Jason Howard, Sara Jo Dunstan, Beth Hempen and 
    Josh Wright
Jason Howard, Sara Jo Dunstan, Beth Hempen and Josh Wright

Party of Five

Centered around five young college grads who live together in pre-9/11 New York City, the off-Broadway show I Sing! would seem like nothing more than a musical adaptation of Friends. Of course, to our knowledge, Phoebe never sang to Joey, "You wanna fuck, you wanna screw, you wanna score? Well, isn't that what friends are for?" But the characters in I Sing! do, making the refreshing musical pick up where Rent, which spoke frankly to twentysomething life in the '90s, left off. It helps that the show's creators, Sam Forman, Eli Bolin and Benjamin Salka, wrote I Sing! in college and had it produced off-Broadway before any of them was 23 years old. I Sing! follows daddy's girl Heidi, her philandering boyfriend, Nicky, and their roommate/best friend, Alan (who sleeps on the couch as he pines for Heidi). The trio becomes intertwined with the saucy Pepper and her gay roommate, Charlie (who, by the way, is in love with Pepper). After some bed-hopping and breakups, reality sets in and our young friends -- gasp! -- begin to grow up. Opens at 8 p.m. Thursday, February 3. Show runs at 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays through March 5; and 5 p.m. Sunday, March 6. Theater LaB, 1706 Alamo. For tickets and information, call 713-868-7516 or visit www.theaterlabhouston.com. $20. -- Steven Devadanam

Baby Blues

Hamilton Loomis shreds at Dan Electro's

FRI 2/4

With his short, curly do and his shy, boyish grin, Hamilton Loomis looks like your run-of-the-mill pop singer or even a boy-band member. Fortunately for him, the baby-faced local kid is one of the premiere acts in the next generation of blues musicians. Loomis, who cut his teeth in local clubs, now tours nationally and has hung with legendary bluesmen B.B. King, Joe "Guitar" Hughes and Bo Diddley, who has bragged, "You got to put some seasoning in what you're doin', and this boy's got the whole salt shaker!" Tonight you can catch Loomis -- who's been known to use a pool stick like a bow on his guitar -- at Dan Electro's Guitar Bar. Singer-songwriter David Fahl kicks off the night with a happy hour gig, which starts at 6 p.m. Friday, February 4. 1031 East 24th Street. For information, call 713-862-8707 or visit www.danelectrosguitarbar.com. Free. - Steven Devadanam

Hello Dolly

THU 2/3

A note to out-of-work actors: It isn't that bad. At least you're not in the predicament portrayed in Main Street Theater's world- premiere play Somebody's Sons. The aging Dolly Madison, hoping to create the loving family she never had, hires two actors to live with her and play her grown sons. Dolly forces the two through the emotional wringer for a week, then her real son shows up to make hereditary hair loss the least of this family's problems. That walk-on in a Metamucil commercial isn't looking too bad now, huh? Opens Thursday, February 3, and runs through February 27. 2540 Times Boulevard. For a full schedule, call 713-524-6706 or visit www.mainstreettheater.com. $20 to $30. - Julia Ramey

He's No Enrique

THU 2/3

There's no confusing portly comedian Gabriel Iglesias with the studly crooners Julio and Enrique. But the Latino jokester is no less entertaining. A fixture on TV and now film (look for him in the upcoming The Surfer King), Iglesias is in town to share his animated takes on life and, um, being fat. Thursday, February 3, through Saturday, February 5. The Improv, 7620 Katy Freeway, suite 431. For information and a schedule, call 713-333-8800 or visit www.improv.com. $20. -- Steven Devadanam


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