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Stage West Announces Its Next Season
by Jerome Weeks 26 Aug 2011

British comic playwrights are here a-plenty (Shaw, Stoppard, Orton), but we also get Molly Ivins and a look at the 1966 Dallas Cowboys.


Fort Worth’s Stage West has announced its 33rd season — with an emphasis on British comic playwrights (George Bernard Shaw,  Tom Stoppard, Joe Orton), offset by two offerings with a strong local relevance: Red Hot Patriot, the popular one-woman bio of political columnist Molly Ivins (left) and a former Dallas journalist’s look back at the Dallas Cowboys — when TV coverage and female reporters were about to change the world of big-time professional sports. The script by Larry Herold originally won the theater’s 2010 playwriting competition.

There are also area premieres of  a philosophical, off-Broadway drama — a change of pace for the normally comic David Ives (All in the Timing) — as well as a frantic, highly physical, fast-change, double-and-triple-cast adaptation of Jules Verne’s Around the World in 80 Days.

Stage West has just opened Jeeves in the Morning. It’s the last production of its current season. But tickets for the new season are already on sale. Call Stage West at (817) 784-9378 or go online.

The full release follows:


Stage West is pleased to announces its lineup for the 33rd season!   The new season offers a uniquely entertaining mix of plays, ranging from Shaw to Stoppard, and including the winner of Stage West’s 2010 Texas Playwriting Competition.  They are:

Arms and the Man, by George Bernard Shaw               October 20 – November 27

When an enemy soldier breaks into Raina’s room seeking refuge, her life is turned upside down.  After all, her father is an army major, and her fiance, a dashing war hero.  This charming and funny Shaw tale was first produced in 1894, and on Broadway six times since then.

New Jerusalem, by David Ives           January 5 – January 29

In 1656, Amsterdam has given special asylum to the Jewish community.  However, the major governing rule is that no Jew may speak of religion to any local resident.  Baruch Spinoza’s radical beliefs on God and religion draw him into a riveting trial which irrevocably challenges Western thought.

The Sports Page, by Larry Herold     February 9 – March 18

Dallas playwright and former sports writer Larry Herold takes a comic look back at a Dallas Cowboys training camp in 1966, when the whole media world is about to change.  Television has landed in the form of the first woman reporter in a man’s world.  Look what has happened to the newspapers since!

The Real Thing, by Tom Stoppard     March 29 – April 29

Playwright Henry and actress Annie have fallen love—but is it the real thing?  And what, exactly, is the Real Thing?  “A funny, smart play, vibrating with contemporary concerns—art and life and sex and sacrifice and rock classics.” (New York Post)  As potent today as it was when it opened in 1984, and one of our all-time faves.

What the Butler Saw, by Joe Orton June 28 – July 29

A philandering psychiatrist, his nymphomaniac wife, and a totally mad psychiatric examiner from the government provide the fodder for this wacky, subversive farce.  In one door and out the other has never been more irreverent, funny, and wise all at once.

Around the World in 80 Days, by Mark Brown      August 16 – September 23

This zany adaptation of the Jules Verne novel chronicles what may have been the first “Great Race.”  Phileas Fogg has wagered his entire life savings that he can accomplish the feat of the title.  He and his resourceful manservant, Passepartout, confront a series of misadvantures as the clock and the calendar press relentlessly on.

Tickets for the 2011-2012 season are now on sale, and range in price from $130 to $150, with discounts for students, seniors, and teachers.  Orders sent by September 30 will receive an additional discount.  For more information, call Stage West at (817) 784-9378.  Tickets may also be purchased online at www.stagewest.org.

Special Added Attraction!

This one is not part of the season, but Stage West will also be presenting Red Hot Patriot:  the Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins, by Margaret Engel and Allison Engel, May 10 – June 17.

The story of the famously brassy newspaper columnist who wrote for the Dallas Times-Herald and the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and as a frequent op-ed contributor for the New York Times and the Washington Post.  A true Texas original, who skewered the political establishment and the “good ol’ boys” with sharp-tongued wit and wisdom.  This one has been a smash wherever it has played to date. [This is NOT the Kathleen Turner production, which will be playing LA in 2012.]