When your city has one of the few outdoor Shakespeare Festivals in the country, you’ve got theatergoer bragging rights. The Vortex Theatre (vortexabq.org) sets its fest at New Mexico Veterans Memorial Park (1100 Louisiana Blvd. SE) from Aug 5 – Sep 3. Hie there and be wowed. This year, catch King Lear (directed by Debi Kierst) and As You Like It (directed by Julia Thudium) on alternate nights. The setting is lovely and cool, you can bring a pre-show picnic (no alcohol) and it’s free.
Before they present The Bard, the Vortex has some magical realism in store for you indoors at their venue on Carlisle with References to Salvador Dalí Make Me Hot by José Rivera (Marisol, Cloud Tectonics), directed by Miguel Martinez, from June 3-19.
The Adobe Theater crew knows what their audiences want and they deliver with Unnecessary Farce (June 10-July 3); The Sweet Delilah Swim Club (July 22-Aug 14) and The Women of Lockerbie (Sep 2-25). This year they are running AdobeFest (Sunday, July 17, 6pm) on KUNM Radio Theater (89.9 FM or KUNM.org), comprising five short plays that won the theater’s original-work contest (adobetheater.org).
Actors Studio 66 bills itself as “Socially Relevant Theater” and is bringing Keely and Du by Jane Martin (Talking With) into the mix of opinions and feelings about abortion. Pregnant Keely has been kidnapped by an extremist group and held against her will so that she won’t have an abortion. Du is her prison guard. Heated conversations ensue. Actors Studio 66 plays at Black Cat Cultural Center, 3011 Monte Vista Blvd.; this production runs June 23-July 17 (actorsstudio66.org).
FUSION Theatre Company‘s The Seven: New Works Festival top winners will be given full productions June 16-19; the Second Seven runners-up will have a staged reading on June 20. The Bradford Gromelski Jury Award Winner is We Jump Broom by Mildred Inez Lewis from Inglewood, CA. I always pick a personal favorite beforehand just by its title. This year, I’m going with Box of Teeth (Tori King Rice, Lakeside, CA).
The festival will inaugurate main-stage performances at FUSION’s new space called 708. While you’re there, visit their Quantum Garden honoring FUSION participants and fans who have passed on (FUSIONabq.org)
Fun Home is a musical adapted from a graphic novel by Alison Bechdel (Dykes to Watch Out For). Imagine going through adolescence while living in your family’s funeral home, trying to find yourself and grappling with your father’s identity issues at the same time. Musical Theatre Southwest is taking on this surprisingly funny story opening June 3 and running through June 19 (mtsabq.org).
Although we generally don’t cover Santa Fe, I am wrapping up Theater Scenes with their annual Shakespeare in The Garden at Santa Fe Botanical Garden’s Ojos y Manos: Eyes and Hands amphitheater. This year, it’s The Comedy of Errors from July 28-Aug 14 by Santa Fe Classic Theater (santafeclassictheater.org; 505.466.1358). You can picnic in the Orchard but not in the amphitheater (no alcohol, no pets), so come early (gates open at 5:15). Truly, seeing Shakespeare under the heavens is an annual summer experience to look forward to and a wonderful time to introduce newbies and kids to Will and his charms.
Other Summer performances (check venues later in the season for more summer events):
Every Saturday Night, The Show at The Box Performance Space
June 2-11, N4th Theatre, New Works (N4NW), northfourthnm.org
June 5, 2022 June Music Festival (80th Anniversary), American String Quartet and Nancy Allen, harp, at First Presbyterian Church, Chamber Music Albuquerque
June 11-18, Festival Flamenco Alburquerque, various venues
June 12, 2022 June Music Festival (80th Anniversary), Jaime Laredo, Sharon Robinson and Friends at Simms Center for the Performing Arts, Albuquerque Academy, Chamber Music Albuquerque
June 18-19, NM Juneteenth Celebration, Civic Plaza
June 24-25, NM Gay Men’s Chorus Naked Man, Albuquerque Journal Theatre, National Hispanic Cultural Center and June 26, Lensic Performing Arts Center, Santa Fe
July 1-Aug 27, Santa Fe Opera: Carmen, The Barber of Seville, Falstaff, Tristan und Isolde, M. Butterfly (World Premiere)
Sep 8-18, elite Dance & Theatre, The Jungle Book, elitedancetheatre.com
Sep 15-25, ABQ Funny Fiesta, North Fourth Arts Center, abqfunnyfiesta.com