Theater critics forum bestows annual honors


Garret Storms, right, was recognized for the excellent production of ‘The Big Meal’ at WaterTower, as was director Emily Scott Banks.

The Dallas-Fort Worth Theater Critics Forum weighed in last weekend about the 2015-16 theater season. Some shows currently in production — including Constellations at DTC and The Toxic Avenger at Uptown Players — were recognized. Eligibility ran from Sept. 1, 2015–Aug. 31, 2016.


Akín Babatundé, Bootycandy, Stage West and The Mountaintop, Dallas Theater Center

Emily Scott Banks, The Big Meal, WaterTower Theatre

David Lozano, Blood Wedding, Cara Mía Theatre Company

Katherine Owens, Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Undermain Theatre

Artie Olaisen, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Dallas Children’s Theater

Len Pfluger, Grand Hotel, Lyric Stage

CabaretProvidence Performing Arts Center

The tour of ‘Cabaret’ was one of the best this season.

Susan Sargeant, Play, WingSpan Theatre Company

Ryan Matthieu Smith, Trainspotting, L.I.P. Service

Garret Storms, The Nether, Stage West

Regina Washington, Harriet Jacobs, African American Repertory Theater


Clarkston by Samuel D. Hunter, Dallas Theater Center

Deferred Action by David Lozano and Lee Trull, Cara Mía Theatre Company and Dallas Theater Center

Faust by Michael Federico, Lydia Mackay and Jeffrey Schmidt, The Drama Club

Stacy Has a Thing for Black Guys by Ruben Carrazana, The Tribe

Temple Spirit by Susan Felder, Echo Theatre


Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs, AT&T Performing Arts Center Off-Broadway on Flora Series

Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, AT&T Performing Arts Center Broadway Series

Eric Bogosian’s Bitter Honey: The Best of 100 (Monologues), AT&T Performing Arts Center Off-Broadway on Flora Series

Cabaret, AT&T Performing Arts Center Broadway Series

A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder, AT&T Performing Arts Center Broadway Series

Ghost Quartet, AT&T Performing Arts Center Off-Broadway on Flora Series

The Sound of Music, Dallas Summer Musicals and Performing Arts Fort Worth


Lyric’s ‘Grand Hotel’ with Mary-Margaret Pyeatt and Christopher J. Deaton.


Christopher J. Deaton, Grand Hotel, Lyric Stage

Bruce DuBose, The Night Alive, Undermain Theatre

Hassan El-Amin, A Christmas Carol, Dallas Theater Center and The Mountaintop, Dallas Theater Center

Ivan Jasso, Deferred Action, Cara Mía Theatre Company and Dallas Theater Center

Jason Leyva, The Whale, L.I.P. Service

Barry Nash, I’m Gonna Pray for You So Hard, Kitchen Dog Theater

Alex Organ, Constellations, Dallas Theater Center

Brandon Potter, Richard III, Shakespeare Dallas and Shakespeare in the Bar

Garret Storms, The Big Meal, WaterTower Theatre

Terry Vandivort, The Fantasticks, Theatre Three


Karen Parrish in ‘Blackberry Winter’


Emily Scott Banks, Jacob Marley’s A Christmas Carol, Stage West

Jessica Cavanagh, Outside Mullingar, WaterTower Theatre

Amber Devlin, Picnic, Theatre Three

Frida Espinosa-Muller, Blood Wedding, Cara Mía Theatre Company and Deferred Action, Cara Mía Theatre Company and Dallas Theater Center

Tiana Johnson, The Mountaintop, Dallas Theater Center

Jenny Ledel, I’m Gonna Pray for You So Hard, Kitchen Dog Theater

Denise Lee, Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill, Jubilee Theatre


Janelle Lutz played Judy Garland in ‘The End of the Rainbow’

Janelle Lutz, The End of the Rainbow, Uptown Players and Miracle on 34th Street, Dallas Children’s Theater

Karen Parrish, Blackberry Winter, Kitchen Dog Theater

Allison Pistorius, Constellations, Dallas Theater Center

Joanna Schellenberg, Long Day’s Journey into Night, Undermain Theatre

Diane Worman, The Thrush and the Woodpecker, Kitchen Dog Theater


The Big Meal, WaterTower Theatre

Bootycandy, Stage West

Faust, The Drama Club

Grand Hotel, Lyric Stage

Long Day’s Journey into Night, Undermain Theatre

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Dallas Children’s Theater

The Nether, Stage West

toxie1Play, WingSpan Theatre Company

The Toxic Avenger, Uptown Players

Under the Skin, Circle Theatre


Jeffrey Colangelo, fight choreography, Christina Valentine, fight assistant, and Bobby Garcia, martial arts consultant, Animal vs. Machine, PrismCo

Design team, Faust, The Drama Club

Design team, Jonah, Undermain Theatre

Jay Dias, musical direction and orchestration restoration, Anything Goes, Lyric Stage

John M. Flores, sound design, The Thrush and the Woodpecker, Kitchen Dog Theater

Richard Gwozdz, orchestra conducting, Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown, Artes de la Rosa

Kyle Igneczi, puppet design and direction, Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins, Amphibian Stage Productions

Benjamin Lutz and Dillon White, video design, Trainspotting, L.I.P. Service

Lynn Mauldin and Rebekka Koepke, properties design, The Adventures of Flo and Greg, Echo Theatre

Scott Osborne, set design, The Fantasticks, Theatre Three

Karen Perry, costume design, Dreamgirls, Dallas Theater Center

Gil Pritchett, musical direction, Harriet Jacobs, African American Repertory Theater

Ryan Rumery, original music and sound design, Constellations, Dallas Theater Center

Garret Storms and Nate Davis, set design, The Nether, Stage West


Rose Pearson, co-founder of Circle Theatre, for a lifetime of visionary leadership of professional theater in Fort Worth and support of female theater artists.

Kurt Kleinmann, for his creation of Pegasus Theatre’s Living Black & White productions and 30 years as bumbling noir detective Harry Hunsacker.

Dallas Children’s Theater for providing sensory friendly performances for kids with special needs.


The forum is an organization of professional, paid critics that recognizes outstanding theatrical contributions in North Texas. Members must see 50 or more productions per season and are not actively practicing theater artists.

Nancy Churnin, Dallas Morning News

Martha Heimberg, and Dallas Weekly

Arnold Wayne Jones, Dallas Voice

Mark Lowry, and Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Punch Shaw, Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Lindsey Wilson, CultureMap


—  Arnold Wayne Jones

TGRA’s King and Queen of the Rodeo tonight

Crowning achievements

Find out tonight who’s talents and style will push them to the top as contestants vie for top honors by the Texas Gay Rodeo Association. Bedazzled gowns and tight wranglers are in store when tonight’s event gets us ready for the TGRA Rodeo in March. Yeehaw!

DEETS: Round-Up Saloon, 3912 Cedar Springs Road. 8 p.m.

—  Rich Lopez

Houston to recognize World AIDS Day with candlelight vigil

World AIDS Day logoWorld AIDS Day is Thursday, December 1st. In observance Houston will hold a candlelight observance near City Hall at Tranquility Park (400 Rusk Street ) at 5:00 pm. The annual observance includes performances by the Gay Men’s Chorus of Houston, the Bayou City Women’s Chorus and a youth chorus as well as speeches by Houston Mayor Annise Parker and representatives of local HIV/AIDS organizations. 

If you’ve never attended a Houston World AIDS Day vigil it’s a very moving event. The gentle white noise of Tranquility Park’s massive water features and the sequestered landscaping of the park seem to drown out our noisy city so that the quite dignity of electronic candlelight growing in the shadow of the red lit city call becomes the only reality.

For more information, including other events in the city and information on free HIV testing visit

—  admin

Laster becomes first out gay man on Houston City Council

Mike Laster

Mike Laster

With 57% of precincts reporting Mike Laster is the presumptive victor in the Houston District J City Council race. Laster, an out gay candidate endorsed by the Victory Fund and the Houston GLBT Political Caucus, has a commanding lead with 67% of the vote. His nearest opponent Criselda Romero trails with 22%.

Laster is the first out gay man to be elected to the Houston City Council.

From the Victory Fund website:

A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin’s Plan II Honors Program, Mike earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Houston Law Center. While at the Law Center, Mike distinguished himself as the National Vice Chair of the American Bar Association Law Student Division.

Today Mike is an attorney specializing in real estate with the firm of Williams, Birnberg & Andersen, L.L.P. in Houston, where he has practiced for the past thirteen years. From 1989 to 1995, Mike served as a Senior Assistant City Attorney in the Real Estate Division of the City Attorney’s Office, where he handled many aspects of a general real estate and development practice for the city.

—  admin

Gay Sailor Defends Capt. Honors

Owen P. Honors X390 (GRAB) | ADVOCATE.COMAt least one gay sailor has come forward to defend Capt. Owen Honors,
who was second in command on the USS Enterprise when he produced
several videos screened aboard the ship that some have found offensive
and homophobic. Daily News

—  admin

Navy Tells Capt. Owen Honors To Sit This One Out While His Videos Are Investigated

Capt. Owen Honors, the chief of the USS Enterprise who was the second-in-command when he filmed those awful "training" videos, has been temporarily relived of his post pending an investigation. The "Support Captain Honors U.S.S. Enterprise" Facebook page has already launched; it's got about 800 members thus far.

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Science Honors Two HIV Advances

HIV MUTATION X390 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COMTwo major advances in HIV prevention made Science magazine’s top 10 achievements of 2010. Daily News

—  admin

G&L Hall of Fame Honors 15

SCOTT FREE X390 (PUB) | ADVOCATE.COMThe Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame has announced its 2010 inductees. Daily News

—  John Wright

Kennedy Center Honors Herman, Winfrey

BILL T JONES JERRY HERMAN OPRAH WINFREY X390 (FAIR) | ADVOCATE.COMBill T. Jones, Jerry Herman, and Oprah Winfrey are among this year’s Kennedy Center honorees for their contributions to the arts. Daily News

—  John Wright