2018-2019 Season, Vortex Repertory, Aust9in


Homeward at The VORTEX 2018-19,

our 31st Season





As we grapple with an uncertain future, we gaze Homeward. What is home? A place of comfort, warmth, rest, and refreshment. A refuge where you can completely be yourself. For some, home is not a place but a person or an idea. Many among us have no home-- refugees, immigrants, displaced, poor, orphaned, and unhoused. What is it like, to be far from home? To have no home to go back to? To want to make a new home and to not be allowed to do so?


As we journey through this next year, we will keep the home fires burning for you this season at The VORTEX, Austin’s cultural hub.


Atlantis: A Puppet Opera

September 1-29, 2018

By Chad Salvata

Directed by Bonnie Cullum

Return to the Award -winning world of Atlantis, where Queen Solstra and Prince Helios utilize their mighty battleship Invinctus as they seek world domination. This cautionary environmental tale offers a magical realm including seductive Mermaids, a monstrous Kracken, and the ever-present power of Ocean, Sun, and Moon. 

“Ethos and The VORTEX has never missed a beat in their dance along the high road of fantastical myth and over the bridge to theatrical reality. Atlantis: A Puppet Opera shows their ever-closer approach to perfection of technique in presenting dauntingly complex and imaginatively satisfying theatre. This show is a must-see”.  –Dr. David Robinson, CTXLiveTheatre.com

BIP Award Winner for Outstanding Lighting Design, Jason Amato.

Ethos and The VORTEX



A new play by Fares al Zahaby 

Performed by Internationally recognized Syrian director, actor, 

and playwright Nawar Bulbul. 

October 4-7, 2018

One man struggles to break from tradition in an increasingly sectarian world. Zahaby’s play introduces the complex religious and social nuances 

at work in pre-revolution Syria.

Canopy Theatre



Salvador Dali’s Naked Feast

October 20, 2018 

Conceived and directed by Bonnie Cullum

A performance installation cocktail party benefitting The VORTEX--our Annual Fundraising Extravaganza. A moveable feast encompassing the entire VORTEX compound. Mature Audiences only—NAKED Feast.

Full Promo: https://vimeo.com/138265816(@ 5 minutes--some nudity)

30-second Promo: https://vimeo.com/139041476  (PG, Facebook friendly)

Full promo by Magic Spoon Productions for 2015 edition (some nudity)

music by Astor Piazolla Quartet



Great Expectations

November 16-December 8, 2018

Adapted from Dickens’ Novel by Barbara Field

Directed by Karen Jambon

Dickens’ extraordinary novel brought to life on stage. This adaptation centers around the adventures of Pip, the orphaned blacksmith's apprentice who is fashioned to become a gentleman with "great expectations." 

Different Stages



December 13-15, 2018

Music, scenic, and choreographic conception 

by Sandie Donzica and François Minaux 

Moving bodies, music, text, and lights evolve into spontaneous exchange in an eclectic performance on the themes of orphanage and identity. 

Corps Multiple


The Muttcracker (SWEET!)

December 20, 2018-January 6, 2019 

Written by Melissa Vogt and Darren Petersen

Composition by Tyler Mabry

Holiday fun for the whole family featuring world-class juggling, live music, talented rescue canines, and a talking macaw.

Circus Chickendog



by Gabriel Jason Dean

January 17-February 9, 2019

National New Play Netwwork Rolling World Premiere 

Directed by Rudy Ramirez

The play unfolds in the heartlands of Nebraska and Afghanistan. Inspired by true events of American propaganda in Afghanistan, Heartland unfolds as an emotional journey through love and loss, an examination of culpability and, ultimately, a meditation on the power of forgiveness.




February 15-16, 2019

Written and Performed by Nia & Ness 

The dance-poetry of two black, out-lesbian women in a committed relationship.  Brooklyn-based artists return to The VORTEX after their stand-out performance at last year’s OUTsider Fest.  They bring us strong, intimate, and loving conversations about and influenced by their identities.





OUTsider Fest 2019 - Queeriosities

February 20-24, 2019 

Annual Festival and Conference celebrating the bold originality and creative nonconformity of the LGBTQ+ communities through film, dance, theatre, performance art, music, writing, and visual art.



Locus of Control

February 28-March 3, 2019

Written and Performed by Jason Bayani

Directed by Kat Evasco 

Utilizing poetry, storytelling, music, and multimedia, Bayani explores the lives of Filipino immigrants in America through stories of his hip-hop inspired youth, club-going college days, and turbulent adulthood.




Dog Magic: Woman’s Best Friend

March 7-10, 2019

Performance Art by Rachel Martin and Suze Kemper  

An audience interactive cabaret memoir about our love affairs with our many dogs over our lifetimes—funny, irreverent, entertaining, informative, spiritual, and moving.



Last: An Extinction Comedy

March 29-April 27, 2019

Conceived and Directed by Rudy Ramirez

Devised by the Ensemble

At the height of the sixth global mass extinction, the last band of traveling comedians wander a post-apocalyptic wasteland. Using gallows humor, they cope by laughing in the face of death and mass extinction. Each takes the name of a species that still survives. This is not just a story about death, for all stories about extinction are also stories about survival.



Memoirs and Amours

May 2-4, 2019

A new dance piece about how much our memories affect our human interactions.




May 9-18, 2019

Written and Performed by Ebony Stewart

Directed by Sonja Parks 

“Create a galaxy

Call her grandmother

Give her daughters

Call them waves”

Ebony brings her award-winning, hit show back to The VORTEX, weaving her evocative poetry, brilliant storytelling, feminist aesthetic, and spiritual depth. B. Iden Payne Award Winner for Outstanding Original Script and Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama.




Chickens in the Yard

May 24-June 1, 2019

A new play by Paul Kruse 

Directed by Alice Stanley 

The story of a family through the eyes of their four chickens. Set in Pittsburgh, this heartfelt play explores what a gay identity means for one couple as they journey from the families that raised them to the family they choose to create together.



Phantom Cornucopia

June 1, 2019

Music Release Party with 18 all new arrangements and recordings of epic Ethos music spanning Chad Salvata’s 30-year career. Tied together with a narrative thread and characters, as well a Steampunk junk aesthetic. Featuring live performances and debut screening of a music video. 



black girl love: an adaptation project

June 7-22, 2019

Directed by kt shorb

Adapted by Alaina Monts from Anondra 'Kat' Williams' black girl love 

An adaptation of Williams' short stories and poetry, black girl love looks at the everyday lives of black queer women and non-binary people. It is a play about our relationships to love, sex, and obsession.



Summer Youth Theatre 

July 19-27, 2019

Directed by Gabriel Maldonado

28th annual free theatre program for young professional teens.



The Donner Party Project

August 2-17, 2019

An Original Puppet Operetta by Trouble Puppet and Mother Falcon.

Based on the horrifying true story of a group of families immigrating to California in 1846. Snowbound in the Sierra Nevada mountains, they resort to cannibalism. 




The Mamalogues

August 23-September 7, 2019

A new play by Lisa B. Thompson  

Directed by Rudy Ramirez 

A fiercely funny, intelligently relatable, powerful play centered on three black women mothers in the era of Black Lives Matter.


Color Arc Productions and The VORTEX



September 13-28, 2019

Story by Melissa Vogt 

Original Score by Chad Salvata  

Directed by Bonnie Cullum 

A dark and humorous tale about the secret lives of nursery rhyme characters, conveyed through a multi-disciplinary montage of original music, dance, mime, video, puppetry, shadow play, and spectacle. Loosely based on the nursery rhyme characters Humpty Dumpty, The Spoon, The Dish, The Cow, The Dog, and The Moon. 

B. Iden Payne Award Winner for Outstanding Original Score.




FUTURX: a festival of new and avant-garde LatinX performance 

Coming October 2019 

2nd annual festival exploring the many permutations and intersections of LatinX identity in the 21st Century and beyond. Featuring a new production of playwright Krysta Gonzales’s MAS CARA 

Avante Theatre Project




Tickets: $35-$15

$35 Priority Seating 

$25 General Admission

$15 Discount/Artist/Student/Senior/Veteran

Advanced Reservations Recommended.  Limited seating.

www.vortexrep.org     512-478-5282

Radical Rush Free Tickets: Limited free tickets for each performance in the spirit of sustainability, accessibility, and the gift economy. Radical Rush tickets released at 7pm each night-in-person only.

Blue Star Theatre: Discounts for Military, Veterans, and their families

2-for-1 admission: Thursday and Sunday with donation of 2 cans for SAFE Austin.