Rising young movie star Mitchell has a problem in The Little Dog Laughed. As his agent, the deadly Diane, who has the instincts of a barracuda, tells us, he "suffers from a slight...recurring case of homosexuality." If Mitchell stays in the closet, fame and fortune will be his. Unfortunately, he's fallen hard for a male hustler and wants to go public, which will kill his career, derail Diane's 10 percent profit share and make a mess of the hustler's home life, where a trusting girlfriend awaits. This showbiz fairy tale from Douglas Carter Beane (As Bees in Honey Drown) skewers fame, ambition, unbridled narcissism and Hollywood's penchant for hypocritical make-believe. And Beane tosses off the gay bon mots with a wit worthy of Wilde and Coward.
As The New York Times said at the play's 2006 opening, "The comedy of manners, a theatrical form widely believed to be long extinct in the American theater, has actually resurfaced on Broadway with all its vital signs intact." Directed by Jimmy Phillips, this production is the Houston premiere of The Little Dog Laughed. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays; 5 p.m. December 5 and 12; 8 p.m. December 9. Through December 12.Theater LaB Houston, 1706 Alamo. For information, call 713-868-7516 or visit www.theaterlabhouston.com. $25 to $30.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 5 p.m.; Thu., Dec. 9, 8 p.m. Starts: Nov. 12. Continues through Dec. 12, 2010