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‘Pageant,’ ‘Cell Phone Waiting Lot,’ ‘Lauren Weedman Doesn’t Live Here Anymore,’ and more

Pageant
Through July 8

Pageant

The first offering from promising company A Sensible Theatre Co., Pageant is a seldom-done, dragtastic musical from 1991, with an Edwin Drood-like choose-your-own-adventure-style ending selected by a very special panel of audience members acting as beauty pageant judges. Six contestants vie for the title of Miss Glamouresse: Will it be Miss West Coast? Miss Industrial Northeast? Miss Bible Belt? “This will be a production of Pageant unlike any ever done before, one that honors the camp, fabulousness and charm of the material while also bringing the show into the context of 2018,” says director Charlie Johnson.

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ACT Theatre

July 13–28

Cell Phone Waiting Lot

When set to work in the brains of writers, standard prompts can yield an array of wild results. For Radial Theater Project’s new show, they asked four playwrights to think about the holding pen that is the airport’s cell phone waiting lot, and more specifically, what’s happening in all those cars around you while you wait. Andrew Lee Creech, Jackie De La Cruz, Nick Edwards and Maggie Lee all responded to that question with plays that last no more than 20 minutes—because that’s how long you’re allowed to wait in the lot.

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18th and Union

July 20–Aug. 12

Lauren Weedman Doesn’t Live Here Anymore

Here’s the promo copy for Lauren Weedman’s newest solo show: “With her hair bigger than ever, Lauren Weedman and her fine band are ready to take you on a journey of heartbreak, laughter and fresh starts.” I don’t really know what that means, but I do know that if Lauren Weedman is the writer/performer and Alison Narver the director, this is a show I will see. Weedman is an endlessly compelling stage presence, funny and intense, and I’m sure that’ll hold true whether she’s singing, dancing, playing herself or fictional variety show host Tami Lisa.

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ACT Theatre

Through Sept. 30

Femme Fatale

If you, like most people with eardrums, are entranced by the sultry vocals of Prom Queen, you’ll want to check out this all-new adaptation of the Mata Hari story at Can Can. Prom Queen (aka Celene Ramadan) stars alongside the Can Can Dance Company in a multigenre show featuring new choreography, original music and projected visual art. Also, as this is the Can Can, enjoy it all with a fresh-from-Pike Place seasonal menu and tasty cocktails. Sounds like this could be a collab worth going subterranean during summer in Seattle, and that’s saying something.

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Can Can

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‘Mac Beth,’ ‘Wild Horses,”ZM’ and more

MacBeth
Through June 17

Mac Beth

Actor, director and playwright Erica Schmidt’s adaptation of Macbeth is the latest play to journey from a reading in Seattle Rep’s new-work series the Other Season to a full production at the Rep. Schmidt, who also directs, sets Shakespeare’s story of vaulting Scottish ambition on seven young women gathered after school to tell the tale, and as they delve further and further into the tragedy, “the line between real life and bloody fantasy becomes increasingly blurred.” This marks Schmidt’s returns to the Rep after directing 2011’s Humor Abuse, Lorenzo Pisoni’s one-man show about his circus childhood; Pisoni joins Mac Beth as movement coordinator.

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Seattle Repertory Theatre

Through June 24

Wild Horses

Allison Gregory’s play Wild Horses centers on a young woman on the cusp-of-the-cusp-of-adulthood, as remembered by her adult self over a few drinks at a bar. Dedra Woods stars as that grown-up woman reliving her younger days, recounting for her audience a pivotal summer in the 1970s when she was 13 years old, running around with her friends, sneaking out of her house, testing the waters of sex and drugs for the first time, tasting the fear and freedom of independence all at once. Sheila Daniels directs this Intiman Theatre production.

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12th Avenue Arts

June 1–10

ZM

From Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, the team behind hilarious and unlikely Tony-winner Urinetown, comes a new musical set in a remote American town where a fast-food behemoth is test-marketing a sandwich that turns people into zombies and where two teenage lovers set out to uncover the corporate malfeasance. The musical, which was part of the Eugene O’Neill National Music Theater Conference a few years back, sounds more iZombie than Walking Dead, and I’m excited to see that bizarro sensibility in Village Theatre’s Beta Series, where nascent musicals can get a proper production in which to experiment before hitting the big stage

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Village Theatre

June 1–23

Journey West!

Theatre company Copious Love presents this musical by Andrew Lee Creech, billed as “an epic quest that re-blazes the historic trail to the Pacific through song, dance and Sasquatch in this whimsical and irreverent sendup of one of America’s most beloved origin stories.” That origin story, of course, is of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, commissioned by Thomas Jefferson in 1804 to find a water route across the newly expanded United States. Copious Love is establishing a serious track record of doing interesting and untested work, and I’m glad to have them in town.

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Theatre Off Jackson

June 7–July 7

How I Learned to Drive

Paula Vogel’s Pulitzer-winning play is all the more chilling for its ordinary nature, a life and a trauma painted in flashback that reveals itself slowly, charmingly and insidiously over time. Our narrator, an adult woman called Li’l Bit, leads the audience through scenes from her youth, narrative breadcrumbs of the shame, laughter, guilt and confusion that made her the woman she is, using as a guide the framework of her driving lessons with her aunt’s husband, Uncle Peck. Ryan Guzzo Purcell (the Williams Project) directs this Strawberry Theatre Workshop production, which stars Amy Danneker as Li’l Bit and Frank Boyd as Uncle Peck.

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12th Avenue Arts

June 8–July 8

Until the Flood

Dael Orlandersmith’s new play Until the Flood was a New York Times critic’s pick a short six months ago, when critic Jesse Green described the multi-character solo work as “an urgent moral inquest.” Pulitzer-finalist playwright and performer Orlandersmith created Until the Flood and the eight characters she plays (nine, if you include the writer herself) out of interviews she conducted in and around Ferguson, Mo., following the shooting death of Black teenager Michael Brown and the subsequent non-indictment of the white police officer who shot him.

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ACT Theatre

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