A scene from the musical Jagged Little Pill
Find the great rainbow way at these upcoming productions
RICH LOPEZ | Staff writer
The stage is upon us, and the variety of performing arts shows coming up over the next year across North Texas does not look to disappoint. World and regional premieres, classics in music and onstage, touring and local productions — all that plus a slew of original works and local talent on the horizon for area stages.
But let’s narrow it down a bit.
There is nary a shortage of queer representation throughout the performing arts in these parts. But we’re here to sift through the upcoming seasons to hone in on what’s the LGBTea (and Q+) on shows that speak to the community. From personal stories, grande dames with showtunes queer choirs and more will deliver a season full of variety and entertainment with that extra hint of mint.
But first, we can start easily with a few companies’ entire repertoire of upcoming productions because they are speaking the same language. Uptown Players, Turtle Creek Chorale, the Women’s Chorus of Dallas, American Baroque Opera, MBS Productions and Bruce Wood Dance each have ties to the community through its mission, members, leaders or founders. So basically, go see everything they do.
The queer-owned American Baroque Opera presents this season of three productions for its seventh season titled Revenge and Fury. Nov. 18: Semele, location to be announced. March 1: Giulio Cesare at Moody Performance Hall. June 7 and 8: Ormindo, location to be announced. BaroqueOpera.org.
The company Bruce Wood Dance opens its season this week at the Battery Dance Festival in New York. Founded by the late and out dancer/choreographer, BWD has perpetually built a strong following not just for its queer-centric pieces but for its provocative performances of Wood’s works and artistic director Joy Bollinger’s creations. Sept. 16: Homecoming 2, will feature Bollinger’s Blue along with Wood’s The Only Way Through Is Through and his ’70s homage, Polyester Dreams, at the W.E. Scott Theatre in Fort Worth. Sept. 21-23: Fort Worth Dance Festival. BWD and four professional local companies close the festival at the Terrell Performing Arts Center. Nov. 17-19: SOAR, the world premiere by out choreographer Norbert de la Cruz III along with Bollinger’s In My Your Head and Wood’s Home, at Moody Performance Hall. March: WOOD/SHOP: New Works by Company Dancers in the BWD Gallery Dates to be announced. April 6: 14th Anniversary Performance and Gala includes the Dallas premiere of Twyla Tharp’s masterpiece, Nine Sinatra Songs with Wood’s Anything Goes at Moody Performance Hall. June 7-9: Radiance, will feature an encore performance of Nine Sinatra Songs, a world premiere by Bollinger and Wood’s Boléro, at Moody Performance Hall.
TTurtle Creek Chorale’s 43rd season is already underway and will conclude this December. Sept. 19: Sing for Our Lives with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra at the Meyerson Symphony Center. November: Border Songs, works in English and Spanish of the stories of immigrants from our southern border. Date and location to be announced. Dec. 18 and 19: Sing for Joy: A Celtic Holiday Celebration at the Meyerson Symphony Center. TurtleCreekChorale.com.
Uptown Players has been presenting queer-based stories through theater, musicals and cabarets for more than 20 years. Even with some slight shakeups like a pandemic and the use of other venues, the company continues to slay all day and nights depending on your ticket. All performances at the Kalita Humphreys Theatre unless otherwise noted. Dec. 1-10: Jada Bells: A Holiday Extravaganza with Lee Walter. March 7-17: Fire and Air by Terrence McNally (regional premiere) in the 6th Floor Studio Theater at the Wyly. May 2-5: Broadway Our Way annual fundraiser revue. July 12-28: The Prom (regional premiere). Aug. 16-25: The Boys in the Band by Mart Crowley. UptownPlayers.org.
Now, put these performances by other companies on your gaydar (in alphabetical order by organization):
Art Centre Theatre: Sept. 29-Oct. 15: Firebringer by Art Centre Theatre: Cave people – mostly women – discover fire and queer feminist themes in this kitschy musical at this plucky theater in Plano. The company follows up with The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas Nov. 11-29. ArtCentreTheatre.com.
Bishop Arts Theatre Center: Next year, BATC will stage Jet Fuel inspired by the story of South African lesbian runner Caster Semenya who was tested on her gender identity due to her athletic performances. Amy Evans’ play will run Aug. 8-25. BishopArtsTheatre.org.
Broadway at the Bass: The big musicals have already started at Bass Hall, but the season is bringing all the divas to Cowtown. Alanis Morrissette’s Jagged Little Pill runs Sept. 15-17, the theatrical pop icons of Six run Nov. 28-Dec. 3, from Feb. 6-11 Tina: The Tina Turner Musical will headline the stage and dancing queens can rejoice for Mamma Mia! July 9-14. BassHall.com.
Broadway at the Center: The AT&T Performing Arts Center will boots the Winspear house down with one big gay icon — or a facsimile of. The series presents The Cher Show Dec. 14-16 to get things rolling. That’s followed by Morrissette’s Jagged Little Pill Jan. 12-14 and then some razzle dazzle with Chicago April 4-6.
Broadway Dallas: Dallas will be home to some big musical names soon (Hamilton, anyone?), but The Music Hall at Fair Park will host some big names in 2024 like Tina: The Tina Turner Musical from Jan. 24-Feb. 4, Hairspray, based on the John Waters film, June 18-30 and Funny Girl Aug. 6-18. Hello, gorgeous, indeed. BroadwayDallas.org.
Circle Theatre: The Fort Worth stage will open The Other Josh Cohen on Aug. 24-Sept. 16. The comedy about a down-on-his-luck guy who can’t rise about his bad luck is directed by Joel Ferrell with music director Cody Dry. CircleTheatre.com.
The Classics Theatre Project: Dallas theater legend Terry Martin will direct the company’s next show, The Seagull by Anton Chekhov which runs Sept. 1-24 at the Stone Cottage in Addison. TheClassicsTheatreProject.com.
The Dallas Theater Center: DTC will open its season with the camp classic The Rocky Horror Show Sept. 23-Oct. 29 at the Kalita Humphreys Theater. In 2024, the company returns to the Kalita with Jonathan Norton’s I Am Delivered’t, an original play and world premiere that celebrates same-gender loving church folks. Kevin Moriarty directs the season’s closer, Disney’s The Little Mermaid at the Wyly July 12-Aug. 4.
Eisemann Center: The venue is delivering Broadway legends in its new season including the show Get Happy: Michael Feinstein Celebrates the Judy Garland Centennial on Nov. 11, Tony-winner Brian Stokes Mitchell on Feb. 24 and then the icon Patti Lupone delivers A Life in Notes on March 23. EisemannCenter.com.
Garland Civic Theatre: Lose your mind at Sondheim’s Follies in the burbs March 8-24. GarlandCivic.org.
Lakeside Community Theatre: Always enough Sondheim to go around. Head to The Colony for the audience-favorite Sweeney Todd this fall from Oct. 13-Nov. 4. LCTTheColony.com.
Lewisville Playhouse: Don’t sleep on this suburban theater cranking out good stuff. The musical comedy beauty contest Pageant runs Feb. 9-25 followed by Howard Ashman’s Little Shop of Horrors June 14-July 7. LewisvillePlayhouse.org.
Lyric Stage: This Dallas company has expanded its 30th season across two venues. Ashman’s Little Shop of Horrors will give the Majestic Theatre monster vibes Oct. 26-29 and even more of the same next spring for Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd in the new Lyric Stage Studio March 15-April 20. LyricStage.org.
MainStage ILC: BJ Cleveland is set to direct Grand Hotel: The Musical that will run May 3-18 at the Dupree Theater in the Irving Arts Center. MainStageIrving.com.
Repertory Community Theatre: The Richardson company puts its spin on Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd Oct. 20-29 and then gives us a showtune revue with Broadway’s Best March 15-24. RCTTheatre.com.
Shakespeare Dallas: See Ryan Matthieu Smith’s costuming work at the fall production of King Lear at the Samuell-Grand Amphitheater Sept. 14-Oct. 15. ShakespeareDallas.org.
Soul Rep Theatre: SRT commissioned local playwright Erin Malone Turner to create the play What Fits Inside a Human Heart about being Black and queer, Oct. 12-23. SoulRep.org.
Stage West: The Fort Worth company goes Oscar Wilde in 2024 with The Importance of Being Earnest Sept. 5-22. StageWest.org.
Theatre Three: The company has a killer season beginning with Lizzie the Rock Musical by gay composer Steven Cheslik-Demeyer, queer characters come up in Deathtrap Dec. 7-31, Joel Ferrell directs both The Seagull April 4-28 and Pirates of Penzance June 13–July 14. Theatre3Dallas.com.
Undermain Theatre: The Deep Ellum space will stage Harold Pinter’s No Man’s Land with its queer undertones Nov. 9-Dec. 3. Brian Dang was the 2022 recipient of the Katherine Owens/Undermain Fund for New Work for This time, about three maids in the 1900s with secret desires, which premieres Feb. 29-March 17. Undermaing.org.
Upright Theatre: The Euless theater brings a little bit of Victorian fab to its stage with gay playwright Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, Aug. 25-17. UprightTheatre.org.
WaterTower Theatre: Cheryl Denson directs the season opener Chaplin the Musical Nov. 8-19 and then the company will present Ann about our favorite former governor Ann Richards Feb. 14-25. WaterTowerTheatre.org.