Starting with a doubleheader of live, local theater just in time for the scary (and political) season.
Nobody does it camper than longtime Kansas City actor / producer Ron Megee who loves nothing better than to “hide onstage behind the character.” And a often as not in drag, like when he played Joanna in The Stepford Wives.
This time out in Megee’s incarnations include a variety of men, women and monsters in The Kansas City Repertory Theatre production of The Mystery of Irma Vep, A Penny Dreadful.
Joining Megee is heralded local thespian Mark Robbins in a ghoulish comedy in which the pair play more than 25 different characters on the H&R Block Copaken Stage at 13th and Walnut.
“It’s certainly impressive to see the actors running around changing costumes,” says Theater League main man Mark Edelman. “It’s perfect for Halloween.”
Now through November 18th, tickets range from $25 to $60 and are available here.
With the big election coming up, what better way to while away the next two weeks than catch a comedic, wild west rock musical about the founding of the Democratic Party and America’s seventh – and arguably nuttiest president – Andrew Jackson.
“It’s Andrew Jackson as a rock n roll star, sort of like Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter,” Edelman says. “He was a character – he was a badass – kind of the Axel Rose of his day.”
Is it actually bloody, or just bloody funny?
“Oh yeah,” Edelman says. “Besides a guitar he was a gun and there are people flailing at each other, an Indian massacre – it’s a wild show.”
Now through November 4th, tickets available here.
Sedaris killed at the Lied Center in Lawrence last year. Now check out how The Guardian’s Brian Logan described his performance:
“Few authors could label a book-reading session as comedy and sell out five nights at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre. Yet David Sedaris can, and the event – a reading from his stories, articles and diaries, followed by a Q&A – comfortably holds its own against all the other stand-ups on the fringe.”
And look for Sedaris to have his way with this year’s election.
“The highlight (was) a spoof politician’s speech, in which a Rick Perry alike Republican insists he isn’t running for president,” Logan writes. “It lays bare the egotism of all that hotline-to-God rhetoric, and is crammed with good jokes, like the one where his character blames his unmarried status on abortion; this prevented ‘the woman who was meant for me’ being born in the first place.”
Tickets range from $43 to $52 and are available here.
Another deserving early heads up is for The English Beat show Halloween Eve at Knuckleheads Saloon in the East Bottoms.
Forget that the band’s actual name was The Beat. Something about legal complications over another 80s band from the U.S. with that same name resulted in adding the word “English.”.
You may recall the band’s hits “Mirror in the Bathroom,” “Save it for Later,” “Tears of a Clown,” “Stand Down Margaret” and “I Confess.”
Or maybe not.
The band’s current status is even more confusing if that’s possible. The original Beat broke into two groups in 1983, General Public (“Tenderness) and Fine Young Cannibals (She Drives Me Crazy”).
And now are two separate versions of The English Beat making the rounds. The one coming to Knuckleheads features original frontman Dave Wakeling (also of General Public) as the lone original member.
The English Beat played to a packed house five years ago at Harrah’s VooDoo Lounge. As for the band’s current show, sixty-seven Ticketmaster fans rate it at better than 4.5 out of 5 stars.
“The English Beat continues to impress,” reads one. “The years have been very kind to this group of musicians who still play with amazing energy. They are tight, and their music still sounds fresh after all these years.”
Tickets are $15 in advance and available here.