Saturday, December 13, 2008

New Thing #337--That's Entertainment

When Tony and I plan our "date night" on Saturdays we always include dinner out, but the rest of the activities vary. In good weather we like to take walks; we often pick a neighborhood we're unfamiliar with to stroll through. When the weather isn't good for being outside, we'll watch a movie at home, go to a movie theater (rarely), or scan the Calendar section of the newspaper for a special event that catches our interest.

Although there's a wide variety of theater companies and venues in the area, for some reason that activity usually doesn't make the top of our list. However, tonight we decided to take in a live performance, and had it narrowed down to two. One was a conventional cabaret show; the second was a bit more edgy play. Tonight we went to a performance of Die! Mommie! Die! by the Stray Dog Theatre at the Tower Grove Abbey.

According to the Website, the play is:
A campy melodrama evoking the 1960’s B-movie thrillers that featured aging cinematic icons like Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, and Lana Turner. Faded pop singer Angela Arden is trapped in a corrosive marriage to film producer Sol Sussman. In pursuit of happiness with her young unemployed T.V. star lover, Angela schemes to murder her husband. A resentful daughter, an emotionally disturbed son, and a botched acid trip eventually expose all of Angela’s dark secrets.
When we received our programs, we also got a brochure with information about this year's season for the Stray Dog Theatre (SDT), which has been around for six seasons. The plays are a good variety of comedies, musicals, and thrillers, but the troupe also seem to be interested in more than performing. The brochure stated they have a "mission of 'unleashing the art' both onstage and off" through education and community outreach.

Tower Grove Abbey, where SDT performs, is an old church. The Main Stage area had beautiful stained glass windows and comfortable pews with plenty of leg room arranged around the stage. The area wasn't very big; it looked like it could hold about 150 people, and the room was almost full for tonight's performance.

The fast-paced play was hilarious, but pretty R-rated. The two acts went quickly. As the house lights came up at the end of the play I realized I'd had a great evening. All of the actors were wonderful in their roles. They really chewed up the scenery, but in this play that was a good thing!


  1. We've seen a few performances at The Tower Grove Abbey/Stray Dog. Love the venue (professional yet personalized) and I love that I can walk to it (two blocks away).

  2. I love Stray Dog Theatre! They do great stuff. A friend of mine is in Die Mommie Die. I haven't had a chance to see it. Guess I better do that before it goes away! Glad you enjoyed it. Now, you'll have to come to one of my company's plays.