Best Bets • 02.19.16

Thursday 02.25— Sunday 03.06


WaterTower Theatre opens 14th Out of the Loop Fringe Festival, dedicated to alt-theater

There’s a lot more going on in the world of theater than what Broadway, off-Broadway and even well-funded regional companies are producing. That’s why a fringe fest is an excellent opportunity for discovery, as WaterTower has demonstrated over more than a decade. Out of the Loop is back with a crowded lineup of performances (music, comic, dance, dramatic) over 11 days, including work from queer artists like Ebony Stewart to WTT’s first-ever 24 HR Play Fest, a quasi competition where playwrights, directors and actors write, rehearse and mount all-new works on a common theme with only one day’s prep. Get a season pass and discover what’s really going on in theater.

Addison Theatre Centre
15650 Addison Road
Visit for a full schedule.

Friday 02.26


Lesbian rockers Hunter Valentine bids (sort of) adieu with So Long for Now Tour appearance at Trees

The queer all-girl rock group Hunter Valentine has been touring and recording (and making appearances on programs like Showtime’s The Real L Word) for more than a decade; just last Sunday, the group released its latest EP (on, appropriately enough, Valentine’s Day). But all good things must come to an end … or at least go on hiatus. The members are coming to Trees Feb. 26 as part of their So Long for Now Tour, so this could be your last chance (at least for a while) to catch them. (Also appearing on the bill are Faded Grace, Hush Money and Cruella.)

Trees, 2709 Elm St.
Doors at 7 p.m.
Show at 8 p.m.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition February 19, 2016.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

WaterTower Theatre announces 2014-15 season


Terry Martin

Addison’s WaterTower Theatre extends its affiliation with Fort Worth’s Stage West with another co-production, and offers two regional premieres as well as a piece by local playwright Vicki Caroline Cheatwood in its upcoming season.

The season — the 15th for WTT’s artistic director, Terry Martin — opens with a musical biography with Dallas roots: Bonnie & Clyde (Oct. 10–Nov. 2), which had a brief run on Broadway two seasons ago.  That’s followed by a new holiday show built around a familiar group. The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical (Dec. 5–Jan. 4, 2015) follows the antics of the popular Great American Trailer Park Musical, which WTT has produced in the past to much acclaim.

The Explorers Club, co-produced with Stage West, runs Jan. 16–Feb. 8, 2015, followed by Arthur Miller’s Tony Award-winning drama All My Sons (April 17–May 10). Cheatwood’s new play Manicures & Monuments settles in for a summer run (June 5–28), and the musical Sweet Charity closes out the season (July 14–Aug. 16).

The Out of the Loop Fringe Festival returns for its 14th incarnation, March 5–15.

For more information or season tickets, visit

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

WaterTower announces lineup for 2014 Out of the Loop Fringe Festival

AztecButcher15WaterTower Theatre announced today the lineup of shows for its 2014 Out of the Loop Fringe Festival, which takes place March 6–16.  The Addison theater will host seven world premieres and several returning favorites, Terry Martin, the artistic director, said. As always, the festival will include dance, theatre, cabaret artists and visual arts

Eighteen artists and performing arts organizations will participate in this year’s festival. Among the  world premieres will be Mozart’s Muse (presented by Jendi Tarde), Beware of Plastics (Actor’s Conservatory Theater), local actress-singer Diana Sheehan in Searching for Gertrude Lawrence and returning gay playwright David Parr’s Express from 59th. Best of Loop will also return this year. 

The gayest of the plays is certainly Falling Man, about a drag queen, a hustler and Jeffrey Dahmer.

Read the full line up after the jump.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

More on the Loop: “Strange Dreamz,” “Dark Play”

In addition to the shows at Out of the Loop I mentioned earlier this week, there are two productions I want to single out.

First is Strange Dreamz, Kevin Thornton’s one-man quasi-standup that includes songs (Katy Perry! Gaga!), short comic stories, a few jokes and some interplay with the audience. Thornton is funny and very out there, so not all the jokes seem to hit on a mixed audience, but like Johnny Carson, even when he’s not getting anything back, he puts it up for all to see. Your last chance to see him is Saturday at 2 p.m.

Next is Dark Play, pictured, a fast-moving, modern-day cautionary tale about Internet mischief. In it, a 14-year-old (the once-again remarkable Adam Gerst) cyber-punks an innocent 16-year-old by pretending to be his ideal woman. Only it all takes a strange turn from there. The play itself is on the brink of being outdated (no one has a tablet?) and the last 10 minutes implode, but the 90 until then are furiously intriguing. You can see that on Saturday, too — don’t miss it.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Out of the Loop: What you should see this week

The Out of the Loop Fringe Festival continues tonight through Sunday, and if you haven’t been yet, try to check out some of the shows. Here’s a rundown:

Tonight (March 7), if you want to get your gay on at the fest, you can choose between an intense Terrence McNally drama, Sweet Eros (presented by Q Live!) or the comic tour of stage divas, A Most Happy Stella. Both start at 7:30 p.m.

Thursday (March 8) offers a one-act by North Texas lesbian playwright Kelsey Ervi, Waking Up, or the acclaimed one-woman cabaret by actress Diana Sheehan.

Friday (March 9) provides your last show to see Sweet Eros, or catch the debut of mime Bill Bowers’ one-man show Beyond Words, pictured. Bowers has been here before, and is terrific. Late night, you can also catch the premiere of the Screw You Revue comedy show.

I’ll post more recommendations Friday.


—  Arnold Wayne Jones