2307 Manor Rd., 512/478-5282
This 75-seat Eastside theatre may have been built out of a dilapidated metal barn, but for over 20 years it’s been home to some of the city’s most cutting-edge and risk-taking theatre – often bending both mind and gender. Nude dinner with Salvador Dalí? Check. Aerialist space operas? Check. Musicals based on goddesses and elements of nature? Check. Check it out? Check. For all its envelope-pushing, the Vortex is as welcoming a theatre as you’ll find in town. Come for the show, stay for cocktails at the Butterfly Bar and sumptuous Italian dishes at the Patrizi’s food truck outside.
Different Stages presents this beloved Charles Dickens romp about the adventures of an orphaned blacksmith's apprentice who's fashioned to become a gentleman. You know – it's that Pip! Karen Jambon directs a colorful cast of characters. Nov. 16-Dec. 8. Thu.-Sat., 8pm; Sun., 6pm. Note: No show on Thanksgiving. $15-30.