Dreamlandia, Octavio Solis' take on the tough existence at the Texas-Mexico border, is the centerpiece for the Dallas Theater Center's Big D Festival of the Unexpected, running May 13-28.
Originally commissioned by DTC as an adaptation of Life is a Dream, Dreamlandia examines cultural, political and personal identities of those living on the edge of America and Mexico. The lyrical and often bawdy play had its world premiere reading at the 1997 Big D festival. Solis' other works include Santos & Santos, Man of the Flesh, El Paso Blue and El Otro.
DTC artistic director Richard Hamburger directs Carlo Alban (Lazaro), Dolores Godinez (Dolores), Zabryrna Guevara (Blanca), Maggie Palomo (Sonia), Scott Philips (Seth), Bernie Sheredy (Frank), Geno Silva (Celstino), Felix Solis (Pepin) and T.A. Taylor (Carl).
Designing Dreamlandia are Russell Parkman (sets), Claudia Stephens (costumes), Steve Woods (lighting) and Martin Desjardins (sound).
Dreamlandia will be performed on the Center's Kalita Humphreys Theater May 13-28. Tickets are $25-$20. The second big premiere will be Quake, a new comedy from Melanie Marnich (Blur, Beautiful Again, Tallgrass Gothic), running May 17-28 in Bryant Hall. Undermain Theatre co-founder and co-artistic director Katherine Owen directs.
While traveling across the United States, Lucy becomes a woman with a mission: to find true, perfect love. Instead she discovers a brilliant female serial killer and comes to understand how to love another without losing herself.
Quake stars Kateri Cale, Bruce DuBose, Billy Eugene Jones, Elizabeth Rothan and Lisa Lee Schmidt.
Short runs of several other plays, in conjunction with Dallas companies, Echo and Kitchen Dog, will run in the Wynn Studio and at Frank's Place. Samuel Beckett's two short pieces, Krapp's Last Tape and Rockabye, visit the Wynn Studio May 22-27 with Matthew Wilder directing. Bruce McKenzie and Sheriden Thomas star. Stanley Rutherford's The Chinese Art of Placement, performed by Mark Farr and directed by Tina Parker, will take feng shui and the final placement of a single chair to comic heights May 27 at Frank's Place. C.J. Critt will perform her dedication to her life as a musical theatre comedy writer in Suicide at 8 May 25 & 28.
Three special readings of Eve Ensler's The Vagina Monologues will be held May 20-22 at Frank's Place. Ensler's examination of the female genitalia and women's attitudes towards them is an Obie Award winner and continues to run Off Broadway. The Echo Theatre's Pam Myers-Morgan directs.
Other Big D events include jazz and silent movies with live music accompaniment at Frank's Place and the children's Little D festival.
Ticket prices vary. For more information and reservations, call (214) 522-8499. Dallas Theater Center is on the web at http://www.dallastheatercenter.org.