RSSAll Entries Tagged With: "harvey perr"

THE TEMPEST (ZOMBIE JOE'S UNDERGROUND): 83% - SWEET

THE TEMPEST (ZOMBIE JOE’S UNDERGROUND): 83% – SWEET

SWEET I wish I could share with you more about each and every actor, the mystically induced spirit dances, the black fingernail creeping creatures and the commitment to the art the cast has embarrassed. I will let you have the experience for yourself. Support the NoHo Arts District and venture into the world of underground […]

POOR BEHAVIOR (MARK TAPER): 73% - BITTERSWEET

POOR BEHAVIOR (MARK TAPER): 73% – BITTERSWEET

SWEET Poor Behavior’s talented quartet of actors engage in a wonderful game of verbal volleyball, taking place in the wonderful world of he said, she said, bouncing from one character to the next, without any signs of any performer dropping the ball. Johanna Day, Sharon Lawrence, Reg Rogers and Christopher Evan Welch work as a […]

CABARET (REPRISE): 88% - SWEET

CABARET (REPRISE): 88% – SWEET

SWEET Really, why are you sitting idly in your room when Reprise Theatre Company is presenting such a satisfying revival of “Cabaret,” the eternally captivating musical set in manic, hard-partying Berlin just prior to one of history’s most sinister turns? Charles McNulty – LA Times SWEET After decades of this milestone musical being tinkered with […]

THE CHANTEUSE AND THE DEVIL'S MUSE: 86% - SWEET

THE CHANTEUSE AND THE DEVIL’S MUSE: 86% – SWEET

SWEET The narrative is weak, but the song and spectacle are worthwhile. Pauline Adamek – LA Weekly SWEET Whatever. Yes. One night this month, don’t watch another cop show on television. Come see this. I promise it is no dumber than any given episode of acronym detective TV (CSI, SVU, etc). It is, however, a […]

TROJAN WOMEN (AFTER EURIPIDES) (SITI COMPANY): 78% - SWEET

TROJAN WOMEN (AFTER EURIPIDES) (SITI COMPANY): 78% – SWEET

SWEET Poetically adapted by Jocelyn Clarke to include modern insights through temporary suspension of the fourth wall, this standing ovation worthy SITI Company production brims with sophistication and powerful dramatic performances perfectly contextualized within the Villa’s outdoor Greek-style theater. Mialka Bonadonna Morano – LAist BITTERSWEET But the collective force of the play — an overwhelming, […]

It's Zombie Joe's World and We're all Just Living in It

It’s Zombie Joe’s World and We’re all Just Living in It

At least on Saturday nights we are. Finally caught this mad genius’ late night show Urban Death last weekend and I gotta tell ya, Lemon Heads, I still have some of the images and sounds stuck in my head. Urban Death plays like a montage of nightmares – literally – and I bet I’m not going […]

THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY: 84% - SWEET

THE ELABORATE ENTRANCE OF CHAD DEITY: 84% – SWEET

SWEET It’s unlikely we’ll see any offering this season that remotely resembles playwright Kristoffer Diaz’s balls-out theatrical happening. His vision is flamboyantly brought to life in collaboration with Edward Torres’ electrifying direction, an inspired design team, and an energetic and committed cast. Les Spindle – Backstage SWEET This production, directed by Edward Torres, whose lengthy […]

URBAN DEATH (ON-GOING AT ZOMBIE JOE'S UNDERGROUND): 100% - SWEET

URBAN DEATH (ON-GOING AT ZOMBIE JOE’S UNDERGROUND): 100% – SWEET

SWEET At once dark, delicious descent into a pageant of gore, and luminous musical romp through the most ignoble archetypes inhabiting our collective image repertoire, playing late nights in the heart of Noho, writer-director Zombie Joe’s, Urban Death, drives the final stake through the heart of the mere notion that anything is or can be […]

ROMEO AND JULIET (ZOMBIE JOE'S UNDERGROUND): 100% - SWEET

ROMEO AND JULIET (ZOMBIE JOE’S UNDERGROUND): 100% – SWEET

SWEET Rarely has anyone written or a theater company more touchingly and movingly presented a work of such resonance and power. True love is well represented in North Hollywood. Radomir Luza – North Hollywood-Toluca Lake Patch SWEET This is a surprisingly straightforward production and, in many ways, it is one of the best productions of […]

FOUR CLOWNS: ROMEO AND JULIET: 67% - SWEET

FOUR CLOWNS: ROMEO AND JULIET: 67% – SWEET

SWEET Alexis Jones, Kevin Klein, Zach Steel, and Raymond Lee are talented, crowd-pleasing, and hilarious, with Lee standing out as particularly engaging. Working through the comedically gifted and exceptionally well matched troupe, director Jeremy Aluma orchestrates the fast-paced and freaky Four Clowns: Romeo and Juliet with perfect comedic timing. Mialka Bonadonna-Morano – LAist SWEET If […]

MARGO VEIL: 100% - SWEET

MARGO VEIL: 100% – SWEET

SWEET Margo Veil is like no other play in town in terms of the purity of its stagecraft and the imaginative forces that inspired just that sort of purity. Harvey Perr – Stage and Cinema SWEET The illusory nature of personal identity lies at the heart of Jenkins’ intricate, entertaining mash-up of old-time radio melodramas, […]

"Radar LA was much more important than the Hollywood Fringe Festival." -Harvey Perr, Stage and Cinema

“Radar LA was much more important than the Hollywood Fringe Festival.” -Harvey Perr, Stage and Cinema

This was the rather shocking statement uttered by Harvey Perr during the Bitter Lemons sponsored Critics Panel at the Fringe. The statement came after Harvey admitted that he’d seen almost ALL of the 14 Radar LA shows and had seen only 1 of the 200+ shows playing at the Fringe. The show he had seen […]

BLACKBIRD (ROGUE MACHINE): 100% - SWEET

BLACKBIRD (ROGUE MACHINE): 100% – SWEET

SWEET I think Blackbird, at heart, contains both despair and hope, without one canceling the other out. But Blackbird provides more proof that Rogue Machine is one of our most intelligent and vibrant theater companies. Harvey Perr – Stage and Cinema SWEET Larsen takes a less abstract approach to the play than Joe Mantello did […]

BAKERSFIELD MIST: 97% - SWEET

BAKERSFIELD MIST: 97% – SWEET

SWEET This is entertainment, not art (despite the fact that Art is at the heart of its theme), but it is entertainment at its simplest and best. There are times when a reviewer sees a play and all he wants to say is, hey folks, just go, take my word for it, you’re going to […]

JUAN AND JOHN: 100% - SWEET

JUAN AND JOHN: 100% – SWEET

SWEET But, in the end, it doesn’t matter. What is always there is the feeling that Smith himself is that rare thing: a true mensch. He has no control, thank goodness, over his genuinely human instincts; the tears he sheds are not the kind which can be faked. Especially when we are crying along with […]

Critique of the Week - Runner Up

Critique of the Week – Runner Up

KISS ME, KATE Harvey Perr – Stage and Cinema RECIPE FOR SUCCESS Here’s a mouth-watering recipe for making people happy: 1) Take a great musical. (Kiss Me, Kate will do. If you need to ask why, then I’ll tell you: It’s both a wonderful backstage comedy romance and a scintillating interpretation of Shakespeare’s The Taming […]

MAD WOMEN: 100% - SWEET

MAD WOMEN: 100% – SWEET

SWEET Direction by Ric Montejano is adequate, but feels rushed. This may be an attempt to replicate the mental instability of the “mad women” featured in the play. Multi-media video, audio, and photographic images used in the Mad Women are excellent. Thr use of minimal set design to creatively invoke Garland recalls childhood dress-up games […]

KISS ME, KATE (REPRISE): 89% - SWEET

KISS ME, KATE (REPRISE): 89% – SWEET

SWEET Like everything else that looks easy, it requires painstaking work. Nothing is as easy as it looks. Even the Reprise Theatre Company, which mostly gets it right, has never, in the time I’ve spent with their productions, got it quite so right. This Kiss Me, Kate is a full meal that has the aroma […]

HOW TO DISAPPEAR COMPLETELY AND NEVER BE FOUND: 83% - SWEET

HOW TO DISAPPEAR COMPLETELY AND NEVER BE FOUND: 83% – SWEET

SWEET In the play’s Southern California premiere, director Nancy Keystone’s stylish cinematic staging offers much visceral excitement, and a chameleonlike ensemble pulls off a wide range of impressive characterizations. Though it’s easy to appreciate the artistry on display here, it’s difficult to fully warm up to the frenetic material. Kennedy’s protracted Rubik’s Cube narrative sometimes […]

GEORGE GERSHWIN ALONE (PASADENA PLAYHOUSE): 100% - SWEET

GEORGE GERSHWIN ALONE (PASADENA PLAYHOUSE): 100% – SWEET

SWEET One might call it spending an evening with George Gershwin. Or maybe call it a backward look at a gentler time. Whatever you want to call it, the current fare at the venerable Pasadena Playhouse is a singular experience in theatre, where you are entertained by a superbly gifted storyteller and then the audience […]

STANDING ON CEREMONY: THE GAY MARRIAGE PLAYS: 100% - SWEET

STANDING ON CEREMONY: THE GAY MARRIAGE PLAYS: 100% – SWEET

SWEET Only in distant memory has this reviewer ever experienced laughter through tears. Whether you leave the theatre exhilarated or reflective (or both), you will no doubt have been completely entertained. Tony Frankel – Stage and Cinema SWEET It is a compelling testimony to the universal struggle for commitment, compassion and humor for everyone working […]

HOUSE OF THE RISING SON: 94% - SWEET

HOUSE OF THE RISING SON: 94% – SWEET

SWEET Tom Jacobson takes a giant step forward with his engrossing, provocative “House of the Rising Son” — note the spelling. It’s nothing less than a comprehensive homosexual ecology that kicks off in a graveyard and ends in a bed: life engagingly turned upside down. Bob Verini – Variety SWEET Still, The House of the […]

THE CHINESE MASSACRE (ANNOTATED): 75% - SWEET

THE CHINESE MASSACRE (ANNOTATED): 75% – SWEET

SWEET The ensemble cast is expertly led by the visionary directing of Jeff Liu. Their collective talent carries the audience as the play vacillates between right brain emotionality and the rapid-fire delivery of historical dates and annotations designed to remove the viewer from the trauma of the events as they unfold. The cast delivers extraordinary […]

DEVIL'S ADVOCATE: 67% - SWEET

DEVIL’S ADVOCATE: 67% – SWEET

SWEET Direction by Jose Luis Valenuela is a sharp and calculating presentation of restless momentum. Donald Freed’s script feels natural and completely avoids the flowery and awkward melodramatic pitfalls of monologue-heavy plays, although the script occassionally sounds like an NPR fundraiser rant. Scenic design by Tesshi Nakagawa is a rich yet graceful that folds the […]

THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (BROAD STAGE): 90% - SWEET

THE MERCHANT OF VENICE (BROAD STAGE): 90% – SWEET

SWEET It’s not easy to join the festivities in Belmont after Shylock’s courtroom degradation, but that’s where Shakespeare sends us, and this production knows how to be faithful even when taking the wildest liberties. Charles McNulty – LA Times BITTER And so much letting go of pentameter in order to stretch a sentence out so […]

"The Talking Cure Review": Is this a new kind of Theatre Criticism or just annoying? [UPDATED]

“The Talking Cure Review”: Is this a new kind of Theatre Criticism or just annoying? [UPDATED]

Hey, Lemon Heads, what do y’all think about this Stew Review from Harvey Perr over at Stage and Cinema? First let me define my terms. Any review that  piles in over three productions in one review, in my opinion, is a Stew Review, and is usually the sign of either a LAZY reviewer, or an […]

THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN (KIRK DOUGLAS THEATRE): 100% - SWEET

THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN (KIRK DOUGLAS THEATRE): 100% – SWEET

SWEET Kudos to Hynes for balancing the play’s mix of mockery and truth in her internationally acclaimed production. Artistic director of the Galway-based Druid, she is an experienced hand with McDonagh, having won a Tony for her staging of “The Beauty Queen of Leenane,” and she works out a marvelous détente between overstatement and understatement […]

THE ESCORT: 91% - SWEET

THE ESCORT: 91% – SWEET

BITTERSWEET The play, a world premiere, is on the road to a destination that hasn’t yet been discovered. Some of this has to do with Anderson’s expository writing style, and some with director Lisa Peterson’s punching scene transitions that obscure some reflective essences in Anderson’s writing. Some with lapses of credibility and some with the […]

The Saturday Saying

The Saturday Saying

Pure. Perfect. Impeccable. Mesmerizing. Exquisite. Hilarious. Work of Art. Take your pick. Any one of these – or all of them – aptly describe Samuel Beckett’s Fragments, under the simple, elegant, finely tuned direction of Peter Brook and Marie Hélène Estienne. The experience of seeing it is akin to entering a world of dreams and […]

GOD OF CARNAGE (AHMANSON): 100% - SWEET

GOD OF CARNAGE (AHMANSON): 100% – SWEET

SWEET The play’s insights hardly constitute breaking news, but what great fun it is watching these characters tear into one another’s self-regard. The performances are broader than they were on Broadway — the Ahmanson requires the actors to ratchet up their technique — but they’re still a chomping treat. Charles McNulty – LA Times SWEET […]