FronteraFest, the five week-long performance festival that ScriptWorks co-produces with Hyde Park Theatre returns next week after a two-year hiatus due to COVID. The Short Fringe, for pieces 25 minutes or less occurs at Hyde Park Theatre, with five shows performing a night. All shows start at 8 PM. We commission four pieces for the Short Fringe, which appear weekly on Weds. nights. Every year, several of our members are involved in FronteraFest. Below are the members who are taking part in the Short Fringe this year. For the full festival line-up and to purchase tickets visit Hyde Park Theatre.

Tuesday, January 17

Moonrise, by Marla Porter. Moonrise leads two squabbling brothers to forgiveness and redemption by the Moon’s beautiful trickster goddess. Written by Marla Porter and starring Christine Schiele, Seth Tiven, and Jeff Smith. Original music by Ben Poliakoff.

Wednesday, January 18

La Planchada, by Carl Gonzales. (ScriptWorks Commission) The play is about a pair of friends (a historian and a YouTuber) teaming up to find out if the legend and ghost of La Planchada, or “The Ironed lady” is real or fake. What happens will test their faith, their culture, and their sanity.

The Crushed Ice That Lingers in My Head, by Alex Garza. The Crushed Ice That Lingers in My Head is a solo performance in which the performer dares to crack open his own brain to tell a tale of, not madness, but something far beyond, something deep inside the wardrobe and perhaps even through the magical land of Narnia. Join Alex Garza as he allows his original characters to tell their perspectives on life, including a bucket-carrying Eastern-European woman who writes poetry, as well as a grown man who can’t seem to color inside the lines.  It’s a cavalcade of personalities, a smorgasbord of unsupervised voices running through one man’s mind.

Thursday, January 19

There Are Butterflies in Cairo, by Raymond V. Whelan. Young Sharon Shaw writes a disturbing classroom essay about 9/11. Her mother sends her to Dr. Mansoor Kikihia Faiz for counseling. Featuring the Highland Lakes Players, Sebastian Garcia as Dr. Faiz, Samantha Levine as Shaw. Directed by Raymond V. Whelan.

Friday, January 20

Ph*Ck! You Must Be On Crack! by Sandy Maranto. While she’s not on crack, Sandy Maranto does need the occasional Piña Colada and nap to get through life. Come hear why.

Halfway to Death: A Coming of MIDDLE Age Escapade, by Christine Hoang. Comedic storytelling piece about an adventurous weekend in NYC.

Tuesday, January 24

Round the Cauldron, by Liberty Stevens. The three crones from The Scottish Play now have a cooking show, and they are making their special brew while they tell us a story about the Mad King.

The Stained Glass Closet, by William Frisbie. The fateful day when a deeply-closeted preacher threw stones inside a stained glass house.

Kapatid, by Pelita Dasalla. Three sisters gather together after their mother’s funeral. This is the first time the sisters have been together in the same room for 10 years. They reminisce about their childhood memories of their mother as well as her toxic traits. It is a story about breaking the cultural cycle and finding our own path, even if it meant we let go of the people we love.

Wednesday, January 25

A Woman Manages Her Anxiety, by Molly Fonseca & Anikka Lekven. (ScriptWorks Commission) This is the story of an anxious woman. Watch as she tries to manage her uncomfortable feelings, watch as she tries to escape a shame spiral, watch as she tries to make a new friend. Watch as she tries.

Heaven (By Way of Suicide), by Sean Sweeney. Beyond August Productions Presents: The first 12 pages of an unfinished full-length play. A family comes together for the suicide of the father who is terminally ill. Comedy/Drama

Painkillers, by Lowell Bartholomee. ​​How I coped with a pandemic through irresponsible choices and fruit juice. There will be some audience participation.

Thursday, January 26

How to Properly Train Your Husband, by Tristan Mercado. Two women hold a presentation on all the ways in which husbands can properly be trained.

Happily Ever After Toxic Masculinity, by Sandy Maranto. ​​The princes from the fairy tales we’ve known forever are either separated, divorced, or completely obsolete, and they find themselves in need of counseling and advice.

Friday, January 26

Dammit Lola, created by CB Goodman and Roz Mandola. Dammit Lola is experimental DIY comedy shenanigans

Abecedarian for Kyle Who Doesn’t Exist, by Eva Suter. A collaborative performance about longing, stars, space station cleaning crews, and flowers beginning with the last few letters of the alphabet. Written by Eva Suter, directed by Kate Taylor.

Tuesday, January 31

Performance cancelled due to ice storm

Wednesday, February 1

Performance cancelled due to ice storm

Thursday, February 2

A Pest Control Affair, a dramedy based on a true story! by Rosemary Guzman Hook. Shortly after marrying, an entomologist finds out his wife secretly ordered pest control for their home to combat the Texas tree roaches that keep showing up in their living room. This scientist’s disgust at such blatant insectile infidelity may prove too much for his purist’s perspective, until his wife gives him an ultimatum. Friends inadvertently solve their dilemma, while the husband makes one final demand of his wife.

Pour Me Another, by Aneesa Needel. An anniversary date goes from sweet to awkward in this comedic 10-minute play.

Friday, February 3

Snickerdoodles and Disco, by Max Langert. A queen, a rook and a knight go off the grid and find themselves in the woods at the edge of a field in the middle of nowhere.

Pizzas, Pandas, and those Pesky Princes, by Maggie Gallant. Royal observations from a displaced Brit.

Augusta Speaks Volumes, written and performed by Helen Sneed. The piece is the story of Augusta Stubbs, a New York woman whose life is a cautionary tale.

The Dating Project, by Max Langert. Organized and proficient in her professional life, Tara is messy and lonely in her personal one. So she does what any good project manager would, and creates a detailed project plan to launch a stable relationship. When there’s a problem, she logs a bug. When there’s something missing, she creates a feature request. What could possibly go wrong? Presented by Summer Break Theater. (rescheduled from Feb. 1)

Tuesday, February 7

Miss Lotta Chanel Explains, by Allan Baker. Miss Lotta Chanel explains the source of misogyny, homophobia, toxic masculinity and its violence, our dangerous “warrior culture”, the self-destructive gay “inner closet”…and your own quiet discomfort with drag queens…even the most FABULOUS! Directed by Trace Turner.

Macduff , written and performed by Alex Garza. (Additional text by William Shakespeare)The year is 2023. His name is Macduff. Is he the hero from Shakespeare’s tragic play? As far as he is concerned, that is his truth. Once a father, a husband, and a warrior, he finds himself stuck in apunishing, eternal life, traveling through centuries, carrying a past that forever haunts him. He reveals his tragedies and losses, but also interprets his attempts at joy, love, and creating connections with men in his life.

Wednesday, February 8

For Your Interpretation, by Tristan Young Mercado. (ScriptWorks Commission) A 1980s Interpretive Dance troupe living off the grid for the past 27 years, contemplates a return to the modern society and whether or not Interpretive Dance will rise again.

Texas Book of Beasts: Year of the Bat, by Jeff Irvin. Fable on organizing a community to save an endangered toad, with audience participation: cricket clickers, sign prompts, and audience yoga (seated).

Dem Ol’ Time Lag Accumulation Blues, by Hank Schwemmer. A process. And a processing.

Thursday, February 9

Scenes from a Road Trip, by Paul Normandin & Gloria Rabil. At three stops along a drive from Texas to California, two strangers slowly reveal themselves. The closer the pair get to their destination, the more they learn about what motivates them to head West. First-time playwright, Paul Normandin offers a short play about two characters in a temporary situation trapped on a collision course with each other. (rescheduled from Feb. 1)

Your New CEO , by Max Langert. I work for YOU!

Friday, February 10

Old Haj Wins The Day, by Bernadette Nason. (ScriptWorks Commission) Bernadette Nason has worked at a Dubai hotel for a short time and realizes there’s a discrepancy between Anglo staff and those of color. While she tries to redress the balance between the treatment of management and workers, Old Haj finds a far more appropriate way. A funny, thought-provoking solo piece about a silly Englishwoman living abroad. (rescheduled from Feb. 1)