arts eclectic

The political variety show Over the Lege is returning to the Institution Theater for a second season this September. It's the creation of Stephanie Chiarello Noppenberg, who pulled from her two diverse areas of expertise to develop the show.

"I have worked at the legistlature for six sessions now... in both the House and the Senate," she says. "And you stay up really late at night watching these committee hearings, and you're like, Did they just say that... or do that?' And the answer is 'Yes, and people aren't paying attention.'"

Every year around this time, the Out of Bounds Comedy Festival brings hundreds of performers -- from around the world -- to Austin. Over the course of a week, 130 comedic acts will perform, including sketch troupes, improv troupes, standup comedians, and performers who don't quite fit any of those categories.

Since its debut in Milwaukee in 1999, The Marvelous Wonderettes has proven enduringly popular. The jukebox musical, which focuses on a four-member girl group performing at their 1958 high school prom and their 1968 class reunion, has been produced at theaters across the country, eventually enjoying an Off-Broadway run in 2008. 

"I was twenty-six years old when I decided to run away from home," says writer and actress Bernadette Nason. "A lot of things had gone wrong in my life and I just decided I needed to go somewhere."

"Making art can be a solitary practice ... and we picked artists who are maybe stepping out in a new direction," says the Contemporary Austin's Andrea Mellard. "So our hope is that we can get a group together and they can support each other in this and give each other some feedback or some encouragement or some constructive criticism."

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