best september theater

9 best Houston plays and performances to catch in-person this September

9 best Houston plays + performances to catch in-person this September

Broadway in Houston: My Fair Lady, Shereen Ahmed
My Fair Lady creates a stir and brings live musicals back to the Hobby Center this month.  Photo by Joan Marcus
Still We Tend
Open Dance Project brings the dance drama along with Musiqa for an outdoor performance at the Houston Botanic Garden. Photo courtesy of Open Dance Project
Friends! The Musical Parody
Get ready for some old Friends! to come to town October 1. Photo courtesy of Friends! The Musical Parody
Broadway in Houston: My Fair Lady, Shereen Ahmed
Still We Tend
Friends! The Musical Parody

Live, in-person and onstage theater is back. Yes, alongside some outdoor shows, we’re finally going back inside some of our favorite venues for all the drama, comedy and music live performances can bring.

We’re also putting some theatrical dance on our must-see list this month. Plus, look for friendlysurprises to welcome Houston back to a fall full of live theater.

Totally 80s at Music Box Theater (now through October 9)
We’re hoping for some Miami Vice sock-less fashion, Madonna lace gloves and maybe a leg warmer or two during the latest original show from Houston’s cabaret specialists.

From head banging to new wave popping, the Music Box gang is bound to get physical with a decade of hits to choose from, but we know they’ll be some Springsteen, Pat Benatar, Chicago, Billy Joel, and Boston on the playlist.

Sonia Flew presented by Textrx at various locations (now through September 19)
Melinda Lopez’s play depicts the live of a Cuban immigrant mother raising two children with her Jewish husband in Minneapolis.

When her son leaves college to join the military following the terrorist attacks on 9/11, Sonia must reconcile with her childhood memories of Operation Pedro Pan, a political maneuver that separated her and thousands of other Cuban children from their parents.

This special touring production will have performances at MATCH, Holocaust Museum Houston and MECA.

Elvis My Way at A.D. Players George Theater (September 9-12)
This theatrical concert is part of a series of shows from the A.D. Players’ partnership with Artists Lounge Live, each showcasing a theater, film and Broadway artist honoring a musical iconic.

This month, Brandon Bennett of Million Dollar Quartet fame pays royal homage to the king once more in this concert retrospective featuring stories of Elvis’ life along with hits like “Blue Suede Shoes,” “Can’t Help Falling In Love,” “That's Alright Mama,” and “Suspicious Minds.”

My Fair Lady from Broadway at the Hobby Center (September 14 - 19)
The Hobby Center reopens with one of the most glorious classic musicals in Broadway history. Bartlett Sher’s Lincoln Center revival production of Lerner and Loewe’s My Fair Lady, became the 2019 hot ticket in New York and now brings Broadway to Houston once more.

While keeping the book and songs intact, this revival is said to turn the focus more on Eliza Doolittle’s ability to transform herself than Henry Higgins as master linguistic magician. With an Eliza for the 21st-century the show will still make us want to dance all night.

Respect: A Musical Journey of Women at Ensemble Theatre (September 18-October 17)
For its “Indomitable Spirit” 45th anniversary season, Ensemble will be highlighting several themes including women’s empowerment, and this “Respect” musical looks like the ultimate pick to lead this celebratory lineup.

Playwright Dr. Dorothy Marcic’s show weaves crowd-pleasing songs like “Someone to Watch Over Me,” “I Will Survive,” “I Will Follow Him,” “These Boots are Made for Walking,” and “What’s Love Got to Do with it” into stories of modern women's work, relationships, family, and dreams.

The Drama Squad from Catastrophic Theatre (September 24-October 17)
Though Houston’s absurdist theatrical mainstay announced that they’re not ready to return to their indoor MATCH home just yet, they will be producing a third round of their outdoor variety show of original comedy, dance, short plays, and musical interludes.

There might be a twisted clown along for the ride. In the past, they limited the shows to small audiences on people’s private lawns, they’re now bringing these theatrical adventures to larger outdoor audiences.

Friday and Saturday evening performances will take place on the rooftop of Khon’s Wine Darts Coffee Art with Sunday late afternoon performances in Smither Park.

Still We Tend from Open Dance Project and Musiqa (September 25 and 26 at Houston Botanic Garden)
The loneliness and isolation of the pandemic was the catalyst for this dramatic merging of dance, music and sculpted nature created by Open Dance’s artistic director Annie Arnoult, Musiqa’s A.D Anthony Brandt and filmmaker James Templeton.

The trio say this outdoor work “leans into a collective desire to keep making new artistic work, or tending to our creative gardens, during the shutdown.”

As Still We Tend was first conceived as a film, during this live outdoor performance the dancers will replicate the film’s journey with a promenade dance through five different locations around the Gardens.

The live performance will include the original film score by Malian musician Hawa Kassé Mady Diabaté, and also celebrates the one year anniversary of the Houston Botanic Gardens.

The Margaret Alkek Williams Jubilee of Dance from Houston Ballet (September 30-October 3)
The Houston Ballet’s annual fall (usually) one night glorious dance affair extends to five performances as the company celebrates a return to its Wortham stage home.

Audiences can expect a selection of pas de deux and solo performances from beloved ballets and excerpts from artistic director Stanton Welch’s new classic “Divergence.” Welch and company kept busy during the pandemic creating a collection of free digital works, including “In Good Company,” a series of dances where the dancers were initially filmed separately and then edited together.

During the Jubilee of Dance, audiences will get to see “In Good Company” now re-envisioned as a live stage performance.

Friends! The Musical Parody at Hobby Center (October 1-3)
While technically this show doesn’t debut until next month, we don’t want to miss a very special “Pivot!” back to in-person theater with this touring comedy only in town for a few days.

Yes, your favorite turn-of-the-century friends, Monica, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Joey, and Phoebe, are back in parody form. They’ll singing and romancing to songs like "We Were On A Break!” "How You Doin’?" and “The One Where We Make a Million Dollars an Episode.”

Relive those epic love stories between Ross and Rachel, Monica and Chandler, and Joey and sandwiches, now live and on the Hobby Zilkha stage. We even hear rumors of an appearance from a certain monkey.