OPENING THIS WEEK
ABUNDANCE • Left Coast Theater AN ANGEL CRIED A TEAR LAST NIGHT • Human Theater Company FIRES IN THE MIRROR • Intiman FOOTLOOSE • 5th Ave Theater IMPROSIA • Wit's End JEKYLL & HYDE • Paramount STONEWALL JACKSON'S HOUSE • ACT
ONE WEEK ONLY
DANCE THIS... • Moore Theater LETTER TO AXL • David Schmader MAE WEST FEST • Theater Babylon MOMOTARO (PEACH BOY) • Thistle Theater
CLOSING THIS WEEK
ESCHER'S HANDS • Theater Simple FOR LORNE • Annex THE HABIT • Annex MY ROMANCE • On The Boards *POONA THE FUCKDOG • Open Circle UNCLE VANYA • Art Theater of Puget Sound
OPENING AND CURRENT RUNS
ABUNDANCE--The wayward tale of mail-order brides who hoof it into Wyoming in the late 1860s, Pulitzer Prize-winning Beth Henley's Abundance promises "lyrical irony," in this inaugural production from Left Coast Theater Company. Union Garage, 1418 10th Ave, 729-9168. Wed-Sun at 8, through Aug 1. $10.
AN ANGEL CRIED A TEAR LAST NIGHT--Amy Marschak visits from Colorado to perform her play. Angel, well received at 1997's Edmonton International Fringe Theater Festival, tells of one girl's experience with incest. Human Theater Company on Capitol Hill, 340 15th E, 368-4226. Sat & Sun at 8, some matinees, through July 25. $10/$7.
BULLSHOT CRUMMOND--A "zany comedy" with a title that's almost a swear word, Bullshot parodies a 1930s detective serial--in the opening scene alone, an airplane crash, parachute escape, and kidnapping ensue. Taproot Theater, 204 N 85th St, 781-9707. Wed & Thurs at 7:30, Fri at 8, Sat at 2 & 8, through Aug 7. $16-$22.
THE COMPLETE HISTORY OF AMERICA--"The Complete History of America is billed as a 'completely unhinged, completely skewed, and completely hilarious' chronology of American events, beginning with Columbus' voyage and leading up to the present state of the union. What this really amounts to is wacky sketch comedy. With such a wealth of information to draw upon, and such a powerfully talented cast--Burton Curtis, Jonathan Hochberg, and Jeffrey Treadwell--I expected more. Maybe in the end American history just isn't that funny, no matter how many dick jokes and drag queens you toss in." (Adrian Ryan) Empty Space Theater, 3509 Fremont Ave N, 547-7500. Tues-Thurs at 7:30, Fri-Sat at 8, Sat-Sun at 2, extended through Aug 8. $16-$25.
ESCHER'S HANDS--Two writing students discover that a story can really get away from you when they collaborate on an assignment that goes awry. Sandy wants the story to be a romance; Gary wants it to be hard-boiled. Such a conflamesict can only lead to a dramatic denouement, and Theater Simple is sure to play it edgy. Town Hall, West Room, 721 Seneca, 784-8647. Wed-Sat at 8, Sun at 2, through July 18. $7-$10.
ESCOBAR--"Two dim American servicemen in Vietnam duel over a woman named Linguine--ever since the duel, ex-soldier Lawrence Baker (Victor Janusz) has been curiously seeking a reunion with Escobar (Ben DiGregorio), now a burned-out relic who spends his days getting high and acting paternal with Samantha (Diedre Kilgore), the troubled 18-year-old who lives nearby. Playwright Steven Barron, trying to cover all the bases, takes his play off on astonishingly awful tangents. Samantha suddenly reveals to the Young Escobar, a total stranger, that she was molested (this begins with 'Once upon a time, there was a princess...'). Joseph, back in Vietnam, rattles off a clichéd, hyperbolic memory so overheated it manages to make a child's death unintentionally funny. Escobar is tiresomely derivative." (Steve Wiecking) Theater Off Jackson, 409 7th Ave S, 405-2388. Wed-Sun at 8, through July 17. $14.
FIRES IN THE MIRROR--Anna Deavere Smith's race-riot-inspired play is performed by Intiman with four actors--two men and two women, two white and two black (Leslie DoQui, Joanne Klein, Dawson Nichols, and David Scully). From multiple points of view, urban ethnic violence is put under the microscope. Intiman Playhouse, Seattle Center, 269-1900. Sun, Tues, Wed at 7; Thurs-Sat at 8, Sat & Sun at 2, through Aug 14. $10-$39.
FOOTLOOSE--If you're under 25, you might be more than six degrees of separation from Kevin Bacon's dance-patriot movie, so here's the scoop: A small town, repressive religious parents, and the wild adolescent urge to dance turn a high school summer into the setting for such teeny-bop pop hits as "Let's Hear It for the Boy." Everybody cut! The 5th Avenue Theater, 1308 5th Avenue, 292-ARTS. Wed-Fri at 8, Sat at 2 & 8, Sun at 2 & 7:30, through Aug 15. $19-$55.
FOR LORNE--Playwright Ed Hawkins, "veteran of re-invention," serves up a pastiche of TV transcripts and original dialogue centered around Bewitched''s Marion "Aunt Clara" Lorne. "I barely remember Lorne as the muddled Aunt Clara in Bewitched, but neither does Ben Stevens, our modern-guy link through the sometimes surreal but always well-threaded story of Lorne's life. Sappy, but with a humorous flamesair." (Brendan Kiley) Annex Theater, 1916 Fourth Ave, 728-0933. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun at 7, through July 17. $10.
THE GRAND DUKE--The Seattle Gilbert and Sullivan Society and their 26-piece orchestra ham it up to parodies of Strauss and the Can-Can, in this "surprisingly modern" musical. Bagley Wright Theater, Seattle Center, 341-9612. Thurs-Fri at 8, Sat at 2 & 8, through July 24. $12-$24.
IN SEATED COMFORT--What will waiting room etiquette be like in the future? ExiTheater attempts an answer in this future-farce directed by Michael Lindgren and featuring a giant chicken. University Heights Community Center, 50th Ave NE & University Way, 325-7152. Thurs-Sat at 7:30, through July 31. $8.
JEKYLL & HYDE--It's a romance--it's horror--it's a medical musical--it's gothic drama. London in the 1880s will never be the same. Paramount, 911 Pine St, 682-1414. Tues-Sat at 8, Sun at 7, Sat & Sun at 2, through Aug 1. $23-$46.50.
LATE NIGHT CATECHISM--And the nun goes on. Somebody really likes cute Catholics. This is an evening of audience participation and interactive improv theater: think Sister Windy crossed with Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All for You. ACT, 700 Union St, 292-7676. Thurs-Sat at 8, Sun at 2, extended for eternity. $24.50-$29.50.
*LETTER TO AXL--See Calendar Box. Re-bar, 1114 Howell (at Boren), 323-0388. Wed July 21 at 8 pm only. $10.
MAE WEST FEST--Mae West may have said it best, but others try to match her wit at this third annual festival of female playwrights, producers, directors, and performers. Featuring Tierra Sin Mal, a one-woman piece by Rose Cano (Sunday's performance is in Spanish), The Yoko Ono Project, an American premiere reading by Jean Joon, and A Bris is Still a Bris, a comedy by Mary Lathrop. Union Garage, 1418 10th Ave, 720-1942. Thurs-Sun, call for schedule or visit www.maewestfest.org. $35 festival pass.
*MILLENNIUM CIRCUS--40,000 square feet of hangar space inspires the UMO Ensemble's newest (and largest ever) creation, promising elements such as bungee jumping, a suspended aerial ballet, and flamesaming angels, surrounding the audience on all sides. Bring on the next century! Sand Point Naval Base, 463-2128. Thurs-Sun at 8, through Aug 15. $10-$15. See review this issue.
MOMOTARO (PEACH BOY)--Thistle Theater's adept Bunraku puppetry brings this juicy tale to life: A lonely old woman finds a giant peach and a boy emerges! Features the beloved Momotaro song. Nippon Kan Theater, 630 S Washington, 524-3388. Sat July 17 at 4 pm only. $5/$7.
OF ME I SING, BABY!--Tom Orr is the clever-as-a-fox, nasty-as-a-porn-star lyricist behind last year's super-smash parody musical, Dirty Little Showtunes!. Now he goes it alone in this one-man musical revue. "For all of its homoerotic sexploitation and perhaps misplaced bravado, Of Me I Sing, Baby, is one heck of a fun show. With a blend of overwhelming confidence, lighthearted (and often lewd) anecdotes, and sheer force of will, Orr makes his life story entertaining enough to keep audience members firmly ensconced in their seats." (Adrian Ryan) Re-bar, 1114 Howell (at Boren), 323-0388. Fri-Sun at 8, open-ended run. $12/$10.
*POONA THE FUCKDOG--"Poona reinvents every social cliché as if it were a naughty and very funny joke told by an intelligent kindergartner. It is smart, bold, and insightful, poignant without being preachy, and meaningful without being sappy. Written by Jeff Goode and directed by Basil Harris, Poona the Fuckdog is two hours of theater magic that will go down in infamy." (Adrian Ryan) Open Circle Theater, 429 Boren Ave N, 382-4250. Thurs-Sat at 8, extended through Sat July 17. $10/$12.
STONEWALL JACKSON'S HOUSE--Political orthodoxy be damned: In this "incendiary" satire by Jonathan Reynold, things are never quite what they seem. A tour guide (Tracey A. Leigh) leading visitors through Jackson's restored Virginia home offers to go home with two wealthy tourists as their slave. ACT's Allen Theater, 7th & Union, 292-7676. Tues-Thurs at 7:30, Fri & Sat at 8, Sun at 7, through Aug 8. $10-$40.
TARTUFFE 2000: T2K--Moliere's tale of obsession and swindling is reset for the millennium in Hyperion Theater's update, which casts TV evangelists, high-tech yuppies, and California movie producers in the traditional parts, and promises "pungent and satirical comedy." Broadway Performance Hall, 1625 Broadway, 781-0022. Tues-Thurs & Sun at 7:30; Fri-Sat at 8, through July 18. $12.50. See review this issue.
TIMON OF ATHENS--Timon has to learn his lesson: Money might buy you a good pair of shoes but it can't buy you happiness. One of Greenstage's "Shakespeare In the Park" offerings. Call for Location, 748-1551, www.greenstage.org. Fri & Sat at 8, through Sept 5. Donation.
TRIPLE ESPRESSO--In this enervating showbiz spoof, the comedy team of "Maxwell, Butternut & Bean" relives their attempts to make it big-time. A touring production with Bill Arnold, Michael Pearce Donley, and Bob Stromberg. Performance Studio at The Children's Museum, Seattle Center, 374-9490. Wed & Thurs at 7:30; Fri at 8; Sat at 1, 5, 8; Sun at 3 & 7, through Sept 2. $26.50-$29.50.
UNCLE VANYA--Claustrophobic Chekov directed by Russian artist Leonid Anisimov, this joint production of Uncle Vanya has been hashed out in private homes before going public, and promises to be provocative. Norton Clapp Theater, Jones Hall, University of Puget Sound, 253-756-3419. Thurs-Sat at 6:30, Sun at 4, through July 18. $18-$22.
WOMAN IN MIND--The dispiriting disappointment of middle class life urges a wife and mother toward escapism: when her fantasy family begins to intrude on her real life she has to make some decisions that lead to a surprise ending. Directed by Scott Morrison (Carlotta's Late Night Wing Ding). Northwest Actors Studio, 1100 E Pike St, 324-6328. Fri-Sat at 8; Sun at 7, through July 31. $8/$10.
DANCE THIS... Seattle's youth dance companies team up to present this hodgepodge of hiphop, modern, traditional, and dances in between. Featured groups include Rainier Vista Cambodian Youth Group, Sukutai Zimbabwean Dance Ensemble, Spectrum Dance Youth Ensemble, and more. Moore Theater, 1932 2nd Ave, 292-ARTS. Sat July 17 at 7 pm only. $10/$7.
FESTIVALS, CABARETS, & COMEDY
IMPROSIA--Character-driven improv based on audience suggestions. Wit's End, 770 N 34th St, tickets at the door. Saturdays at 9:30. $7.
JULIE CASCIOPPO EXPERIENCE--Songs and characters you may grow to love. The Pink Door, Pike Place Market, 1919 Post Alley, 443-3241. Tues at 8:30 & 11. No cover.
MY ROMANCE--Classic love songs by artists such as Leonard Bernstein, Lorenz Hart, and Cole Porter are presented with a twist--as sung to the same sex!--in this cabaret-style revue featuring local musical talent. On The Boards, 100 W Roy St, 217-9888. Wed-Sun at 8, through July 18. $23-$26.
THE PROM REUNION--The folks at Richard (Dick) Ultimate High School have decided to restage their 1970s prom, and you can be a part of it. Interactive theater in the style of Tony & Tina's Wedding, food included. Phinney Ridge Neighborhood Center, Community Hall, Lower Level, 6532 Phinney Ave N, 628-0888. Sat at 6:30, through the end of summer. $45/$35 (group rates available).
*TEATRO ZINZANNI--Three hours of fancy food and thrilling spectacle from the world over, presented in an antique European dance hall imported from Belgium for the occasion. Now featuring body-juggling brothers from France and the jaw-dropping Kevin Kent. Seattle Center, 222 Mercer St, 281-7788 ext 700 or 292-ARTS. Thurs-Sat at 7:30, Sun at 6:30, extended through Sept 8. $88.
THE A.M. CABARET--Amoral entertainment for insomniacs; promising naked poetry, music, strippers, and drag queens. You may think you're dreaming. Coffee Messiah, 1554 E Olive Way, 860-7377. Sat from 2-4 am. $5.
THE HABIT--Addictive sketch comedy that mainlines musical oddities and parodies of commercials, fresh from the Fringe Festival. Annex Theater, 1916 Fourth Ave, 728-0933. Fri-Sat at 11, through July 16. $5.
JET CITY IMPROV--Improv comedy and music based on audience suggestions. Ethnic Cultural Theater, 3940 Brooklyn Ave NE, 781-3879. Fri-Sat at 10:30.
THEATER SPORTS--Improv comedy with a competitive edge, brought to you by Unexpected Productions. Market Theater, 1428 Post Alley, 781-9273. Fri-Sat at 10:30, $9. Sun at 7, $5.
DARK HOUSE THEATER--Auditions for the ACTF award-winning play, Thugs, by Alan Averill will be held by appointment July 18, 2-5 pm and July 19, 7-10 pm, at Northwest Actors Studio, 1100 E Pike, 528-5912.