ARTS: Theatre
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Stop Hitting Yourself

The Rude Mechs' newest theatrical exploration gets a workshop performance (which means it'll likely be more polished and enjoyable than most companies' full performances), presenting a show that "borrows from the plots of 1930s musicals to dig into the contemporary conservative dilemma: how to honor steely individualism without disavowing the virtue of charity. Tap dancing, fine dining, and the missionary position will all be employed in order to help all Americans stop hitting yourself." Through April 21, 8pm. $12-25 ($5-25, Thursday and Sundays).

The Off Center, 2211-A Hidalgo, 512/476-7833

The Importance of Being Earnest

Oscar Wilde's classic comedy gets a fresh revival from St. Ed's theatre department under the direction of Richard Robichaux, and featuring the Chronicle's own Robert Faires and Barbara Chisholm among the delightful cast. Through April 21. Thu.-Sat., 7:30pm; Sun., 2pm. $15-20.

Mary Moody Northen Theatre at St. Edward's University, 3001 S. Congress, 512/448-8484

The Vagina Monologues

This production of Eve Ensler's classic play, based on interviews with more than 200 women, benefits Refugee Services of Texas, Central Texas Coalition Against Human Trafficking, and Empower Art. Fri.-Sun., April 19-21, 7:30pm. Vuka Co-Op, 411 W. Monroe. $15.

Guest by Courtesy

This riotous, genre-bending spectacle has been brought back for 2013's Fusebox Festival, but we're listing it separately because, because, because, ah! We love it so much! Hannah Kenah and Jenny Larson are hilarious as the battling cousins in this parlor comedy that's like a glorious cross between Jane Austen and Tex Avery. Watch politeness shatter and rivalries go ballistic as the doilies and tulle fly to a score by Graham Reynolds. Thu.-Sat., April 18-20, 3pm. $10.

Scottish Rite Theater, 207 W. 18th, 512/809-7799


Conceived and directed by the Vortex's Artistic Director Bonnie Cullum, this is the latest in the company's Elementals series: A multi-disciplinary show performed in 17 tons of dirt, with performers singing, dancing, and telling stories of the Earth. Featuring Mick D’arcy, Anderson Dear, Gabriel Maldonado, Betsy McCann, Emerald Mystiek, Mindy Rast-Keenan, Melissa Vogt-Patterson, and Aisha Melhem. And the show is reviewed by Arts Editor Robert Faires right here.Through April 20. Thu.-Sun., 8pm. $10-30 (2-for-1 admission w/ donation of 2 canned goods for SafePlace, Thursday & Sundays).

The Vortex, 2307 Manor Rd., 512/478-5282



Theatre en Bloc brings us this world premiere, conceived by Jenny Lavery and Derek Kolluri, that dramatizes the personal stories of some of the two million people who call Texas’s capital city home: homeless men and women, illegal migrant laborers, city planners, students, artists, pioneers, representatives, and more. Based on interviews with hundreds of Austin residents. Through May 12. Thu.-Sun., 8pm. 1107 N. I-35. $15 ($12, students, seniors).


Fox On The Fairway

Ken Ludwig's furiously paced comedy gets a run by the Way off Broadway Community Players out in Leander, under the direction of Debbie Bishop. Through May 11. Fri.-Sat., 8pm. 11880 W FM 2243, Leander. $20 ($15, students, seniors, military).


Fusebox Festival

Art! Performance! Music! Food! Drink! Perhaps a bit of divine madness! Note: This festival is kind of like a smaller, slightly more rarified version of SXSW, where the afterparty conversations and creative meet-ups are possibly as important as the scheduled events themselves. Note: This festival sprawls across the city of Austin and presents acts and events from brilliant groups and individuals from across the entire planet. Note: Ron Berry and his co-moguls are to blame for this multipartite upheaval of spectacle and meaning, and it's their vigor and drive that make Fusebox too vast an endeavor to fully cover the details of here – see the Fusebox website for a complete schedule. Get caught up in the ensuing wonders as your city is transformed, for a jam-packed week and a half, into an even greater hub of creativity than it is normally. Through April 28.

Good People

David Lindsay-Abaire’s award-winning play, set in Boston's Southie neighborhood, explores the "struggles, shifting loyalties, and unshakeable hopes that come with having next to nothing in America." Directed by Karen Jambon for Different Stages, featuring Rebecca Robinson and Tom Chamberlain. See our review here. Through May 11. Thu.-Sat., 8pm; Sun., 5:30pm. $15-30.

City Theatre, 3823-D Airport, 926-6747

The Merchant Of Venice

The Baron's Men present William Shakespeare's famous tragicomedy at Richard Garriott's Curtain Theater, the only Elizabethan-style theater in Austin. If you like your Shakespeare done right, O modern-day citizen, you'll like what these Men have to offer. Through April 27. Thu.-Sat., 8pm. $12-15.

The Curtain Theatre, 7400 Coldwater Canyon,

Austin Upon Avon: Shakespeare for the People and BY the people

Everyone in town's invited to participate in reading, reciting, or acting Shakespeare scenes, sonnets, and soliloquies on Thursday the 25th of April. Those wishing to get an early start with selecting and working on their pieces, email or call Louise Richardson right now. (But also, anyone can show up an hour early on the day of the show and sign up to perform.) Free.

Dougherty Arts Center, 1110 Barton Springs Rd., 973-3885

Next Fall

Karen Jambon will direct this Bible-spiced comedy for the Paradox Players in June. Now seeking performers: Men (ages 20-55) and women (ages 25-35). Email for details Mon.-Tue., April 22-23, 7pm.

First Unitarian Universalist Complex, 4700 Grover


It's the regional premiere of this new play by Greg Pierce, about a chatty teenage girl who uncovers secrets about her reclusive, soft-spoken uncle when she visits him in exile in the Costa Rican jungle. Directed for Hyde Park Theatre by Ken Webster, starring that worthy and Molly Karrasch. Through April 27. Thu.-Sat., 8pm.

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

Mad Beat Hip & Gone

ZACH's new Topfer Theatre is the venue for the world premiere of this Kerouac-inspired odyssey through wanderlusty on-the-road days and nights of young America in the mid-20th century, written and directed by Austin's own Steven Dietz. And here's Elizabeth Cobbe's review of the show. Through April 28. Wed.-Sat., 8pm; Sun., 2:30pm. $25-65.

Topfer Theatre at Zach, 202 S. Lamar, 512/476-0541

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