Del Shores\' \"Yellow\" will have its premiere by Uptown Players in 2013.

Uptown's 2013 Season

Group expands season, stays (mostly) in Kalita Humphreys, plus shows at City Performance Hall and Rose Room. Works include a Del Shores premiere, a revival of Spider Woman and a Fabulous Story.

published Monday, August 27, 2012

The 2013 season for Uptown Players has been announced, and while it's been unclear what the status of Kalita Humphreys Theater is (will Dallas Theater Center use it more or less than it has been?), looks like things are working out for Uptown in that Frank Lloyd Wright-designed space.

In fact, instead of doing the usual four shows at the Kalita, they'll have five there. The extra will be in December, 2013, because Dallas Theater Center's annual production of A Christmas Carol will move to the Wyly Theatre next year.

One interesting venue note is a weekend in the soon-to-open Dallas City Performance Hall, with a staged concert of Ragtime, with the Turtle Creek Chorale.

Uptown will also do one show in the Rose Room at S4 Nightclub, and it's another TV show spoof from Jamie Morris, this time of Designing Women. So let's see, they've done spoofs of loved-by-gays sitcoms The Facts of Life, Golden Girls and now Designing Women. What could be next? Bewitched? Bosom Buddies? That Girl?

The other shows, at the Kalita, include the annual fundraiser Broadway Our Way; a Southwest premiere of Yellow by Del Shores (Sordid Lives, Southern Baptist Sissies, The Trials and Tribulations of a Trailer Trash Housewife); and two musicals: Jason Robert Brown's Songs for a New World and Kander, Ebb and Terrence McNally's musical take on Manuel Puig's Kiss of the Spider Woman, with Linda Lee returning to play the title role, which she did for Uptown in 2003.

The one I'm most excited about is the Dallas premiere of Paul Rudnick's hilarious The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told, which begins in the Garden of Eden with couples Adam and Steve, and Jane and Mabel, and travels through time to modern Manhattan. Sort of a gay, not absurd The Skin of Our Teeth. It premiered off-Broadway in the 1998-'99 season, and the now-defunct Fort Worth Theatre did the show a few years later, with some minor picketing from protesters. If Uptown plays their cards right, it could stir some Corpus Christi-like controversy, with its gay take on a Bible story. Let's be honest: Controversy is always good for box office.


Broadway Our Way

Jan. 18–27

Kalita Humphreys Theater

Now in its 11th year, Uptown Players' fundraiser, Broadway Our Way, light-heartedly pits the men against the women to determine who the true Divas of the Dallas stage really are. The evening features selections from your favorite Broadway shows both past and present, done with an Uptown Players twist! It is sure to be a hot ticket for its six performances in January 2013.


Ragtime: The Concert Version

by Stephen Flaherty (music), Lynn Ahrens (lyrics) and Terrence McNally (book)

Feb. 7–9

Dallas City Performance Hall

With Turtle Creek Chorale

Uptown Players and the Turtle Creek Chorale join forces for a concert version of the powerful Broadway hit and Tony Award winner, Ragtime. This snapshot of American history is told through the stories of a Harlem musician, a wealthy matriarch, and a Jewish immigrant. The musical intertwines the stories of these three extraordinary families, as they confront history's timeless contradictions of wealth and poverty, freedom and prejudice, hope and despair, and what it means to live in America. Ragtime is not only a powerful portrait of life in turn-of-the-century America, but a relevant tale for today. It will be a "must see" as Uptown Players and the Turtle Creek Chorale join forces in the new City Performance Hall downtown.



by Del Shores

Feb. 22–March 10

Kalita Humphreys Theater

Uptown Players will kick off its main stage season with the Southwest Premiere of Yellow, Del Shores' latest smash hit which made its world premiere in West Hollywood in 2010. In Yellow, the usual unusual characters lifted from Southern Gothic lore are dropped in our laps, in this case the Westmoreland family of Vicksburg, Mississippi. A modern interpretation of the Old South family with all the attendant baggage thereof, we follow them through a tumultuous year in the life where everything is in flux, fraught with crises of religion, relationships, sexuality and adolescence. Yellow is a bawdy, hellacious, rousing, and finally, thoughtful and poignant drama.


Re-Designing Women

by Jamie Morris

April 5–May 19

Rose Room at Station 4 Nightclub

Uptown Players will present the world premiere of Re-Designing Women, a parody of the popular '80s sitcom, its fourth production by playwright Jamie Morris (Mommie Queerest, The Facts of Life: The Lost Episode, The Silence of the Clams). Plagued by the faltering economy, Atlanta-based Sugarbaker Design Firm is on the brink of collapse when Suzanne, the vapid ex-beauty queen, has an outrageous idea to save the family business by pitching a reality show to Bravo TV. Soon camera crews are following the zany day-to-day antics of the four Southern Belles, their ex-con delivery man Anthony, and their daffy family friend Bernice. The producers get more than they bargain for and plenty of zany footage of Julia's infamous, highly-charged tirades and long, long over-the-top monologues; Mary Jo's tell-all testimonials after a few cocktails; and Charlene's down-home, hillbilly there's-got-to-be-point-to-this-story stories. Even Suzanne's pet pig Noel gets into the action. Re-Designing Women has enough snappy dialogue, big hair and huge shoulder pad 1980s fashion to fill a dozen sitcoms.


Songs for a New World

by Jason Robert Brown

June 21–July 7

Kalita Humphreys Theater

In June, Uptown Players returns to the Kalita Humphreys Theater and presents its version of the musical, Songs for a New World, a musical exploration of life's emotions: risk, fear, hope, dreams and love. As composer Jason Robert Brown said, "It's about one moment. It's about hitting the wall and having to make a choice, or take a stand, or turn around and go back." It's about those life-defining moments we reach and must make those important decisions. The show's concept is more about a collection of songs that tell a series of stories, rather than a continual and developing plot running throughout. Each song transports us through our American identity, our community and our desires. They sweep us away into the moments we stand our ground, break our silence, make a bargain, or find our way home.


The Kiss of the Spider Woman

by John Kander and Fred Ebb

July 26–Aug. 11

Kalita Humphreys Theater

Uptown Players presents the Tony-Award winning musical Kiss of the Spider Woman. With book by Terrence McNally and music by John Kander and Fred Ebb, Kiss of the Spider Woman revamps a harrowing tale of persecution into a dazzling spectacle that juxtaposes gritty realities with liberating fantasies. Cellmates in a Latin American prison, Valentín is a tough revolutionary undergoing torture and Molina is an unabashed homosexual serving eight years for deviant behavior. Molina shares his fantasies about an actress, Aurora (Linda Leonard will reprise her Leon Rabin Award-winning role) with Valentin. One of her roles is a Spider Woman who kills with a kiss.


The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told

by Paul Rudnick

Dec. 5–15

Kalita Humphreys Theater

To close its 12th season, Uptown Players presents its first holiday show ever, Paul Rudnick's The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told. Revamping the traditional stories of the creation of the world, The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told asks the question, "What the world would be like had God made Adam and Steve, not Adam and Eve?" The play opens with the Stage Manager, who may or may not be God, cueing the creation of the world, and follows the "first" couples-Adam and Steve, and Jane and Mabel, from the Garden of Eden to modern-day Manhattan. This show is Rated R for adult language, situations and nudity.


Ticket prices for all shows, except Re-Designing Women range from $25 to $50. Performances at the Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd at Blackburn, will run at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday evenings and 2 p.m. on Sundays with added Thursday performances at 8 p.m. during the run of each show. Tickets for Re-Designing Women at the Rose Room Theater at S4, located at 3911 Cedar Springs Road, are $20-25 with performances on Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 p.m. Four, five, six or seven-show season ticket flex packages are also available and include great discounts on premium seating. Individual and season tickets can be purchased online at or by phone at 214-219-2718. Thanks For Reading

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Uptown's 2013 Season
Group expands season, stays (mostly) in Kalita Humphreys, plus shows at City Performance Hall and Rose Room. Works include a Del Shores premiere, a revival of Spider Woman and a Fabulous Story.
by Mark Lowry

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