Acting Out: What's New on San Antonio's Stages in 2020

click to enlarge The Classic Theatre's September 2019 production of Romeo and Juliet - Siggi Ragnar
Siggi Ragnar
The Classic Theatre's September 2019 production of Romeo and Juliet
San Antonio’s live theatre scene has everything audiences need to start a new year on the right step, from the fresh enthusiasm of fanciful spectacles to the reflective tragedies of history. For theatergoers eager to support local productions, we’ve put together a list of shows to kick off 2020 — either with a laugh or a sigh.

More Senior Moments at Barshop Jewish Community Center

Local playwright and Golden Globe-winning composer Linda Kaufman's More Senior Moments comes to the Barshop Jewish Community Center, another uproarious musical about the peril and poignancy of aging. This sequel follows the success of Senior Moments, which premiered at the Center in 2016 before enjoying a nationwide tour. One noteworthy scene follows the logic of a couple who reappropriate the money they've saved for their funerals to take a “cremation vacation.” $20-$25, 7 p.m. Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays January 4-12, Barshop Jewish Community Center, 12500 NW Military Hwy., (210) 302-6820,

The Magical Piñata
at the Magik Theatre

The colorful characters of Karen Zacarías' The Magical Piñata will give life lessons to young audiences through song. Kids can accompany young Cucha on a redemptive journey to become less selfish, as she's spirited out of the town of Zapotoco to a mysterious jungle where she meets friends that embody past, present and future. Cucha uses her bilingual gifts to foil the plot of an evil Monkey King, find the fantastic in the mundane and celebrate her Mexican heritage. $8.50, 9:45 a.m. Thursdays and Fridays, 2 p.m. Saturdays January 24-February 15 (see website for additional showtimes), The Magik Theatre, 420 S Alamo St., (210) 227-2751,

A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder at the Public Theater of San Antonio

Multiple homicides get the musical comedy treatment in Robert Freedman's A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, in which titular "gentleman" Monty Navarro plots to claim the inheritance of the family that disenfranchised him by using his killer charm — literally. Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical in 2014, the musical lays out Navarro's dastardly deeds, which are so awful the show features a disclamatory prologue song, "A Warning to the Audience." $10-$40, 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays January 31-February 23 (see website for additional showtimes), The Public Theater, 800 West Ashby Pl., (210) 733-7258,

The Music Man at the Woodlawn Theatre

The Music Man is an American tale of a con-artist scamming a small town with the idea of a marching band to cool their hot-headed youth, selling music lessons he can't actually give. But things get real as he gets to know his marks and falls for the only person who sees through him. The noble lie of charlatan turned community organizer might be a strange sell in the era of truthiness and alternative facts, but we have to admit “76 Trombones” still bops. $18-$30, 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 3 p.m. Sundays January 31-February 23 (see website for additional showtimes), The Woodlawn Theatre, 1920 Fredericksburg Road, (210) 267- 8388,

Hedwig and the Angry Inch at the Roxie Theatre Company

The great “internationally ignored” punk rock drag queen Hedwig is coming to smash through gender binary — and the fourth wall. Hedwig tells her story with songs and monologues, destroying the distinction between theatre and rock. As a young man named Hansel, she tries to leave East Berlin with an American G.I. on the condition of a sex-change that goes awry, leaving her with just “an angry inch.” Abandoned by lovers but embraced by glam rock, Hedwig remains driven to find her other half, inspired by a story told by Aristophanes in Plato's Symposium. Who knew punk rock and Greek philosophy could make such sweet music? $25-$29, 8:30 p.m. Friday, February 7, Thursday, February 13, Friday, February 21 and Friday, February 28, Roxie Theatre, 7460 Callaghan Rd Ste. 333, (210) 360-9180,

Anna in the Tropics at the Classic Theatre of San Antonio

A family of Cuban immigrants experience Anna Karenina amid the sultry heat of Tampa in Anna in the Tropics. Nilo Cruz's Pulitzer Prize-winning play revolves around the common practice in which cigar factories would employ lectors to read literature to employees during their long workdays. Once introduced to Tolstoy, the rich, scandalous lives of his characters inevitably inspire one family to expose their hidden failings and character flaws. $10-$15, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 3 p.m. Sundays Feb 7-March 1, Classic Theatre, 1924 Fredricksburg Rd., (210) 589-8450,

These Shining Lives at the Sheldon Vexler Theatre

Glowing hands shouldn't be an occupational hazard, argue the women of These Shining Lives —nor should radium poisoning. This play chronicles the true story of four women who sought well-paid work in a 1920-30s watch factory, and fought for justice when they discovered that their employer prioritized profits over their safety. Catherine Donohue narrates the play as the lead plaintiff in the women's lawsuit. $25, 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2:30 p.m. Sundays Feb 8-March 1, The Sheldon Vexler Theatre, 12500 NW Military Hwy. Ste. 275, (210) 302-6835,

Twelfth Night
at the Overtime Theater

Cross-dressing confusion was one of William Shakespeare's favorite dramatic devices, and it doesn't get more convoluted than in Twelfth Night. Shipwrecked in the land of Ilyria, Viola assumes her twin brother is dead and impersonates a man only become caught up in a love triangle with homoerotic implications. Starring Ashley Hamilton as Viola, the Overtime's rendition of the Bard's comedic classic will feature original music written and produced by local artist Jack Bonner and performed by Meaghan Setterbo as Feste. This production features contemporary design and a few gender-bent roles, to boot. Actors will never exit the stage, but step in and out, heightening Shakespeare's metatheatrical flair and making full use of the Gregg Barrios Theater's intimate space. $10-$15, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, February 14-March 7 (see website for additional showtimes), Overtime Theater, 5409 Bandera Rd Suite 205, (201) 577-7562,

at the Public Theater of San Antonio

Who would've guessed that Joshua Harmon's satire Admissions would have been so on the nose when it premiered in 2018? After last year's landmark college admissions bribery scandal, we're sure many attendees to The Public's production will be surprised that the play predates the arrest of Aunt Becky. When white high school senior Charlie receives a rejection letter from Yale and rails against his parents' support of affirmative action, they briefly lament “raising a Republican,” then pull some strings to get him into a prestigious school. It's a ballsy drama about the hypocrisy of liberal white America, which is admittedly written by and for liberal white America. $15-$45, 7:30 p.m. Thursdays-Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays February 28-March 22, The Public Theater, 800 West Ashby Pl., (210) 733-7258,

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