This is the fifth season for this showcase of directorial aspiration, featuring shoestring-budget stagings of classic and new works. Coordinated this year by Cecille Keenan, the four-week event offers the work of 48 directors (chosen from 60 applicants), most of whom you've never heard of before. In a brave effort to bring order to the affair, this year's festival is organized along thematic lines. The first week (March 28 through 31) places special emphasis on Irish satirist George Bernard Shaw; he's represented by some of his one-acts as well as by adaptations of his prose. Selections from works by Shaw's contemporaries are also included in several programs. Upcoming weeks' themes are "World Premieres and New Voices" (April 4 through 7), "American Voices" (April 11 through 14), and "A Different Point of View" (April 18 through 21). Bailiwick Repertory, Theatre Building, 1225 W. Belmont, 327-5252. Opens Sunday, March 28, 7:30 PM. Through April 21: Sundays-Wednesdays, 7:30 PM. $8 per program (each program consists of three one-acts). The first week's schedule follows.
SUNDAY, MARCH 28
Angela Allyn directs her own adaptation of 19th-century poet William Cullen Bryant's meditation on death; the theatrical masque is performed by members of the Abiogenesis movement ensemble, of which Allyn is a founder and director.
George Bernard Shaw's "bravura piece" is directed by self-described Artaud devotee Scott Heckman.
Dark Lady of the Sonnets
Shaw's comedy is directed by Single Action Theatre Company's Robert Koon.
MONDAY, MARCH 29
The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God
J.G. Severns directs a stage version of Shaw's short novel about an innocent's journey through the jungle of western philosophy.
Don Juan in Hell
Brendon Fox stages Shaw's satire on sexual morality.
Shaw's letters to actress Stella Campbell are the basis for this epistolary comedy adapted by Jerome Kilty. Catherine Davis directs.
TUESDAY, MARCH 30
Box and Cox
Mr. Cox discovers that his landlady has rented his flat to the disagreeable Mr. Box, in Andrew Altenburg's staging of John Maddison Morton's comedy.
As Far as Thought Can Reach
The final act of Shaw's epic Back to Methuselah, directed by Linda Gates, explores the quest for immortality.
In the Beginning (Back to Methuselah)
Adam, Eve, and that goddamned serpent. Andrew Callis directs Shaw's comedy.
WEDNESDAY. MARCH 31
Lindsay Porter directs her version of D.H. Lawrence's story about repression and sexuality (surprise!) in World War I England.
The Saint and the Skeptic
Carlton Miller's theater piece brings Shaw the didact into dialogue with his own character, Saint Joan of Arc.
Shaw's comedy about a shipboard romance and its aftermath is directed by Lewis Magruder.