"It's even got a Cirque du Soleil feel to it," says Sheryl Cooper. Hmm, brings to mind images of Alice in a tight bodysuit. Welcome to our nightmare. Showtime is 7 both nights. Tickets are $15 to $30. Call 602-262-7272. -- Joe Watson
The cutthroat world of Glengarry Glen Ross
In salesmanship, the mantra is easy as ABC -- "Always Be Closing." In TheatreScape's production of Glengarry Glen Ross -- starting Thursday, June 3, at Space Theatre, 4700 North Central -- the slogan is more appropriately "Always Be Cursing." The troupe's rendition of David Mamet's seminal -- and profanity-laced -- dramedy about backstabbing salesmen drops nearly 150 F-bombs on theatergoers.
"It's the Lenny Bruce syndrome . . . first, there's shock value, and then it becomes a tennis game, repeating itself until it gets funnier or absurd," says John Sankovich, who plays über-shark Richard Roma. The big f'in' deal goes down through June 27. Tickets are $15. Call 602-405-3681 or see www. theatrescape.com. --Benjamin Leatherman
Slamfest hosts take the heat
Between the rarity of raucous laughter and the deafening chirping of crickets at amateur comedy shows, you can always count on the charm of the emcee. Right? "Well, I guess I'd better be funny -- or else," says John Janezic, who, along with his improv partner, Tom Koelbel, hosts the 10-week Comedy Slamfest standup competition, beginning at 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 9, at The Sets, at Mill and Southern in Tempe.
Each week, one winner -- crowned by the audience -- out of 10 competitors will advance to the finals in August, and a shot at $1,000. Tickets, $8, include one drink. See www.trashcity.com/comedyslamfest.htm for details. -- Joe Watson
So Low Show
Lew Bakey shows off her Unsung talents
Many performing artists have failed their much-aggrandized potential. Think Daniel Baldwin (the one brother without the steady paycheck) and the Diff'rent Strokes kids (unless death by OD, periodic prison terms and mocking the democratic system are brushes with greatness). While local singer/songwriter/actress Lew Bakey possesses nary the dysfunctionality of the aforementioned, it takes some serious inner fortitude to showcase all of one's unrealized potential, as Bakey does in her one-woman show Unsung, premi'ring at 8 p.m. Friday, June 4, at the Fountain Hills Community Theater, 11445 North Saguaro Boulevard.
"It's quite an education for people who know nothing about the music business," says Bakey, who's had modest success as a songwriter in Nashville and as an actress in smaller theater productions. "But really, the show is for anyone who's ever had a dream."
Bakey performs the mostly autobiographical show -- which includes discussions with her dead father and theatrical agent, as well as eight songs she wrote for the show -- through June 20. Call 480-837-9661 for tickets, $11 to $18. -- Joe Watson
OK With Us
A classic play for cool geeks
Ev'rythin's up to date in the Royal National Theatre production of Oklahoma!, the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic opening at ASU's Gammage Auditorium, 1200 South Forest in Tempe, at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 8. Despite the updated version, certain individuals (read: my editor) are worried this particular event might not be cool enough for you, the always hip and edgy reader. Oh, it's cool, all right. Take the word of a certain high school stud (read: yours truly) whose co-starring role as Will Parker some 15 years ago paved the way for the greatness he's achieved today. The show runs through June 13. Tickets are $19.75 to $60. Call 480-784-4444 or visit www.asugammage.com. --Joe Watson
Las Lindas spins through Spain
We corn-fed Midwestern girls look mighty fetching, flushed and panting from a polka. But a good temptress knows when she's licked, so we dip our apron and curtsy when a Spanish dancer whirls by -- those darn girls have lovely written all over them. As if to prove our point, local group Las Lindas ("the pretty ones") takes the beauty of Spanish dance on the road in Víva España: A Journey Through Spain, a family-friendly performance to be presented at Valley libraries throughout June and July. Starting at 2 p.m. Tuesday, June 8, at the Desert Sage branch, 7602 West Encanto Boulevard, the free one-hour productions showcase a dozen regional dances, including the flamenco. (And no, we're not jealous. If we showed up at a barn dance with castanets, those Iowa boys would explode.)