|The talented and attractive cast of Wilde/Earnest.|
Years ago, my love for theater was my entry point into journalism. A poetry student dog paddling in the social tsunami that was Southern Methodist University campus life, I signed on to write a few articles for the student newspaper about theater. Next thing I knew I was taking journalism classes and eventually running the Daily Campus' arts section. The first thing Mark Lowry, who had not long before launched TheaterJones.com, said to me was, "Oh, you're that student seeing all the shows." I saw every show in town my senior year, even more than I see now as the arts editor of the local alt weekly. I've known and loved Dallas theater for years.
To hear Katherine Owens speak of her 30 years at Undermain Theatre is to hear of a scene that has ebbed and flowed. One that embraced experimental work in the 80s, to move into a slightly more conservative 90s, eventually adopting a self-awareness in the late 2000s, as the arts in Dallas were seeing civic recognition with expensive gestures like the Dallas Arts District. Last year, I wrote a piece for Arts & Culture Texas about the rich history of the Dallas theater scene. One on the forefront of the regional theater movement, thanks to pioneers like Margo Jones and Norma Young. And a scene that, like the rest of the city, has wrestled with its identity, in light of its neighbors: the refined Houston, and the progressive Austin.
But right now, I just want to take a minute to say that I don't think I've ever seen the theater scene healthier than it is right now. More »