Death to the Salesmen
The man-eat-man world of David Mamet's Glengarry Glen Ross is as dark as it gets. The burning story about a salesman who loses everything as he tries to hold onto his pathetic manhood takes place in a hellhole of a sales office, the sort of dingy place where men must step over one another if they want to keep their jobs. Much is on the line for these worms of the underworld, who sell bad real estate to unsuspecting idiots. And if this show is done properly, no one will leave the theater feeling safe from the apocalypse that is surely coming sometime, somewhere. This is theater for the iron-stomached. But no local group of actors is better prepared to handle this postmodern rage against America's romance with the salesman than the cast lined up by Alley Theatre director James Black. Of course Mamet, one of America's greatest playwrights -- living or dead -- is reason alone to call the box office. His black-hearted play, built out of the poetry of the profane (every character curses like, well, a salesman), is as beautifully cynical as it gets. Show opens at 8 p.m. Friday, May 6, and runs through June 5. 615 Texas. For tickets and showtimes, call 713-228-8421 or visit www.alleytheatre.org. $28 to $45. -- Lee Williams
Oh, Baby, Please!
Give a little respect to '80s popsters Erasure
Twenty years ago, among the ridiculously mod dance-club set, you were a complete nobody if you didn't know every line to each and every Erasure song -- remixed or otherwise. Now, the duo -- keyboard whiz Vince Clark and vocalist Andy Bell -- is back on the scene with a new album, Nightbird. The latest offering is yet another in the band's tradition of poppy, pulsing odes to love and, well, more love. The group has been drawing hordes of Gen-Xers, turntablists and dance fans to its current tour, which hits the Verizon Wireless Theater this week. Expect the classics, like "Oh, l'Amour," "Love to Hate You" and "Chains of Love" to be played for an eager, utterly fabulous crowd. 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 10. 502 Texas. For tickets, call 713-629-3700 or visit www.ticketmaster.com. $30. -- Steven Devadanam
Worms Not Included
Word around the national comedy circuit is that NBC's Fear Factor is the bane of actor-comedian Joe Rogan's existence. Whether or not that's so, making people eat worms on TV keeps Rogan in the public eye -- which leads to sellout audiences who pack the clubs to catch his loud, raunchy act. His impression of Sumatran tigers screwing, and subsequent impersonation of two suburbanites quietly and awkwardly engaging in a few moments of apologetic sex, is dead on (if not unsettling). Leave your cans o' worms at home and grab a cuppa Joe at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Thursday, May 5, through Saturday, May 7. Laff Stop, 1952-A West Gray. For tickets, call 713-524-2333 or visit www.laffstop.com. $22 to $29.50. -- Eric A.T. Dieckman
In the exultant spirit of Cinco de Mayo, the local Several Dancers CORE Performance Company joins forces with Mexico's Danza Contemporanea en Concierto for "Baile! Danza! Dance!" a celebration of the contrasts and commonalities between life on both sides of the border, translated into the common tongue of joyful movement. 8 p.m. Friday, May 6. Miller Outdoor Theatre, One Hermann Circle Drive. For tickets and information, call 713-862-5530 or visit www.severaldancerscore.org. Free. -- Scott Faingold
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