Lisa D'Amour is an acknowledged force in avant-garde theater. Catastrophic Theatre and artistic director Jason Nodler have championed her work in Houston with "Anna Bella Eema" and the world premiere of her "Hide Town." Now, the company is preparing the Houston premiere of the Obie-winning "Detroit." Set in any "first-ring suburb" of a major metropolis (not necessarily Detroit), it depicts two neighboring couples (including one husband newly unemployed) sharing barbecue and reflects upon all types of contemporary angst, especially involving upward, downward and/or nonexistent mobility
this summer’s Tamarie Cooper musical can be expected by long-time followers to be just as crazy and loud as last year’s Tamarie ventures. The first thing that went through my head when I heard about the show was “Wait, so Tamarie Cooper is talking about Christmas? Tamarie Cooper? The inappropriately genius, dick-joke delivering Tamarie Cooper?
Many Houston fans (us included) miss seeing Miki Johnson, an extremely talented actor, perform on stage. These days, she's Catastrophic Theatre's playwright-in-residence. The trade-off has been that she's written some breathtakingly beautiful and well-crafted plays, including this year's winner for Best New Play, clean/through. (Johnson previously won this award for her debut play, American Falls.) The story of a couple struggling to stay together as they get clean and sober wasn't pretty (drug addition rarely is), but gosh was it powerful.
We’re suckers for the Catastrophic Theatre and this September one of Houston’s coolest theater companies is bringing one of the funniest and harshest American plays of the last few years to Houston audiences. Lisa D’Amour’s Detroit, a Pulitzer prize finalist and Obie Award winner, is a play about two neighboring couples, which starts innocently enough with the two couples getting together for a backyard barbecue. In the second act however, the barbecue takes a very, very dark turn. It’s a play that grapples with what it means to be a neighbor in the 21st century and questions the future of the middle-class. It’s funny, it’s sad, it’s ridiculous and we’ll bet the Catastrophic Theatre’s production will not disappoint. The play opens Sept. 26 and runs through Oct. 18.
For the theater set, August means it’s time for Tamarie Cooper to take center stage at the Catastrophic Theatre. This year marks the 17th installment of Cooper’s musical comedy series, and this one might very well be the perfect introduction to the series for the uninitiated. A Very Tamarie Christmas is a big-hearted, fun-spirited laugh-fest that critiques the three-month marathon of food, family, and frenzied shopping that we know as the holiday season.
This year’s musical beat all retail to decorate for the holiday season because A Very Tamarie Christmas was every bit the traditional Hallmark card worthy decor – presents, bows, snowflakes, a snowman, reindeer, Santa and anything else your child-like heart could imagine!
Produced by Catastrophic Theatre, A Very Tamarie Christmas is local goddess Tamarie Cooper’s 17th flirtation with musical as drug-induced memoir, a thing that begins with a thought, maybe with a question, and then romps joyously downhill from that point forward.
"Wild and crazy" is the guiding principle for everything in Tamarie Cooper's annual summer musicals, especially the costumes.
This year's show, "A Very Tamarie Christmas," is no exception. From Gregory Dean's festively embellished duds (he's Christmas personified) to the floppy-eared rabbit suit Noel Bowers sports as a lewdly rapping Easter Bunny, the costumes are as crucial to the outlandish fun as the performers, songs and sketches.
Tamarie Cooper gives Houston Christmas in July with A VERY TAMARIE CHRISTMAS and it is definitely a treat! She is at it again with her original summer musical, and this year with a book by Patrick Reynolds, music by Miriam Daly and Joe Folladori, and lyrics by Tamarie Cooper, Miriam Daly, Joe Folladori, Miki Johnson, and Patrick Reynolds, she has conceived an effervescent spectacle full of mirth and some of that good old Christmas spirit. It is never early to get in the mood for one of the great holidays ever, right
For the 17th summer, Cooper has conceived, directed and choreographed a zany original musical in which she also stars. Appropriately enough, "A Very Tamarie Christmas" has the feeling of a rowdy holiday party. It generates lots of laughs, fun and surprises, with good company and festive accoutrements - a little out of control at times, but never dull. And no hangover.