With 47 seasons of quality, not-for-profit community theater tucked into its curtain belt, the El Paso Playhouse brings a homegrown local flair to Robert Anderson’s four-part comedy about the farcical perils of interpersonal communication. Directed by stagecraft savant Jonathan Schwind, this uproarious production runs on weekends from May 20 to June 11, with 8 p.m. shows on Fridays and Saturdays and a 2 p.m. show on Sundays. As the play progresses through its seemingly unrelated acts, audience members are treated to fresh revelations on life and relationships that range from the hilarious hurdles of childrearing to the charming complications of love in old age.
The hum of live performances echoes across The Percolator, where guests meet over mugs of organic coffee and plates of gourmet sandwiches and sushi. Chefs usher in the day with eggs, meat, and vegetarian breakfast wraps before moving on to lunch and dinner to assemble chicken pesto or herbed goat–cheese sandwiches along with seven specialty sushi rolls. Lattes, mochas, and creamy coffee frappés start days or cap off meals, and a selection of beer and wine rinses off incisors. As customers sip and dine, they lounge at the cafe's numerous tabletops beneath local artwork and vibrant murals on the crimson walls. A stage hosts a rotating schedule of live music, poetry slams, and theater nearly every day, offering visitors a welcome reprieve from frustrating evenings of teaching a pet tortoise to roll over.
Jamie O'Hara the Magic Guy's child-friendly, interactive performances have entertained jaded children and giddy adults with a balance of magic and comedy for nearly a quarter century. Jamie's balloon-shaping hands, humor-filled hats, in-depth encyclopedia readings, and surprise rabbit showings keep special events entertaining with eye-fooling flimflammery.
Shundo Dance Studio's crackerjack rug cutters, celebrating more than 25 years teaching choreographed struts, transform pairs of left feet into Astaire-esque hooves of rhythm and grace during group lessons. The Foxtrot, Rumba, and Waltz sessions invoke a simpler time when men wore hats and women hunted wooly mammoths, and the Swing class allows for more modern and flashier moves, such as the Lindy Hop and Charleston. Or add a little Latin flair to evenings by learning how to hip swivel through Salsa, Cha Cha, Samba, and Bachata gambols. Class sizes average between 15 and 20 humans to ensure that everyone gets the personal attention they need while providing enough of a crowd to hide missteps and spasmodic break dances.
Glistening crabmeat, avocado, and cream cheese lay atop a bed of rice in an artful, rectangular array, like an edible piece of abstract art. With swift hand gestures, the sushi chef lifts one side of the rectangle and begins to roll it up, transforming it into a cylinder that shows no immediate evidence that fresh fish and vegetables are hidden inside. Sushi chefs perform this and even more intricate sushi rolling techniques all day at Susaki, coming up with fantastical presentations and pet names for their specialty rolls. Back in the kitchen, the rest of the culinary team grills steaks and seafood with teriyaki sauces and spices, letting their scents waft into the contemporary dining room to announce their arrival. Among angular walls and black leather banquettes, DJs spin tunes each weekend, filling the space with high-energy beats while diners recline in the low-lit lounge amid flat-screen TVs and enjoy custom drinks from the full bar.