RSSArchive for September, 2010

Photo: Clifford Bañagale and the cast of “Dear Harvey.”  Credit:  Sean Lambert

DEAR HARVEY: 100% – Sweet [UPDATED]

SWEET Thomas Hodges’ lush original music, performed live by Joe Symon on piano and Jyvonne Haskin on cello, sets an appropriately elegiac tone. The cast yanks its fair share of tears, none of them forced. As Cleve Jones, the originator of the AIDS quilt, Clifford Bañagale gives a spectacularly gripping account of the quilt’s genesis. [...]

At Some Point You Just Gotta Say…

At Some Point You Just Gotta Say…

Fuck you. Somewhere in the depths of your heartache, wallowing in all that self-pity and melancholy murk you have to find the strength to stand up straight, throw back your shoulders and just let it rip.  You shouldn’t stop there, but it’s a start. And damn it feels good. I posted a similar version of [...]

The Thursday Thought

The Thursday Thought

As we inch closer to that circus that we like to call “election time” I’d like to add this training video for you future and present politicians.  A sort of “What NOT to do” primer. Now for you future and present stand up comedians.  You might look at this as a “What TO do” primer. [...]

Can I Get a Translator?

Can I Get a Translator?

Yes, apparently this might become a series. A few months back we poked some fun at LA Times’ critic Philip Brandes’ review of Tom Jacobson’s play “The Twentieth Century Way”. Everybody seemed to have a good time, including Philip – which we appreciated. Well, in my travels I’ve stumbled upon another winner in the “Can [...]

Dakin Matthews and Amelia White. Credit: Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times

MISALLIANCE: 100% (SOUTH COAST REP) – Sweet [UPDATED]

SWEET “Misalliance” doesn’t culminate in the explosive synthesizing vision of “Heartbreak House,” an ultimately more satisfying Shavian adventure. The squabbles between parents and children are never to be resolved, and thus the ending marks just a temporary cessation in what will forever be a garrulous conflict. But the high level of entertaining chatter remains as [...]

Photos: Giselle Jones and Chris Schultz. Credit: Ryan Sheffer

BREAK THE WHIP: 56% – Bittersweet [UPDATED]

BITTER The spectacle elements stand apart. You can sense the workshop participants’ enthusiasm for their full ensemble Bantu chant and response, or chase scenes through rippling, handheld strips of blue fabric. But all this pageantry outlasts both its utility to the drama and its welcome. An overall Commedia dell’Arte look promises physical expansiveness and wit [...]

Photos: Lisa Gallo

THE WEB: 67% – Sweet [UPDATED]

SWEET Under Matt Wells’ astute artistic direction, needtheater’s 2008 production of Fatboy won the company three LA Weekly Theatre Awards and last year’s Mercury Fur scored them an Ovation Award nomination for Best Ensemble. Whether lightning will strike a third time for The Web is anyone’s guess. On the other hand, if the company can [...]

Photo: Michael Genovese, Andrew Patton, Andre Verderame, Joan McCrae. Credit: Aliah Whitmore

TRUE WEST (LYRIC): 0% – Bitter

BITTERSWEET But director Aliah Whitmore’s well-intended staging is uneven, here stylized, there naturalistic, and ending scenes with actors visibly exiting doesn’t exactly build narrative tension. The hard-working cast is still finding their character arcs, resulting in schematic segments that waver between competent and collegiate. Shepard fans can check it out, but this dutiful reading seems [...]

Photos: Rob McClure. Credit: Craig Schwartz

LIMELIGHT: THE STORY OF CHARLIE CHAPLAIN: 69% – Sweet [UPDATED]

BITTER Unfortunately, the imagination behind “Limelight: The Story of Charlie Chaplin,” which had its world premiere Sunday at La Jolla Playhouse, doesn’t rise to the challenge with anything resembling bold invention. Charles McNulty – LA Times BITTER Christopher Curtis’ score is enjoyable but unexceptional; one yearns for more memorable melodies and bona fide showstoppers. The [...]

L.A. Theatre Works presents Lucy Prebble’s award-winning tale, Enron.

L.A. Theatre Works presents Lucy Prebble’s award-winning tale, Enron.

LOS ANGELES, CA – September 21, 2010 – Gregory Itzin, Amy Pietz and Steven Weber head the cast when L.A. Theatre Works presents Lucy Prebble‘s award-winning, savagely comic tale of greed and loss during financial meltdown, Enron. Five performances, directed by Rosalind Ayres, take place October 20-24 at the Skirball Cultural Center. All performances will [...]

needtheater Presents “The Web” by Michael John Garces

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Press/media contact: Philip Sokoloff, (626) 683-9205 WORLD PREMIERE OF MICHAEL JOHN GARCES’ “THE WEB,” PRESENTED BY NEEDTHEATER; OPENS SEPTEMBER 17 WHAT: “The Web.” World Premiere engagement of a new play. WHO: Written by Michael John Garces. Directed by Alyson Roux. Presented by needtheater. Produced by Ilona Piotrowska, Rachel Stoll and Matt Wells. [...]

“The Birthday Boys” at Theatre Asylum

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 11, 2010 Press Contact Rachel Stoll Rach.stoll@gmail.com “The Birthday Boys” Written by Aaron Kozak EXTENDED- THEATRE ASYLUM’S BEST OF FRINGE Thursdays – Sundays, September 16 – October 3, 2010 at 8:00pm August 11, 2010 – Insurgents capture three U.S. Marines during an unheard-of infiltration of the Al Asad green zone, regarded as one of [...]

Casting call for Kristina Wong’s Cat Lady — touring production!

Kristina’s fantastic & she’s looking for performers for Cat Lady. It’s a paid gig and will tour to Houston, San Francisco, with more opportunities on the horizon. Here are the details: Acclaimed LA Performance Artist Kristina Wong is looking for three Los Angeles based male performers to workshop in Los Angeles and perform in the [...]

Press Release

Press Release

Now that we’ve become a part of the Los Angeles “Media” Community (Grrrr), as you can imagine, we get a lot of press releases sent our way. So in our ongoing effort to provide unique and innovative services to the Los Angeles Theatre Community, we have now created the Press Release page.  This service is [...]

#sadmusicals

#sadmusicals

Pretty funny new Twitter meme.  The idea: alter names of popular musicals to make them sound sad and tragic. Check it out at #sadmusicals. Here are a few the LA Times found: @richardgin: North Dakota! @cloreen: Nein @waterock: Maim @mattduplessis: The King and Her @ahamamah: Nair @JensenClan88: Seven Brides For The Kardashian Brother @ danajdanaj: [...]

Seeking Stage Manager and Lighting Designer

Seeking Stage Manager For world premiere of new play by award-winning Writer/Director at Theatre 40, Beverly Hills. Nights/weekends job starts around tech time (approx 10/21). Play opens 10/27 and runs Wed – Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 2pm through 11/21. Must be professional, collaborative, dependable and able to run lights and sound plus all traditional [...]

The Matrix Theatre Company presents Nick Ullett’s exhilarating, poignant and very funny memoir DYING IS EASY… COMEDY IS HARD

LOS ANGELES, CA – September 10, 2010 – Lisa James directs writer/actor/comedian Nick Ullett in Dying is Easy… Comedy is Hard at The Matrix Theatre on Mondays at 8 pm from September 27 through October 25. With songs, slides and irrepressible wit, Ullett takes the audience on a roller coaster ride through existence. Dying is [...]

International City Theatre closes its Silver Anniversary Season with a World Premiere Musical about a Silver Screen Legend “When Garbo Talks!”

LONG BEACH, CA – September 20, 2010 – International City Theatre closes its 25th, Silver Jubilee Season with the world premiere of an original musical about glamorous and enigmatic silver screen legend Greta Garbo. With book and lyrics by the late Buddy Kaye (“A-Your Adorable,” the “I Dream Of Jeannie” television theme) and music by [...]

Are you a Theatre or a Theatre Performer with a Cause?

Are you a Theatre or a Theatre Performer with a Cause?

Does your theatre make a difference in your community? Does your production change lives? Do you perform for a cause? If you can answer any of these questions with a “YES” then you could get FREE advertising for a month and you could be featured in our “Theatre With a Cause” monthly series. We choose [...]

Athol Fugard chooses the Fountain for U.S. Premiere of his most personal play “THE TRAIN DRIVER” starring Morlan Higgins and Adolphus Ward directed by Stephen Sachs

LOS ANGELES, CA – September 16, 2010 – The Fountain Theatre continues its ongoing, award-winning relationship with Athol Fugard with the U.S. premiere of the master playwright’s newest play. Stephen Sachs directs Morlan Higgins and Adolphus Ward in The Train Driver, opening on October 16. Low-priced previews begin October 8. A tormented train driver is [...]

Three Roses Players Call for Actors with disabilities and PLAY submissions

Hello Theatre fans, writers and actors: The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy unveiled the official theme for October’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month: “Talent Has No Boundaries: Workforce Diversity INCLUDES Workers With Disabilities.” The theme serves to inform the public that workers with disabilities represent a diverse and vibrant talent pool [...]

The Monday Moment

The Monday Moment

Are you a Dickhead too?  No.  You’re a LEMON HEAD! Happy Monday!

Photo: David Huynh and Christine Corpus in "Mysterious Skin." Credit: Michael Lamont.

MYSTERIOUS SKIN: 100% – Sweet [UPDATED]

SWEET This won’t please lovers of mysteries, fans of “The X-Files” or people who make regular pilgrimages to Roswell, and the ending is no mystery to those who have read the Scott Heim novel or seen the 2004 movie directed and written by Gregg Araki (with Heim). Under the direction of Tim Dang, the East [...]

Critique of the Week

Critique of the Week

DAVID, THE MUSICAL Philip Brandes – LA Times If you’re looking for an act of atonement during High Holy Days, sitting through “David: The Musical” should score points with even the most wrathful God. Chronicling the life of King David, the Hebrew warrior-poet credited with penning the “Book of Psalms,” this painfully earnest “Jesus Christ [...]

Photo courtesy of Theatre West

Critique of the Week – Runner Up

WAITING FOR LEFTY Marcus Kaye – LA Theatre Review Waiting for Lefty at Theatre West is a play that should resonate with today’s audiences, given the current economic slump that many find themselves in the middle of. The play, about an impending labor strike in the 1930′s, finds its themes of unrest, poverty, and distrust [...]

Keira Keeley and Judith Ivey in The Glass Menagerie  (Source: Craig Schwartz)

Critique of the Week – Runner Runner Up

THE GLASS MENAGERIE Trevor Thomas – EdgeLosAngeles Ah, The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams’ wacky tale of a fading Southern belle’s scheme to pawn her emotionally and physically crippled daughter off on an unsuspecting gentleman caller — all the while trading barbs with her kvetch of a son. For this fun-filled romp, Williams took the plaintive [...]

A Two-Part Question for LA Weekly Critic Lovell Estelle III

A Two-Part Question for LA Weekly Critic Lovell Estelle III

Did the fact that you decided to answer a phone call during the performance of La Vie En Route in any way affect your “disappointment” with the production? AND Since it was obviously such an important call that it needed to be answered during a show that you were reviewing, why didn’t you mention it in [...]

Photos: Top: Portia, center, with Cherise Boothe, left, and Condola Rashad, right. Credit: Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

RUINED: 100% – Sweet [UPDATED]

SWEET Nottage has clearly made a conscious artistic choice. Mama has no patience for the romantic novels her workers adore, but her heart isn’t dead, just long buried in the business of survival. Yet what moved me most about “Ruined” were the quieter displays of stamina among the women, those moments that didn’t need to [...]

Seeking PT Development Director for Need Theater

needtheater is a critically acclaimed, award-winning Los Angeles theater company. Founded in 2006, needtheater has a reputation for innovation and excellence within the 99-seat theater community. “At the tip of the spear. Making the future of LA theater…[needtheater] looks for the relationship between…plays, in order to establish theater’s larger purpose and vision…Scintillating productions.” – LA [...]

Photo: Sara Collins and Dane Bowman. Credit: Temple of the Cave Photography.

DAVID, THE MUSICAL: 0% – Bitter [updated]

BITTER If you’re looking for an act of atonement during High Holy Days, sitting through “David: The Musical” should score points with even the most wrathful God. Chronicling the life of King David, the Hebrew warrior-poet credited with penning the “Book of Psalms,” this painfully earnest “Jesus Christ Superstar”/“Godspell” wannabe rock musical is a disaster [...]