dauntless the Drab? Or that it may not have been the pea at all that caused the princess a sleepless night? Carried on a wave of beguiling songs, but turns hilarious and raucous, romantic and melodic, this rollicking spin on the familiar classic of royal courtship and comeuppance provides for some side-splitting shenanigans. Chances are, you’ll never look at the fairy tale quite the same way again!
May 1 (7pm), May 2 (2 & 7pm), May 3 (6pm), $12
Scottish Rite Theater
Nini lives in a steampunk world where rules are rigid, ashes cover everything, and loved ones’ names and memories are erased and tossed away to be devoured by the terrifying prehistoric Woman in the Hole. Can one girl’s love and courage help to change society and recover what’s lost? Recommended for ages 6 and up. Learn more about the show and enter our giveaway here.
May 2-23 (Saturdays at 11am and Sundays at 2pm), $8 for children and $12 for adults
Disney on Ice: Let’s Celebrate
Cedar Park Center
It’s one colossal party on ice, with all your favorite Disney friends at Disney On Ice presents Let’s Celebrate! Join Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald and Goofy as they celebrate a Very Merry Unbirthday Party with Alice and the Mad Hatter; a Royal Valentine’s Day Ball with your favorite Disney Princesses, including Cinderella, Ariel, Belle and Tiana; a Hawaiian luau with Lilo & Stitch; a whole new world with Jasmine and Aladdin; a winter wonderland with Woody, Jessie and Buzz Lightyear; a Halloween haunt with the Disney villains and more in a magical medley of holidays, celebrations and festivities from around the globe.
May 7 & 8 (7:30pm), May 9 (11:30am, 3:30 & 7:30pm), May 10 (1:30 & 5:30pm), $20
The Long Center
Join us Mother’s Day weekend for the exquisite and iconic classic…Swan Lake. It’s the timeless tale of love and loss on everyone’s “ballet bucket list.” This celebrated love story, infused with magic and intrigue from the innocence of the lovely Odette to the passion of Black Swan, Odile, provides all the magic of the world of ballet. Sweeping sets and costumes, breathtaking moments with the corps de ballet…and add the timeless Tchaikovsky score for the perfect way to close our season.
May 8 (8pm), May 9 (2 & 8pm), May 10 (3pm), $15+
The Long Center
This Pollyanna production is designed specifically to appeal to the developmental and educational needs of young children, ages 3 – 7. The play explores the concept of cause and effect as well as basic pre-math concepts through the story of a little girl named Jimmi as she discovers what can happen when a seemingly unimportant but very big bolt is taken out of its intended place. Performances on May 10 and 17 will be followed by a “Meet The Cast Party.”
May 9 (2 & 4pm), 10 (2pm), 16 (2 & 4pm), 17 (2pm), $10
Theatre Roundup for the Older Kids and Grown-Ups for May:
The Free Fringe
There are hundreds of performers, and every single one of them is prone to saying things like “Wouldn’t it be crazy if…?” or “I just had the most insane idea.” This is where those dreams go, not to die, but to live gloriously on the stage for one night only. Every week will be dramatically different. There could be shows with improvisers tied up in rope, 50 performers onstage, blindfolded actors, improvising dogs, or 1000 other things. THE FREE FRINGE IS FREE. FOREVER. Reserve your tickets in advance to guarantee yourself a spot.
Shows start at 10pm
Prepare for MOVIE RIOT— a live improvised comedy double header event. Two teams of comedy juggernauts take the ColdTowne Theater stage to create brand new never-before-seen movies live on stage. From a title or song lyric, the performers will lovingly craft complete improvised films, all made up on the spot. But the fun doesn’t end there. Add in free popcorn and movie candies (and for a limited time FREE MAGARITAS), you’ll get a recipe for a killer cinema-inspired live comedy event.
Show starts at 7pm, $5
Hideout TheatreThe Hideout presents twelve of Austin’s virtuoso improv comedians for a night of games and scenes based on audience suggestions — but only one of them will make it to the end of the show and be crowned MAESTRO for the week and awarded the coveted Canadian five-dollar bill. Also, all Maestro shows are now wheelchair accessible as they are performed in the Downstairs Theater. To guarantee a space ahead of time e-mail Artistic Director Roy Janik at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shows at 10pm, $12
All Ages Improv Night
Each week, we welcome one or two troupes of young performers and an established adult troupe to improvise original shows. In addition to family friendly performances, each show features an Improv Jam. Audience members are invited to join performers on stage for low pressure, supportive and occasionally very silly improv.
Every Sunday through May 17 (no show on May 3)
5-6:15pm, pay as you wish (Suggested donation: $3-$5)
There is a movement afoot… a movement that celebrates the power of everyday lives, and which proclaims that the memories we hold within our hearts are the most powerful stories we can tell. You can see it alive in projects like PostSecret, Mortified, Found Magazine, StoryCorps, and This American Life, all of which take our lives and reflect them back to us respectfully, humorously, and sincerely. In every show we’ll use improvisation to explore secrets anonymously submitted by you and other Austinites. Serious secrets will be treated with proper respect, and more lighthearted secrets will be treated frivolously, so expect a mix of drama, comedy, and everything in between.
Saturdays at 8pm in March and April and select Sundays at 8pm in April, $12
Second Sunday Comedy Showcase
Watch the improv all-stars of Austin, The Known Wizards, headline this improv comedy showcase with spontaneous scenes, hilarious games, surprisingly good songs, and fantastic stories all made up on the spot based on audience input. You say it, we play it–like magic! The March show features Merlin Works Improv 301 & Singing 301 students and Improv 601 graduating students.
Second Sundays (March 8, April 12, May 10, June 14, July 12, August 9, September 13, October 11, November 8, December 22), $9
I’m Not Rappaport
Austin Playhouse at Highland Mall
This Tony Award-winning play introduces audiences to the unforgettable characters Nat and Midge, two senior citizens who meet in Central Park to escape and combat the sometimes unpleasant realities of life. Together they fight injustice, spin fantasies, and form a friendship full of comic genius.
April 3rd-May 3rd (Thursdays-Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 5pm, no performance on Easter Sunday), $15+
All The Way
Based on Lyndon Baines Johnson’s prolific first year as President, ALL THE WAY is written by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Robert Schenkkan and features a cast of 20 actors depicting many of the 20th Century’s most famous leaders including Martin Luther King, Jr., J. Edgar Hoover, Governor George Wallace, Senator Hubert Humphrey, Secretary of Defense Robert J. McNamara and President Johnson himself.
April 8th-May 10th (Wednesdays-Saturdays at 7:30pm, most Saturdays and Sundays at 2:30pm, $25+
Monty Python’s Spamalot
The Georgetown Palace Theatre
Lovingly ripped off from the classic film comedy MONTY PYTHON AND THE HOLY GRAIL, the story retells the legend of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table, and features a bevy of beautiful show girls, not to mention cows, killer rabbits, and French people. Did we mention the bevy of beautiful show girls? The winner of 3 Tony Awards, including “Best Musical,” and received 14 Tony Award nominations.
April 17-May 17, Fridays & Saturdays at 7:30pm, Sundays at 2pm, $27+
The Secret Lives of Soccer Moms with Girls Girls Girls
The Institution Theater
Behind the facade of every perfect life is a secret. Behind every perfect suburban hedge is a pile of dry leaves waiting for a match. Behind every ordinary day is the song of lost potential. Behind every goal post, is a child that needs an orange slice, and behind every PTA meeting, is a mom who just wishes she could have been a broadway star instead. Watch as the ladies of GGG improvise a full-length musical in the vein of Weeds, or Desperate Housewives but with songs, dance, scandal and soccer, all while coaching their children from the sidelines of the big game. Friday night shows will feature free, onsite childcare and fun improv games for kids ages 6-12 (up to 20 kids). Click here to reserve your spot. Saturdays will have a pre-show starting at 6:30PM as the ladies tailgate and drink out of hot pink, GGG water bottles (filled with what? It’s a secret!) in the parking lot.
April 17-May 3 at 8pm, $10
Out of Ink 2015: Random Acts of Magic
Hyde Park Theatre
The magic of theatre can lead to unexpected changes and sometimes to reliving special moments from the past. That is especially true in this year’s Out of Ink ten-minute play showcase, which features plays written using those ideas as their jumping-off point. The plays were written during ScriptWorks’ Weekend Fling, where members have 48 hours to write 10 minute plays using three arbitrary ingredients. This year’s elements were: a piece of magic, two characters must switch clothes/costumes at least once during the play and a character must revisit the most embarrassing day of their life.
April 23-25, April 30-May 2 at 8pm, $15 general admission
This production features powerful vocals, the captivating virtuoso of Mozart, and a unique set where seduction, entertainment and danger collide. Don Giovanni is both charismatic and repulsive in his cavalier manipulations of others. But Don Giovanni, with all his arrogance, promiscuity and cunning, is finally undone by a vengeful victim incapable of outwit or defeat. This masterpiece, deemed “the greatest opera ever written” by George Bernard Shaw, brings justice to an outlandishly lecherous and wild man.
April 25th & 30th at 7:30pm and May 3rd at 3pm, $15+
Motown the Musical
Bass Concert Hall
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL is the true American dream story of Motown founder Berry Gordy’s journey from featherweight boxer to the heavyweight music mogul who launched the careers of Diana Ross, Michael Jackson, Smokey Robinson and many more. Motown is an entertaining show for all ages. Theatergoers will love the show’s energetic dance numbers and nonstop music. The show contains minimal adult language and references.
April 26 – May 1, showtimes vary
The Wimberley Playhouse
Greater Tuna is the hilarious comedy that satirizes an ordinary day in the lives of the citizens of Tuna, Texas, the third smallest town in the Lonestar State. The audience is first introduced to the eclectic blend of characters by Tuna’s morning radio broadcast, but quickly begins to meet the rest of the characters, learning of intrigue inherit in small town life. Appropriate for adults, seniors, & teens (Age 14 – 18).
April 27 – May 17, Fridays & Saturdays 7:30pm and Sunday matinees 2:30pm, $12+
Infinity + Infinity
Museum of Human Achievement
The inter-media music performance features Elizabeth McQueen’s newest ensemble, EMQ (with guitarist Lauren Gurgiolo and multi-instrumentalist Lindsay Greene), in conjunction with interactive structures designed and built by designer/visual artist Jerome Morrison. Read more about the event here.
April 30 & May 1 at 7 & 9pm, $10
The Wars of Heaven
Salvage Vanguard Theater
Angels and demons are among us, serving God and Lucifer, fighting in our wars, upholding an ancient order. What happens when some of them begin to doubt the rules? Part I of Trouble Puppet’s epic three-part tale is a spectacular Miltonic saga, told through tabletop and shadow puppetry. (Parts II and III to come in 2016 and 2017; each show stands alone as a complete dramatic work.) The show is created by the company (a mainstay of Chronicle Top-10 lists) that brought Austin award-winning productions of The Jungle, Frankenstein, Riddley Walker, Toil and Trouble, The Cruel Circus, The Head, The Crapstall Street Boys, and Hyde & Jekyll. Not created for children; probably OK for ages 13+.
April 30-May 17 (Thursdays-Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 6pm), $16 general admission
Emma When You Need Her
The Vortex Theatre
In a world where a handful of rich men control the government, where women fight to control their bodies, where immigrants escaping war and poverty are met with fear and mistrust, where handlebar mustaches rule the streets and massage therapists are leading the march for justice . . . well, it’s either Austin, 2014 or New York, 1914, but whenever we are we need to find the crowd-charging, hard-writing, fast-dancing, freedom-fighting, polyamorous, Lithuanian-Jewish anarchofeminist firebrand inside us all! It’s time to answer the question: where oh where is . . .
May 1-16, $20 general admission; 2-for-1 admission Thursday and Sunday with donation of 2 cans for SafePlace; Radical Rush offers limited free tickets for each performance in the spirit of sustainability, accessibility, and the gift economy. Radical Rush tickets released at 7pm each night–in-person only.
Waiting for Godot
The City Theatre
The New York Times named Waiting for Godot “the most important play of the 20th Century.” Since it was first staged over sixty years ago, theatre artists, critics, scholars and audiences have come to embrace Samuel Beckett’s seminal tragicomedy as a masterpiece. A funny, harrowing, and deeply human story, the play centers on two tramps, Vladimir and Estragon.
On a country road, these two wanderers wait for an enigmatic figure to arrive, a road where time, place, and memory are obscure and meaning is where you find it. With the arrival of other eccentric travelers, their comical efforts to pass the time parody the human condition and the simple lives and language of these men take on extraordinary and universal
significance. Poetic and provocative, hopeless and hopeful, the play is a haunting and uncompromising master work from one of the greatest writers in modern drama.
May 15-June 7 (Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 5:30pm), $15 general admission
Wits is a live, public radio show that brings world-class comedians, actors, and musicians together onstage, where host John Moe gives them and the audience the time of their lives. Wits mixes improv, sketch comedy, conversation, and music in a program praised as “one of the rare public radio comedy shows that’s actually funny” (Huffington Post) and “on course to become a national hit” (USA Today).
May 16, $42
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.livemom.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Nicole-Basham-Sara-Marzani-Photography-livemom.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]A native Austinite and soccer-playing mom, Nicole uses her 9-year-old son as an excuse to rediscover her hometown through his eyes. In Thoreau’s words, her mission is to “suck out all the marrow of life”, or in her son’s words, to cultivate in him a love of “advenchers”.[/author_info] [/author]