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Thursday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 15 Dec 2011 7:55 AM

Today in the roundup: A rave for Lysistrata Jones on Broadway, local music bits, plus the key to not falling flat during improv.


A RAVE FOR ‘LYSISTRATA’: We’ve been pretty closely following the ascent of Lysistrata Jones, the musical that began life at the Dallas Theater Center as Give it Up! before moving to New York and finally to Broadway. Liz Mikel, who performed in the Dallas production has stuck with it all the way through. And her persistence is paying off. “Lysistrata Jones has been dressed up (and scaled up) real pretty for Broadway, bringing a heightened touch of summer sun and silliness to what has been an exceptionally gray season for musicals,” Ben Brantley writes in his review. Mikel takes up a small portion of the review, but Brantley calls her performance “commanding.” Overall, it’s a review worth clipping out and magneting to the fridge. TheaterJones surveys all the other notices, positive, negative and in-between with special notice of any Mikel mentions.

MUSIC BITS: Fort Worth Weekly counts down the top 10 songs of 2011. Topping the list is Stella Rose’s “I’m a Ghost.” ( … Staind’s Aaron Lewis talks about making a country album ahead of the band’s appearance at House of Blues tonight. (DC9 at Night) … Lyle Lovett talks about being a labelless “free agent” for the first time in 30 years ahead of his Bass Hall show next week. (

QUOTABLE: “They train us in a way that … well, I don’t want to use the word ‘flawless,’ but we learn how to not suck. There’s a 99.9 percent chance that we’re always going to be funny.”

– Warren Phynix Johnson, a member of the Second City Touring Company, which brings its Second City Dysfunctional Holiday Revue to the Wyly Theatre tomorrow and Saturday. Read more of the interview at