Trey Gutierrez's Top 10 Moments That Left Audiences Speechless in 2019

The year celebrated through moments when performers stunned their audiences into silence

Jesús I. Valles
Jesús I. Valles

1) JESÚS I. VALLES IN BALA.FRUTA./BULLET.FRUIT. (FuturX) Valles' pained musings on El Paso's Walmart massacre echoed FuturX's overarching message: Shut up and listen.

2) SAMUEL GRIMES IN MARY SHELLEY'S FRANKENSTEIN (Different Stages) A dynamic cast brought Frankenstein to life, but when Grimes' menacing Creature broke his silence, nobody dared answer back.

3) KHALI MCDUFF-SYKES IN THE VINEYARD (Heartland Theatre Collective) A seemingly homeless McDuff-Sykes snapped, "I don't want your fucking money," revealing nothing was what it seemed in this far-out one-act.

4) CHANEL IN THE BALLAD OF KLOOK AND VINETTE (Zach Theatre) Covered in blood, her panicked expression revealed that nothing – not even love – lasts forever.

5) HUCK HUCKABY IN THE BOOK OF WILL (Austin Playhouse) Sitting in solemn reverence seemed the second-best option to personally consoling Huckaby's grieving John Heminges.

6) THE CYRANO DE BERGERAC ENSEMBLE (Archive Theater Company) A soundboard hiccup left the Gascony cadets frozen – mid-battle – in an artfully framed theatrical still life.

7) MARTINIQUE DUCHENE-PHILLIPS IN MÁS CARA (Vortex Repertory Company/Teatro Vivo) Her husband's gun pointed at her face, Duchene-Phillips' Alma stared back, unmoved.

8) BABS GEORGE IN THE WAVERLY GALLERY (Alchemy Theatre) George's visceral portrait of Alzheimer's made me wish quiet reflection – not applause – was the norm following plays.

9) LIZ BECKHAM IN THE DUCHESS OF MALFI (Hidden Room Theatre) This sensational performance, brutally cut short by an executioner's garrote, is something I couldn't stand watching again. Bravo.

10) KIMBERLY BECKER IN DRACULA (Zach Theatre) What's scarier than a vampire (possibly) hiding behind your curtains? Becker milking that tension for all it was worth.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 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  

More Top 10s
Rosalind Faires' Top 10 Fiction Books of 2019
Rosalind Faires' Top 10 Fiction Books of 2019
Here’s to a year of rollicking adventures, laughing, weeping, and rooting for those crazy kids to wind up together in the end

Rosalind Faires, Dec. 20, 2019

Jay Trachtenberg's Top Books of 2019
Jay Trachtenberg's Top Books of 2019
From the social upheaval of the Sixties to the double life of an intelligence agent to the secular past of an Orthodox rabbi, splits resolved into memorable books

Jay Trachtenberg, Dec. 20, 2019

More by Trey Gutierrez
Jo Carol Pierce’s <i>Bad Girls Upset by the Truth</i>
Jo Carol Pierce’s Bad Girls Upset by the Truth
This revival of Jo Carol Pierce’s one-woman show from the Eighties pays loving tribute to the author without really coming into its own

March 20, 2020

Vortex and New Manifest Theatre's <i>good friday</i>
Vortex and New Manifest Theatre's good friday
Kristiana Rae Colón's shocking drama puts audiences at the intersection of gun violence and sexual assault, and makes us think about both

March 13, 2020


Top 10s, Tops 10s 2019, Jesus Valles, Khali McDuff-Sykes, Samuel Grimes, Chanel, Huck Huckaby, Martinique Duchene-Phillips, Babs George, Liz Beckham, Kimberly Becker, FuturX, Heartland Theatre Collective, Different Stages, Zach Theatre, Austin Playhouse, Vortex Repertory Company, Teatro Vivo, Alchemy Theatre, Hidden Room Theatre

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

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