FronteraFest Schedule

Cathy Dresden Sings for Her Supper
"Cathy Dresden Sings for Her Supper"

The Short Fringe at Hyde Park Theatre

The foundation of FronteraFest is the Short Fringe, five weeks of performances in which all the works run 25 minutes or less. For the first four weeks, Tuesdays through Fridays are first-run performances, with the Saturday programs offering encores – the Best of Week as selected by judges. Then the fifth week is devoted to pieces judged Best of Fest. Each Wednesday will feature a work that was commis-sioned by the playwrights organization Austin Script Works. The 2009 Short Fringe runs Jan. 12-Feb. 13, Tuesday-Saturday, 8pm, at Hyde Park Theatre, 511 W. 43rd. For more information, call 479-7529 or visit

Tuesday, Jan. 12

"Just Eat Johnny" by Jericho Thorpe & Leah Moss. Improvised comedy with clowns that have seen the darker side of the circus.

"Nattie: At the DMV" by Natasha Sanchez. Nattie chronicles her journey of self-discovery in unlikely places such as the Department of Motor Vehicles and McDonald's.

"Something Like Loneliness" by Ryan Dowler. Two neighbors learn that even the hardest memories are meant to be shared.

"Party in the Desert" by Cecilia Brie Walker. Hagar in the desert, Sarah at Ishmael's 13th birthday, and the birth of two nations who will war for millennia.

"Christian U2ber" by Tom Truss. A look at a young teen's naive YouTube exploration and the dangerous fallout that follows.

Wednesday, Jan. 13

"Packing Memories" by Allison Orr Block. Two movers face an elderly woman as she rebels against her daughter's plans to place her in assisted living.

"Whistle" by Meg Haley (ASW commission). How the past, the future, freedom, choice, and imagination pushed Gigi and Ben together into a relationship.

"Things in Life" by Ben Prager. Comic monologues that portray with unblinking realism "ordinary" Americans, excerpted from his Long Fringe show.

"We Are All Volunteers" by John M. Meyer. A collage of wartime scenes from the Long Fringe piece titled American Volunteers.

"Saint Matilde's Malady" by Kyle John Schmidt. A swashbuckling new play about rage, love, and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Thursday, Jan. 14

"Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz" by Belinda Acosta. A performance/reading from Belinda Acosta's Damas, Dramas, and Ana Ruiz.

"Donkeyskins" by Georgia Young. An avant-garde interpretation of the fairy tale by Charles Perrault.

"Where Am I" by Kate Cleary. An inquiry into the questions of who, where, and how am I in my life right now using spoken word, props, dance.

"Incantations" by Philip Kreyche. Alone on an isolated island, Antonin Artaud speaks about his life, pain, and true spiritual freedom.

"John Brown From BOB" by Stuart Hersh. John Brown appears before the United States Commission on Race Relations just before being hanged for treason.

Friday, Jan. 15

"And I Said" by Mike Henry. A one-man spoken word show by the longtime Austin Slammaster.

"The Mommy Confessions: An Excerpt" by Rhonda Kulhanek. Three stories of motherhood excerpted from the one-woman Long Fringe show.

"Alcoholic Drama" by Tommy LeVrier. One-act play.

"Cardigan" by Trey Deason. A heckler in the audience causes Edgar Cardigan to embellish his story with extravagant details until the truth is irrelevant.


Saturday, Jan. 16

Best of Week One

Tuesday, Jan. 19

"Kitsune Parade" by Ellen Stader. A dance piece about the choreographer's encounters with foxes, set against a mystical Japanese fox-wedding procession.

The Bitter Poet's "Looking for Love in All the Wrong Cafes, Strip Clubs and Black Box Performance Spaces" by Kevin Draine. Satirical poems about searching for true love from the Long Fringe show.

Midnight Society. Improv from the troupe known for absurd humor and obscure pop-culture references.

"Growth" by Danny Strack. A set of poems on time, space, sex, relationships, and how they fit together.

"The Punchline" by Alex Berry. A story about two sick people perfectly suited for their inevitable ends.

Wednesday, Jan. 20

"Working Title" by Blacklisted Individuals. A journey of sound, set to the tragedies and triumphs of two working-class artists.

"I'm not a writer ... but I got a story to tell" by La Tasha Stephens. You see these people every day. To you, they're part of the landscape. But what if one day the landscape talked back?

"Love Puzzle" by Marcella Garcia & Jonathan Blackwell. Romantic comedy? Tragedy? Drama? See if you can put the pieces together.

"Consultant for Hire" by Max Langert (ASW commission). Hire me!

"Single Being" by Tom Truss. Four solo vignettes about isolation with audience members using their iPods, cell phones, or other handheld devices.

Thursday, Jan. 21

"I've Got You Under My Skin" by Kate Motzenbacker. A problematic burlesque.

"H." by Kristen Kosmas, performed by Steve Moore. A man. A window and chair.

"Stoners and Self-Appointed Saints" by Annie La Ganga. Monologues and poems about awkward grieving, bad judgment, and important stoners.

"Circled in Red" by Aslan Hollier, based on the idea of Sarah McKinney. A comedy about guys' points of view of women on their periods.

"T–" by Cindy Vining. An extract from Euripides' The Trojan Women.

Friday, Jan. 22

"Crossing the Line" by Jessica Arnold. A comedy about the division of personality and the consequences thereof.

"Here, Nigger" by Roger Reeves. A 17-year-old boy finds a Ku Klux Klan robe in the woods and wears it as a prank, but the robe has a mind and will of its own.

"Prep" by Susan Busa & George Ayres. Headmaster Tab teaches Will Lassater all there is to know about traditions at the Worthington Prep Academy for Boys.

The Glamping Trip. David Lee Hess, Lisa Jackson, and John Ratliff create improv using personal monologues as a starting point.

"The Re-Branding Meeting" by Larry Hill. From the hit I (Heart) Wal-Mart, a satirical monologue aimed right at the gut of the big box retailer.

Saturday, Jan. 23

Best of Week Two

Tuesday, Jan. 26

"The Wafer" by Sandra Fountain. Five actors rehearsing for scene study class run into taboos and technical difficulties no one could have anticipated.

"Damned Avalanche" by Jenny Carlson & Patrick Knisely. An improvised comedic piece with strong characters in absurd situations.

"Spinning the Bottle" by Krissi Reeves. A one-woman comedy about mammal mating rituals, love, bed-wetting, and the Baudelairean idea that one should always remain drunk.

"I drove I said I did" by Natalie George. Seeing is believing. A performance about the time period between May and November of '09.

"Music Was the Air She Breathed" by Steven Laing. A dream in the mind of avant-garde composer Luciano Berio involving vocalist Cathy Berberian.

Wednesday, Jan. 27

"Battle" by Cry Havoc. A montage of mayhem through movement.

"Seamstress" by Kenneth Wayne Bradley (ASW commission). A one-woman show featuring Melanie Dean, directed by Ellie McBride.

"Autorama" by W. Joe Hoppe & David Jewell. A poetry reading by the authors.

"Histrionics" by Julie Akers. Beth discovers she is not the only female visiting Leonard's apt in the wee hours of the morning.

"You and What Sketch Show" by Matt Derman, Steve Donovan, Charles Formichella, Cortnie Jones, and Brian Engravalle. A selection of sketch comedy.

Thursday, Jan. 28

"Blue" by Aslan Hollier. A gothic story of a man who seems to live in a fairy tale doing anything he can to obtain his love he lost to death.

"The Sex of Joy" by Joy Loveall. A humorous glimpse into the world of a woman unexpectedly single at 50 as she explores sex, love, and intimacy.

"Johns and Spirits" by Jude Hinojosa. Mommy/daddy issues, gummi-bear addiction, a need for affection – just a typical night for three young prostitutes.

"Confidence Men: Improvised Mamet" by the Confidence Men. A new two-act play improvised in the style of David Mamet.

"Parents/Kids Dance Party" by Michelle Flanagan, with Rubber Repertory. Three sisters, four daughters, two moms, and a grandma get down!

Friday, Jan. 29

"Natasha Sonovavitch in 'Dancing With the Czars'" by Sue Bilich. The world's oldest living athlete is back to make the audience fall in love with her.

"The Struggle Within" by Danielle Ricci. A dance piece with spoken word about the struggle within one's mind when faced with a life-altering decision.

Boy Toy. ColdTowne Theater Conservatory teachers and graduates perform the Harold long-form improv.

"Astronaughty" by Keira McDonald, music/lyrics by Dafyyd James. A musical about a female astronaut who drives 900 miles to mace her rival in love.

"The Color of Pain" by Kristie Schuh. Experience the emotional effects of pain through the eyes of color.

Saturday, Jan. 30

Best of Week Three

Tuesday, Feb. 2

"When You Say Go Here" by Errin Delperdang in collaboration with Matthew Young. A movement piece that deals with proximity.

"Spit" by Evie Worsham aka June Doe. Short stories that offer striptease views of the inner workings of the author's heart, after all the therapy.

"19 Years" by Julianna Fry. After a 19-year-old's suicide, his family unravels some of the mysteries of his life and explores the fluid meaning of family.

"Heartbreakers and Other Good Guys" by Kat Williams. Feel the grief of loss, the empowerment of anger, and the freedom of loving in this piece.

"Poor Life Choices" by Leah Moss. One woman shares all the sage and disastrous advice that has guided her to make supremely poor life choices.

Wednesday, Feb. 3

"The Understudy: A Musical" by Rain Nox. A Broadway diva, an emo director, and the new girl battle it out in this musical comedy.

"Magician's Assistant" by Christi Ginger. Former assistant to the Amazing Christopher demonstrates freelance magic assistantship.

"FAllING FOR YOU" by Ryan & Ross Wilsey, Chris Doubek, and Tex Carlson. A lost soul pleads with a corpse.

"An Ownership Society" by Hank Schwemmer (ASW commission). Twenty minutes somewhere between possessing and being possessed.

"Cathy Dresden Sings for Her Supper" by Joe Hartman. That singer with a heart of gold and pipes to match gamely makes her way through the Midwest of 1959 with pianist Jerome Tolliver in tow.

Thursday, Feb. 4

"The Wussy Boy Manifesto: Episode Five: The Wussy Boy Strikes Back" by Big Poppa E. New poetry about beards, making love, and the joys of pubic hair.

"Sea Witches & Storms" by Lorene Stilwell. Fantastical tales of the fisherfolk of the Hebrides.

"ms" by Molly Fonseca. A solo play that explores the journey of accepting a diagnosis and offers a turn toward hope.

"Gus!" by David Meyers & Patrick Knisely. Act I of a musical about a high school student who wants nothing more than to be an ice sculptor.

"Beans!" by Sharon Sparlin. The sound of a long, untroubled inhale. A satisfying exhale. Sip. Swallow.

Friday, Feb. 5

"I Have Angered a Great God" by Brad McEntire. A satire of modern public etiquette about a man who believes he has somehow angered a great god.

"A Derivative Work" by Richard L. Cambier, Hannah Kenah, and Zeb L. West. An original ensemble work of theatre by America's Theatre Company.

"Rambo: The Missing Years (Excerpt Basic Training)" by Howard Petrick. Story of an anti-war activist in 1966 who went into the Army and, without breaking the rules, spoke out against the war to his fellow GIs.

"The stuff dreams are made of" by Isabel Salazar. Does one really know when dreams end and reality begins?

"The Graveside Service" by Timothy Thomas. Loaded Gun Theory reveals the roles that KOOP Radio's Mr. Spradling and Mr. Harris played in the deaths of certain musicians.

Saturday, Feb. 6

Best of Week Four

The Long Fringe

Dance Carousel
Dance Carousel

The Long Fringe consists of productions that can run up to 90 minutes, each of which is performed four times over a two-week period. This year, you can see 18 such works between Jan. 18 and 31 at either the Salvage Vanguard Theater, 2803 Manor Rd., or the Blue Theater, 916 Springdale. A 19th work is being presented as part of the festival's occasional Bring Your Own Venue program. Long Fringe tickets range from $5 to $12. For more information, call 479-7529 or visit

Long Fringe at Salvage Vanguard Theater

Lady M

(Melissa Rodriguez) Gruoch Comegáin is a Scottish noblewoman happily married with a child. What happens to transform her into the fiendlike Lady Macbeth? Directed by Matthew Braylon Haynes. Tuesday, Jan. 19, 8:45pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 5:15pm; Monday, Jan. 25, 9:15pm; Thursday, Jan. 28, 7pm.

Some Other Day

(Ben Schave & Caitlin Reilly) Schave and Reilly's take on the inevitable: death and weather. With their absurd blend of physical comedy and dance, the clowns take 'em on. Tuesday, Jan. 19, 7pm; Wednesday, Jan. 27, 9:15pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 2:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 8:15pm.

Dance Carousel

(Spank Dance Company) Forty one-minute dances – four each created by local choreographers Ellen Bartel, Tom Benton, Yvonne Ferrufino, Nikki Jonston, Meredith Knight, Lisa Kobdish, Sumi Komo, Maia McCoy, Rosalyn Nasky, and Janna Rock. Monday, Jan. 18, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 3:15pm; Friday, Jan. 29, 7pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, noon.

Bohemian Cowboy

(Raymond King Shurtz) An authentic portrayal of a theatre artist, a bohemian, and a cowboy still searching for the West and for his father who walked into the Nevada desert and vanished. Thursday, Jan. 21, 9:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 8:15pm; Wednesday, Jan. 27, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, noon.

Things in Life

(Ben Prager) Three-time Best of Fest winner Prager reprises his comic monologues that portray with unblinking realism "ordinary" Americans. Directed by Wynne West. Saturday, Jan. 23, 1pm; Monday, Jan. 25, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 8:30pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 3:45pm.

An Evening With Chastity and Alan Jr.

(Alan Metoskie & Zoe Schwartz) In this comedic musical revue, famous country & western duo Alan Jr. and Chastity Gambler find their commitment to each other and to their show tested. Monday, Jan. 18, 9pm; Wednesday, Jan. 20, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 7:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 2:15pm.

I Can't Believe It's Not Funny: The Best of Midnight Society Presents

(Midnight Society) A full hour of the best sketch comedy Austin has to offer, with troupe members Lance Gilstrap, Michael Jastroch, Joel Keith, Delaney Liming, Andy Petruzzo, Nick Ramirez, Kyle Sweeney, Jericho Thorp, and Michael Williams. Wednesday, Jan. 20, 8:45pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 6:15pm; Thursday, Jan. 28, 9pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 2pm.

Hotel Morocco

(Aaron Black) Having lost his dad, girlfriend, and job, Adam is stuck as the overnight bellman at Hotel Morocco, a Times Square tourist trap. And now the owners want him dead. Directed by Shannon Davis. Friday, Jan. 22, 9:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, noon; Tuesday, Jan. 26, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 6:15pm.

Long Fringe at the Blue Theater


(Robert Minshew) Timothy is down to his last five cigarettes. Moving to a new home, however, dredges up his past with his wife, Jane, and complicates the task of quitting. Directed by Josh Nanninga. Monday, Jan. 18, 9:15pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 6:30pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 8:30pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 3:30pm.

One Man's Music: A Monologue With Song

(Vince Bell) Based on his new autobiography, Bell tells a tale about Texas music, the singer-songwriter tradition, and a personal journey – of rehabilitation from a car wreck – that ends triumphantly. Saturday, Jan. 23, 8pm; Monday, Jan. 25, 7pm; Tuesday, Jan. 26, 9pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 2:15pm.

A Man, a Magic, a Music

(Melvin Brown) A journey through black music from the Fifties to the Nineties in story, song, tap, clogging, comedy, and character. With music by Ray Charles, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, and more. Friday, Jan. 22, 7pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 4:15pm; Monday, Jan. 25, 8:45pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 10:15pm.

American Volunteers

(City on a Hill? Productions) John M. Meyers' play follows a squad of special operations rangers as they patrol the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and the conflicts that arise as they pursue life, liberty, or happiness. Tuesday, Jan. 19, 9:15pm; Thursday, Jan. 21, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 9:45pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, noon.


(Chaotic Theatre Company) James Jackson Leach's play depicts a girl's descent into madness. On her journey she meets characters with sinister smiles and outrageous personalities. Wednesday, Jan. 20, 9:15pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, noon; Thursday, Jan. 28, 7pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 5pm.

Love Me

(Philip Kreyche) Oskar still can't get over the love who left him several years ago. So to avoid reality and save himself, he orders a mannequin made in her image. But his fantasy is becoming a nightmare. Monday, Jan. 18, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 2pm; Wednesday, Jan. 27, 9pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 6pm.

The Mommy Confessions

(Rhonda Kulhanek) Kulhanek's one-woman show features 13 characters struggling to survive their maternal lives, from a "memaw" who talks to Jesus to a former beauty queen to an unwed mother-to-be. Wednesday, Jan. 20, 7pm; Friday, Jan. 22, 9:15pm; Saturday, Jan. 23, 4:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 7pm.

Dying City

(Capital T Theatre) Christopher Shinn's unsettling new play seeks the truth of war in a quiet, transfixing tale of grief and violence, set in the shadow of the Iraq war. Tuesday, Jan. 19, 7pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 2pm; Thursday, Jan. 28, 9pm; Friday, Jan. 29, 7pm.

Feelgood Hits of the 70s

(Pommelhorse) Two roommates. On a couch. Drinking Tab. No subtext. No growth. No future. It's Waiting for Godot meets Richard Linklater. Written and performed by Sam L. Landman and Matthew Glover. Wednesday, Jan. 27, 7pm; Friday, Jan. 29, 9:15pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 8:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 31, 1:30pm.

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Cafes, Strip Clubs and Black Box Performance Spaces

(Kevin Draine/The Bitter Poet) The Bitter Poet performs his darkly humorous, satirical, guitar-driven poems about searching for true love and the contortionists you meet along the way. Thursday, Jan. 21, 9:15pm; Sunday, Jan. 24, 6:30pm; Tuesday, Jan. 26, 7pm; Saturday, Jan. 30, 4pm.

Bring Your Own Venue (BYOV)

In This House (Everything Is You)

(Salvage Vanguard Theatre & Eponymous Garden) A ghost story examining love, loss, and family. This workshop production is written by Sharon Bridgforth, Daniel Alexander Jones, Monika Bustamante, and Cyndi Williams and co-directed by Dustin Wills and Jenny Larson. Jan. 21-24, Thursday-Friday, 8pm; Saturday-Sunday, 5 & 8pm, at Eponymous Gardens, 1202 Garden.

Mi Casa Es Su Teatro

A full day of site-specific and interactive works in various homes. As curated this year by DA! Theatre Collective, the day will include dance, performance art, improv, vaudeville, stop-motion animation, and comedy, all in the 78704, in locations within a 2.5-mile radius. Participating artists include Get Up improv, Sheep Army/Elsewhere Dance, Adriene Mishler & Dustin Wills, Robin Myrick, Sarah Saltwick, Johnny Villarreal's the Edge of Imagination Station, Tongue & Groove Theatre, and DA!. Saturday, Feb. 6, 11am-7pm. Tickets available at the door only, $3 per show. Full schedule at

  • More of the Story

  • The FronteraFest Way

    Christi Moore's top rule for producing the annual festival: Just say 'yes'

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle