Local alternative theater fans have seen two previous incarnations of Museum of Dysfunction, a series of short stage works loosely centered around a theme. For this years Museum of Dysfunction III: A Showcase of Shorts, the theme is dysfunctional relationships. The works range from two-minute monologues to 20-minute plays, says Jennifer Decker, Mildreds Umbrellas artistic director and co-founder. Theres a mother-and-son relationship in which the mother is a selkie she leaves him to go and be a seal. We see the conversation when she comes back. There are love relationships, including a woman who is engaged and has four encounters with other men while her fiancé constantly calls her on her cell phone.
Decker performs in one of the plays, which features a love relationship of sorts, Lady and the Tiger, the only work from a non-Houston playwright. Her character is a random woman who seems to have a screw loose. She finds a man in the park and verbally attacks him, and from there it somehow evolves into a relationship.
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The showcase features two programs of shorts, with different plays running on alternating days. Decker says that while Museum of Dysfunction III isnt about Santa Claus or reindeer, it is still appropriate for the holiday season. This is the more realistic approach to the holidays, she laughs. I think the reality is the holidays are stressful. You might think its supposed to be all fun and family love, but in reality you have a lot of run-ins with the relatives. There is a lot of dysfunction in families during this time of year. 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Obsidian Art Space, 3522 White Oak. For information, call 832-418-0585 or visit www.mildredsumbrella.com. Pay-what-you-can.
Dec. 9-11, 8 p.m., 2010