Theater Festivals

By Seattle Mag

May 17, 2013

The play's the thing in Seattle this month, when local theater festivals abound

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Seattle Sketch Comedy Month 5/31–6/29
Founded in 1999 under the direction of monologue master Mike Daisey, the SketchFest comedy festival each fall is packed with local performers and laughs aplenty. This new, summer showcase of short-form scripted comedy bits (think: Saturday Night Live but, hopefully, better) includes local groups Charles, Ubiquitous They, and Drop the Root Beer and Run. Times vary. $10. The Ballard Underground, 2220 NW Market St.;

Sandbox One-Act Play Festival
Sandbox Artists Collective premieres four new short plays by some of Seattle’s most exciting playwrights. Milwaukee, by Scot Augustson, concerns the communication gap between an aging mother and her sons. Elizabeth Heffron’s Dispose of Me explores the renewed familial connections a death can bring about. Openly We Carry, an allegory by Paul Mullin, imagines a gun-toting community where a female prophet makes waves. And things take a surreal turn with Emily Conbere’s Knocking Bird, about a couple that escapes from reality. Times vary. $15. Erickson Theatre, 1524 Harvard Ave.;

Infinity Box Theatre Project: Robots and Artificial Intelligence
This daring group uses theater to examine the impact of science on humanity. Its multiyear initiative, “Thought Experiments on the Question of Being Human,” kicks off this month with the theme “Robots and Artificial Intelligence,” for which five local scientists teamed with five local playwrights to create and present five new short plays. Each explores how robots will affect our daily life in the near and far future (cue The Jetsons theme song), and the resulting human consequences. Times and prices vary. Town Hall, 1119 Eighth Ave.; 206.652.4255;

Intiman Theatre Festival
Last year, this fest proved itself by taking risks and having a ton of fun. This year, the impressive local repertory cast includes Tracy Michelle Hughes, G. Val Thomas and Charles Leggett, and the plays broach delicate dinner topics: sex, in Lysistrata (by Aristophanes); money, in We Won’t Pay! We Won’t Pay! (by Dario Fo); race, in Trouble in Mind (by Alice Childress); and politics, made more palatable in the brand-new musical Stu for Silverton (music by Breedlove), about America’s first transgender mayor. Times and prices vary. Intiman Theatre, 201 Mercer St.; 206.441.4178;


Entering a Period of Discovery