Oxford's Tiffany Stern: Brudermord

So there's an English translation of a German adaptation of Hamlet that was found in a monastery in 1710, and Oxford don Tiffany Stern thought it was so weird that it might actually be a puppet show. Austin's Hidden Room Theatre decided to partner with her to help test that idea. The show itself opens the weekend of the 17th; tonight, though, Professor Stern (recovered from transatlantic jetlag by then, we trust) talks about the play to enlighten and delight the theatre-loving public in this free lecture. 4:00. Free.

Harry Ransom Center, 300 W. 21st, 512/471-8944



Venus in Fur

This steamy David Ives play is about a writer who's adapted Leopold von Sacher-Masoch’s famous 19th-century erotic novel for the stage, but can’t find the right woman for the role. Until he does – and she turns out to be, oh, a bit more fierce than he bargained for. Starring Gray G. Haddock and Molly Karrasch, directed by Lara Toner for Austin Playhouse. Caution: Adults only. Jan. 3-25. Thu.-Sat., 8pm; Sun., 5pm. Austin Playhouse at Highland Mall, 6001 Airport. $24-26 (half price, students).


American Idiot

This is the Tony-winning Broadway musical based on that Green Day album, right? Exactly – now on tour and ready to rock UT's Bass Concert Hall in a youthsplosion of "the hope embodied by a new generation." Jan. 14-19. Tue.-Fri., 8pm; Sat., 2 & 8pm; Sun., 1 & 7pm. $25-85.

Bass Concert Hall, 2350 Robert Dedman Dr., UT campus, 512/471-1444


The Language Archive

Different Stages presents the quirky comedy by Julia Cho that looks at the power of words and the private languages that love inspires. Directed by Karen Jambon, featuring Trevor Bissell, Circe Sturm, and Eva McQuade. See our review of the show right here. Through Feb. 1. Thu.-Sat., 8pm; Sun., 5pm. $15-30.

City Theatre, 3823-D Airport, 512/926-6747



The 21st annual theatrical extravaganza that's taken over so many parts of this fair city concludes its slate of 25-minute-long Short Fringe presentations each night – with this final weekend of Best of the Fest shows. Highly recommended, possibly already sold out: It's the primo shit of the whole Short Fringe section. See website for details! Thu.-Sat., Feb. 13-15, 8pm.

Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd, 512/479-7529


True West

Sam Shepard's classic – about what The West means and used to mean, about what it's like to be men, about, hell, about two adult brothers staying at their mother's empty house – features David Boss, Chris Hejl, and Bob Jones and is directed by Jerry Fugit for Weird Rodeo. Through Jan. 25. Thu.-Sat., 8pm. $10-30.

The Off Center, 2211-A Hidalgo, 512/699-1603