On Stage

Four companies present live theater this summer.

By Kelsey Dayton

From campy musicals to farcical murder mysteries, comedy to classic Shakespeare, Jackson theater companies offer something for everyone’s taste. Four active theater companies provide stage entertainment throughout the year appealing to a variety of tastes and spanning the spectrum of genres. Here’s what’s coming up.

Jackson Hole Community Theater
“The Dixie Swim Club,” Oct. 24-29

Five Southern women meet for a weekend each August to catch up. “The Dixie Swim Club” is the story of four of those weekends over thirty-three years and shows how as life changes, the women increasingly rely on each other. Jackson Hole Community Theater, whose mission is to involve anyone interested in theater, presents the comedy about love, strength and long-term friendship this October. It will be directed by California resident Ronald Joseph, an Emmy award-winning actor.

Riot Act, Inc.
“Rumors,” October 21-22 and October 28-29

A routine dinner party goes askew in Neil Simon’s “Rumors,” a murder-mystery farce. Riot Act, Jackson’s local alternative theater company, whose mission is to push artists and audiences intellectually, socially and emotionally, presents the play in October.
The avant-garde theater company will also perform two other full-length productions during the year, not yet confirmed by press time. It also hosts a new play festival featuring original shorts each spring.

Jackson Hole Playhouse
“The Ballad of Cat Ballou,” 6:30 p.m. dinner, 7:30 p.m. pre-show, 8 p.m. show, Mondays through Saturdays through Oct. 3. $65 for dinner and show for adults, $40 youth 13 and older, $40 child 5 to 12 year olds, $35 show only for adults, $25 youth, $20 child.

This summer the historic Jackson Hole Playhouse presents its original “The Ballad of Cat Ballou,” based on the 1965 comedy movie where a woman hires a gunman to protect the family ranch and avenge her father’s death. The play features saloon and tap dancing and “good ol’ slapstick” humor, said Joel Duke, marketing manager with the company and a cast member.
Playhouse actors also put on the Jackson Hole Shootout at 5:20 p.m. six days per week each summer on Town Square. It’s free.

Off Square Theatre Company
Thin Air Shakespeare, “Taming of the Shrew,” 7:30 p.m. July 8-10 and July 15-17, Center for the Arts lawn, free.
“Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike,” a staged reading, 7 p.m. October 28 and 29, Black Box Theater, Center for the Arts.
“Dogs in a Drift,” December 3, Center Theater at the Center for the Arts.

Pack a picnic and enjoy a summer evening along with some Shakespeare on the Center lawn. Thin Air Shakespeare, produced by Off Square Theatre Company, performs “Taming of the Shrew,” outside this summer.
In October the company performs a staged reading of “Vanya and Sonya and Masha and Spike,” a comedy about bickering middle-aged siblings.
In December, Off Square presents “Dogs in a Drift,” an original show by Jackson resident Bob Berky.
“It’s going to be perfect Bob Berky,” Off Square Executive Director Clare Payne Symmons said. “It will be entertaining for everyone.”