Top Five Things to Do in Houston This Weekend: Waiting for Godot, Cruzar la Cara de la Luna, Bayou City Arts Festival and More
Waiting for Godot
Photo by Anthony Rathbun
Samuel Beckett's most famous work, Waiting for Godot, opens in The Catastrophic Theatre's new space on Friday and tickets are going fast. The show is directed by Jason Nodler, artistic director of the Catastrophic, who tells us, "Waiting for Godot was the first and remains the best play to express the feeling of life as an absurdity and existence as a futility. The people of the play seek meaning but never find it; they wait for an unknown and unknowable thing that will never come, as do we all." He also says it's "very, very funny."
The cast for Godot includes two actors lauded for their performances in last year's Catastrophic production of End Game, Greg Dean and Troy Schulze.
You can wait for Godot at 8 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. Through April 13. Catastrophic Theatre, 1119 East Freeway. For information, visit the theater's website or call 713-522-2723. All tickets are pay-what-you-can.
In Cruzar la Cara de la Luna (To Cross the Face of the Moon), which plays Saturday and Sunday, baritone Octavio Moreno goes from a young man in his early 20s to the same man in the 35-45 age range and then to his character Laurentino at 70-80 years old. And back again. Moreno, a former Houston Grand Opera Studio Artist who spent the last two years in Mexico, returns to his mariachi roots to play a man who left behind his family in Mexico when he moved to the United States and who at the end of his life wants to introduce his American family to his Mexican one.
Jose "Pepe" Martinez, the music director of the esteemed Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán, wrote the music and co-wrote the lyrics. The one-of-its-kind mariachi opera, commissioned by the Houston Grand Opera for its HGOCo Song of Houston: Mexico 2010 project, is back at the Wortham with the original cast after previous performances here and in Paris.
Moreno says the trip to France was a success beyond their anticipation -- word of mouth after the first show there meant sellouts by the end of the run and a waiting list of people who couldn't get in. "We were like rock stars," he says.
Cross the face of the moon at 2 p.m. March 23, 2 and 7:30 p.m. March 24. Wortham Theater Center, 501 Texas. For information, visit the Houston Grand Opera website or call 713-228-6737. $25 to $145.
Work by more than a dozen photographers from Argentina, Denmark, Korea, France and Russia makes up "International Discoveries IV," the latest exhibit at FotoFest and our pick for Saturday. The group's curators travel the world in search of new and undiscovered talents, hand-picking several photographers to showcase during the ongoing "Discoveries" series. Among them is Belgian/French artist Patrick Gries; the exhibit includes his Milu KUJAGA, a straight-on portrait of a young albino boy from Gries's In/Visibility series. There's also Argentine photographer Fernando Di Sisto, who contributes Untitled, a geometric composition showing a close-up of a concrete and tile building, from his series Uno.
Viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays, noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Through May 4. FotoFest Headquarters at Vine Street Studios, 1113 Vine. For information, visit the FotoFest website or call 713-223-5522. Free.
Known as "The Art Couple," Signe and Genna Grushovenko are the featured artists for this year's 42nd Annual Bayou City Art Festival Memorial Park, one of our suggestions for Sunday. The Grushovenkos, from South Carolina, create intricate and multicolored mixed-media works using oil paint and vintage photos (see above). More than 300 other juried artists join the Grushovenkos at the festival, including participants in two new programs. One, the Emerging Talent program, is especially designed to support young artists with little or no experience in exhibiting and selling their work. The other, Fresh Perspectives, is for experienced professional artists who are exploring new mediums and styles. Besides the exhibits by hundreds of artists, there's a full program of live music and entertainment.
There's no parking at the festival site; take advantage of the free shuttles. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Memorial Park, 6501 Memorial. For information, visit the festival's website or call 281-813-640. $3 to $15.
Here's a test. Try reading the following song names without having at least one of them stick in your brain for the rest of today. "Big Girls Don't Cry," "Sherry," "December 1963 (Oh What a Night)," "My Eyes Adored You," "Stay" and "Can't Take My Eyes Off You." Jersey Boys, the Tony®-, Grammy®- and Olivier Award-winning Best Musical about Rock and Roll Hall of Famers The Four Seasons -- Frankie Valli, Bob Gaudio, Tommy DeVito and Nick Massi -- is back in Houston courtesy of Gexa Energy Broadway for a two-week run, including two Sunday performances. And, yeah, the music -- still being covered by other musicians to this day (Lauryn Hill's recorded "Can't Take My Eyes Off You," for example) is timeless. But it's not just the music that has staying power, according to Colby Foytik, who plays Tommy DeVito and says Jersey Boys is not a jukebox musical. "You can take all the music away and still have a brilliant play," says Foytik, who has been on the national tour for the last 15 months. Foytik says he loves playing the DeVito character. "It is incredibly different from me as a person. Tommy is just fearless and brash and says whatever he wants. That's not necessarily me or people I know. It's a lot of fun to go out there and cut loose every night."
See the show that our critic called "almost genius" at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2 and 7:30 p.m. Sundays. Through March 31. Hobby Center, 800 Bagby. For information, visit the Hobby Center website or call 713‑315‑2525. $29 to $95.
Jim J. Tommaney and Margaret Downing contributed to this post.
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