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The Cheap Seats

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New Orleans theater houses aren't as busy in summer as they are the rest of the year, but there are new shows, original local work and special deals on tickets.

  The New Orleans Shakespeare Festival at Tulane (http://neworleanssummershakespeare.tulane.edu) and Summer Lyric Theatre at Tulane University (www.summerlyric.tulane.edu) both offer professional productions. The Shakespeare Festival offers half-price tickets during preview nights, and every show has a pay-what-you-will night. The next ticket deals are available for the comedy Twelfth Night (July 7-23). Preview nights are Thursday and Friday, July 7-8, and the pay-what-you-will performance is July 17. Summer Lyric doesn't offer single-ticket discounts.

  Until its new season opens in September, Southern Rep presents two monthly shows featuring original works. Pat Bourgeois' serialized soap opera Debauchery! runs Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for it and installments of 6x6, a monthly showcase of short plays about a common theme, are just $10. Visit the website for schedule information. During its regular season, Southern Rep offers $20 tickets for preview nights, and student last-minute rush tickets are $10. (The Jefferson Performing Arts Society offers $10 tickets for preview performances during its regular season.)

  Harry Mayronne and Ricky Graham's musical Waiting Around gets a reprise at AllWays Lounge July 8-25. The show looks at restaurants from the waitstaff's point of view. Tickets are $15 for Monday performances. Also at AllWays in July (29-30) is the third installment of Potluck, a variety show featuring original local theater, music and dance. Admission is $5 if you bring a shared dish, or $12 if you don't.

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