Theater and dance: A little early spookiness

BloodyVox, Body Awareness, Day of the Dead, On Killing, Mother Courage

Sure, I could go right on hammering away at my October theme, which has been something along the lines of The Perils of Democracy so far. After all, we have a “Mother Courage” in our rack of new plays and dances this week, and there’s nothing like “Mother Courage” to set your teeth on edge about the political economy of our time.

But even I have my limits, and a much as I’d like to savage the shallowness of the press coverage of elections local and national, well, I just won’t, unless I just did! Instead, I’ll point out that the fabulous Gretchen Corbett (so fabulous, she’s on the board of Oregon ArtsWatch) is taking on a winsome comedy and that BodyVox has some Halloween humor in store, too, and Miracle Theatre has a new installment of its Day of the Dead celebration, that sounds pretty spooky.

And that’s not to mention ALL the shows that are still running (many of which we’ve already reviewed here).  So, on with the shows!

 

Sharonlee McLean and Gretchen Corbett in “Body Awareness”/Photo Gary Norman

“Body Awareness,” Oct. 18-Nov. 10, CoHo, 2257 NW Raleigh—Annie Baker’s comedy is set in a Vermont college town, where the  are celebrating Body Awareness Week, including a visit from a male photographer known for his female nudes. What could possibly go wrong? Gretchen Corbett directs and stars along with Sharonlee McLean, Gavin Hoffman and Josh Weinstein.

 

“BloodyVox: Fresh Blood”

“BloodyVox: Fresh Blood,” Oct. 18-Nov. 3, BodyVox, 1201 NW 17th Ave.—Hey, it’s Halloween! Or almost, anyway, and BodyVox’s Ashley Roland and Jamey Hampton have added some new material to 2010’s version of “BloodyVox,” which was actually more gently amusing than genuinely grotesque. So don’t be fooled by the name, because its fine for both kids and adults who aren’t looking for a chainsaw movie. (Among whom, I must count myself…)

 

Paige Jones stars in “Mother Courage” at Theatre Vertigo/Photo by Gary Norman

“Mother Courage and Her Children,” Oct. 18-Nov. 17, Theatre Vertigo, 3430 SE Belmont—Tony Kushner (“Angels in America”) has translated and updated Bertolt Brecht’s great anti-war play, which though it always seems appropriate no matter when it plays, seems especially pertinent now. We should be seeing a lot more Brecht these days: Cheers to Theatre Vertigo for making it so. Joel Steinkamp directs.

 

“Raiz” at Miracle Theatre

“Raiz,” Oct. 18-Nov. 11, Miracle Theatre Group, 425 SE 6th Ave.—Miracle continues its tradition of keeping the Day of the Dead in front of us onstage with Martin Milagro’s take, which sounds as though it’s perfectly attuned to the company’s magical realism direction. The gods, the Aztecs and the present day mix and match in this consideration of the permeable membrane between life and death.

 

Jacob Coleman in “On Killing”

“On Killing,“ Oct. 18-28, Headwater Theatre, 55 NE Farrugut St. #9—Jacob Coleman and Amber Whitehall, members of Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble, have written this solo piece (which Coleman will perform) about the loss of self that can occur, coincidentally, when falling in love or fighting in a war: “…a series of fragments, a tangle of memories, grainy black and white video, decaying voices from an old tape recorder, a story told on moving trains, dances from empty city squares.  It is about the longing for excitement that drives us to seek new loves and fight new wars, and the dead melancholy that follows the elation from both.”

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