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“Scene in LA” February 2018 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Valentine’s Day is coming fast! Here are some of the shows you can see in our local theaters this month:

“Dessa Rose” tells the story of a young black woman (a runaway slave) and a young white woman (an abandoned mother) and their journey to acceptance in the antebellum South, as they tell their story to their grandchildren. Written by Lynn Ahrens, with music by Stephen Flaherty, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, and directed by James Esposito, it runs February 2 through February 25 at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-510-2688 or visit www.crtheatre.com.

“Occupant” Unapologetically flamboyant, New York sculptor Louise Nevelson’s life was one marked by intrepid artistic triumphs as well as deep inner turmoil. In this play, both her public accomplishments and private emotional conflicts are thoroughly examined by an unnamed interviewer who questions the posthumous Nevelson with an unabashed scrutiny. From her unique vantage point beyond the grave, Nevelson answers his queries with a clarity born of the distance provided by death. The result is a touching, humorous, and honest tribute to a woman who was a pioneer for free-thinking females everywhere, but also stood strongly on her own as one of the 20th century’s greatest artistic minds. Written by Edward Albee, and directed by Heather Chesley, it runs February 2 through March 4 at the Garry Marshall Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.garrymarshalltheatre.org.

“Pizza Man” Step inside a Hollywood loft for an experience where instead of viewing the action from a distance, you become immersed in it! In this site-specific production, the audience themselves are part of the 1980s apartment where Julie Rodgers is on the verge of a breakdown. Her boss made a pass at her that she rejected, so now Julie is without a job, broke, disillusioned, and drinking. Her roommate, Alice, is at an equally low point coping with romantic troubles. The pair of Los Angeles women decide to take revenge on the entire opposite sex, and the unsuspecting pizza delivery man is just the vehicle for this descent into comedic chaos! Written by Darlene Craviotto, and directed by Jamie Lou, it runs February 2 through February 24 at the Loft Space in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.PIZZAMAN.eventbrite.com.

 

“Two Fisted Love” It’s 2008 and Hollywood A-lister, Caroline Connors, having recently been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, braves her descent into an uncertain future while attempting to navigate her relationships with her ultra-conservative and less than politically correct husband Kevin, and her defiant and idealistic daughter Rachel.Written and directed by David Sessions, it runs February 3 through March 11 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.twofistedlove.com.

“Henry V” tells the story of King Henry V of England, focusing on events immediately before and after the Battle of Agincourt during the Hundred Years’ War, and the historical events during the years 1398-1485, particularly the struggles for the British throne between warring branches of the Plantagenet family and Britain’s ongoing wars with France. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Geoff Elliott and Julia Rodriguez-Elliott, it runs February 4 through April 6 at the A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.ANoiseWithin.org.

“Prez” featuring Leslie A. Jones, this play is set in a 1959 hotel room in Paris, and paints an intimate portrait of Lester Young, a unique jazzman whose warm, lyrical style brought him fame, first with the Count Basie band, then with the likes of Nat ‘King’ Cole, Oscar Peterson, Teddy Wilson, and his best friend and alter ego, Billie Holiday. Written by Willard Manus, and directed by Daniel E. Keough, it runs February 4 through March 11 at the Write Act Repertory @ The Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.brownpapertickets.com.

“Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” the dysfunctional but wealthy Pollitt family gathers to celebrate aging patriarch, Big Daddy’s, birthday. Lurking under every practiced interaction between the Pollitts is an ulterior motive. Under every smile, a challenge. And under every statement, the specter of mendacity. For the Pollitts, the truth is as hazy as the late summer sun in Mississippi, and sometimes the only way to find it is to journey through the lies. Written by Tennessee Williams, and directed by Kenneth James Billington, it runs February 8 through March 30 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“Great Expectations” David Mynne portrays all of the novel’s colorful characters including terrifying Magwitch, kindly Joe Gargery, eccentric Miss Havisham, cold and beautiful Estella, pompous lawyer Mr. Jaggers and Pip’s wise and spluttering friend Herbert Pocket. Providing all the sound effects himself, Mynne traverses the difficult line of staying true to the story but adding some modern-day anarchy, thanks to his natural ability for physical comedy, and keeping it as strangely spooky as the original tale. Written by Charles Dickens, and directed by Simon Harvey, it runs February 8 through February 11 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/GE.

“Trust” This is a contemporary dramatic comedy set against a backdrop of the rock music scene. In a world ruled by love, lust and lying, a spiral unwinds. Cody is a rising star musician. Becca is his fiancée. Gretchen is a dressmaker, fitting Becca for her wedding dress. Leah is a rock star past her prime who Cody meets while on the road. Roy is a public radio announcer smitten with the young bohemian, Holly. As the lives and loves of these people continue to intersect, attraction gives way to seduction, and secrecy holds sway over truth. Becca and Cody’s marriage-to-be grows as rocky as Roy increases his hilariously futile attempts to charm Holly. Gretchen and Leah’s past is unearthed, brought on by Gretchen’s attraction to Becca. As the final concert of Cody’s tour concludes, new bonds have been formed, old wounds remain; friends looking for answers, lovers looking for that elusive word: trust. Written by Steven Dietz, and directed by William Kircher, it runs February 8 through March 31 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“Extremities” Marjorie, is attacked in her home by Raul, but manages to turn the tables on him, tying him up in her fireplace. Her roommates come home to discover the attacker bound with cords, belts and other household items. When Terry and Patricia, Majorie’s roommates, come home, they are shocked and begin discussing how to handle the situation: call the police or take matters into their own hands? The incredibly gripping drama portrays the act of rape and its aftermath as the victim turns the tables on her attacker, reaching a climax of fever pitch suspense. Written by William Mastrosimone, and directed by Jenny Nwene, it runs February 9 through March 31 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“Jack Stevenson, A Decent Man” centers around the exploits of a sex crazed sociopath, who after marrying into wealth, deceitfully attempts to maintain a highfalutin lifestyle while continuing to carry on his sexual indiscretions. Written by Johnny Cannizzaro, and directed by Lee Aronsohn, it runs February 9 through March 31 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“Million Dollar Quartet” Set in Memphis, Tennessee on December 4, 1956, this musical harkens back to when Sam Phillips, the “Father of Rock ‘n’ Roll” – responsible for launching the careers of Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley – brought the four superstars together at the Sun Records storefront studio for the first and only time, resulting in what became known as one of the greatest jam sessions in rock ‘n’ roll history. As such, the legendary event comes to life on stage with an irresistible telling of broken promises, secrets, betrayal and celebrations that are both poignant and amusing. Relive the era through a rousing score of rock ‘n’ roll, gospel, R&B and country hits such as: “Blue Suede Shoes”, “Fever,” “Walk the Line”, “Sixteen Tons”, “Who Do You Love?”, “Great Balls of Fire”, “Folsom Prison Blues”, “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On”, “Hound Dog” and more. Written by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux, with music by David Lamoureux, and directed by David Lober, it runs February 9 through February 18 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center in Redondo Beach, then February 23 through March 4 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in Cerritos. For tickets call 714-589-2770 Ext. 1 (for Redondo) or 562-916-8500 (for Cerritos) or visit www.3dtshows.org (for any show).

“Requiem” Is the story of a man who has lost his faith in society. Troubled by his past, his current job and relationship. He struggles to fit in and subsequently looks to a firearm for answers. A comedic snapshot of an American workforce and their plight to exist in the nightmare. Written by Carlos Javier Castillo, and directed by Hector Negrete, it runs February 9 through March 31 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“The Speed of Darkness” Joe is a decorated hero of the Vietnam War and owns a prosperous construction business in South Dakota. When Joe suddenly finds himself nominated as man of the year by his town, he is faced with an unwelcome amount of attention, which begins to challenge his ability to walk the tenuous line of normality on which he has come to live. Emotionally numbed by the fallout of war and with rumblings about family scars, Joe’s home life faces upheaval with the sudden appearance of an old war buddy, Lou. The presence of his mysterious and mentally disturbed friend puts Joe and his family on edge as whispers of past misdeeds begin to unravel, all which he has worked to build. Written by Steve Tesich, and directed by William Alderson, it runs February 9 through March 18 at the River Street Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.riverstreettheatre.yapsody.com/event/index/171616.

“A Walk in the Woods” This witty two-hander concerns a relationship between two arms negotiators and what happens when they step out of the war room and into the woods. Written by Lee Blessing, and directed by Ken Sawyer, it runs February 9 through March 18 at the Actors Co-op Crossley Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-462-8460 or visit www.ActorsCo-op.org.

“Burt… A Homeless Odyssey This show pays homage to people who aren’t recognized. The creative souls, artists and street-people. The lost and forgotten we pass-by on the street and don’t give a second glance. But guess what? In this play, we are going to stop and listen to them. Written by Sam Henry Kass, and directed by Ronnie Marmo, it runs February 10 through March 31 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.theatre68.com.

“The City of Conversation” It’s 1979, and Washington, D.C. socialite Hester Ferris is notorious for her posh dinner parties that can change the course of politics. But when her son turns up with an ambitious girlfriend and a newly minted political agenda, it ignites a family divide that spans 30 years and six presidential administrations. A timely and moving look at a family forced to choose between defending opposing political views and keeping their family together. Sharon Lawrence and Meredith Baxter star. Written by Anthony Giardina, and directed by Cameron Watson, it runs February 10 through February 25 at the Ensemble Theatre Company at the New Vic in Santa Barbara. For tickets call 805-965-5400 or visit www.etcsb.org.

“4Play: Sex in a Series” Celebrate Valentine’s Day (and the rest of February and March) with this delightful romantic comedy that blurs the lines between art and life, gay and straight. New York City’s trip. theater ensemble kicks off its move to L.A. with the West Coast premiere of the company’s uniquely theatrical hit production, direct from a sold out run in Chicago — the not-so-simple story of boy meets girl, boy meets boy, girl meets girl, and all the little things that can ruin a perfectly good dinner party. trip.: a place we have not been before. Written by Graham Brown with Nathan Faudree and Lisa Roth, and directed by Graham Brown, it runs February 14 through March 17 at the Trip. @ The Actors Company in Los Angeles. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.tripnyc.org.

“A Streetcar Named Desire” This radical re-envisioning of Streetcar will feature a multicultural cast and modern setting, pushing on the play’s present-day relevance by stripping away decades of “Southern gothic gauze” to reveal striking themes of class, race, and gender—reinvigorating the classic which shocked audiences in its debut 70 years ago. By placing a traditional, 1940s era Blanche within a contemporary, multicultural and urban environment familiar to modern audiences but foreign to her, this new production highlights the pertinence of this play for our divided America. Written by Tennessee Williams, and directed by Michael Michetti, it runs February 15 through March 25 at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-683-6801 or visit www.BostonCourt.com.

“The Art Couple” Long before Felix met Oscar, Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin were ill-fitting roommates in the south of France; a fateful co-habitation that would change the face of art – and Van Gogh’s face, too. It’s a lesser-known tidbit of theatre history that these two masters were also the subjects of Neil Simon’s original draft of The Odd Couple. Written by Brendan Hunt, and directed by Lauren Van Kurin, it runs February 16 through March 17 at the Broadwater Black Box in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.sacredfools.org.

“Don’t Hug Me, We’re Family” The host of a radio show devoted entirely to ice fishing loses his sole sponsor while his wife, a popular host of a book show, has numerous sponsors, putting the couple at odds. Issues escalate and are compounded when two fish-out-of-water Brooklyn Italians come to the rural Minnesota town, buy the radio station and a hotel, and turn everything on its ear. Written by Phil Olson, with music by Paul Olson, lyrics by Phil Olson, and directed by Doug Engalla, it runs February 16 through March 25 at the T.U. Studios in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-850-9254 or visit www.donthugme.brownpapertickets.com.

“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” Experience this Biblical saga of Joseph and his coat of many colors at the Historical in-the-round Glendale Centre Theatre! Joseph is a boy blessed with prophetic dreams and being his father’s favorite son. But when his jealous brothers sell him into slavery and he is taken to Egypt, Joseph endures a series of terrific adventures. This Old Testament tale emerges both timely and timeless. One of the most popular shows we have ever produced. A must-see! Written by Tim Rice, with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Tim Rice, and directed by Lee Martino, it runs February 16 through April 7 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

“Nice Fish” On a frozen Minnesota lake, the ice is beginning to creak and groan. It’s the end of the fishing season, and two old friends are out on the ice, angling for something big — something down there that is pure need. Something that might just swallow them whole. Written by Mark Rylance and Louis Jenkins, and directed by Rob Brownstein and Anita Khanzadian, it runs February 16 through March 25 at the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-765-8732 or visit www.interactla.org.

 

“Priscilla Queen of the Desert the Musical” is a hilarious, outrageous and fabulous musical road trip featuring some of the most classic dance songs of all time including “It’s Raining Men,” “I Will Survive,” and “I Love the Nightlife.” Set in Australia, PRISCILLA follows three drag queens as they drive across the outback in a rundown old bus searching for love and fulfillment and end up discovering what true friendship really means. Written by Stephan Elliott and Allan Scott, with music by Jennifer Lin, and directed by Jessica Hanna, it runs February 16 through March 25 at the Celebration Theatre @ the Lex Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“Talley’s Folly” Set in a deserted Victorian boathouse (a “folly”) in Lebanon, Missouri in 1944, Matt Friedman has arrived to plead his love to Sally Talley, the susceptible but uncertain daughter of the Talley family. Telling his innermost secrets and in return, learning hers, Matt gradually awakens Sally to the possibilities of a life together, two kindred spirits who, in their union, will find a wholeness rare in human relationships. Written by Langford Wilson, and directed by Richard Kilroy, it runs February 16 through March 11 at the Hudson MainStage Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-4412 or visit www.plays411.com/talleysfolly.

“The New Colossus” tells the story of forced migration and the constant struggle for survival and dignity in an uncertain and hostile environment. The members of the acting company are from different parts of the world; they tell their stories, each in a different language, and each in different dress. Written by The Actors’ Gang Ensemble, and directed by Tim Robbins, it runs February 17 through March 24 at the Actors’ Gang Theatre in Culver City. For tickets call 310-838-4264 or visit www.theactorsgang.com.

“The Wicked, Wicked Mae West” is a new comedy about the legendary actress, writer and sex symbol. Set in 1959, the play portrays the bigger-than-life, wise-cracking Mae when she was being interviewed by Charles Collingwood for a possible appearance on his popular “Person to Person” TV show. Written by Willard Manus, and directed by Iris Merlis, it runs February 17 through May 25 at the Write Act Repertory @ the Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3328677.

“Allegiance” tells the story of the Kimura family, whose lives are upended when they and 120,000 other Japanese Americans are forced to leave their homes following the events of Pearl Harbor. Sam Kimura seeks to prove his patriotism by fighting for his country in the war, but his sister, Kei, fiercely protests the government’s treatment of her people. An uplifting testament to the power of the human spirit, Allegiance follows the Kimuras as they fight between duty and defiance, custom and change, family bonds and forbidden loves. Written by Marc Acito, Jay Kuo and Lorenzo Thione, with music by Jay Kuo, and directed by Snehal Desai, it runs February 21 through April 1 at the Aratani Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.AllegianceMusical.com.

“The Pirates of Penzance” tells the story of the Pirate King and his apprentice Frederic as they match wits with the Major General and his beautiful daughters. Written by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan, with music by W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan, and directed by Dr. Henry Price and Dorothy Danner, it runs February 21 through February 24 at the Smothers Theatre, Pepperdine University in Malibu. For tickets call 310-506-4522 or visit www.arts.pepperdine.edu.

 

“The Happiest Song Plays Last” chronicles a year in the life of two kindred souls as they search for love, meaning and a sense of hope in a quickly changing world. At the dawn of the Arab Spring in an ancient Jordanian town, Elliot, an Iraq War veteran, struggles to overcome the traumas of combat by taking on an entirely new and unexpected career: an action-film hero. At the same time, halfway around the world in a cozy North Philadelphia kitchen, his cousin, Yasmin, takes on a heroic new role of her own: as the heart and soul of her crumbling community, providing hot meals and an open door for the needy. Written by Quiara Alegría Hudes, and directed by Edward Torres, it runs February 22 through March 19 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.thelatc.org.

“Jackie Unveiled” Hailed as an icon of style, grace and strength, Jacqueline “Jackie” Kennedy Onassis was known for her alluring mystery and piercing sensuality. Much has been written and said about America’s most famous First Lady. However, one detail usually omitted from the story is that she was human. This one woman show dares to peek behind the façade of America’s most private public figure. Written by Tom Dugan, and directed by Jenny Sullivan, it runs February 22 through March 11 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/Jackie.

“Year of the Rooster” Gil is a loser. He works at McDonald’s, lives with his ailing mother, and hasn’t had a girlfriend since…ever. But that’s all about to change. He’s been secretly training (and drugging) a rooster to fight. And Odysseus Rex (aka Odie) is the baddest barnyard bird there is. Gil has so much faith in Odie’s abilities that he bets everything on him — but victory and revenge may not yield the delicious spoils he anticipates. A fiercely comic play about cockfighting, connections, and clawing your way to the top. Written by Olivia Dufault, and directed by McKerrin Kelly, it runs February 22 through March 24 at the Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-856-8611 or visit www.theatreofnote.com.

 

“Daddy Long Legs” An intimate musical about a spirited orphan girl who is sent to a prestigious college by a mysterious benefactor. Jerusha’s heart-warming journey to independence, education and romance is chronicled in a wealth of witty letters and glorious songs. Written by John Caird, based on the novel by Jean Webster, with music by Paul Gordon, and directed by Mary Jo DuPrey, it runs February 23 through March 11 at the International City Theatre Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.InternationalCityTheatre.org.

 

“Wicked Pagan Gays” Jeff is a 35-year-old atheist who has recently moved to Los Angeles to start a new life. Greg is a middle-aged struggling journalist led by “signs from above.” When serendipity reunites the former acquaintances, Greg insists their fates are intertwined and they must uncover the details of their shared cosmic destiny. Jeff, ever skeptical, first humors Greg, but soon finds himself second-guessing his core beliefs. Moral questions arise and loyalties are tested as the duo are thrust into a world of child stars, self-help gurus, and baffling gay politics. Born of real-life friends Jeff Dinnell and Greg Archer’s cocktail-fueled debates on God and gays comes this surprisingly thoughtful look at compromise in modern times. Sending up everything from religion to gay culture, steeped in cheeky, fast-paced banter, this play examines the unlikely friendship between two gay men with very different world-views as they embark on a hilarious search for meaning in a bewildering (and possibly sentient), Universe. Written by Jeff Dinnell, and directed by Kiff Scholl, it runs February 23 through March 31 at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.plays411.com/wicked.

“The Alamo” In the blue collar Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn sits a rundown neighborhood institution called The Alamo; the last great American bar. The owners, Munce and Carmen, along with some of their regulars watched, from the roof, as the World Trade Towers fell, taking down their relatives, friends, and neighbors. Today, with an aging clientele the place is fighting to keeps its doors open and the only hope seems to be the arrival of artist/gentrifiers who are moving into the neighborhood and wanting to adopt the bar as an entertainment hangout. Bay Ridge locals and The Alamo regulars don’t want to surrender their bar, much less their neighborhood, to these young neo-carpetbaggers without a fight. Touching on themes of, nativism, racism, and war, The Alamo paints a humorous yet heartbreaking portrait of eight working class Bay Ridge natives who always seem to find themselves on the front lines of change in America. Written by Ian McRae, and directed by Kent Thompson, it runs February 24 through March 31 at the Ruskin Group Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-397-3244 or visit www.ruskingrouptheatre.com.

“Antony & Cleopatra: The Musical” is rarely produced in Southern California, and it may be because the genre-defying play is one of the Bard’s most complex: It’s a history play, but it takes liberties with historical facts; It could be seen as a sequel to Julius Caesar, yet it stands on its own; Its heroine is a leader of men, but also an object of male sexual desire. Its complexity, however, may be the source of its appeal. This show has its all: Romance, passion, sex, heartbreak, the fascination of royalty, war, politics, the epic sweep of history and, at its center, one of history’s most celebrated love stories: that of Antony, a general and triumvir of the Roman Republic who defied his Emperor; and the woman for whom Antony was willing to risk all, the Macedonian usurper of the throne of Egypt, the mighty Queen Cleopatra. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Gloria Gifford, it runs February 24 through March 18 at the Gray Studios in North Hollywood. For tickets call 310-366-5505 or visit www.tix.com.

“The Flying Lovers of Vitebsk” Partners in life and on canvas, Marc and Bella are immortalized as the picture of romance. On the painter’s canvas they flew, but in real life they walked through some of the most challenging times in 20th Century history—navigating the devastation of war, the Russian Revolution and each other. Following the artistic heights of Brief Encounter and 946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips, Kneehigh and Rice return to The Wallis with a production that combines the visuals of Chagall’s paintings with the music and dance of the Russian-Jewish tradition. Written by Daniel Jamieson, with music by Ian Ross, and directed by Emma Rice, it runs February 24 through March 11 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/Lovers.

“A Raisin in the Sun” In pre-civil rights America, an unexpected windfall offers a life-changing option for the Youngers, an African-American family living in a cramped Chicago apartment. They struggle with competing dreams and racial intolerance in this timely drama. Written by Lorraine Hansberry, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs February 25 through April 8 at the A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.anoisewithin.org.

“Six Characters in Search of a Play” Del Shores brings to life six one-of-a-kind characters he has met in real life that haven’t quite made it into one of his plays, films or TV shows. In 90 minutes, the audience will hear the truth behind how he collected these eccentrics and their stories as he portrays his hilarious, off-the-rails encounters with them. The audience will meet “Yvonne”, the anti-vegetarian Dallas waitress; “Sarah”, a Trump-hating elderly actress with an inhaler in one hand and a cigarette in the other; “Jimmy Ray”, the evolving, Magic Mike-loving latent Georgia redneck; “Loraine”, the once-brilliant drama teacher who has lost her damn mind and is now obsessed with porn; “Marsha”, the monkey-hating lesbian with COPD; and “Aunt Bobby Sue”, the racist Republican with a heart of gold. Written by Del Shores, and directed by Emerson Collins, it runs February 26 through March 25 at the Celebration Theatre @ the Lex Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“Waist Watchers the Musical” If you’re like the rest of us, perhaps those New Year’s resolutions are starting to slip. So what better than getting a group of your friends together to LAUGH OFF a few pounds! We guarantee this will be the easiest weight loss program you have ever gone too – so much fun, you’ll want to come back again and again! This hilarious & inspirational musical comedy will leave you laughing so hard, you’ll burn more calories than you have all week. Come and dance in your seat or jump right in with a lighthearted look at four women dealing with food, friendship, love, life and sex! Written by Alan Jacobson, with music by Vince Di Mura, lyrics by Alan Jacobson, and directed by Matthew E. Silva, it runs February 27 through March 4 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

“Scene in LA” January 2018 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Happy New Year! Well, 2018 is finally upon us, and here are some of the shows you can see in our local theaters this month:


OPENING


“Bugaboo & The Silent One” Bugaboo is an inmate in the women’s block of Henderson County Jail in West Virginia. After 42 days alone, she is assigned a roommate who she comes to call her “silent little sinner”. This timely new drama is an intimate look at the power of female friendship despite devastating circumstances. Written and directed by Marja-Lewis Ryan, it runs January 6 through January 27 at the Lounge Theater in Los Angeles. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.batso.brownpapertickets.com.

“My Father’s A Cop” is a true story that traces the tumultuous relationship of Jerry Dean, a charismatic local Greenwich Village legend and his father, a decorated NYPD detective, as their paths crisscross in the worlds of crime, drug addiction, prisons, and mental hospitals. The story uses archival footage and video interviews, to chronicle Jerry’s journey from extorting the owner of A&W Root Beer’s son for $6,000 at his private upper eastside grammar school when he was 12, to robbing 26 whorehouses with a sawed-off shotgun when he was 16. In between Jerry and his teenage crew roamed the Village, tagged landmarks with legendary graffiti artists. As an adult, Jerry bobs and weaves and swerves through downtown NYC clubs, high-end whore houses, Park Avenue brownstones, heroin dens, incarcerations in America’s toughest prisons, rehab centers, iconic mental institutions (Bellevue), star friendships, run-ins with gangsters, kinky sex with supermodels, a burgeoning acting career, Hollywood hostage stand-offs, break-ups break-downs, and an undying and tumultuous relationship with his father that would make Shakespeare blush. Jerry gets his first sparks of hopes in one the darkest places on the planet— Sing-Sing Psychiatric Ward, a 30-bed facility for the state’s most mentally ill criminals, when a “sexy little” social worker-angel walks into his cell. Written by Jerry Dean and Kurt Brungardt, and directed by Kurt Brungardt, it runs January 6 through January 28 at the Lounge Theatre 2 in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.myfathersacop.brownpapertickets.com.

“Tales of Modern Motherhood: This Sh*t Just Got Real” is a heartfelt comedy about the uncertainties of becoming a parent, the FEAR of being a parent, and the reservations of why I didn’t just settle for a dog. It addresses the good, the bad and the ugly truth about what really happens behind closed doors and gives a very honest perspective on the hardest job in the world, PARENTING! Written by Pam Levin, and directed by Mark Hatfield, it runs January 6 through February 10 at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.talesofmodernmotherhood.com.

“The Manor- Murder and Madness at Greystone” depicts momentous changes in the fortunes of the fabulously wealthy MacAlister Family (fictional surrogates of the oil-rich Doheny Family). Family patriarch and mining tycoon Charles makes an illegal if well-intentioned loan to Senator Alfred Winston (a stand-in for Secretary of the Interior Albert Fall). Both men face imminent disgrace and worse in the oncoming Teapot Dome bribery scandal, which will engulf the Warren Harding administration. A scion of the MacAlister family faces violent death. Written by Kathrine Bates, and directed by Martin Thompson, it runs January 11 through February 4 at the Greystone Mansion, in Greystone Park in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-3606 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“Small Mouth Sounds” In the overwhelming quiet of the woods, six runaways from city life embark on a silent retreat. As these strangers confront internal demons both profound and absurd, their vows of silence collide with the achingly human need to connect. Filled with awkward and insightful humor, Small Mouth Sounds is a unique and compassionate new play that asks how we address life’s biggest questions when words fail us. Written by Bess Wohl, and directed by Rachel Chavkin, it runs January 11 through January 28 at the Eli and Edythe Broad Stage in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-434-3200 or visit www.thebroadstage.org.

“The Crucible” Using the historical and controversial subject of the 1692 Salem Witch Trials, it presents an allegory of events from the McCarthy Hearings of the 1950’s. Reason and fact become clouded by irrational fears and the desire to place blame for society’s problems on others. John Proctor, a blunt, out-spoken farmer is the play’s central character. He gets caught up in a conspiracy not even his own strength can control when his ex-lover Abigail throws false accusations on his wife Elizabeth. As Proctor tries to free his wife and prove all others accused of witchcraft innocent, he finds himself accused as well. One man stands in a tug-of-war between God and Satan, pride and damnation, and good and evil. It all leads to a climactic ending in which one lost soul finds peace with himself and realizes the importance of one’s own dignity. Written by Arthur Miller, and directed by George L. Rametta, it runs January 12 through February 17 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

“Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons Lemons” explores how we communicate in our everyday lives, and how that could be affected by censorship, oppression and loss of free speech. Bernadette and Oliver are two people that meet, fall in love and move in together, like people do. But their rapidly-progressing relationship becomes more complicated when the government introduces a draconian hush law giving everyone a daily limit of just 140 words each. They come up with ways to communicate with each other within the constraints of the law, but how can you know someone in just 140? Without words and the freedom to use them, are we completely powerless? Written by Sam Steiner, and directed by Jen Bloom, it runs January 12 through February 11 at the Hudson Guild Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-4420 or visit www.2centstheatre.com.

“The Price” In a soon to be demolished family house, two brothers, estranged for decades, meet together to dispose of their late parents’ property. The resulting confrontation leads them to examine the events and qualities of their very different lives and the price each of them had to pay. Written by Arthur Miller, and directed by Tony Torrisi, it runs January 12 through February 18 at the Theatre Palisades in Pacific Palisades. For tickets call 310-454-1970 or visit www.theatrepalisades.org.

“Trump in Space” Four hundred years from now, thanks to the stripping away of EPA regulations, the earth has blown up. Two human factions survive and are on the hunt for Polaris 4, a planet capable of sustaining human life. One faction, the United States of Commerce, lives by a motto of “opportunity at any cost.” Ruled by The Executive, his chief representative in space is starship Captain Natasha Trump, a lineal descendant of Donald J. Trump. Competing with her to reach Polaris 4 first is a resistance called The Separatists, gathered on the Starship California and led by President Gary Hart, Natasha’s ex-lover. Which faction will be the first to reach Polaris 4 and establish the New Cosmic Order? Written by Gillian Bellinger and Landon Kirksey, with music by Tony Gonzalez and Sam Johnides, and directed by Frank Caeti, it runs January 12 through April 27 at the Second City Hollywood Studio Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-464-8542 or visit www.secondcity.com/shows/hollywood/trump-in-space.

“Bled for the Household Truth” Keith doesn’t need a roommate, but wants one. He wants a female roommate. Pen needs a place to live – and a lot more. This is a play about intimacy and yearning, and what happens when the world we live in, and the experiences we have, make simple human interactions the most intolerable and painful acts we could ever imagine. Written by Ruth Fowler, and directed by Cameron Watson, it runs January 13 through January 28 at the Rogue Machine in the MET Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.

 

“Freud’s Last Session” September, 1939. On the day England enters World War II, legendary psychoanalyst Dr. Sigmund Freud invites the young, rising Oxford don C.S. Lewis to his home in London. There, only weeks before Freud took his own life, they engage in a brain-teasing battle of wits on the subjects of love, sex and the existence of God. Filled with humor, this deeply touching play explores the minds, hearts and souls of two brilliant men addressing the greatest questions of all time. Written by Mark St. Germain, and directed by Robert Mandel, it runs January 13 through March 4 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“A Love Affair” follows the the roller-coaster-ride of a 38-year (and counting) marriage, from the romantic naiveté of a 1950’s honeymoon, to the irritation of daily life in the Coming-of-New Age ’90’s. The successes, the disappointments, the sex, the traumas, the traumas about sex and the budget and the children and the adventure of casting your lot with another human being…for life. Written by Jerry Mayer, and directed by Chris DeCarlo, it runs January 13 through March 25 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.santamonicaplayhouse.com/a-love-affair.html.

“Shakespeare in Love” follows young Will Shakespeare (portrayed by Paul David Story), who is desperate. He has writer’s block and owes a new comedy to two demanding producers; what he has at the moment is a half-baked mess titled Romeo and Ethel, the Pirate’s Daughter. Enter his inspiration: Viola (Carmela Corbett). Smart, beautiful and Will’s greatest admirer, she will stop at nothing—including breaking the law—to be in his play. As their love blossoms, so does his greatest masterpiece. Written by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard, adapted by Lee Hall, with music by Paddy Cunneen, and directed by Marc Masterson, it runs January 13 through February 10 at the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“I Am My Own Wife” Charlotte von Mahlsdorf, an elegant and eccentric German transvestite, against all odds, navigates a path between the Nazi’s and East German Secret Police — in a pair of high heels. Uses more than 30 characters—all played by a single actor—to piece together Charlotte’s controversial life. A profound story of survival and inspiration, this provocative and bold production is highly engaging for ages 16 and up. Written by Doug Wright, and directed by Jenny Sullivan, it runs January 14 through January 28 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“The Last Wife” moves the story of King Henry VIII and his final wife, the wealthy widow Katherine Parr, to the 21st Century in this fascinating what-if imagining of The Tudors. Katherine Parr actively plays a role in being the stepmother to Henry’s three surviving children, Edward, Mary and Bess. Edward is the Heir Apparent, but Katherine acts to have Mary and Bess added to the line of succession, advancing their status as women of royal privilege. Henry also makes her Queen Regent when he goes off to war. Katherine’s marriage to Henry interrupts her ongoing affair with nobleman and soldier Edward Seymour. Given Henry’s track record with wives, will Katherine’s head remain upon her shoulders? Written by Kate Hennig, and directed by L. Flint Esquerra, it runs January 18 through February 18 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“Shakespeare His Wife and the Dog” asks a burning question: Now that he’s come home, just what is up with Shakespeare? The play tells the story of a sleepless night and of secrets, lies, resentments and passions of a marriage laid bare. Of course, this is not just any marriage. It is April 1616 and Shakespeare has returned to Stratford, having had the most illustrious career in all of theatrical history. He is a rich and famous man, but all’s not well. Why is he so unhappy? Why can’t he sleep? Why is his wife furious with him? Who is Will waiting for and why can’t his wife Anne find the dog? Written by Philip Whitchurch, and directed by Julia St John, it runs January 18 through January 28 at the Edye at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-434-3200 or visit www.thebroadstage.org.

“This is Very Important” Three different women. Three different stories.​ ​One common denominator… HIV positive. This one woman show sheds a light on the lives of these women, the people in their lives, public perception and what we think we know about HIV. Written by Rahvaunia, and directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson, it runs January 18 through February 4 at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.thisisveryimportantshow.com.

“A Delicate Ship” A haunting love triangle triggers an unexpected chain of events in this poetic play. In the early stages of a new relationship, Sarah and Sam are lovers happily discovering each other. Sarah and Nate know everything about each other, best of friends since childhood and maybe something more. But when Nate shows up unannounced on Sarah’s doorstep, she’s left questioning what and who she wants in this humorous and heartbreaking look at love, memory, and the decisions that alter the course of our lives. Written by Anna Ziegler, and directed by Andre Barron, it runs January 19 through March 11 at the Road Theatre on Magnolia in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-761-8838 or visit www.RoadTheatre.org.

“Denim Doves” tells the story of a modest compound nestled deep in the woods of what was once a small Midwestern town, home to five denim-clad sister wives and their naive husband, Penis. When a mysterious sixth wife arrives to join the sisterly Braid, clad in scandalous acid-wash and singing forbidden songs of ancient riot girls, will she compromise the security of this pious sect? The show contains strong sexual themes, brief full-frontal nudity, suggestive humor and is recommended for audiences ages 16 and up. Written by Adrienne Dawes, with music by Ellen Warkentine, lyrics by Cyndi Williams, and directed by Rosie Glen-Lambert, it runs January 19 through February 17 at the Broadwater Theater Complex in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.sacredfools.org.

“Nothing Is the Same” December 7, 1941. Four Hawaiian youngsters (two of Korean extraction, one of Filipino parentage, one of Japanese extraction) are playing marbles in a churchyard in Wahiawa, on Oahu’s North Shore. Japanese bombers buzz the town on their way to attack Pearl Harbor. War arrives, and nothing is the same. Mits, the Japanese-Hawaiian youth, eventually becomes an object of suspicion after he appears to signal one of the aircraft flying overhead. Could he possibly be a spy for the enemy? How will this affect how the other three youngsters respond to him? Japanese Americans on the mainland are being sent to detention camps far from their homes. Will that happen to Mits on the island? George, Bobi and Daniel, the other three, though not of Japanese heritage, are Asian Pacific Americans. How will perceptions of how they are seen affect their lives and their relationship with Mits? Written by Y York, and directed by Tim Dang, it runs January 19 through March 4 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

“Cabaret” A thrilling and up-to-date production of a classic show that is now more relevant than ever. The seedy glamour of the Kit Kat Club with its bawdy Emcee provide an unsettling but fitting backdrop to the story of the hard-living entertainer Sally Bowles in the decadent nightlife of Germany in the early ’30s. Come hear some of the most memorable songs in musical theatre history, including “Cabaret,” “Willkommen” and “Maybe This Time.” Right this way, your table’s waiting! Written by Joe Masteroff, with music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and directed by Larry Carpenter, it runs January 20 through February 11 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts in La Mirada. For tickets call 562-944-9801 or visit www.lamiradatheatre.com.

“The Chosen” A silent father, an ancient tradition and an unexpectedly important game of baseball forge bonds of lifelong friendship between two Jewish boys from “five blocks and a world apart” in this funny, poignant, timely and timeless father-son story about recognition and acceptance of “the other”. Written by Chaim Potok, adapted by Aaron Posner and Chaim Potok, and directed by Simon Levy, it runs January 20 through March 25 at the Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-663-1525 or visit www.FountainTheatre.com.

“Moon over Buffalo” centers on Charlotte and George Hay, fading stars of the 1950’s, played by Wendy Way and Edwin Scheibner. At the moment, they’re playing Private Lives and Cyrano De Bergerac in rep in Buffalo, New York with five other actors. On the brink of a disastrous split-up caused by George’s dalliance with a young ingénue (Haley Rade), they receive word that they might just have one last shot at stardom: Frank Capra is coming to town to see their matinee, and if he likes what he sees, he might cast them in his movie remake of “The Scarlet Pimpernel.” Unfortunately for George and Charlotte, everything that could go wrong does go wrong, abetted by a visit from their daughter and her clueless fiancé (Desiree Gillespie and Josh Breeding) and hilarious uncertainty about which play they’re actually performing, caused by Charlotte’s deaf old stage-manager mother (Rebecca Tudor) who hates every bone in George’s body. Charlotte’s admirer, attorney Richard (Jack Stroud) and Roz’s lovesick ex-fiancé Paul (Eric Pierce) round out the cast. Written by Ken Ludwig, and directed by Michael Thomas-Visgar, it runs January 20 through February 11 at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-828-7519 or visit www.web.ovationtix.com/trs/pr/975428.

“Pirates of Penzance” Sappy pirates, dewy-eyed damsels, bumbling Bobbies and a stuffy Major General. The Playhouse goes topsy-turvy as the audience joins the cast for a beach party onstage – tiki bar, banjos, and beach balls included. Chicago theater rebels The Hypocrites bring their zany immersive production of this beloved operetta to Pasadena. Written by Gilbert and Sullivan, adapted by Sean Graney and Kevin O’Donnell, with music by Gilbert and Sullivan, and directed by Sean Graney and Thrisa Hodits, it runs January 23 through February 25 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

“The Hothouse” A wild, impudent and blisteringly funny look at a government-run mental institution in which the wardens may be madder than the inmates. Under a veil of devilish wit and subversive humor, Harold Pinter’s biting political commentary on the perils of unchecked power is as vital and pertinent today as when he first wrote it. Nike Doukas directs a fully partner-cast production. Written by Harold Pinter, and directed by Nike Doukas, it runs January 25 through March 11 at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale. For tickets call 818-506-1983 or visit www.Antaeus.org.

“The Chinese Wall” Part tragedy, comedy, history, and satire, this wildly unpredictable theatrical event rivals and parallels today’s headlines, making an astounding comment on a seemingly farcical political arena. This 1946 anti-fascist play is being presented as a satire of the Trump administration. What sort of emperor would delight in the completion of a protective wall (The Great Wall of China) that could reach from New York to Berlin? Written by Max Frisch, and directed by Larry Eisenberg, it runs January 26 through March 11 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-763-5990 or visit www.thegrouprep.com.

“Buyer and Cellar” follows a struggling actor named Alex who winds up working for an unnamed show-business legend in her Malibu basement mall. An unlikely friendship develops between the two from which Alex learns profound lessons about himself. Written by Jonathan Tolins, and directed by Stephanie A. Coltrin, it runs January 27 through February 11 at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura. For tickets call 805-667-2900 or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

“Ironbound” spans 22 years to tell the story of Darja, a Polish immigrant getting by on a cleaning job, aggressive pragmatism and sheer will. This wry drama points out that sometimes survival is the only measure of success. Written by Martyna Majok, and directed by Tyne Rafaeli, it runs January 30 through March 4 at the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.


CONTINUING


“Barefoot in the Park” Paul and Corie Bratter are newlyweds in every sense of the word. He’s a straight-as-an-arrow lawyer and she’s a free spirit always looking for the latest kick. After a six-day honeymoon, they get a surprise visit from Corie’s loopy mother and decide to play matchmaker during a dinner with their neighbor-in-the-attic, Velasco, where everything that can go wrong, does. Written by Neil Simon, and directed by George Strattan, it runs through February 10 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.


Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

“Scene in LA” December 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Here are the new shows opening in our theaters this month:

OPENING

 

“A Christmas Carol” a masterpiece about the redemptive and transformative power of love. It allows families to take a supremely theatrical journey and celebrate the transformative power of forgiveness during the holidays. Ebenezer Scrooge’s rebirth from miserly curmudgeon to the epitome of love and generosity affirms our faith in the potent goodness of humanity during this beloved time of year. Written by Charles Dickens, adapted by Geoff Elliott, with music by Ego Plum, and directed by Geoff Elliott and Julia Rodriguez-Elliott, it runs December 1 through December 23 at the A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.ANoiseWithin.org.

“Latina Christmas Special” Back by popular demand and bursting with laughs, more laughs, music and escandalo (scandal)! You thought your holidays with the family were dramatic? Try these three hilarious, touching and surprisingly personal Christmas stories of holidays past told by three acclaimed Latina comedians. Written by Maria Russell, Sandra Valls and Diana Yanez, and directed by Geoffrey Rivas, it runs December 1 through January 7 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.thelatc.org.

“Pacific Overtures” is set in 1853 and follows the difficult Westernization of Japan, told from the point of view of the Japanese. In particular, the story focuses on the lives of two friends caught in the change. Written by John Weidman, with music by Stephen Sondheim, and directed by James Esposito, it runs December 1 through December 17 at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-205-1617 or visit www.crtheatre.com.

“The SantaLand Diaries” Patrick Censoplano dons the candy-cane tights for a Santa Monica Playhouse holiday celebration in this outrageously funny one-man play from NPR’s well-loved humorist David Sedaris about the author’s experiences as an unemployed writer taking a job as an elf at Macy’s department store in New York City, taking a wry look at how the holiday season brings out the best – and the worst – in us all. Written by David Sedaris, adapted by Joe Mantello, and directed by Chris DeCarlo, it runs December 1 through December 17 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.SantaMonicaPlayhouse.com.

“Santasia” This Off-Broadway Hit and Critics Pick laugh out loud annual holiday romp, is the perfect blend of Yuletide snark and sentiment, and has been compared to “The Carol Burnett Show”, “The Kids in the Hall”, “In Living Color”, “Saturday Night Live” and Vaudeville. This multi-media holiday special has it all including classic Rankin and Bass Claymation inspired movies, musical parodies, and heartfelt holiday moments. Written by Shaun and Brandon Loeser, and directed by Shaun Loeser, it runs December 1 through December 25 at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks. For tickets call 818-990-2324 or visit www.santasia.com.

“William Shakespeare’s Antony & Cleopatra” has its all: Romance, passion, sex, heartbreak, the fascination of royalty, war, politics, the epic sweep of history and, at its center, one of history’s most celebrated love stories: that of Antony, a general and triumvir of the Roman Republic who defied his Emperor; and the woman for whom Antony was willing to risk all, the Macedonian usurper of the throne of Egypt, the mighty Queen Cleopatra. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Gloria Gifford, it runs December 2 through December 30 at the Gray Studios in North Hollywood. For tickets call 310-366-5505 or visit www.tix.com.

“Sugar Plum Fairy” is the story of Loh’s holiday trauma, which revolves around the piles of tinsel, reindeer infestations, too-cheery tales of preternaturally good-hearted children—and the memories of a particularly fraught childhood holiday. At the age of 12, she was obsessed with landing the highly coveted lead role in the Beverly Rosann School of Dance’s production of The Nutcracker. Written by Sandra Tsing Loh, and directed by Bart DeLorenzo, it runs December 3 through December 24 at the South Coast Repertory’s Julianne Argyros Stage in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“A Christmas Carol with Charles Dickens” In his lifetime, Charles Dickens was recognized not only as a great writer, but as an actor. His greatest successes on the stages of Britain and the United States were his solo performances of his own work. One of the first pieces he presented to great acclaim was A Christmas Carol. In what has become a holiday tradition, ISC re-creates (with a little artistic license) the experience of a public reading given by Mr. Dickens himself. Written by Charles Dickens, and directed by Melissa Chalsma, it runs December 7 through December 23 at the Independent Studio in Atwater. For tickets call 818-710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.

“Aladdin and his Winter Wish” is a singing, swinging and soaring adventure that features family-friendly magic, with a comedic twist, dancing (with “So You Think You Can Dance” alumni), and contemporary music from “Jai Ho” (Slumdog Millionaire) to “Treasure” (Bruno Mars) to “Fantasy” (Earth, Wind and Fire) and many more! Written by Kris Lythgoe, with music by Keith Harrison, and directed by Spencer Liff, it runs December 8 through December 31 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” a young woman in a provincial town, and a Beast, who is actually a handsome young Prince who lives in a luxurious castle in France. When an Old Beggar Woman, who is actually an Enchantress, asks the Prince for shelter from the freezing cold, the Prince shuns the beggar for her repulsive appearance, at which time the Enchantress appears transforming the Prince into a Beast for his cold-hearted and selfish ways. The Enchantress casts a magic spell upon the Prince’s entire castle, including his good-natured servants, who are transformed into household objects to reflect their different personalities. Ashamed of his new appearance, the Beast conceals himself inside his castle with a magic mirror as his only window to the outside world, and an enchanted rose, which will bloom until he turns 21 years of age. Time is running out. If the Beast can learn to love a woman and earn her love in return before the final petal falls off the rose, the curse will be broken and he will return to his original self as a Prince. But, if not, he will remain a Beast forever, and all the members of his household will be doomed as well for all eternity. Written by Linda Woolverton, with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, and directed by Rigo Tejeda, it runs December 8 through January 21 at the CASA 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights. For tickets call 323-263-7684 or visit www.casa0101.org.

“Ashes to Ashes” is a madcap romantic comedy that’s a perfect escape for the holidays. Liberal Sara and right-winger Jefferson are polar opposites about everything — except their love and devotion for their two, newly deceased, filthy-rich best friends. Trapped by the time-constraints of their friends’ will, the two are forced to spend the next 16 days, 21 hours and 32 minutes together, scattering ashes across Europe. Whether they make it or not, the audience is in for a bumpy and very funny ride. Written by Debbie Bolsky, and directed by Katherine James, it runs December 9 through January 14 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-564-9410 or visit www.AshesToAshesThePlay.com.

“Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol” This timeless tale of redemption and hope follows the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge (Peter Van Norden), who is visited by the ghost of his former partner Jacob Marley (Joe Spano) and three spirits, who show him the error of his ways. Burns’ adaptation provides particular insight into the circumstances of the lost and lonely boy who became a bitter and hardened miser, an echo of Dickens’ own experience. Drawing from rich language of Dickens’ novel, the characters not only speak the dialogue but also narrate their thoughts and actions. The lack of a fourth wall allows the audience to be a part of Scrooge’s inner journey as he discovers the joy and meaning in Christmas. Written by Charles Dickens, adapted by Karyl Lynn Burns, and directed by Brian McDonald, it runs December 9 through December 23 at the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura. For tickets call 805-667-2900 or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

 

“Beauty and the Beast – A Christmas Rose” An updated version of the classic tale, in the style of a traditional British family Panto, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST – A CHRISTMAS ROSE features family-friendly magic, with a comedic twist, dancing (with “So You Think You Can Dance” alumni), contemporary music and more. Written by Kris Lythgoe, with music by Michael Orland, and directed by Sheldon Epps, it runs December 13 through December 24 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena. For tickets call 800-982-2787 or visit www.BeautyAndTheBeastPanto.com.

“Miracle on 34th Street” an old man going by the name of Kris Kringle fills in for an intoxicated Santa in Macy’s annual Thanksgiving Day parade. Kringle proves to be such a hit that he is soon appearing regularly at the chain’s main store in midtown Manhattan. When Kringle surprises customers and employees alike by claiming that he really is Santa Claus, it leads to a Supreme Court case to determine his mental health and, more importantly, his authenticity. Written by Valentine Davies, and directed by Danny Feldman, it runs December 14 through December 23 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

“The Nutcracker” The Long Beach Ballet continues its annual holiday tradition, for the 35th year this December. This production boasts a full symphony orchestra, a flying sleigh, a real live horse, on-stage pyrotechnics, and a cast of over 200. Former Disney designers Elliot Hessayon and Scott Schaffer created the enchanting scenery, Australian artist Adrian Clark designed the detailed costumes, and renowned magician Franz Harary created the special effects. Written by Alexandre Dumas, with music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, and directed by David Wilcox, it runs December 16 through December 24 at the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center Terrace Theatre in Long Beach. For tickets call 877-852-3177 or visit www.LongBeachNutcracker.com.

“How the Princh Stole Christmas” The Troubies will pay tribute to the Purple One himself as they send-up the Music of Prince while mashing it with the story of How the Grinch Stole Christmas. Dr. Seuss’ detestably fiendish hero the Grinch will get a makeover he won’t soon forget as he transforms from Green to Purple in the Troubies’ seasonal spoof! You’ll get Delirious over the Troubadour Theater Company’s latest adventure – a Sign of the Times skewering of Who-manity’s triumph over The Grump. The Controversy starts when The Princh dons Santa’s Raspberry Beret, hops in his Little Red Corvette sleigh, and decides “Let’s Go Crazy!” Be at The El Portal to feel the Housequake when the Purple Rain of terror is ended and The Princh is heard to say, “I Would Die for You”. The Troubies’ annual holiday show has become a tradition in Los Angeles and this will be their 16th in a long line of productions bringing guffaws and groans to the most festive time of the year. In this hilarious takeoff the Troubies’ signature blend of theatricality and mayhem will provide laughs aplenty featuring their renowned live musical and comedic style. Written and directed by Matt Walker, it runs December 21 through December 31 at the El Portal Theatre Debbie Reynolds Mainstage in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight, and have a very happy holiday season!

“Scene in LA” November 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Here are the new shows opening in our theaters this month:

OPENING

 

“Yohen” In Japanese pottery, the term “yohen” refers to unpredictable changes that take place in the kiln. James and Sumi Washington are an interracial couple struggling to maintain their 37-year marriage after James retires from the US Army. The dramatic change in routine prompts questions about life, love, and aging, as the couple attempts to repair what’s broken and decide what is worth saving. Screen, stage, and television actor Danny Glover and Emmy Award-winning actress June Angela will star in the revival. Written by Philip Kan Gotanda, and directed by Ben Guillory, it runs November 1 through November 19 at the David Henry Hwang Theater at the Union Center of the Arts in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-625-7000 or visit www.eastwestplayers.org.

“Caught” You walk into a gallery hosting District 798, a show of new work inspired by a legendary Chinese dissident artist who was imprisoned in China for a single, epic work of art. Recently profiled in The New Yorker, the Chinese artist himself is present, and begins his presentation by sharing the details of an ordeal that breaks your heart and stirs your sense of justice. But… his lecture is interrupted; then that interruption is broken. Soon, you find yourself in a labyrinthine exploration of truth, art, social justice, and cultural appropriation, where nothing is as it first appears. Written by Christopher Chen, and directed by Ed Sylvanus Iskandar, it runs November 3 through December 10 at the Think Tank Gallery in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.thinktank.gallery.

“In-Laws, Outlaws, and Other People (That Should Be Shot)” It is 6 p.m. and the Douglas family is busily preparing to be invaded by their quirky relatives for their annual Christmas Eve dinner. After robbing a local liquor store, two bumbling crooks, Tony and Vinny, seek a place to briefly hide out. Using a ruse to gain entrance into the home, they soon find themselves in charge of an ever-growing list of zany family members. Who is holding whom hostage? This dysfunctional family holiday comedy will leave you quite merry! Written by Steve Franco, and directed by Ria Erlich, it runs November 3 through December 10 at the Theatre Palisades Pierson Playhouse in Pacific Palisades. For tickets call 310-454-1970 or visit www.theatrepalisades.com.

“The Man Who Came to Dinner” about the nightmare holiday guest who never leaves – or so it seems. Just before Christmas, Sheridan Whiteside, a noted radio personality, is invited to dinner at the home of Ernest W. and Daisy Stanley in Mesalia, Ohio. After slipping on ice and claiming to have dislocated his hip, he becomes an intrusive and outrageously demanding houseguest. Written by Moss Hart and George F. Kaufman, and directed by Linda Kerns, it runs November 3 through December 17 at the Actors Co-op David Schall Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-462-8460 or visit www.ActorsCo-op.org.

“Driving Miss Daisy” takes place in the 1940s through 1970s at the height of the Civil Rights movement. The play delicately explores racial tensions when a warm friendship evolves between an elderly Jewish woman and her black chauffeur. Written by Alfred Uhry, and directed by Heather Provost, it runs November 4 through December 10 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.colonytheatre.org.

“I’m Not Famous – a Musical Journey with Barbara Minkus” Join us for a funny, poignant and powerful evening of theatre as film, television and Broadway star Barbara Minkus shares private moments, personal tidbits, and a plethora of musical delights. Written by Barbara Minkus, and directed by Susan Morgenstern, it runs November 5 through November 26 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.SantaMonicaPlayhouse.com/im-not-famous.html.

“Chasing Mem’ries: A Different Kind of Musical” Tyne Daly stars as a woman not quite ready to let go of the life she’s loved and the love of her life. Written and directed by Josh Ravetch, with music by Bill Cantos & Mari Falcone, Dave Grusin, Marvin Hamlisch, Michel Legrand and Johnny Mandel, lyrics by Alan & Marilyn Bergman, it runs November 7 through December 17 at the Geffen Playhouse, Gil Cates Theater in Westwood. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“King Charles III” The Queen is dead. After a lifetime of waiting, the prince ascends the throne. A future of power. But how to rule? Camilla, William, Kate and Harry join Charles in Mike Bartlett’s “future history play,” exploring the people beneath the crown. The Los Angeles premiere of the 2015 Olivier Award winning best new play. A contemporary Shakespearean drama. Written by Mike Bartlett, and directed by Michael Michetti, it runs November 8 through December 3 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

“BIG FISH – 12 Chair Version” is a fantastical new musical that follows the life of Edward Boom, a traveling salesman who lives life to its fullest. Edward’s larger-than-life stories delight everyone around him—most of all, his devoted wife Sandra. But their son Will, about to have a child of his own, is determined to find the truth behind his father’s epic tales of witches, giants, and mermaids. Overflowing with heart and shifting between present day and a storybook past, this musical brings a family together and reveals the true meaning of friendship. Written by John August, based on the novel by Daniel Wallace, with music by Andrew Lippa, and directed by Cathy Thomas-Grant, it runs November 9 through November 18 at the Smothers Theatre, Pepperdine University in Malibu. For tickets call 310-506-4522 or visit www.arts.pepperdine.edu.

“Avenue Q” is an irreverent and hilarious musical that tells the timeless story of a recent college grad named Princeton, who moves into a shabby New York apartment all the way out on Avenue Q. He soon discovers that, although the residents seem nice, it’s clear that this is not your ordinary neighborhood. Together, Princeton and his new-found friends struggle to find jobs, love and their ever-elusive purpose in life. Filled with gut-busting laugh-out-loud humor and a delightfully catchy score, not to mention puppets, AVENUE Q is a truly unique show that has quickly become a favorite for audiences everywhere. Not appropriate for children under 16 years of age. Written by Jeff Whitty, with music by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, and directed by Susan Goldman Weisbarth, it runs November 10 through December 16 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

 

“DeLEARious” There’s a new king in town. Queen Elizabeth is dead — all hail King James! In deLEARious, Ron and Phil are writing about King James I and Shakespeare — who in turn are writing about the legendary King Lear. Phil gets sick of Ron’s laziness and womanizing; King James gets sick of Shakespeare and demotes him to working on the Bible; and King Lear gets sick of everyone and goes crazy. Great songs, a clever story and lots of laughs! Written and directed by Ron West, with music by Phil Swann and Ron West, it runs November 10 through December 16 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 323-882-6912 or visit www.openfist.org.

“Letters from Home” In 2016, Kalean Ung learned of a drawer in her father’s study, filled with letters from family and friends living in desperate circumstances in refugee camps and detailing their lives during the genocide that befell Cambodia with the rise of the Khmer Rouge. This play examines her own life through the stories her father (acclaimed composer Chinary Ung) told her of arriving in America in the 1960s as a young music student, and his subsequent quest to rescue family members. Written by Kalean Ung, with music by Chinary Ung, and directed by Marina McClure, it runs November 10 through November 18 at the Independent Studio in the Atwater Crossing Arts + Innovation Complex in Atwater Village. For tickets call 818-710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.

“The Secret in the Wings” is a witty, magical, and darkly mysterious collage of lesser–known fairy tales that explores simple parables in the context of a surreal, tempestuous dream. Written by Mary Zimmerman, and directed by Joseph V. Calarco, it runs November 11 through December 16 at the Historic Lankershim Arts Center in North Hollywood. For tickets call 323-944-2165 or visit www.coeurage.org/sitw.

“Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Jersey Lily” England’s greatest actress and national treasure Lillie Langtry is the target of blackmail in a sex scandal that threatens to bring down the British monarchy. The perpetrator of this extortion is the vilest fiend ever to walk the streets of London, Professor Moriarty. Three men team up in an attempt to thwart the foul misdeed: The Great Detective, Sherlock Holmes; his friend, John H. Watson, M.D.; and the playwright, Oscar Wilde. Can these three succeed in stopping the arch-villain when Scotland Yard cannot? Written by Katie Forgette, and directed by Jules Aaron, it runs November 16 through December 17 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“A Christmas Story” Back in the 1960s, humorist, writer, raconteur and TV and radio personality Jean Shepherd (1921-1999) was the undisputed king of late night radio on the East Coast. His live broadcasts from the Limelight Café in Greenwich Village late on Saturday nights on WOR-AM became appointment listening for millions of fans. (This was a decade before Garrison Keillor and Saturday Night Live made their way onto the airwaves. This was when people still listened to AM radio.) Written by Philip Grecian, based on the screenplay by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown and Bob Clark, and directed by Christian Lebano, it runs November 17 through December 31 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

“A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” finds the Roman slave Pseudolus scheming his way to freedom by playing matchmaker for his master’s son, Hero, who is smitten with the blonde and beautiful Philia. However, things don’t go at all according to plan. The complications that ensue involve blackmail, funny disguises and long-lost children, while Pseudolus desperately tries to keep up with his end of the bargain. Written by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart, with music by Stephen Sondheim, and directed by Joseph Leo Bwarie, it runs November 17 through December 31 at the Garry Marshall Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.garrymarshalltheatre.org.

“Levi!” a classic fit new musical based on the life of Levi Strauss. Written by Larry Cohen and Janelle Webb Cohen, with music by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman, and directed by Bruce Kimmel, it runs November 17 through December 2 at the Los Angeles City College Camino Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-953-4999 Ext. 2990 or visit www.red.vendini.com/ticketsoftware.html?t=tix&e=b3d784085302c0056f5583711938c080.

“The Marvelous Wonderettes” At Springfield High School, you better believe that the female population has hopes and dreams as big as their crinoline skirts! This holds especially true for the Wondrettes — four gals with incredible voices who all want to make it big, and by the second act’s 10-year high school reunion, you’ll find out which of them did. The leading ladies keep this nostalgic romp rocking with their versions of ’50s and ’60s jukebox classics like “Lollipop,” “Dream Lover,” “Lipstick on Your Collar,” “It’s My Party” and many more. Written by Roger Bean, and directed by Robert Marra, it runs November 17 through January 7 at the Crown City Theatre Company in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-605-5685 or visit www.crowncitytheatre.com.

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is a romantic fantasy, set in royal court and enchanted forest, weaves together four plots all joined to the upcoming nuptials of the Duke and his Amazon queen. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Marc Singer, it runs November 17 through December 31 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-763-5990 or visit www.thegrouprep.com.

“One Way Ticket to Oregon” takes place in Alexandria, Louisiana during the very hot and humid summer of 2010. At its core are two life-long friends, June Collins, an older no nonsense African American woman with an intuitive understanding of people, and Leigh Anne Rainey, a fiery and opinionated older southern belle living in an aging house that has been home to her family for over 150 years. When Leigh Anne receives the diagnosis that her cancer has returned and spread to her pancreas, she’s forced to confront her mortality and how it will affect her son Bobby, who relies on her stability, his unstable wife Eve, and her young grandson Duke, who has autism. With help from her friend June, Leigh explores her limited options, including the use of medical marijuana to curb her symptoms, and learns about doctors in Oregon who can legally help her to “die with dignity.” As she wrestles with her faith, unresolved issues of race and heritage threaten to unravel the core of Leigh’s fragile family, an emotional struggle taking place all too often around the world today. Written by B.C Caldwell, and directed by JJ Mayes, it runs November 17 through December 17 at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets visit www.tinyurl.com/onewaytix.

“A Christmas Carol” visits from three ghosts help Scrooge to see the light and change his ways. This wonderful, optimistic Christmas message shows us that, the human spirit is capable of renewal and its hopeful message has earned a place of honor in the hearts of generations. Tiny Tim, Bob Cratchit, and the lively carolers will put you in the perfect holiday mood! Glendale Centre Theatre’s traditional dramatization of Ebenezer Scrooge’s life-changing Christmas Eve is entertaining, captivating, and touching. Written by Charles Dickens, and directed by Tim Dietlein, it runs November 24 through December 24 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

“A Christmas Carol” Nineteenth-century London comes to life and recaptures for audiences the spirit of an old-fashioned Christmas with this timeless Dickens classic and all the favorite characters—Tiny Tim and the Cratchit family, the Fezziwigs, the Ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet-to-come—and everyone’s favorite curmudgeon, Ebenezer Scrooge. Written by Charles Dickens, and directed by John-David Keller, it runs November 24 through December 24 at the South Coast Repertory Segerstrom Stage in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“We Are America” is a musical salute to our veterans! All performers are 60 or more years old. Special New Years Eve performance. Written by Pink Lady, and directed by Jack Failla, it runs on select dates from November 25 through December 31 at the Madrid Theatre in Canoga Park. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3097240.

“The Heart of Robin Hood” Robin Hood and his unmerry gang of cutthroats steal from the rich, but it never occurs to them to give back. When a wicked Prince John threatens it all, the bold Marion steps in to protect the poor. Written by David Farr, and directed by Gisli Örn Gardarsson and Selma Björnsdóttir, it runs November 29 through December 17 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/RobinHood.

“A Very Die Hard Christmas” a team of terrorists has seized a building, taken hostages, and declared war. One man has managed to escape. An off-duty cop hiding somewhere inside. He’s alone, tired…and he doesn’t like Christmas. This is much more than a stage version of the holiday classic Die Hard, its parody at its best with Christmas miracles and familiar holiday friends galore. Yippee Ki-Yay, Father Christmas! Written by Josh Carson, and directed by Gregory Crafts, it runs November 29 through December 17 at the Belfry Stage, Upstairs at the Crown in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.theatreunleashed.org.

“Bob’s Holiday Office Party” Every year, insurance agent Bob Finhead’s whacked out friends and clients stop by his small-town Iowa office for their annual holiday bash. The town mayor, the sheriff, the twin farmer sisters, the stoner, the town floozy and the pastor’s wife have already RSVPed for this year’s event. Bob’s Holiday Office Party is a Los Angeles holiday tradition that has been making the season brighter with gut busting hilarity since 1995. Written by Joe Keyes and Rob Elk, and directed by Matt Roth, it runs November 30 through December 17 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.bobsofficeparty.com.

“It’s a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play” takes place at KAWL, a struggling 1940s radio station that good-hearted owner Michael Anderson is barely keeping alive. He calls on some old friends (with big personalities) and some less-than-professional station employees to offer up a live radio version of Frank Capra’s touching masterpiece It’s a Wonderful Life in what might sadly be the station’s last live show. But it’s the holidays, a time when miracles can happen…. Written by Jim Martyka, and directed by Jenn Scuderi Crafts, it runs November 30 through December 17 at the Belfry Stage, Upstairs at the Crown in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.theatreunleashed.org.

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

“Scene in LA” October 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Here are the new shows opening in our theaters this month:


OPENING

 

“THE FACE, Behind the Face, behind the face” a performing artist confronts the ups and downs and struggles of his life and career and is led to the conclusion that his voice and his music are the keys to his success. The story provides a framework for the glorious singing voice of vocalist and actor Anthony Gruppuso, who performs in nineteen musical numbers. The songs include favorites from the Broadway canon, pop standards, lesser-known gems, and some brand-new material. Written by Anthony Gruppuso, with music by John Dickson, and directed by Calvin Remsberg, it runs October 1 through October 29 at the Theatre West in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-851-7977 or visit www.theatrewest.org.

“Mice” Ayushi and Grace have just met. Both are pastor’s wives. Both are being held captive, locked in the basement pantry of a serial cannibal. Today, food isn’t the only thing on his mind. If Ayushi and Grace are to survive, they must win a series of mind games with their captor. They must discern what it really means to become good. Written by Schaeffer Nelson, and directed by Roderick Menzies, it runs October 1 through October 29 at the Ensemble Studio Theatre/LA (in Atwater Village Complex) in Atwater. For tickets call 818-839-1197 or visit www.dime.io/events/mice/9/2017.

“So Long Boulder City” Straight from the world of the almost-Best Picture winner LA LA LAND, So Long Boulder City is comedian Jimmy Fowlie’s take on Emma Stone’s one woman show-within-a-movie that played to a barely-sold house. It’s a tale of determination, ambition, crushed dreams and Hollywood triumphs. You won’t want to miss what Deadline Reporter calls “A struggling actresses’ tour-de-force!” Starring Jimmy Fowlie as Mia Dolan. Written by Jimmy Fowlie and Jordan Black, and directed by Jordan Black, it runs October 2 through November 6 at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“Tilda Swinton Answers an Ad on Craigslist” Walt is a gay wallflower. After a devastating break-up, Walt innocently places an ad on Craigslist for a new roommate. When other-worldly star Tilda Swinton shows up at his door and insists on moving in to “study” Walt for her next big movie role, things gets hysterically chaotic. Written by Byron Lane, and directed by Tom DeTrinis, it runs October 4 through October 25 at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“An Accident” follows the story of a woman who is struck by a car, leaving her severely injured and with little memory of her past. Her sole visitor is the man who hit her. Critically acclaimed, this powerful drama explores how small decisions can change the course of a life and how the body and mind heal in unexpected ways. Written by Lydia Stryk, and directed by Kate Jopson, it runs October 5 through October 29 at the Lounge Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-205-6642 or visit www.anaccident.brownpapertickets.com.

“Cagney the Musical” Direct from its hit run in New York, CAGNEY is the award-winning musical that follows the life of the legendary James Cagney from the streets of New York to his rise as one of the brightest stars of Hollywood, from a vaudeville song-and-dance man to the cinema’s original tough guy. Broadway’s Robert Creighton, in the role he was born to play, leads the original NYC cast of six who tap dance through a score that blends original music with classic George M. Cohan favorites, including Give My Regards To Broadway, Grand Old Flag, and Yankee Doodle Dandy. Written by Peter Colley, with music by Robert Creighton & Christopher McGovern, and directed by Bill Castellino, it runs October 5 through October 29 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.cagneythemusical.com.

“Working 2017” is a fresh look at the struggle of the middle class in Studs Terkel’s ‘Working’ updated with new characters. Written by Bobby Moresco, it runs October 5 through November 9 at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.working2017.brownpapertickets.com.

“The Comedic Tragedy of Macbeth” In Dunsinane Sanitorium, an early 20th century insane asylum, a lowly janitor (Macbeth) bonds with five patients: a delusional bipolar who thinks she is his wife, a schizophrenic best friend, and three patients with multiple personalities (ranging from the superintendent of the asylum to witches, murderers, and physicians). Written by William Shakespeare, adapted by Rebecca Lynne, and directed by Rebecca Lynne, it runs October 6 through October 21 at the Brand Park in Glendale. For tickets visit www.deanproductionstheatre.com.

“The Dreamer Examines His Pillow” A striking, surreal study of the often-bizarre byways that love between men and women can follow. Told in three related scenes, the play uses indirection and richly evocative language to make its unsettling but ultimately illuminating points. The Dreamer Examines His Pillow is a philosophic dream-comedy full of rich symbolism, magical realism, and emotional intensity about love, marriage and maturity. Written by John Patrick Shanley, and directed by Mark Blanchard, it runs October 6 through October 29 at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.plays411.com/dreamer.

“Red Sand” Innovative, unusual new piece of movement theatre with heart, humor and a touch of absurdity: this show is at once non-linear, chaotic, cathartic, and undeniably relatable. Presented through a series of revolving stories and using an evocative dreamscape of sights, sounds, and sensuality, this new piece of physical theatre journeys through the capricious stages of loss and hope, walking on the edge of the thin line between the sensations, real or imaginary, true or false, of what frees and fetters us. Written and directed by Serena Dolinsky, it runs October 6 through November 17 at the Santa Monica Playhouse, The Other Space in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.SantaMonicaPlayhouse.com/red-sand.html.

“Young Frankenstein” When Frederick Frankenstein, an esteemed New York brain surgeon and professor, inherits a castle and laboratory in Transylvania from his grandfather, deranged genius Victor Von Frankenstein, he faces a dilemma. Does he continue to run from his family’s tortured past or does he stay in Transylvania to carry on his grandfather’s mad experiments reanimating the dead and, in the process fall in love with his sexy lab assistant Inga? Young Dr. Frankenstein (that’s Fronkensteen) attempts to complete his grandfather’s masterwork and bring a corpse to life. Together with his oddly shaped and endearing helper Igor (that’s Eye-gor), his curvaceous lab assistant Inga, and in spite of his incredibly self-involved madcap fiancée Elizabeth, Frankenstein succeeds in creating a monster — but not without scary and quite often hysterical complications. Written by Thomas Meehan, with music by Mel Brooks, and directed by David Lamoureux, it runs October 6 through October 15 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center in Redondo Beach, then October 20 through October 29 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in Cerritos. For tickets call 714-589-2770 Ext. 1 (Redondo) or 562-916-8500 (Cerritos) or visit www.3dtheatricals.org.

“Mrs. Warren’s Profession” explores what happens to a family when Cambridge-educated Vivie discovers that her genteel upbringing has been funded by her mother’s illicit (but successful) business dealings as a prostitute and madam. Written by George Bernard Shaw, and directed by Michael Michetti, it runs October 8 through November 18 at A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.anoisewithin.org.

“Twelve Angry Men” Be part of the courtroom action in this classic drama in which 12 jurors decide the fate of a young man accused of murder. What will the verdict be? Find out in this suspenseful thriller that pits passionate jurors against one another in a timely, timeless and bold examination of the American justice system. Written by Reginald Rose, and directed by Michael Matthews, it runs October 8 through October 22 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“Afterlife: a ghost story” explores the fragility of the human psyche and the lingering effects of great loss framed by a chilling tale. An impending storm forces troubled couple, Connor and Danielle to return to their beachfront home for the first time since they lost their son. While they reluctantly attempt to secure their house and also try to pick up the pieces of their fractured lives, they are welcomed by dead fishes littering the shore, enormous black birds that appear to be waiting and watching and a familiar voice whispering from the waves…calling to them. When the storm hits sooner than expected, they are thrust into another dimension, where they must confront their tragedy and learn how to cope with the pain of remembering before they are swept away forever. This hauntingly beautiful play asks the question: what do you do when hardest part of living is remembering? Written by Steve Yockey, and directed by Steve Jarrard, it runs October 13 through November 12 at the Avery Schreiber Playhouse in North Hollywood. For tickets call 323-860-6569 or visit www.afterlife.brownpapertickets.com.

“The Daughters of the Kush” It’s 1963, at Plains University in Iowa. Lambda Kappa Nu is a historically Black sorority. The sisters are referred to as The Daughters of the Kush. Kathy is the sorority’s lone white, Jewish pledge. She has been raised by Black adoptive parents and is eager to pledge her adoptive mother’s sorority. When Kathy meets with a violent mishap, the Daughters suddenly find themselves under investigation. Written by George W. Corbin, and directed by Veronica Thompson, it runs October 13 through October 29 at the Stella Adler Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 805-496-2982 or visit www.corbinkush.eventbrite.com.

“The Final Girl” No one under 17 will be admitted. Smalltown, USA, 1978. High-school senior Victoria Vahtes becomes the target of escaped psychotic Morgan Miller. In a one-night spree of butchery, the masked Miller murders Victoria’s best friend, boyfriend, and parents before attempting to kill her. Rescue arrives in the form of Miller’s pistol-packing psychiatrist, Dr. Harriett Gordon-Lewis but Miller escapes and disappears without a trace. Six years later, violent psychotic escapes from understaffed insane asylums and the ensuing murder sprees have become a national epidemic. When a mysterious masked female vigilante starts killing fugitive psychotics mid-rampage, Dr. Gordon-Lewis suspects former patient Victoria Vahtes. After a spectacularly bloody asylum escape by psychotic Wayne Walton, Dr. Gordon-Lewis follows Walton’s trail of destruction back to his childhood hometown, certain he will be pursued by the vigilante known to law enforcement as The Final Girl. Written and directed by Christopher Johnson, it runs October 13 through November 4 at the McCadden Place Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.thefinalgirl.brownpapertickets.com.

“Homecoming Queen’s Got a Gun: The Musical” The song tells the story of a High School Homecoming Queen who freaks out and goes on a killing spree. The stage show has it all…singing, dancing, and murder! Come check out what happens before that prom night. Blood and Mascara will run!! But will the question ever be answered — who is Johnny? Join Julie Brown, as Julie Brown and her best friend Debbie Dickey (Drew Droege) as they count down the minutes and the student bodies, until Homecoming! Something’s not right at Betty Ford High. People are starting to drop dead, but no one has time for that because there a new a Homecoming Queen to crown! Like for sure! Grab your best prom outfit for a night of total awesomeness! Written by Julie Brown and Kurt Koehler, and directed by Kurt Koehler, it runs October 13 through October 21 at the Celebrity Cavern Club Theater inside Casita Del Campo Restaurant in Silverlake. For tickets visit www.juliebrown.tix.com.

“Is He Dead?” It’s 1846. Talented French artist, Millet, feels honor bound to save his fiancée and her father from financial ruin. Millet soon realizes that great paintings make much more money after the artist dies. In desperation, he fakes his own death and becomes… his sister. Written by Mark Twain, and directed by Todd Nielsen, it runs October 13 through November 18 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

 

“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” The story is based on the Biblical story of Joseph, found in the Book of Genesis. It is set in a frame in which a narrator is telling a story (sometimes to children, encouraging them to dream). She then tells the story of Joseph, another dreamer (“Prologue,” “Any Dream Will Do”). In the beginning of the main story Jacob and his 12 sons are introduced (“Jacob and Sons”). Joseph’s brothers are jealous of him for his coat of many colours, a symbol of their father’s preference for him (“Joseph’s Coat”). It is clear from Joseph’s dreams that he is destined to rule over them (“Joseph’s Dreams”). To get rid of him and prevent the dreams from coming true, they attempt fratricide, but then they sell Joseph as a slave to some passing Ishmaelites (“Poor, Poor Joseph”), who take him to Egypt. Back home, his brothers, led by Reuben (Levi in the original Broadway production) and accompanied by their wives, break the news to Jacob that Joseph has been killed. They show his tattered coat smeared with his blood – really goat blood – as proof that what they say is true (“One More Angel in Heaven”). After the bereft Jacob leaves, the brothers and their wives happily celebrate the loss of Joseph. In Egypt, Joseph is the slave of Egyptian millionaire Potiphar. He rises through the ranks of slaves and servants until he is running Potiphar’s house. When Mrs. Potiphar makes advances, Joseph spurns her. She removes his shirt, feels his chest and back, squeezes his rear and blows him kisses. Potiphar overhears, barges in, sees the two together – and jumps to conclusions (“Potiphar”). Outraged, he throws Joseph in jail. Depressed, Joseph laments the situation (“Close Every Door”) – but his spirits rise when he helps two prisoners put in his cell. Both are former servants of the Pharaoh and both have had bizarre dreams. Joseph interprets them. One cellmate, the Baker, will be executed, but the other, the Butler, will be returned to service. Upon hearing this, the rest of the prisoners surround Joseph and encourage him to go after his dreams (“Go, Go, Go Joseph”). Written by Tim Rice, with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Tim Rice, and directed by Will North, it runs October 13 through October 22 at the Kavli Theatre at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks. For tickets call 800-745-3000 or visit www.5startheatricals.com.

“Kaidan Project: Walls Grow Thin” You receive a letter from your childhood friend who is haunted by a mysterious event in your shared past—and she needs your help. When you arrive at her family’s warehouse, you ascend to the fifth and sixth floors in a creaking freight elevator, followed by a voice that calls out through the shadows, drowning you in echoes of wells and engines and graveyards, in tangles of hair and snow, in sharp reflections of your darkest moments—a voice that may not be human. A small group of twelve enters a room alone, the walls begin to thin, and a dark spirit stirs within you—will you ever escape it? Written by Lisa Dring and Chelsea Sutton, and directed by Sean T. Cawelti, it runs October 13 through November 5 at the A secret warehouse location in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-596-9468 or visit www.rogueartists.org.

“Mr. Burns, a Post-electric Play” After the collapse of civilization, a group of survivors keep the spark of human spirit alive by telling stories around a campfire. As the years wear on, these stories expand into the realm of legend and myth. Written by Anne Washburn, and directed by Jaime Robledo, it runs October 13 through November 18 at the Broadwater in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-281-8337 or visit www.sacredfools.org.

“A Picasso” The curtain rises. We are in Paris, 1941. A screen projects black and white images of old Parisian streets on the Left Bank. The rue des Grands-Augustins, Picasso’s studio, and his favorite hangout, Le Catalan Café, come to the forefront. The romance is contrasted by the sound of marching boots and the reality of the German Occupation. The boots invade our set, an underground vault. Lights up! Our hero, Pablo Picasso, is thrown in! Sex, Art, Politics, Nazis, and a classy 20th century icon are all wrapped up into an intense, confrontational drama with sensitivity and wit. Mademoiselle Fischer, a beautiful, “cultural attaché”, from Berlin has arrested Picasso. She needs him to authenticate three of his pieces, recently “confiscated”, by the Nazis from their Jewish owners, for inclusion in a “degenerate art show”, curated by Joseph Goebbles. Picasso does, whereupon he learns that the works will be destroyed in a bonfire! Written by Jeffrey Hatcher, and directed by Natalia Lazarus, it runs October 13 through November 11 at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets visit www.PromendePlayhouse.com.

“Turn Me Loose” is a new comedic drama about the extraordinary and explosive life of the late Dick Gregory—starring Emmy Award-winner and “Scandal” star Joe Morton—that shines a light on the first black comedian to expose white audiences to racial comedy. Gregory confronted bigotry with shockingly disarming humor, marched alongside Martin Luther King, Jr., and deeply influenced comics from Richard Pryor to Chris Rock. He’s been a prolific writer, muckraker, provocateur, and candidate for Mayor of Chicago and for President of the United States. He was singled out by President Obama as one of his all-time favorite comedians. Experience the comic genius of Dick Gregory and the poetic final words of his mentor, slain civil rights activist, Medgar Evers. Written by Gretchen Law, and directed by John Gould Rubin, it runs October 13 through October 29 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Lovelace Studio Theater in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/Theater.

“Gem of the Ocean” set in 1904, nearly 50 years after slavery ended, but at a time when freedom is still precarious. Many former slaves and descendants venturing north find themselves at Aunt Ester’s door in Pittsburgh’s Hill District. A renowned cleanser of souls claiming to be 285 years old, Ester provides solace, advice and healing. Citizen Barlow, racked with guilt because he let another man take the rap for his crimes, desperately wants to be pure again—and Aunt Ester may be his only hope. Written by August Wilson, and directed by Kent Gash, it runs October 14 through November 11 at the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“Underneath the Lintel: An Impressive Presentation of Lovely Evidences” When a reclusive librarian discovers a 113-year overdue book in the night slot, curiosity compels him to pursue the borrower. His search for answers leads to a worldwide, whirlwind journey, where he discovers instead the great mysteries of humanity. Written by Glen Berger, and directed by Steven Robman, it runs October 18 through November 19 at the Audrey Skirball Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“An Evening with Fritz Coleman” Everyone’s favorite weatherman shares his hilarious, insightful take on growing up and growing older. He proves that aging isn’t pretty … but it’s pretty funny! NBC4’s weathercaster for the past 35 years, Coleman has made eight appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson and Jay Leno, and he is a three-time Emmy Award winner. Written and directed by Fritz Coleman, it runs October 19 through October 22 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.colonytheatre.org.

 

“Hello Stranger” is about a man who has mixed feelings about returning to his hometown in the Inland Empire after having been away for many years. He is there to attend his 30-year high school reunion, but finds he is drawn to stay after encountering a strange girl in the yard of the house he grew up in with his mother. The house has since gone through many owners and his mother is long dead but the man has been haunted by things that happened here in his childhood. He meets the woman who now lives in his old house who is covering up a tragedy that also connects to him, which has colored the whole town. The man then embarks on a journey through his past, dreams, and memories to uncover dark secrets about his mother and the town, and along the way he meets other characters of mysterious origins who may or may not be helping him, and who may or may not be part of the ghost world of the Day of the Dead Festival, which is when the play takes place. Written by Sharon Yablon, and directed by Sarah Figoten Wilson, it runs October 19 through November 18 at the Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-856-8611 or visit www.theatreofnote.com.

“An Enemy of the Pueblo” is a feminist Chicano modern adaptation of Henrik Ibsen’s classic play, An Enemy of the People, a Curandera (shaman woman) warns the people in the border town of Milagros (Miracles) of the poisoning of the water, but no one want to believe her because their economic futures depend on the water in the springs attracting the “gringos” back to the town. Written by Josefina López, and directed by Corky Dominguez, it runs October 20 through November 12 at the CASA 0101 Theatre in Boyle Heights. For tickets call 323-263-7684 or visit www.casa0101.org.

“Feathers of Fire: A Persian Epic” is a visually breathtaking cinematic shadow play for all ages. Inspired by the 10th-century Persian epic Shahnameh (‘The Book of Kings’), the action-packed tale follows star-crossed lovers Zaul and Rudabeh who triumph at the end against all odds. Hamid Rahmanian’s graphics, derived from the visual tradition of the region, are rendered as puppets, costumes, masks, scenography and digital animation, all of which come to life in a “live animation” on a cinema-size screen. Suitable for ages 5+. Written and directed by Hamid Rahmanian and Larry Reed, it runs October 20 through October 29 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Bram Goldsmith Theater in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/Theater.

 

“Home” an orphan who leaves his family’s farm in North Carolina to seek refuge and prosperity in the North. We experience the epic journey from adolescence to adulthood, as he struggles to stay true to himself amid a rapidly changing and turbulent America. Spanning the 1950s through the Vietnam War and Civil Rights eras, heartbreaking hurdles and setbacks continuously obstruct his road to happiness. But Cephus perseveres and always manages to remain upbeat. Written by Samm-Art Williams, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs October 20 through November 5 at the International City Theatre – Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.InternationalCityTheatre.org.

“Sinner’s Laundry” the residents of Newport Women’s Correctional Facility have all mysteriously vanished. Courtney Sauls (Dear White People) and Christine Woods (Hello Ladies) star as Jess and Sam, the only two inmates who remain — and they are locked in Rec Room No. 4 with nothing but some crappy board games and their imaginations. Waiting for Godot meets Orange is the New Black meets The Book of Revelations as they navigate their way towards salvation in this unique, funny and poignant exploration of the power of redemption and the divinity within us all. Written by John Lavelle, and directed by Becca Wolff, it runs October 20 through November 19 at the Lounge Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-380-8843 or visit www.iamatheatre.com.

 

“This Land” is a deep, painful, joyful story that spans 150 years as four families, each with roots in different parts of the world, make their home on the same plot of Southern California land. A host of old curses and blessings, traditions and recipes, loves and betrayals, conspire to threaten successive displacements. And as the story unfolds each successive generation grapples with whether this land is truly theirs. Written by Evangeline Ordaz, and directed by Armando Molina, it runs October 20 through November 12 at the Company of Angels in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.companyofangels.org.

“New York Water” Linda and Albert, both in their mid-thirties, meet in New York through a Personals ad. They connect. They feel stifled by their native big city and decide to move elsewhere. Their American odyssey will take them first to the Midwest and then to Hollywood. Linda ascends to dizzying heights while Albert remains steeped in mediocrity. After Hollywood, where do you go next? Written by Sam Bobrick, and directed by Howard Teichman, it runs October 21 through December 17 at the Pico Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-821-2449 or visit www.wcjt.org.

“Redline” engines and heart rates explode on a journey towards redemption in a profoundly intimate theater-going experience. James Eckhouse (All the Way on Broadway, Beverly Hills 90210) stars as Raymond, whose moment of road rage along a frigid eastern Sierra highway shattered his relationship with his family forever. The impact of this event ripples through the years until his estranged son (Graham Sibley – Jane the Virgin, Sully) returns to test the limits of forgiveness. Written by Christian Durso, and directed by Eli Gonda, it runs October 21 through November 19 at the Lounge Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-380-8843 or visit www.iamatheatre.com.

“Bright Colors and Bold Patterns” Josh and Brennan are about to get married in Palm Springs on a lovely Saturday afternoon. However, the night before becomes a drunken, drug-fueled scream riot, because their friend Gerry has arrived, furious that their invitation says “please refrain from wearing bright colors or bold patterns”. In the struggle for equality, what do we really want? What do we lose? And is there any cocaine left? Written by Drew Droege, and directed by Michael Urie, it runs October 22 through October 25 at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“Chicas are 4Ever” In the two act musical stage show, Chico’s Angels are going under the covers for another case and this one sparkles like a diamond….literally…it’s a diamond heist! It seems the Countess Tago’s world famous Chez Chez Diamond has been stolen and she needs the Angels to steal it back! This will be no easy task, so Chico also hired a world renowned Jewel Thief Expert Manuel Hung to assist the Angels. Before long, the Angels and Bossman become entangled in a web of lies, double-crosses and a final heist that comes to an explosive conclusion…literally…it explodes on stage! Written by James Edward Quinn, Kurt Koehler and Oscar Quintero, with music by Dan Ring, lyrics by Mr. Dan, and directed by Kurt Koehler, it runs October 26 through November 5 at the Cavern Club Theater inside Casita Del Campo Restaurant in Silverlake. For tickets visit www.chicosangels.com.

 

“Les Liaisons Dangereuses” Set among the decadent ruling class of pre-revolutionary France, this is a seductive and unsettling tale of sex, deceit, cruelty and the struggle for power in an all-too-recognizable world. Former lovers, the Marquise de Merteuil (Reiko Aylesworth and Elyse Mirto) and Vicomte de Valmont (Scott Ferrara and Henri Lubatti) now compete in games of seduction and revenge. Merteuil incites Valmont to corrupt the innocent Cécile de Volanges (Chelsea Kurtz and Elizabeth Rian) before her wedding night, but Valmont has targeted the peerlessly virtuous and married Madame de Tourvel (Lindsay LaVanchy and Liza Seneca). The production is fully double cast. Written by Choderlos de Laclos, adapted by Christopher Hampton, and directed by Robin Larsen, it runs October 26 through December 10 at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale. For tickets call 818-506-1983 or visit www.Antaeus.org.

“The Radiant” depicts the story of scientist Marie Curie after the death of her partner in marriage and science, Pierre Curie, in a horrific accident. She shared the Nobel Prize in physics with her husband and a colleague in 1903, becoming the first female awardee. In 1911, she won the Nobel Prize in chemistry, being the only woman to win twice. Following her husband’s death in 1906, she is alone with two children to raise, simultaneously continuing her vital and pioneering scientific work. She finds herself increasingly drawn to her lab partner, the younger, married Paul Langevin. The two become lovers, and when news of their clandestine affair is leaked to the Paris tabloids, she is the focus of a scandal that threatens her life and career and the safety of her children. A naturalized French citizen, she had been born in Warsaw to an atheist father and a Catholic mother. Nonetheless, the xenophobic and anti-Semitic press of the time attack her for being a foreigner and, supposedly, a Jew. She is forced to flee from home after it is attacked by an angry mob. She returns to Paris to advance her research and, as the years pass, it is evident that she is becoming affected by the radioactive nature of her materials. Written by Shirley Lauro, and directed by Jane Edwina Seymour, it runs October 27 through November 19 at the Other Space at The Actors Company in West Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7712 or visit www.Plays411.com/radiant.

 

“End of the Rainbow” The real fireworks happened offstage. It’s December 1968 and Judy Garland is about to make her comeback…again. In a London hotel room, with both her new young fiancé and her adoring accompanist, Garland struggles to get “beyond the rainbow” with her signature cocktail of talent, tenacity and razor-sharp wit. Featuring some of Garland’s most memorable songs, this savagely funny play-with-music offers unique insight into the inner conflict that inspired and consumed one of the most beloved figures of our time. Written by Peter Quilter, with music by Jon Steinhagen, and directed by Michael Matthews, it runs October 28 through November 12 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts in La Mirada. For tickets call 562-944-9801 or visit www.lamiradatheatre.com.

 

“The Red Dress” This fictionalized account of a parents’ marriage and their forced divorce by the Nazis begins in 1924 Berlin. Alexandra Schiele (Laura Ligouri) is a famous film actress from a prominent Jewish family who falls in love with a down-on-his-luck World War I vet, Franz Weitrek (J.B. Waterman). Franz is able to parlay his wife’s connections into work as a film director. But when his career takes off making Nazi propaganda films, his wife suddenly becomes a liability. Written by Tania Wisbar, and directed by Kiff Scholl, it runs October 28 through November 19 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-5521 or visit www.Plays411.com/reddress.

“Taking Sides” a provocative and gripping drama based on the true story of German conductor and composer (and accused Nazi sympathizer) Wilhelm Furtwängler. The play explores the terrible collision between art, power, politics and personal responsibility. Harwood’s dramatization of the investigation into Furtwängler is set in 1946 in the American Zone of occupied Berlin. Major Steve Arnold interrogates Furtwängler following the war in preparation for his de-Nazification tribunal. Why did Furtwängler remain in Germany while many of his colleagues fled out of protest or because of persecution. Did he naively believe that art was above politics? Did he allow himself to be manipulated by the Nazi propaganda machine? Or was he, in fact, a collaborator? Written by Sir Ronald Harwood, and directed by Stephanie Coltrin, it runs October 28 through November 12 at the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura. For tickets call 805-667-2900 or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

“Strays” is a warm, funny journey through one woman’s experiences in the animal rescue world as she finds parallels of her own story. Twice adopted, Lisa Wharton faces her own fears of abandonment and the guilt of not being able to protect the ones she loves and finds hope, one rescue at a time. Written by Lisa Wharton, and directed by Lisa Nicole Lennox, it runs October 29 through December 3 at the Secret Rose in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.straystheshow.com.


CONTINUING

“[Title of Show]” Jeff and Hunter, two struggling writers, hear about a new musical theatre festival although the deadline for submissions is a mere three weeks away! With nothing to lose, the pair decides to enter a script but the big question is what to write about? Deciding to follow the old adage, “write what you know,” they set off on a unique musical adventure with their three friends: writing a musical about writing a musical! Frequently hilarious, occasionally heartbreaking and thoroughly inspiring, [title of show] is a love letter to musical theatre and to the joy of collaboration and creativity. Written by Hunter Bell, with music by Jeff Bowen, and directed by Aric Martin, it runs through October 15 at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-828-7519 or visit www.morgan-wixson.org.

“A Love Affair” follows the roller-coaster-ride of a 38-year (and counting) marriage, from the romantic naiveté of a 1950’s honeymoon, to the irritation of daily life in the Coming-of-New Age ’90’s. The successes, the disappointments, the sex, the traumas, the traumas about sex and the budget and the children and the adventure of casting your lot with another human being…for life. Written by Jerry Mayer, and directed by Chris DeCarlo, it runs through November 19 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.santamonicaplayhouse.com/a-love-affair.html.

 

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

 

 

“Scene in LA” September 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Here are the new shows burning up our theaters this month:

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“Pterodactyls” A classic dysfunctional family is the vehicle for a descent into chaos, and this viciously hilarious yet touching story addresses the classic question: “Why are we here?” It suggests that our extinction is beginning not with an asteroid or an ice age but rather with a severed connection to the ones closest to us. Written by Nicky Silver, and directed by Melanie Weisner, it runs September 1 through September 24 at the Commissary at The Culver Studios in Culver City. For tickets visit www.thepopuptheater.com.

“Once, the Musical” The story follows a Dublin street musician who’s about to give up on his dream when a beautiful young woman takes a sudden interest in his haunting love songs. There’s no mistaking the chemistry between them. As it begins to grow, his music soars to powerful, new heights. Theirs is an unlikely connection, though, that turns out to be deeper and more complex than other everyday romances. Written by Enda Walsh, with music by Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová, and directed by Kent Nicholson, it runs September 2 through September 30 at the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“Somewhere in the Middle” is about a Jewish-Christian, middle-class family living in the Midwest. It’s a funny and heartwarming comic-drama about prejudices and religious beliefs, which are brought to the forefront when the eldest over-achieving child (Sarah) comes home for the Passover/Easter holiday dressed in Muslim garb. Her Middle-aged Mother (Lauren) and her Grandmother (Roz) are taken aback, while her smart-ass younger brother (Adam) loves the idea that he can now become the number one child in his parent’s eyes. Her Father (David) is concerned that his daughter’s religious studies class is making her question her Jewish heritage. But is this a rouse to lighten the impact of bringing home her college boyfriend? The conversation about getting Roz to move into a retirement community and back into “the real world” after having lost her husband a year ago, takes a back seat to the new guest of honor. With a nod to “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner” when the boyfriend shows up discussions get a little heated and nothing is off-limits. From the Midwest to the Middle East is there really any one-sided truth or does the truth live somewhere in the middle. Written and directed by Gary Lamb, it runs September 2 through October 8 at the Crown City Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-605-5685 or visit www.crowncitytheatre.com.

“A Tale of Two Cities” set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution. The novel depicts the plight of the French peasantry demoralized by the aristocracy in the years leading up to the revolution, the corresponding brutality demonstrated by the revolutionaries toward the former aristocrats in the early years of the revolution, and many unflattering social parallels with life in London during the same period. Written by Charles Dickens, adapted by Mike Poulton, and directed by Julia Rodriguez-Elliott and Geoff Elliott, it runs September 3 through November 19 at the A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.anoisewithin.org.

“Liner Notes” Rita Wilson brings her vocal and songwriting talents to the Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater at the Geffen Playhouse for the third time. For eight shows only, Wilson is joined by guest songwriters performing and telling the stories behind their songs. Liner Notes is performed in a cabaret setting for a relaxed and intimate experience. Guest artists to be announced. Written by Rita Wilson, it runs September 7 through September 17 at the Audrey Skirball Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

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“Blackbird” Inspired in part by the crimes of sex offender Toby Studebaker (though in no way a literal dramatization of actual events) the play depicts a young woman meeting a middle-aged man 15 years after being sexually abused by him when she was 12 years old. Written by David Harrower, and directed by Don Bloomfield, it runs September 8 through October 1 at the MET Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-4412 or visit www.blackbirdhollywood.com.

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“Disney’s Aladdin, Dual Language Edition” everyone in the fictional city of Agrabah used to be able to speak two languages. The show is based on the Arab-style folktale “Aladdin and the Magic Lamp” from One Thousand and One Nights; the musical includes iconic songs like “A Whole New World” and “Friend like Me.” When the evil Jafar, the Sultan’s Grand Vizier, first finds a Genie’s magic lamp one day, he wishes to divide Agrabah by language so that the people of the palace speak one language and the people in the streets speak another (hence, Spanish and English respectively). However, Jafar speaks both languages, giving him more power. Before making another wish, Jafar, annoyed with his pet parrot, Iago, throws the lamp out the window, and while doing so, he spills some magic “fluency” dust on Iago. The lamp’s dust also enables two other animals, Princess Jazmín’s pet tiger, Rajah, and Aladdin’s pet monkey, Abu, to also speak human languages. To help the audience follow this class conflict adventure, Royal Translators serve as narrators and facilitate official state communication, while the multi-lingual animals translate more intimate conversations. As the story starts Princess Jazmín is running away from the palace, unwilling to be betrothed to yet another snobbish suitor. Aladdin, a street rat, and Princess Jazmín become friends and fall in love, but Jafar has Aladdin apprehended. Later Aladdin befriends at Magic Carpet, as well as a Genie who makes his wishes come true. Written by Jim Luigs and José Cruz González, with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, and directed by Rigo Tejeda, it runs September 8 through September 17 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.thelatc.org/events.

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“Farragut North” is a 2008 political thriller written by Beau Willimon (House of Cards), loosely based on former Governor Howard Dean’s 2004 Democratic primary election campaign for U.S. President. Set in Des Moines in the weeks leading up to Iowa’s statewide caucuses, the play is “a classic tale of hubris set against a contemporary landscape – about the lust for power and the costs one will endure to achieve it.” No trick is too dirty, no lie is too outrageous, no spin is too ingenious if it gets your candidate over the top, including the dirty tricks and brutal backstabbing of those conducting the spin war for aspiring presidents as they attempt to reignite our tapped-out passion for political one-upmanship. Written by Beau Willimon, and directed by Sherry Coon, it runs September 8 through October 14 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

“Lost in Yonkers” This touching coming-of-age story set in Yonkers, New York, centers around two brothers whose mother has died, who are forced to live with their grandmother and their mentally challenged aunt, while their father travels, desperately trying to scrape together enough money to pay off his debts to a loan shark. Written by Neil Simon, and directed by Larry Eisenberg, it runs September 8 through October 22 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-763-5990 or visit www.thegrouprep.com.

“Marion Bridge” This comedy-drama follows three headstrong sisters who converge on their ancestral home to find they have everything and nothing in common. Written by Daniel MacIvor, and directed by Don Boughton, it runs September 8 through September 24 at the Son of Semele Theater in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-422-3462 or visit www.sonofsemele.org.

“The Meeting” imagines a conversation between two of modern political life’s most visionary leaders Malcolm X and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. A provocative clash of wills, political philosophies, and literal arm strength. Jeff Stetson’s “The Meeting,” offers a rare glimpse into the shared humanity of not just two national icons, but two fathers who are ready to die for their beliefs. Written by Jeff Stetson, and directed by Bill Cobbs, it runs September 8 through September 17 at the Theatre 68 “The Flex” in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.malcolmmeetsmartin.com.

“Daytona” Haunting and humorous, Daytona is a play with two love stories at its heart. Joe and Elli were childhood friends who survived the Holocaust. They found each other, after the war, and have been married almost 50 years now and living in New York. The couple created a world for themselves to forget the past…until the day an unexpected visitor arrives, fracturing the relationship that took a lifetime to build. How do we forgive ourselves, and others, and live with what we have done? Written by Oliver Cotton, and directed by Elina de Santos, it runs September 9 through October 30 at the Rogue Machine Theatre (in The Met) in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.

“La Razón Blindada” triply inspired by the classic novel “El Quixote” by Cervantes, “The Truth about Sancho Panza” by Franz Kafka, and testimonies from Chicho Vargas and other political prisoners held in Rawson Prison during Argentina’s “Dirty War” of the 1970s. Jesus Castaños Chima and Tony Durán reprise their roles as political prisoners who are allowed to interact with one another for one hour a week — but must remain in their chairs and never stand. As they entertain each other with stories of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, we witness the power of theater to transport them, and us, into the realm of the imagination, despite repressive conditions and even as we remain bound to our seats. Written and directed by Arístides Vargas, it runs September 9 through October 15 at the 24th Street Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-745-6516 or visit www.24thstreet.org.

“Under the Jello Mold” is Jennie’s Fahn’s one-woman show about how she dealt with her very colorful character of a mother during what turned out to be the final act of her life. Jennie’s mother was a force to be reckoned with: a former dancer, never content to merely rehash her past, there was always a story to be embellished, always a name to drop, and always a lesson to teach. From the inevitability of aging, to criminal acts, to life-changing decisions, Jennie survived the onslaught by finding comedy in every possible tragedy. If anyone could make something ridiculous out of the banal, it was certainly her mom; particularly when it came to where she hid the instructions for what to do in case of her death. Told in anecdotes, characters, and even a little song, the show is full of laughs and a lot of heart. In addition, in an unexpected twist, Jennie learns that her mom had more than just burial instructions hidden. Written by Jennie Fahn, and directed by Tom Cavanaugh, it runs September 9 through November 12 at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3053655.

“Walking to Buchenwald” Cultural, national and gender identity; politics; marriage; death; and the mutability of theater are some of the many motifs that run through Jacobson’s deceptively sweet story in which a soon-to-be-married couple, Schiller and Arjay, take Schiller’s parents on their first trip to Europe. A protean comedy with shattering consequences. Both couples learn what it means to be American in a world that no longer admires the U.S. Guinea pigs playing cricket, dead bodies that talk and an unexpected trip to a concentration camp lead to a shocking yet poignant conclusion. Written by Tom Jacobson, and directed by Roderick Menzies, it runs September 9 through October 14 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 323-882-6912 or visit www.openfist.org.

“Grey Nomad” a funny, engaging comedy about two retired couples who have dedicated their lives to Rving around Australia. It’s a comic road show that captures the unique sense of camaraderie and almost supernatural devotion to a lifestyle of perpetual circumnavigation led by the free range, baby boomers of Australia who call themselves “grey nomads”. Written by Dan Lee, and directed by Iain Sinclair, it runs September 11 through October 8 at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.australiantheatrecompany.org.

“A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Gynecologic Oncology Unit at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center of New York City” Sitting bedside at Memorial Sloan Kettering has never been so entertaining. While their ailing mothers share a hospital room, Karla and Don discover truth in the old cliché that opposites attract…and repel…and attract. Written by Halley Feiffer, and directed by Trip Cullman, it runs September 13 through October 8 at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“I’d Enjoy Being a Girl … On Broadway!” brings writer, performer, and dancer Mark C. Reis to the Colony with his solo show. Through an abundance of music and dance, the Broadway veteran explores how to continue surviving in his career and ponders how different his success in musical theatre might have been had he been a girl. Written by Mark C. Reis, with music by Scott Harlan, and directed by Michele Lynch, it runs September 14 through September 17 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.colonytheatre.org.

“The Drowsy Chaperone” With the houselights down, a man in a chair appears on stage and puts on his favorite record: the cast recording of a fictitious 1928 musical. The recording comes to life and The Drowsy Chaperone begins as the man in the chair looks on. Mix in two lovers on the eve of their wedding, a bumbling best man, a desperate theatre producer, a not-so-bright hostess, two gangsters posing as pastry chefs, a misguided Don Juan and an intoxicated chaperone, and you have the ingredients for an evening of madcap delight. Written by Bob Martin and Don McKellar, with music by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison, and directed by Donna M. Manfredi, it runs September 15 through September 24 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

“Ain’t Misbehavin” Join five sensational performers on a journey through the timeless music of Thomas “Fats” Waller. You’ll be jumpin’ and jivin’ with memorable songs such as “Honeysuckle Rose,” “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” “Black and Blue,” “This Joint is Jumpin’,” and “I’ve Got a Feeling I’m Falling.” One of the most popular, well-crafted revues of all time, the sometimes sassy, sometimes sultry show has moments of devastating beauty that are simply unforgettable. Written by Richard Maltby, Jr. and Murray Horwitz, with music by Thomas “Fats” Waller, and directed by Ken Page, it runs September 16 through October 8 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts in La Mirada. For tickets call 562-944-9801 or visit www.lamiradatheatre.com.

“Incognito” Four actors play 21 characters in interwoven stories (some based on true events) that examine the extent to which our identities and our choices are governed by the complex and delicate mechanisms of the brain. The first of the interconnected stories in INCOGNITO is based on a true story about Thomas Harvey, a doctor who steals Albert Einstein’s brain and risks everything he holds dear in the hope of doing future research and understanding the nature of genius. The second story introduces the audience to Henry Molaison, a young man who experiences short-term memory loss after a brain operation. Unable to form any new memories, Henry is hopelessly caught in a never-ending loop of confusion, with fleeting moments of awareness of his situation. In the third story, a clinical neuropsychologist who prides herself on understanding other people’s needs for human connection, struggles with her own. Written by Nick Payne, and directed by Katharine Farmer, it runs September 16 through October 1 at the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura. For tickets call 805-667-2900 or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

“Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally” This funny, sad, lyrical and highly original coming of age story from emerging playwright Kevin Armento features an unconventional narrator — the cell phone belonging to a troubled teen. As Red’s phone gets sucked into a breakneck journey from pockets to purses, it offers a fresh and unique perspective on human interaction and relationships. Written by Kevin Armento, and directed by Peter Richards, it runs September 16 through October 8 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-4429 or visit www.plays411.com/PEMDAS.

“Runaway Home” Three years after Hurricane Katrina, the unhealed wounds of New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward continue to fester. In this powerful, funny and deeply moving mother-daughter story, 14-year-old runaway Kali embarks on a journey to pick through the wreckage of what used to be her life, rhyming, stealing and scamming her way through the still-destroyed neighborhood. While the rest of the country’s attention drifts, the community’s residents are left to repair the damage from the inside out. As their attempts at renewal leave a path of destruction in their wake, Kali bears witness to what the floodwaters left behind. Written by Jeremy J. Kamps, and directed by Shirley Jo Finney, it runs September 16 through November 5 at the Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-663-1525 or visit www.FountainTheatre.com.

“Fixed” A fierce and funny new play by Los Angeles’ own Boni B. Alvarez, Fixed is the story of Miracles Malacañang, a ladyboy masseuse working in the infamous Malacañang Massage Parlor in Los Angeles’ historic Filipinotown. When Miracles’ forbidden love affair sparks tensions between the city’s hottest political family, two families must come together to understand the power of desire, identity and honor. Written by Boni B. Alvarez, and directed by Rodney To, it runs September 17 through October 22 at the Echo Theater Company – Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 310-307-3753 or visit www.EchoTheaterCompany.com.

“The Madwoman of Chaillot” Oil is discovered under Paris, and Countess Aurelia and her kooky coterie are determined to drive away the evil corporate profiteers lying in wait. Written by Jean Giraudoux, translated by Maurice Valency, and directed by Stephanie Shroyer, it runs September 17 through November 11 at the A Noise Within in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-3100 or visit www.anoisewithin.org.

“Vino Veritas” The play takes its title from the Latin proverb, which literally translated: “in wine, the truth,” suggests that people reveal their truest feelings under the influence of alcohol. On Halloween night, two middle-aged couples prepare to attend a friend’s annual party. Though the evening begins as usual, familiar traditions slowly unravel when the foursome share a bottle of South American ceremonial wine made from the skin of blue dart tree frogs. Under the influence of this tribal truth serum, they share an unpredictable and hilarious night of unbridled honesty that stretches the bounds of their friendship and their relationships forever. Written by David MacGregor, and directed by Michael Karm, it runs September 21 through October 15 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“The 39 Steps” This madcap comic thriller follows our dashing would-be hero Richard Hannay as he is unwittingly lured into a nefarious plot regarding the “39 steps” by a bewitching female spy. When she is murdered in his apartment, Hannay is forced to run for his life while trying to clear his name. Based on the Alfred Hitchcock classic film, this hilarious whodunit has double-crossing secret agents, death-defying chases, and devastatingly beautiful women. Written by John Buchan, and directed by Kevin Chesley, it runs September 22 through October 29 at the Actors Co-op Crossley Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-462-8460 or visit www.ActorsCo-op.org.

“Master Class” Inspired by world-renowned Opera diva Maria Callas’ magnificent Juilliard master class series, this play spotlights the tour-de-force artist and vulnerable woman known as La Divina. Callas relentlessly coaxes, prods, and edifies her young students, motivating them to give the performances of their lives, while revealing her humor, her demons, and her genius. Carolyn Hennesy stars. Written by Terrence McNally, and directed by Dimitri Toscas, it runs September 22 through October 22 at the Garry Marshall Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.GarryMarshallTheatre.org.

“Stupid Kid” After 14 years in prison for a crime he swears he didn’t commit, Chick returns home to find his flat-broke family under the thumb of his dangerous Unclemike. A rollicking Gothic Western tale of a family isolated by shame, this tale explores power, guilt and the limits of maternal love. Written by Sharr White, and directed by Cameron Watson, it runs September 22 through November 12 at the Road on Magnolia in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-761-8838 or visit www.roadtheatre.org.

“’Til Death Do Us Part: Late Nite Catechism” Aubrey Manning is back as the irrepressible Sister! After teaching countless students about the saints, venial sins, limbo and more, Sister is now offering up hilarious lessons on the Sacraments of Marriage and the Last Rites, including her own wacky version of the Newlywed Game. Classroom participation is a must, so bring along your sweetie and your sense of humor for a session with the country’s feistiest couples counselor! Written by Maripat Donovan with Marc Silvia, it runs September 22 through October 1 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

“The View Upstairs” is a gripping, heartfelt and provocative new musical that pulls you inside the world of historic 70s New Orleans bar The Upstairs Lounge. This forgotten community comes to life when a young fashion designer from 2017 buys the abandoned space, setting off an exhilarating journey of seduction and self-exploration. Written by Max Vernon, with music by Max Vernon, and directed by Michael A. Shepperd, it runs September 22 through October 29 at the Celebration Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“Br’er Cotton” Lynchburg, Virginia. The former site of a thriving cotton mill is now an impoverished neighborhood. Deeply affected by all the recent killings of young black men like himself, Ruffrino, a 14 year old “militant,” incites riots at school and online. More and more at odds with his mother and grandfather, the boys’ anger grows beyond containment while the family home literally sinks into the cotton field, and no one seems to notice but him. Written by Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs September 23 through October 29 at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-7745 or visit www.lower-depth.com/on-stage.

“The Dance of Death” On an isolated island, military captain Edgar and his wife Alice, a former actress, live a bitter life, their marriage soured by hatred. As their 25th anniversary approaches, the two face off in a fierce battle of wills. When Alice’s cousin, Kurt arrives, he is quickly ensnared in the couple’s wicked game. Written by August Strindberg in a new version by Conor McPherson, and directed by Ron Sossi, it runs September 23 through November 19 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“Our Town” is a 1938 metatheatrical three-act play that tells the story of the fictional American small town of Grover’s Corners between 1901 and 1913 through the everyday lives of its citizens. Rediscover it in this groundbreaking new production of the iconic play, co-produced with Tony-nominated Deaf West Theatre. Come together to experience this timeless classic as powerful today as when it won the 1938 Pulitzer Prize. Acclaimed actress Jane Kaczmarek stars in this American masterpiece. Written by Thornton Wilder, and directed by Sheryl Kaller, it runs September 26 through October 22 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.pasadenaplayhouse.org.

“Freddy” Set in Greenwich Village in 1964 and based on a true story, Freddy fuses theater, music, dance and video to capture the explosive spirit of a passionate artist and a turbulent era. A naïve young woman falls under the spell of Fred Herko, a brilliant ballet dancer of extraordinary charisma and talent and a fiery denizen of Andy Warhol’s Factory. This hybrid dance/theater work by Fountain Theatre co-artistic director Deborah Lawlor will be presented at Los Angeles City College, inaugurating a new partnership with the LACC Theatre Academy. Written by Deborah Lawlor, and directed by Frances Loy, it runs September 27 through October 14 at the Caminito Theatre Los Angeles City College in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-663-1525 or visit www.FountainTheatre.com.

“With Love and a Major Organ” pushes on the ever-stranger phenomenon of physical human interaction in the age of technology. Why is it that we are ever more connected and yet we have never felt more alone? During her morning commute, a young woman falls in love with a total stranger she meets on the subway. After giving the man her actual beating heart, he disappears —leading this unlikely heroine on a quest to retrieve her heart, accidentally cracking open those of others she meets along the way. This is an eccentric, edgy comedy about what it costs to give your heart away, and what happens when you discover you actually have one. Written by Julia Lederer, and directed by Jessica Kubzansky, it runs September 28 through November 5 at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-683-6801 or visit www.BostonCourt.com.

“Exit Strategy” is the story of the desperate final days of a condemned, crumbling Chicago public school dreading its upcoming prom date with the cruel bulldozers from City Hall. Written by Ike Holter, and directed by Deena Selenow, it runs September 29 through November 5 at the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Davidson/Valentini Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-860-7300 or visit www.lalgbtcenter.org/theatre.

“The House on Mango Street” centers around the life of young Latina Esperanza Cordero, as she undergoes her personal journey into adulthood. As she matures, Esperanza encounters the harsh realities of puberty as well the hardships witnessed in her family and her Mango Street neighborhood. Despite all she witnesses and endures, Esperanza seeks hope and persists toward a better future. Written by Amy Ludwig, based on the novel by Sandra Cisneros, and directed by Alexandra Meda, it runs September 29 through October 28 at the Greenway Court Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-673-0544 or visit www.GreenwayCourtTheatre.org.

“The Woman in Black” is a chilling classic ghost story in its purest form. A lawyer who has experienced a recent tragedy and believes his family is cursed hires a skeptical but enthusiastic actor to help him tell his tale and hopefully exorcise the fear that paralyzes him. With the actor’s help, he shares his story of that dark and stormy night when he first saw a horrifying specter, one that haunts the neighborhood where her illegitimate child was killed. As they prepare their performance, they experience something unsettling as they learn more about what happens to those who have witnessed The Woman in Black. Written by Stephen Mallatratt, based on the book by Susan Hill, and directed by Jacob Smith, it runs September 29 through November 4 at the Belfry Stage Upstairs at the Crown in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.theatreunleashed.org.

“Resolving Hedda” Ibsen’s characters from Hedda Gabler, who know the play insanely well after centuries of performances, try desperately to keep the play afloat. At the same time Hedda, just as desperately, tries to sabotage the plot in order to avoid her demise. The misadventures that ensue continue to raise the stakes of hilarity to a fevered pitch. And if Hedda succeeds in her quest to live, will this classic theatrical work ever be performed again? Written by Jon Klein, and directed by Maria Gobetti, it runs September 30 through November 12 at the Victory Theatre Center in Burbank. For tickets call 818-841-5421 or visit www.thevictorytheatrecenter.org.

“Time Alone” traces the parallel journeys of a young man convicted of killing a gang rival, and a woman whose son – a police officer – is murdered in the line of duty. Both end up in places of extreme loneliness — a solitary confinement prison cell, and the silent house of the bereaved. As time itself seems to unravel, their tales both contrast and mirror each other, providing answers to each other’s questions — until they find new doors to life. Written by Alessandro Camon, and directed by Bart DeLorenzo, it runs September 30 through October 29 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-489-0994 or visit www.bellerevetheatre.com.

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

“Scene in LA” August 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Summer is in full heat this month, but our local theatres are burning up with these new shows:


OPENING


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“The Dream on Royal Street” is a madcap interpretation of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, set in the present in the Royal Street Hotel in New Orleans on Mardi Gras night. Egeus, who owns the hotel, wants his daughter Hermia to marry Demetrius, the assistant manager. Hermia loves Lysander, a lowly desk clerk, and the switchboard girl Helena loves Demetrius. When Oberon and Titania, the fabulous Las Vegas pop stars appearing in the hotel’s nightclub, have a failing out, the four lovers become involved in Oberon’s scheme for revenge. Written by June Walker Rogers, with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by David Rogers, and directed by Alison Kalmus, it runs August 3 through August 13 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

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“On the Twentieth Century” The glamorous passenger train Twentieth Century Limited, which ran between New York and Chicago between 1902 and 1967, is the main setting of this musical screwball comedy’s action. Oscar Jaffe, an egomaniacal Broadway producer who has sustained a string of recent flops and is now dodging creditors, boards the train heading to New York. On the train, he spots his former Broadway leading lady and muse, Lily Garland, now a Hollywood movie star, and schemes to have her signed to star in his new play and thereby save his career and stay out of jail. But she’s on her way to meet with his competitor, Max Jacobs, to sign up for his play. Jaffe believes he’s found an investor in a fellow passenger and heiress, the religiously fervent Letitia Primrose, who could write a check big enough to entice Lily to renew her working relationship with Oscar and save his show. But Ms. Primrose is certifiably insane. There’s action, a little romance, fast-paced dialogue and a dash of slapstick. Written by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, with music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, and directed by Trace Oakley, it runs August 4 through August 27 at the Pan-Andreas Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.ProofDoubtCloser.com.

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“Spamalot” Rude Frenchmen, cancan dancers, the Lady of the Lake and her Laker Girls, killer rabbits, catapulting cows, and the somewhat odd Knights who say “ni” are just part of the adventures and dangers awaiting King Arthur and his knights of the very very very round table in their quest for the holy grail. Written by Eric Idle, with music by John Du Prez & Eric Idle, and directed by Carol Bentley, it runs August 4 through August 13 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center in Redondo Beach (for tickets call 714-589-2770 Ext. 1) then August 18 through August 27 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in Cerritos (for tickets call 562-916-8500) or visit www.3dtshows.org.

“WET: A DACAmented Journey” There is a new kind of American in search of the old dreams that may not exist in our country anymore. This is the story of what it means to be an American in every sense of the word except for one: on paper. It chronicles the story of Anner Cividanis’ Journey of living his whole life in the United States as an undocumented American. The play captures the desperation that DREAMers feel when considering the very limited options of adjustment of status, by being forced to navigate through a broken U.S. Immigration System. It examines the mental, emotional, and psychological hardship one man has to endure in order to secure his livelihood in the only home he has ever known: Los Angeles. Written by Alex Alpharaoh, and directed by Kevin Comartin, it runs August 4 through August 27 at the Ensemble Studio Theatre/LA in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-839-1197 or visit www.dacajourney.brownpapertickets.com/browse.html.

“Las García” Explores what it means to be an independent women in a dependent world, where conflict is always looming around the corner. Starring Gabriela Ortega. Written by Gabriela Ortega, and directed by Alex Alpharaoh, it runs August 10 through August 21 at the Asylum @ Studio C Artists in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-533-7371 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/3451?tab=tickets.

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“Tilda Swinton Answers an Ad on Craigslist” Walt is a gay wallflower. After a devastating break-up, Walt innocently places an ad on Craigslist for a new roommate. When other-worldly star Tilda Swinton shows up at his door and insists on moving in to “study” Walt for her next big movie role, things gets hysterically chaotic. Written by Byron Lane, and directed by Tom DeTrinis, it runs August 10 through August 31 at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

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“Honky Tonk Laundry” is chock-full of your favorite songs including “These Boots Were Made for Walkin’,” “Stand by Your Man,” “Before He Cheats,” “Independence Day” and many more! Starring Bets Malone and Misty Cotton. Move over, Thelma and Louise!  When Lana Mae Hopkins, owner and proprietress of the Wishy Washy Washateria, hires Katie Lane Murphy to help out in the Laundromat, they soon find themselves up to their elbows in soap, suds, and cheatin’ hearts. Take a ride to Nashville heaven as you watch these two country angels join forces to turn their good ol’ Laundromat into a boot-scootin’ honky-tonk, exacting a touch of revenge against those that done ‘em wrong, and all while guaranteeing each and every customer a good, clean time! Written and directed by Roger Bean, it runs August 11 through September 17 at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-7773 or visit www.plays411.com/honkytonklaundry.

“Rebel Without a Cause – The Sal Mineo Story” Ahead of the times, Sal Mineo truly was a Rebel With a Cause. He was a prominent figure for gay rights before he was tragically murdered. Some say his murder was directly related to his gay activism. Or perhaps a spurned lover, no one will ever really know. After living the high life of luxury with mansions, butlers, maids and fast cars as well as providing an extravagant lifestyle for his parents, Sal Mineo died with only $20 in his pocket. Written by Dean Ghaffari, and directed by Tom Waters, it runs August 11 through August 26 at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-656-8070 or visit www.promenadeplayhouse.com.

“MagicMania” An immersive four-day, five performance festival of magic featuring a rotating roster of over 25 world-class, master magicians and outstanding variety acts. Show-stopping feats include amazing sleight of hand, interactive parlor magic and mind-blowing illusions. Each performance is different – no repeats. Prepare for a weekend of amazement! Written and directed by Albie Selznick, it runs August 17 through August 20 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-558-7000 or visit www.MagicManiaLA.com.

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“Welcome to the White Room” we discover Ms. White, Mr. Paine, and Jennings shortly after they have arrived in a completely white room, following their journey within as they attempt to figure out exactly what they are meant to do. There are the letters that only Ms. White can read. There is the arrival of The Last Deck of Cards in the World. There are The Three Devices. There is the constant advancement of the levels. Somewhere between throwing a party, suppressing sexual tensions, and dancing a violent tango, this senseless world summons its puppeteer. And our three puppets are in for a big surprise. Written by Trish Harnetiaux, and directed by Megan A. McGuane, it runs August 17 through September 16 at the Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-856-8611 or visit www.theatreofnote.com.

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“Arsenic and Old Lace” Two murderous old ladies, a Theodore Roosevelt impersonator, a Boris Karloff look-alike and a theater critic in love, make an infectiously funny black comedy about two little-old-lady aunts who see killing as an act of charity. Good, macabre fun! Written by Joseph Kesselring, and directed by Elina de Santos, it runs August 19 through October 8 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“Blackbird” Inspired in part by the crimes of sex offender Toby Studebaker (though in no way a literal dramatization of actual events) the play depicts a young woman meeting a middle-aged man 15 years after being sexually abused by him when she was 12 years old. Written by David Harrower, and directed by Jeremy Adrianne Lelliott, it runs August 19 through September 17 at the GTC Burbank in Burbank. For tickets call 571-232-8894 or visit www.blackbirdplay.com.

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“A Night With Janis Joplin” The show is a musical journey celebrating Janis and her biggest musical influences – trailblazers like Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Odetta, Nina Simone and Bessie Smith, who inspired one of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s greatest legends. Like a comet that burns far too brightly to last, Janis Joplin exploded onto the music scene in 1967 and, almost overnight, became the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll. The unmistakable voice filled with raw emotion and tinged with Southern Comfort made her a must-see headliner from Monterey to Woodstock. Audiences will enjoy Joplin’s favorites, including “Summertime,” “Piece of My Heart,” “Cry Baby,” and “Me and Bobby McGee,” among others. Written and directed by Randy Johnson, it runs August 20 through September 10 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“Footloose” A ban on dancing in a small farming town puts Ren, the new kid in town, at odds with the town council and the local minister. Incredible dancing, a melodic and energetic score, and a great story make the GCT reprise production the perfect show for the whole family. All we can say about this show is “WOW!” You, your family and friends are going to love this one! Written by Dean Pitchford and Walter Bobbie, with music by Dean Pitchford, Kenny Loggins, Tom Snow, Sammy Hagar, Jim Steinman, and Eric Carmen, and directed by Martin Lang, it runs August 25 through October 7 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

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“Silent Sky” A celestial romance and true story of discovery, this riveting new play explores the life and career of Henrietta Swan Leavitt (1868-1921) as she fearlessly asserts herself in the male-dominated world of early astronomy. Hired by the Harvard Observatory as a human “computer” to catalog the stars, Henrietta’s story plays out against a landscape of early feminism and universe-revealing science, reminding us all what we can achieve when we allow curiosity and wonder into our lives. Written by Lauren Gunderson, and directed by Todd Nielsen, it runs August 25 through September 10 at the International City Theatre @Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.InternationalCityTheatre.org.

“Emilie: La Marquise Du Châtelet Defends Her Life Tonight” Passionate. Brilliant. Defiant. Tonight, 18th century scientific genius Emilie du Châtelet is back and determined to answer her unresolved question: love or philosophy, heart or head? In this highly theatrical, fast, funny, and sexy rediscovery of one of history’s most intriguing women, the French physicist and mathematician defends her legacies — both scientific and romantic — and the groundbreaking work for which she was denounced until after her death. Written by Lauren Gunderson, and directed by Julianne Donelle, it runs August 26 through September 17 at the Greenway Court Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-944-2165 or visit www.greenwaycourttheatre.org/emilie.


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 “So Long Boulder City” Straight from the world of the almost-Best Picture winner LA LA LAND, So Long Boulder City is comedian Jimmy Fowlie’s take on Emma Stone’s one woman show-within-a-movie that played to a barely-sold house.  It’s a tale of determination, ambition, crushed dreams and Hollywood triumphs.  You won’t want to miss what Deadline Reporter calls “A struggling actresses’ tour-de-force!” Starring Jimmy Fowlie as Mia Dolan. Written by Jimmy Fowlie, and directed by Jordan Black, it runs through August 19 at the Celebration Theatre at The Lex in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

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“A Steady Rain” The lifelong friendship of two Chicago cops is put to the test when a deadly error of judgment sends their lives spinning out of control. Written by Keith Huff, and directed by John Kirby, it runs through August 20 at the John Kirby Studio in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-467-7877 or visit www.steadyrain.brownpapertickets.com.

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“Marlene” tells a true story. In May, 1960, Dietrich returned to Germany to perform on stage for the first time since fleeing the Hitler regime in 1939.  The play is set in Dietrich’s dressing-room at Berlin’s Tatiana Palast Theatre, where she is trying to decide whether she should go through with the recital. Threats have been made on her life by Nazi sympathizers who still resented her for having spent much of WW II entertaining American soldiers on the front lines. In their eyes she is a turncoat, a traitor, and should be killed. Written by Willard Manus, and directed by Judith Rose, it runs through August 27 at the Write Act Repertory @ Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3034406.

“Trouble in Mind” This scathingly funny backstage drama about interracial politics follows an integrated theater company in rehearsal for a “progressive” anti-lynching drama. The play-within-a-play, entitled Chaos in Belleville, marks the first opportunity for gifted African American actress Wiletta Mayer to play a leading lady on Broadway. But what compromises must she make to succeed? Written by Alice Childress, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.


 

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!

“Scene in LA” July 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

The Fourth of July is not the only thing exploding this month – so is the local theater scene! Just look at all these:


OPENING


 

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“The Cake” Debra Jo Rupp (That ’70s Show) stars as Della, a baker who makes cakes, not judgment calls — those she leaves to her husband. But when the girl she helped raise comes back home to North Carolina to get married, and the fiancé is actually another fiancée, Della’s life gets turned upside down. She can’t really make a cake for such a wedding, can she? For the first time in her life, Della has to think for herself. Written by Bekah Brunstetter, and directed by Jennifer Chambers, it runs July 1 through August 13 at the Echo Theater Company – Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 310-307-3753 or visit www.EchoTheaterCompany.com.

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“Danny and the Deep Blue Sea” The setting is a rundown bar in the Bronx, where two of society’s rejects, Danny and Roberta, strike up a halting conversation over their beer. He is a brooding, self-loathing young man who resorts more to violence than reason; she is a divorced, guilt-ridden young woman whose troubled teenage son is now being cared for by her parents. Danny, whose fellow truck drivers call him “the animal,” seems incapable of tender emotion, while Roberta, who is still haunted by the memory of an ugly sexual incident involving her father, is distrustful of men in general. And yet, as their initial reserve begins to melt, and they decide to spend the night together, the possibility of a genuine and meaningful relationship begins to emerge—the first for both of them. Written by John Patrick Shanley, and directed by Carl Weathers, it runs July 1 through September 10 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-392-7327 or visit www.edgemarcenter.org.

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“Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris” this musical covers three generations of one family gather to clean out their grandmother’s attic, triggering memories that play out through the narratives of Brel’s evocative music, ultimately helping them to come to terms with the past. With more than 25 million records sold worldwide, Brel’s romantic tunes brim with European flair, ranging from heartbreaking to hilarious to the absurd. Written by Jacques Brel, with music by Jacques Brel, and directed by Dan Fishbach, it runs July 1 through August 27 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

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“Seussical the Musical” is a fantastical, magical, musical extravaganza! Tony winners Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty have lovingly brought to life all of our favorite Dr. Seuss characters, including The Cat in the Hat; Horton, the elephant who discovers a speck of dust containing the Whos, vowing to protect them from naysayers and dangers; the irresponsible and lazy Mayzie; the intrepid Gertrude McFuzz; and Jojo, a Who child sent off to military school for thinking too many “thinks.” These colorful characters transport us from the Jungle of Nool to the Circus McGurkus to the invisible world of the Whos. Ultimately, the powers of friendship, loyalty, family, and community are challenged and emerge triumphant. “Seussical” is fun for the whole family! Written by Billy Hayes, and directed by Jeffrey Altshuler, it runs July 1 through July 29 at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-828-7519 or visit www.morgan-wixson.org.

“It’s Only Lipstick” is acclaimed actress Claudia DiMartino’s inspiring, heartwarming and hysterical story of surviving the dysfunction of an Italian-American family in Brooklyn to weathering the instability of being a marketing executive in the beauty industry in corporate America. A hit of the 2017 SoloFest, where it made its one-night-only premiere, It’s Only Lipstick also takes patrons though a surprising and dramatic event that led DiMartino to her destiny and the belief that it’s never too late to go after your dreams. Written by Claudia DiMartino, and directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson, it runs July 6 through August 17 at the Whitefire Theater in Sherman Oaks. For tickets visit www.itsonlylipstick.brownpapertickets.com.

“The Andrews Brothers” A USO show is threatened with cancellation when a certain famous trio of singing sisters fails to appear! Now it’s up to three earnest and determined stagehands to go on with the show! The Andrews Brothers is filled to the brim with over 25 songs made famous by the Andrews Sisters, including the show-stopper “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” and “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree,” Mistaken identities and madcap adventures abound in this wonderful valentine to the heroes of World War II. Written by Roger Bean, and directed by Danny Michaels & Orlando Alexander, it runs July 7 through August 12 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

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“The Hero Within” brings veterans’ personal stories to life through an artistic journey that gives voice to the difficulty of transitioning from the war zone back into society. After completion of a successful operation, the Joint Task Force of the Air Force, Army, Navy and Marines has gathered veterans to be recognized as heroes. However, the effects of trauma trigger one veteran in attendance to do the unthinkable. The Hero Within follows the trials and tribulations of seven brave men and women along their path from civilian life to joining the military to their return home, as they search for the hero within themselves. The show includes both lighthearted comedy and dramatic moments that will leave audiences on the edge of their seat. Written by Greg Shane and Melvin Johnson, and directed by Greg Shane, it runs July 7 through July 9 at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-902-8220 or visit www.tinyurl.com/theherowithin.

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“The Marriage Zone” Cal and Beth are selling their home. They’re visited by Skip and Ellie, an engaged couple, very much in love who are eager to buy their first home. They’re joined by Mike and Liz, apparently a couple of lookie-loos who decided to drop by and take a peek at the house for sale. The three couples get to chatting and begin to marvel at just how much they have in common. WAY too much in common, in fact. So much in common that it begins to become surreal. Written and directed by Jeff Gould, it runs July 8 through August 27 at the Secret Rose Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7784 or visit www.Plays411.com/marriagezone.

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“Other Desert Cities” Brooke Wyeth, a once promising novelist, returns home after a six-year absence to celebrate Christmas with parents Lyman and Polly, brother Trip and Aunt Silda. Lyman and Polly are the seemingly perfect upper middle class couple, “living the dream” in Palm Springs replete with wealth, political influence and A-list connections. But when Brooke announces that she is about to publish a memoir focusing on an explosive chapter in the family’s history, the holiday reunion is thrown into turmoil. As in all desert lands, mirage can transfix and trick the inhabitants. When the heat gives way, reality comes into sharp and unrelenting focus. Old family wounds are opened, childhood memories are tested and the Wyeth clan learns that some secrets cannot stay buried forever. Written by Jon Robin Baitz, and directed by Mary Jo DuPrey, it runs July 8 through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“Hairspray” It’s 1962 and Hairspray’s big, bold heroine Tracy Turnblad twists, ponys and mashed potatoes her way to Baltimore stardom, while fighting for integration on a local TV dance show. Written by Thomas Meehan and Mark O’Donnell, with music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman, and directed by Paula Hammons Sloan, it runs July 9 through July 30 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“Born for This” Detroit teenagers BeBe and CeCe Winans experience the ultimate in culture shock when invited to join Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s Praise The Lord Network in Pineville, North Carolina. Jim and Tammy become an unlikely surrogate family as the two teenagers rapidly become the hottest stars in televangical America. Eventually crossing over to mainstream fame, Bebe must learn to reconcile the temptations of fame and fortune with the things he ultimately values more. It’s a wildly funny yet emotional journey toward self-discovery. Written by Charles Randolph-Wright and BeBe Winans, with music by BeBe Winans, and directed by Charles Randolph-Wright, it runs July 11 through August 6 at the Eli & Edythe Broad Stage in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-434-3200 or visit www.thebroadstage.com.

“Any Night” when a troubled young dancer moves into a new apartment she finds herself inexorably drawn into the world of her seductive upstairs neighbor. Soon she begins to suffer from nightmares and strange behaviors in her sleep. This show is a ‘through-the-looking-glass’ psychological thriller about love, trust, and the immeasurable power of the subconscious. Written by Daniel Arnold and Medina Hahn, and directed by Elizabeth V. Newman, it runs July 13 through July 30 at the Sacred Fools Theater Company in Hollywood. For tickets call 512-496-5208 or visit www.anynightaustin.com.

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“The Gingerbread Lady” Set in New York City in 1972 after Evy’s short stay in rehab, her best friend, the age-defying Toby, her daughter Polly, and Jimmy Perry, a gay actor, all try to help her adjust to sobriety with a jolly birthday party. Enter Lou Tanner, a former lover, who ends up giving her a black eye. The party is a washout, the “gingerbread lady” falls off the wagon and hits the ropes once again. With Neil Simon’s characteristic wit and humor, his serious story of lost misfits is genuinely and deeply touching. Written by Neil Simon, and directed by Drew Fitzsimmons, it runs July 14 through August 19 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

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“Peter Pan” In this high-flying Tony Award-winning musical, Peter and his mischievous fairy sidekick Tinkerbell visit the nursery of the Darling children late one night and with a sprinkle of pixie dust begin a magical journey across the stars that none of them will ever forget. Featuring the iconic songs “I’m Flying,” “I’ve Gotta Crow,” “I Won’t Grow Up,” and “Never Never Land,” and a rousing book full of magic, warmth, and adventure, PETER PAN is the perfect show for the child in all of us who dreamed of soaring high and never growing up! Written by J.M Barrie, with music by Mark “Moose” Charlap and Jule Styne, lyrics by Carolyn Leigh and Betty Comden and Adolph Green, and directed by Yvette Lawrence, it runs July 14 through July 23 at the Kavli Theatre at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks. For tickets call 800-745-3000 or visit www.cabrillomusictheatre.com.

“The Spidey Project” Nerdy social outcast Peter Parker takes on an alter ego as he attempts to defeat a dastardly collection of terrifying villains and perhaps his biggest nemesis of all: himself. Written and directed by Justin Moran, with music by Jordan Ostrowski, it runs July 14 through July 22 at the Studio/Stage in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4398.

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“A Steady Rain” The lifelong friendship of two Chicago cops is put to the test when a deadly error of judgment sends their lives spinning out of control. Written by Keith Huff, and directed by John Kirby, it runs July 14 through July 30 at the John Kirby Studio in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-467-7877 or visit www.steadyrain.brownpapertickets.com.

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“Blinded” Seventeen years ago, Donald walked in on his mother in bed with someone other than his father. Whatever he saw that day was so devastating that his psyche refused to see another thing from that moment on. At 35, the hysterically blind Donald visits NYC’s best shrink, Bob Schneiderman. Donald’s last ditch hope before throwing in life’s towel. However the doctor’s highly unorthodox remedy includes an affair with Schneiderman’s younger, beautiful wife, Bridget. There’s only one caveat; Bridget can never find out Donald is blind. Written by Joni Ravenna, and directed by T.J. Castronovo, it runs July 15 through August 13 at the Write Act Repertory at The BrickHouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2993431.

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“The Devil’s Wife” is a harrowing comedy that goes to hell. A handsome and wealthy landowner who woos three sisters isn’t what he seems. But neither are they. Written by Tom Jacobson, and directed by Eric Hoff, it runs July 15 through August 20 at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-761-7061 or visit www.SkylightTix.com.

“Our Great Tchaikovsky” Known for his beautiful ballets Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and the ferocious and melodic brilliance of his symphonic works, piano concerti, overtures, operas and chamber music, a healthy 53-year-old Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky conducted the premiere of his enigmatic Symphony No. 6, “Pathétique” and, nine days later, he was dead. To this day, how and why he died is still a mystery. Written by Hershey Felder, and directed by Trevor Hay, it runs July 19 through August 6 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/Felder.

“ICONversations” Singing the songs that have stood the test of time from musical artists like Frank Sinatra, Marvin Gaye, Bob Marley, Prince, Whitney Houston, Donny Hathaway, and Michael Jackson, Morton weaves a musical love letter to his father via creative storytelling and incredible music. Joining Morton in the show is Maiya Sykes, Postmodern Jukebox front woman and finalist on NBC’s The Voice. Written by Reign Morton, with music by Dave Yaden, and directed by Kinnik Sky, it runs July 20 through July 23 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.colonytheatre.org.

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“Sequence” Theo has been named Time Magazine’s Luckiest Man Alive. For twenty consecutive years, he has successfully bet double or nothing on the Super Bowl coin toss. And he’s getting ready to risk millions on the twenty-first when he is confronted by Cynthia, a young woman who claims to have figured out his mathematical secret. Stem-cell researcher and professor Dr. Guzman is on the verge of a groundbreaking discovery. She’s also learned that one of her students has defied probability to get all 150 multiple-choice questions wrong on his genetics exam, but it’s not until he shows up at her office in the middle of the night that she’s able to determine if it’s simply bad luck. The two narratives intertwine like a fragment of DNA to examine the interplay between logic and metaphysics, science and faith, luck and probability. Belief systems clash, ideas mutate, and order springs from chaos. Written by Arun Lakra, and directed by Bruce Gray, it runs July 20 through August 20 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

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“The Marvelous Wonderettes” At the 1958 Springfield High School prom, we meet Betty Jean, Cindy Lou, Missy and Suzy- the Marvelous Wonderettes, four girls with hopes and dreams as big as their crinoline skirts. As we learn about their lives and loves, the girls serenade us with classic 50s hits including Lollipop, Dream Lover, Stupid Cupid, and Lipstick on Your Collar. In act two, the Wonderettes reunite and take the stage and perform at their ten-year class reunion. We learn about the highs and lows the young women have experienced in the past decade and are charmed to find that no matter what life throws their way, they will conquer it together. Featuring over 30 classic 50s and 60s hits (including It’s in His Kiss, It’s My Party, Son of a Preacher Man, Rescue Me), The Marvelous Wonderettes will keep you smiling in this irresistible musical trip down memory lane. Written by Roger Bean, and directed by Robert Marra, it runs July 21 through August 27 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

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“Nocturne” In this searingly honest journey, a man unwittingly causes the death of his younger sister in a tragic accident and his life is upended. Wracked with remorse he drifts to New York City and slowly puts the pieces of his shattered existence back together. This is the story of one man’s journey of redemption in a gut wrenching yet hauntingly lyrical meditation on guilt and grief. Written by Adam Rapp and directed by James Eckhouse and Richard Schiff, it runs July 21 through August 13 at the VS Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.triptychgroup.org.

“The Rainbow Bridge” At the intersection of real and satire, Jerry struggles to keep moving forward in his life while haunted by the ghosts of his family’s past. This fearless new comedy mercilessly seeks out and pushes any of those psychological hot buttons that aren’t hidden. Be brave, and you just may enjoy a good cry while you’re laughing. Written by Ron Nelson, and directed by Michael Myers, it runs July 21 through September 17 at the Ruskin Group Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-397-3244 or visit www.ruskingrouptheatre.com.

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“So Long Boulder City” Straight from the world of the almost-Best Picture winner LA LA LAND, So Long Boulder City is comedian Jimmy Fowlie’s take on Emma Stone’s one woman show-within-a-movie that played to a barely-sold house. It’s a tale of determination, ambition, crushed dreams and Hollywood triumphs. Starring Jimmy Fowlie as Mia Dolan. Written by Jimmy Fowlie, and directed by Jordan Black, it runs July 21 through August 19 at the Celebration Theatre at The Lex in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

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“Shout, Sister, Shout” tells the story about the life and music of legendary gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe, whose hits include “Down by the Riverside,” “This Train,” and “Strange Things Happen Every Day.” Tharpe, known as The Godmother of Rock & Roll, was a trailblazer in the history of American music and influenced some of the greatest Rock & Roll and R&B singers of all time, including Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Little Richard, Bob Dylan, Tina Turner and Johnny Cash. Written by Cheryl West, and directed by Randy Johnson, it runs July 26 through August 20 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

 

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“As You Like It” Unable to act on their feelings and forced into exile in the Forest of Arden, lovers Rosalind and Orlando become entangled in a beguiling game of love, lust and mistaken identity. One of Shakespeare’s great comedies, As You Like It subverts the traditional rules of romance, confusing gender roles, nature and politics to reflect on how bewildering — yet utterly pleasurable — life can be. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Rob Clare, it runs July 27 through September 10 at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale. For tickets call 818-506-1983 or visit www.Antaeus.org.

“Bold Magic” The presentation is family friendly, but this is NOT a kiddie show. Set to a dazzling array of dance and song, audiences will see a woman levitate, a honey badger read their minds, a volunteer get stabbed (all in good fun), and lots and lots of colors. A frequent performer at Hollywood’s Magic Castle, Misty Lee has appeared (as herself) in comic books (The Spirit, Madame Mirage) on television (Hallmark’s Home and Family, The Dog Whisperer), and has voiced several characters in cartoons and videogames (Princess Leia in Starwars Battlefront, Red Sonja in Queen of Plagues, Squirrel Girl on Ultimate Spider-Man).Written and directed by Misty Lee, it runs July 28 through July 30 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

“Ball Yards” A Los Angeles Dodgers game is broadcast by a blithely detached announcer during the onset of nuclear winter. The Grand Kleagle of the Ku Klux Klan prefers to learn golf fully hooded and robed. All-American football great Conquistador O’Malley abandons the gridiron for the seductive, near-naked sport of springboard diving. A network sports producer attempts to coerce a Jewish female member of an Olympic field hockey team into pretending that she has a connection with an anti-Semite. A sports commentator copes with gender transition. Hey, it could happen—and it actually does—in this delightfully quirky, surreal play. Written by Chuck Faerber, and directed by Richard Kuhlman, it runs July 29 through August 27 at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-7738 or visit www.Plays411.com/ballyards.

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“The Stolen Child” is an emotional thriller that follows an estranged couple as they return to their deserted cabin in the woods to pack it all up. When a storm moves in they find themselves stranded. A mysterious child appears at their door…could this be their stolen child come home? Written by Jennifer Rowland, and directed by Denise Blasor, it runs July 29 through September 3 at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-761-7061 or visit www.SkylightTix.com.

“Trouble in Mind” This scathingly funny backstage drama about interracial politics follows an integrated theater company in rehearsal for a “progressive” anti-lynching drama. The play-within-a-play, entitled Chaos in Belleville, marks the first opportunity for gifted African American actress Wiletta Mayer to play a leading lady on Broadway. But what compromises must she make to succeed? Written by Alice Childress, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs July 29 through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

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“The Two Gentlemen of Verona” is a wonderfully upbeat coming-of-age comedy in which four young people struggle to define themselves while dealing with the complicated feelings of early adulthood. The cast features multi-talented artists who will not only be acting, but also creating the live musical accompaniment to the production. The musical style will highlight the journey the characters take, starting with a more naive and innocent early-pop sound and transitioning to down-and-dirty rockabilly. This is a free performance. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by David Melville, it runs July 29 through September 3 at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.

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“Marlene” tells a true story. In May, 1960, Dietrich returned to Germany to perform on stage for the first time since fleeing the Hitler regime in 1939. The play is set in Dietrich’s dressing-room at Berlin’s Tatiana Palast Theatre, where she is trying to decide whether she should go through with the recital. Threats have been made on her life by Nazi sympathizers who still resented her for having spent much of WW II entertaining American soldiers on the front lines. In their eyes she is a turncoat, a traitor, and should be killed. Written by Willard Manus, and directed by Judith Rose, it runs July 30 through August 27 at the Write Act Repertory @ Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3034406.


CONTINUING


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“Welcome to Your Alternative Reality” Take the edge off your week with a bracing tonic of laughter and lunacy! Highlights in this evening of interwoven one-acts and sketches include a liberal journalist working for a right wing news program; an octogenarian stressing about the future of the planet; high-level government leakers in love; and a dry cleaner who might be our next president. What do they all have in common? Each is stuck in this strange new post-election world we live in. Written and directed by Catherine Butterfield and Ron West, it runs June 30 through August 12 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 323-882-6912 or visit www.openfist.org.


Enjoy life more by seeing a show today!

“Scene in LA” June 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

The Hollywood Fringe Festival is on this month on the Southern California theater scene:


OPENING


 

“Blackbird” Inspired in part by the crimes of sex offender Toby Studebaker (though in no way a literal dramatization of actual events) the play depicts a young woman meeting a middle-aged man 15 years after being sexually abused by him when she was 12 years old. Written by David Harrower, and directed by Anna Stromberg, it runs June 1 through June 25 at the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Davidson/Valentini Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-860-7300 or visit www.lalgbtcenter.org/theatre.

“Under the Jello Mold” is Jennie’s Fahn’s one-woman show about how she dealt with her very colorful character of a mother during what turned out to be the final act of her life. Jennie’s mother was a force to be reckoned with: a former dancer, never content to merely rehash her past, there was always a story to be embellished, always a name to drop, and always a lesson to teach. From the inevitability of aging, to criminal acts, to life-changing decisions, Jennie survived the onslaught by finding comedy in every possible tragedy. If anyone could make something ridiculous out of the banal, it was certainly her mom; particularly when it came to where she hid the instructions for what to do in case of her death. Told in anecdotes, characters, and even a little song, the show is full of laughs and a lot of heart. In addition, in an unexpected twist, Jennie learns that her mom had more than just burial instructions hidden. Written by Jennie Fahn, and directed by Tom Cavanaugh, it runs June 1 through June 24 at the Ruby Theatre @The Complex in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.hff17.com/4402.

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“Bitch Brow” is a dark comedy set in a Long Island Laundromat on one summer night.  A tough townie chick and an uptight young woman from East Hampton’s upper crust clash over everything from career choices to finger fucking in this hilarious and heartwarming look at the hard choices women are forced to make. These two opposites will try to find common ground… until one of them winds up dead. Written by Demetra Kareman, and directed by Tara Karsian, it runs June 2 through June 24 at the Lounge Theater in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4296?tab=tickets.

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“Dogfight” It’s November 21, 1963. On the eve of their deployment to a small but growing conflict in Southeast Asia, three young Marines set out for one final boys’ night of partying and debauchery. But, when Corporal Eddie Birdlace meets Rose, an awkward and idealistic waitress whom he enlists to win a cruel bet with his fellow recruits, she rewrites the rules of the game and teaches him the power of love and compassion. Written by Peter Duchan, with music by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and directed by Jennifer Oundjian and Jennifer Strattan, it runs June 2 through June 25 at the Hudson Mainstage Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.plays411.com/dogfight.

“Holmes, Sherlock and The Consulting Detective” will feature 12 actors playing upwards of 25 different characters. Audiences will physically follow three different plots through a literary labyrinth of clues and misdirection in a story that features Sherlockian mainstays, new characters, and a host of theatrical surprises. Written by Jonathan Josephson, and directed by Paul Millet, it runs June 2 through July 1 at the Santa Anita Train Depot in Arcadia. For tickets visit www.Unboundproductions.org.

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“In the Valley of the Shadow” An apocalyptic event in an LGBT nightclub changes everything; love becomes hate, hate becomes love. Playwright Katherine Cortez grew up in Orlando with no openly gay nightclubs, witnessing family and friends hiding in shadows and losing lives to AIDS before it had a name. She completed the AIDS LifeCycle ride, but then…The Pulse nightclub shooting on the eve of LA PRIDE. Written by Katherine Cortez, and directed by Elina de Santos, it runs June 2 through June 24 at the Rogue Machine Theatre (in The Met) in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.net/now-playing.

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“Little Shop of Horrors” Meek flower shop assistant Seymour pines for co-worker Audrey. During a total eclipse, he discovers an unusual plant he names Audrey II, which feeds only on human flesh and blood. The growing plant attracts a great deal of business for the previously struggling store. After Seymour feeds Audrey’s boyfriend, Orin, to the plant after Orin’s accidental death, he must come up with more bodies for the increasingly bloodthirsty plant. Written by Howard Ashman, with music by Alan Menken, and directed by J. Bailey Burcham, it runs June 2 through June 18 at the Hillcrest Center for the Arts in Thousand Oaks. For tickets call 805-381-1246 or visit www.HillcrestArts.com.

“Nic and Brooke’s Comedy Dance Party” An homage to the classic variety shows, it asks what it would look like if Sonny and Cher were still on the air today…and black. Triple threat talents Nick and Brooke take the audience through a fun-loving comedy romp with sketches, musical numbers and yes, a dance party. Reminiscent of the great comedy/variety shows of the 70s with a modern twist, it also incorporates The Carol Burnett Show, Laugh-In and even a little Soul Train. Written by Matt Ritchey and Tom Cavanaugh, and directed by Matt Ritchey, it runs June 2 through June 23 at the Lounge Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4598?tab=tickets.

“Nothing Bad: A Werewolf Rock Musical” tells the story of Perfection, California, where everything is exactly that—perfect. But when good girl Lilly White realizes she wants something more than everything, the rebel motorcycle gang looks like a great solution. There’s only one problem: they’re werewolves. And once she’s bitten, she will learn about Perfection’s dark underbelly as she transforms into The Beast. Written and directed by Erik Blair, with music by Daniel Sugimoto, it runs June 2 through June 24 at the Studio/Stage in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4168.

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“We Are Not These Hands” Two cagey 15 year olds, Moth and Belly, live in the ruins of a dystopian society where filth is abundant and the addiction to consumerism and porn is incessant. But, they have each other – a relationship bound by love, an Internet café, and a slew of inside jokes. If they could only “cross the river,” and be in the capitalist society where an ostensible future exists. When they meet Leather, the journey veers in unconceivable directions as a series of humorous events unfold. Written by Sheila Callaghan, and directed by Larry Biederman, it runs June 2 through June 24 at the Rogue Machine Theatre (in The Met) in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.net/now-playing.

“An Evening with John Wilkes Booth” The assassination of Abraham Lincoln was a pivotal point of this nation’s history, but it is a story that is always told from Lincoln’s point of view. John Wilkes Booth was a great actor, but his father and brother were even greater. And his jealousy and his love for the South and slavery lead him to commit the heinous crime for which he is known. An Evening with John Wilkes Booth is a one man play that lets us know who John Wilkes was and why he did what he did. Along the way, there is Shakespeare, sex, drama, and the entire acting out of the assassination itself. Written by Lloyd J. Schwartz and Clinton Case, and directed by Lloyd J. Schwartz, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Complex Theatre (Flight space) in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4579.

“Inversion” Adam, a socially awkward mathematician, especially with women, laments his inability to find the hot woman of his dreams before his mom declines too far into the world of Alzheimer’s. His best friend, Brendan, who seems to get any woman he wants, tries to support his endeavor, with disastrous results. Thus begins the spiral into dating and love and relationships as Brendan encourages Adam to date a low self-esteemed slightly older woman, Rhonda, in order to help Adam learn how to date. In meeting up with Rhonda, Adam finds his hot woman:  Natalia, Rhonda’s roommate. Thinking he’s finally met the woman of his dreams, Adam forges ahead with Natalia thinking maybe he can also ease his mother’s concerns about his well-being as she declines. Romantic entanglements explode in this touching, all too real look at how men and women relate to not only the opposite sex as friends and lovers, but how friendships are tested by the dating world. Written by Aditya Putcha, and directed by Elise Hodge, it runs June 3 through June 18 at the Sacred Fools Theatre Studio in Los Angeles. For tickets call 916-214-6255 or visit www.emhpros.weebly.com.

“Lyman” When a woman has a chance encounter with a homeless man she thinks she recognizes, she begins to wonder what his life could have been like had he made different choices. Was Lyman Liri really the hero he claims to have been? And could his life have ended up much differently? These questions propel a journey through the various universes in which Lyman might have existed and show how our choices affect our own destiny, as well as the destinies of those around us. It is a certainty: one choice separates us all from a Fate of fortune or homelessness….Written and directed by Anne Johnstonbrown, it runs June 3 through June 18 at the Hudson Backstage Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-856-4249 or visit www.plays411.com/lymantheplay.

“Man of La Mancha” tells the poignant story of Don Quixote and his pursuit of the impossible dream. His dream is Everyman’s dream. His tilting at windmills is Everyman’s adventure. Celebrating life – not as it is, but as it should be – is at the heart of this inspiring and unforgettable musical. The Spanish-influenced score is a musical delight, containing the magnificent and uplifting anthem to all that is best in us: THE IMPOSSIBLE DREAM. Remember what it is to believe in all that is noble, heroic and romantic with this rousing classic. Written by Dale Wasserman, with music by Mitch Leigh, lyrics by Joe Darion, and directed by Glenn Casale, it runs June 3 through June 25 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts in La Mirada. For tickets call 562-944-9801 or visit www.lamiradatheatre.com.

“Nicky” transforms the world of 1800s Russia into present-day Palm Springs. Under the piercing desert sun, characters plod through the unforgiving heat, clinging to their self-described identities while chasing after and running away from their true desires. Nicky was developed in the Coeurage CoLab. Written by Boni B. Alvarez, and directed by Beth Lopes, it runs June 3 through July 1 at the Greenway Court Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-673-0544 or visit www.greenwaycourttheatre.org/nicky.

“Nosferatu, A Symphony in Terror” From the fervent mind of Bram Stoker’s Dracula…filtered through the lens of Friedrich Murnau…comes an experience so unique that you will remember it for the rest of your life.  Nosferatu takes the audience on an unforgettable voyage from the world we know to the exotic and mysterious ends of our own imaginations.  Crown City Theatre Company presents Nosferatu through the magic of music, dance and drama.  This is a unique and unforgettable evening of theatre!! Written by Friedrich Murnau, and directed by William A. Reilly, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Studio/Stage in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-605-5685 or visit www.HFF17.com/4556.

“Thanksgiving” Chloe Patterson has invited her perfect fiancé to what she will make sure is the perfect Thanksgiving, despite her very imperfect family. She’s got a solid plan in place to combat any and all hints of dysfunction, providing for every possible contingency — except the unexpected dinner guest: a very unfiltered, Las Vegas stripper. Scabs are picked, secrets are revealed, and fights erupt as this group struggles to make it through another holiday unscathed. Written by Tiffany Cascio, and directed by Kitty Lindsay, it runs June 3 through June 23 at the Lounge Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-455-4585 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4549.

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“The Merchant of Venice” In 2017, Shakespeare’s comic tragedy, arguably one of the most controversial plays ever written, continues to raise penetrating questions about racism, religion, mercy and justice. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs June 3 through October 1 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

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“The Other Mozart” The name Nannerl Mozart has long been a footnote in classical music history, but this production reveals the extraordinary talent and rich inner thoughts of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s sister. A prodigy, keyboard virtuoso and composer, Nannerl performed alongside her brother throughout Europe as children to great acclaim, but was forced to give up her artistic passion as a young woman due to the societal expectations of her gender. Her brother would rise to become one of the preeminent composers in history, while Nannerl’s own works were lost. This monodrama is set in a stunning 18-foot dress (designed by Magdalena Dabrowska from the National Theater of Poland). The modern-styled music created for the play utilizes clavichords, music boxes, bells, teacups, fans and other objets d’art that might have captured Nannerl’s imagination. This is a multi-sensual experience that transports the audience into a surreal world of oversized beauty and delight – but also one of overwhelming restrictions and prejudice where, finally, this other Mozart tells her story. Written by Sylvia Milo, with music by Nathan Davis and Phyllis Chen, and directed by Isaac Byrne, it runs June 3 to June 18 at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura. For tickets call 805-667-2900 or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

“The Spidey Project” Nerdy social outcast Peter Parker takes on an alter ego as he attempts to defeat a dastardly collection of terrifying villains and perhaps his biggest nemesis of all: himself. Written and directed by Justin Moran, with music by Jordan Ostrowski, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Studio/Stage in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4398.

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“This Side of Sweetwater” explores the absurd, the romantic and the enigmatic through the lives of seven couples in This Side of Sweetwater. From wide-open dreamscapes through life changing celebrations to the uncertain vastness of a cool desert night, his characters fall for each other, argue, swear they can’t go on, and then … they go on:

8min – Directed by Amy French  A stage manager and a lighting designer fall for each other in the wide-open dreamscape of an empty stage.  At first, it’s the lighting designer’s dream, but is it the stage manager’s by the end?

I’ve Always Wanted to Write a Play – Directed by Marisa O’Brien  A recently married couple get ready to host friends the night before a wedding.

Gay Wedding – Directed by Katherine Barcsay  One partner in a just married gay couple is drunk off his ass.  Their married hetero friends are having relationship issues.  And the caterer just wants to get paid.

Close – Directed by Paul Hoan Zeidler  A gay man escaping his desperately ill lover is stranded out in the desert when his car breaks down.  He rescues/ is rescued by a disheveled woman with one shoe who’s been thrown out of the car by her husband.

Part – by Tony Foster, Directed by Shaina Rosenthal   A couple prepare to go to dinner at a restaurant where the man will meet the woman’s parents for the first time.

Written by Tom Stanczyk, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Asylum at McCadden Theatre Main Space in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4370?tab=tickets.

“Three Can Keep a Secret” what was supposed to be an easy score turns into nuthin’ but a friggin’ mess. Whack the mark. Stage the scene. Take the money. Retire to Cabo. That’s how it was supposed to go down. But for poor wannabe gangsters Moose and Sonny, a really bad night is only just beginning. This is a darkly funny and slightly twisted interactive crime thriller where the audience chooses how the story proceeds while the anti-heroes attempt to literally get away with murder. With multiple decision points throughout the story for audiences to vote on (like a Choose Your Own Adventure book), no two performances will be the same! Written by Gregory Crafts, and directed by Jacob Smith, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Studio/Stage in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4735.

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“Trump In Space” Four hundred years from now, thanks to the stripping away of EPA regulations, the earth has blown up. Two human factions survive and are on the hunt for Polaris 4, a planet capable of sustaining human life. One faction, the United States of Commerce, lives by a motto of “opportunity at any cost.” Ruled by The Executive, his chief representative in space is starship Captain Natasha Trump, a lineal descendant of Donald J. Trump. Competing with her to reach Polaris 4 first is a resistance called The Separatists, gathered on the Starship California and led by President Gary Hart, Natasha’s ex-lover. Which faction will be the first to reach Polaris 4 and establish the New Cosmic Order? Written by Gillian Bellinger and Landon Kirksey, with music by Tony Gonzalez and Sam Johnides, and directed by Matt Zettell, it runs June 3 through June 24 at the Actors Company Let Live Theater in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-455-4585 or visit www.hff17.com/4764.

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“Hold These Truths” tells the inspirational true story of civil rights hero Gordon Hirabayashi who took his fight all the way to the Supreme Court. Ryun Yu (Geffen Playhouse’s Take Me Out), whose solo performance has captivated audiences and sold-out shows from coast-to-coast, stars in this heartwarming, entertaining and powerful story. Written by Jeanne Sakata, and directed by Jessica Kubzansky, it runs June 4 through June 25 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

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“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” The most magical outdoor setting in Los Angeles is once again transformed into an enchanted forest inhabited by lovers both fairy and human. Shakespeare conjures a world of wonder, magic and romance where comical misunderstandings and the pain of unrequited love are resolved, and all is reconciled through midsummer night revelries and the enduring power of nature. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Melora Marshall, it runs June 4 through September 4 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“Conversations ‘Bout The Girls” is a touching solo show from accomplished artist Sonia Jackson that focuses on women’s relationships to various aspects of their breasts or the breasts of others. It is a series of relatable stories that connects with topics such as the names women have heard breasts called, getting breasts, bras, cancer, cleavage and more. The stories vary from hilarious to heartbreaking, embarrassing to moving, but all are…’bout the girls. Written by Sonia Jackson, and directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson, it runs June 4 through June 24 at the Dorie Theatre at The Complex in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4318.

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“My Janis” is a window into Janis Joplin’s private world as she struggles to find her identity in the summer of 1966. Joplin spent a reclusive year at her parents’ house in Texas after she nearly died from speed and alcohol addiction in San Francisco. At 23, she works hard to fit in and get rid of her destructive habits: she goes back to college, gets a part time job, goes to psychotherapy and waits for her boyfriend to come to marry her… He never shows up.  But she keeps singing. She keeps having very controlled fun. While on a vacation with her friends in Austin she waits for a call from her old friend, Chet Helms who is now a big manager in San Francisco.  Things are changing fast with the music revolution and the hippie movement and he wants her to sing for one of his groups  “Big Brother and The Holding Co”. Janis doesn’t know what to do. She is scared of San Francisco – scared of her own monsters, but this is her dream come true, after years of failures. Can she finally be true to herself and be loved for what she really is? Written and directed by Arianna Veronesi, it runs June 4 through June 25 at the New Collective Mainstage in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4563?tab=tickets.

“October Baby” What happens when a detail-obsessed woman tries to time the birth of her child to occur during her favorite month of the year? Nine months of chaos…in utero and out! A hilarious and poignant look at motherhood and the need to control from stage and screen veteran Brooke Baumer. Written by Brooke Baumer, and directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson, it runs June 4 through June 24 at the Sacred Fools Theater Black Box in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4321.

“The Brick – A One Man Musical” Taking his inspiration from neuroscientist David Eagleman’s theory of three deaths (the first: when the body ceases to function; the second: when the body is put in its grave; the third: that moment, sometime in the future, when your name is spoken for the last time), comedy songwriter Bill Berry goes mano a mano with the spirit of his deceased mother, offering her the choice to live on, or die her third and final death. Written by Bill Berry, and directed by Kelly De Sarla, it runs June 4 through June 22 at the Asylum @ Studio C in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-947-9019 or visit www.hff17.com/4418.

“Tough Brown Leather” A sexual hero’s journey. Sara is the spunky, eight-year-old star running back of her street football team. But off the field, she can’t outrun the attack of a sexual predator. As Sara transitions into womanhood, the effects of the childhood attack stay with her. She takes a few hits, but never stays down for long. Tough Brown Leather is a testament to the human capacity to survive, heal and embrace one’s sexual power. Written by Tonya Jones, and directed by Michael Philip Edwards, it runs June 4 through June 24 at the Lounge Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-863-3643 or visit www.hff17.com/4588.

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“Moments” A road rage confrontation stirs up painful memories for a woman in her late 30’s. Unable to shake off the incident once she gets home, she reaches out to her counselor at a women’s medical health center. Written and directed by Bernadette Armstrong, it runs June 5 through June 25 at the Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 818-437-0177 or visit www.hff17.com/4364.

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“A Harmony Boys Christmas” It’s Christmas Eve 1962 and renowned singing sensations The Harmony Boys are presenting their annual yuletide fundraising concert to benefit their charity “Force Feed the World” (in which they shove food and their personal cultural and religious beliefs down the throats of the less fortunate during the holiday season). It’s a singing, dancing, musical comedy extravaganza brimming with heartfelt but provocative satire, at once evoking nostalgia for our nation’s past while dissecting its many shortcomings of the present day. Written and directed by Aaron Matijasic, with music by Ben Stanton, it runs June 8 through June 24 at the Sacred Fools Theater Mainstage in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-455-4585 or visit www.hff17.com/4661.

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“The Pleasure Project” A woman no longer timid about her right to freedom of speech and sexual expression, poses the question…can female sexuality save humanity? “What do the humans have that could possibly be worth saving?” asks the alien leader in their weekly Aliens Anonymous meeting. Paula, the sexiest of the aliens, knows the answer! “It’s the clitoris, the only organ in the human body designed solely for pleasure.” But that doesn’t explain why the human female is so screwed up about sex? What follows is a hilarious, irreverent, and sensual romp exploring gender, masturbation, cunnilingus, Christianity & much more in a multimedia one-woman variety show that includes music, dance, lip syncing and, yes, there will be cake. Written by Ava Bogle, and directed by Rachel Avery, it runs June 8 through June 24 at the Rogue Machine Theatre (in The Met) in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.net/now-playing.

“The Pride” takes place in both 1958 and 2008 as it eloquently juxtaposes scenes that examine changing attitudes to sexuality over a period of 50 years. In 1958, Philip is married to Sylvia, but is secretly attracted to her colleague, Oliver. In 2008, Philip lives with his boyfriend Oliver, who continually destroys their relationship with his addiction to casual sex, and turns to their friend Sylvia for guidance and support. As the past and present worlds collide, The Pride’s complex love triangle provides a provocative, humorous and insightful look at identity, fidelity and forgiveness. A stylish, witty and affecting play that alternates between two very distinct time periods and the lives of three characters whose fate is destined by their eras. Written by Alexi Kaye Campbell, and directed by Michael Arden, it runs June 8 through July 9 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org.

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“Beauty and the Beast” All-Male Late-Night Date-Night! Based on the original 1740’s tale by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve, this classic musical gets a big twist! Set in a fantasy Medieval milieu “long, long ago,” a lovely and spirited Beauty takes charge of her fate and molds herself a most endearing Beast, who offers her a rose garden of a thousand and one delights. Replete with ditzy sisters, a befuddled sire, a spell-binding sorceress and a flamboyantly foppish suitor, who all inadvertently or intentionally strew more than a few thorns along Beauty and her Beast’s arduous, and ardor-ous, path. Written and directed by Chris DeCarlo & Evelyn Rudie, with music by Evelyn Rudie, it runs June 9 through July 15 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 2 or visit www.santamonicaplayhouse.com/beauty-beast-pride.html.

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“Crimes of the Heart” Meg just left a man. Lenny never had a man. Babe just shot a man. Warm-hearted, irreverent, funny and touching, Beth Henley’s first play examines the plight of three Mississippi sisters betrayed by their passions as each is forced to come to terms with her “crimes of the heart”. Written by Beth Henley, and directed by Luke Yankee, it runs June 9 through June 25 at the INTERNATIONAL CITY THEATRE Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.InternationalCityTheatre.org.

“Emotional Terrorism” This one woman stand-up show takes the audience on an intoxicating journey from Orlando to Togo, ballet to bulimia, the runways of Paris to blacking out in Hollywood mansions and sitting on the precipice of suicide, to finding salvation through stand-up comedy. Daniels puts a hilarious spin on her unapologetic, soul-bearing tale of one girl’s journey from humiliation to liberation. Written by Ellyn Daniels, with music by Desmond Devenish, and directed by Desmond Devenish, it runs June 9 through June 24 at the Actors Company (Let Live Theater) in West Hollywood. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org.

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“Zen Shorts” What happens when a Zen Master Panda bear moves next-door to a ten-year-old boy and his two siblings? Award-winning Rogue Artist Ensemble brings this delightful tale to life with over 30 fabulous puppets from around the globe, fantastical video projections and original songs. Based on the Caldecott Award-winning children’s book, watch and listen as Panda Stillwater imparts centuries of Zen master wisdom about family, friendships and getting through the ups-and-downs of growing up.  A summer treat for audiences of all ages 5 and up. Written by Jon J. Muth, and directed by Sean T. Cawelti, it runs June 10 through June 25 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

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“The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey” When a 14-year-old boy goes missing in a small New Jersey town his disappearance is illuminated by memories of his brilliant spirit. This one-man show, written and staring Academy-award winner James Lecesne, tells the story of a young boy who had touched the hearts of his community during his short by richly colorful life. Teens and adults alike will be inspired by this uplifting story about humanity and the dignity of life. Written by James Lecesne, with music by Duncan Sheik, and directed by Tony Speciale, it runs June 11 through June 25 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“The AmityCode” tells the story of Pete, a brilliant robotics engineer, who, after being dumped by his girlfriend, builds a robot to replace her. But he may have programmed his creation too well. As our society continues to replace more and more with technology, this play asks the question: at what point does it become detrimental to us? What makes us human? And finally, why love is the last part of our lives that technology cannot, and should not, replace? Written by Devin Crittenden, and directed by Nick Cimiluca, it runs June 11 through June 25 at the ASYLUM @ Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/4548?tab=details.

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“Hollywood Diary” A fictional encounter at the filming of Hush Hush Sweet Charlotte between famous Hollywood gossip columnist Hedda Hopper interviewing all time star Mary Astor about her big return to the big screen but wanting to know details of Mary’s scandalous, tell all, revealing diary. Once used as evidence against Mary, in her own divorce trial. So shocking her contents were, that brought together the major heads of the movie studios accompanied by their lawyers to convince Astor that it would be better for the movie industry, and for her, not to introduce the diary in court. Written and directed by Octavio Carlin, it runs June 12 through June 25 at the Hudson Guild Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-667-3162 or visit www.hff17.com/4730.

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“Constellations” is the story of Roland, a beekeeper, and Marianne, a quantum physicist. What are their odds of falling in love? With infinite moments that can change the trajectory of a life, it’s anyone’s guess how cosmic collision is possible. Nick Payne’s Olivier and Drama League nominated hit is a charming, devastating and profound exploration of the universal truth of finding and losing love. A play that balances on the question of “what if” is, at its core, a poignant picture of “what is”. Written by Nick Payne, and directed by Giovanna Sardelli, it runs June 14 through July 16 at the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“E.D. Blues The Musical” looks to give both men and women a chance to laugh at a subject that –  though widely advertised – is generally considered taboo: Erectile Dysfunction. Be among the first to see a showcase performance of this brand new hilarious romantic musical comedy. The subject matter, though mature, is neither offensive nor profane.  E.D. Blues is about how lives are affected by this unfortunate condition and how our multi-ethnic cast of characters reacts to it – each in their own hilarious way! This show is about how men and the women who love them deal with one of nature’s re-occurring dilemmas.  How a little pill can temporarily solve some problems, but that love is the ultimate cure. Written by Butch Dubarri, with music by Butch Dubarri, Gary Dalton, A.T. Freeman and Chris Glik, and directed by Jeffrey Polk & Kent “Butch” Dubarri Sprague, it runs June 16 through June 18 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

“Oklahoma!” A re-imagining of Rodgers & Hammerstein’s first and most innovative collaboration. Set in the Oklahoma Territory at the turn of the century, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides a colorful backdrop against which Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, play out their story chock full of realism, heartache, hard work, love, and tragedy all within the dream of a frontier full of possibility in a brand new state. Written by Oscar Hammerstein II, with music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, and directed by T.J. Dawson, it runs June 16 through June 25 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center in Redondo Beach (for tickets call 714-589-2770 Ext. 1), then June 30 through July 9 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in Cerritos (for tickets call 562-916-8500), or visit www.3dtshows.org for either location.
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“Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” In this hilarious comedy, Vanya and his adopted sister, Sonia, live a quiet life in the Pennsylvania farmhouse where they grew up, while their sister Masha travels the world as a movie star. Just as their cleaning woman issues a warning about terrible events in their future, Masha returns for an unannounced visit with her 20-something boy toy Spike in tow. And so begins this unforgettable family reunion filled with rivalry, regret, and racket. All allusions to Chekhov are purely intentional. Written by Christopher Durang, and directed by Barbara Tarbuck, it runs June 16 through June 24 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-392-7327 or visit www.edgemar.org.

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“Animal Farm” How do lies become truths? This brilliant satire about the corrupting influence of power charts the fall of idealism and the rise of tyranny after the animals of Manor Farm rise up against their human owner in a struggle for rights and equality. Written by George Orwell, with music by Richard Peaslee, lyrics by Adrian Mitchell, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs June 17 through October 1 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“I’m Not a Comedian… I’m Lenny Bruce” Busted for obscenity, Lenny fought for freedom of speech all the way to the supreme court. He accidentally died of an overdose in 1966, while out on appeal. Written by Ronnie Marmo, and directed by Joe Mantegna, it runs June 23 through July 23 at the Theatre 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.Theatre68.com.

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“Measure for Measure” is one of Shakespeare’s most modern plays. It looks at the conflict between strict moralism and unfettered hedonism—and asks what happens when rigid ideologues actually gain access to the reins of power. Audiences can expect a lot of food for thought mixed in with quite bawdy humor and some of the most vibrant characters Shakespeare ever created. Much as the play is full of unexpected twists, the set for this production will include hidden doorways, unusual entrances, and unexpected openings. This is a free performance. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Melissa Chalsma, it runs June 24 through July 23 at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.

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“Rhinoceros” In a small provincial town outside of Paris, the citizens discover how quickly one’s sense of humanity can be eroded when facing the dangers of a herd mentality. A timely and brilliant indictment of impending fascism by this master of Avant-Garde theater. Written by Eugene Ionesco, and directed by Guillermo Cienfuegos, it runs June 24 through August 13 at the Pacific Resident Theatre in Venice. For tickets call 310-822-8392 or visit www.pacificresidenttheatre.com.

“Letters from a Nut” Ted L. Nancy is a customer in need of service. He writes to the city of Huntington Beach requesting a permit for operating his Electronic Nose Blowing Machine, invites Czechoslovakian President Václav Havel to become Treasurer of Ted’s Vacuum Club, asks Nordstrom about buying a mannequin that looks like his deceased neighbor to present to the grieving widow, and more. Time after time, well-meaning representatives offer earnest replies to his letters. Nancy brings his madcap collection of correspondence to the Geffen stage for a one-of-a-kind show that is both outlandish and uproarious. Written by Ted L. Nancy, and directed by Pierre Balloón, it runs June 28 through July 30 at the Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.


 

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“Annie Get Your Gun” This show hits the target with every song and dance! It’s the story of Annie Oakley, one of the Old West’s greatest marksmen, and Frank Butler, who was also renowned for his amazing shooting ability. Both proud and headstrong, they compete against each other and eventually fall in love! It’s tons of fun from start to finish and of course, filled with some of Irving Berlin’s greatest hits! You’re going to love this show! Written by Dorothy Fields and Herbert Fields, with music by Irving Berlin, and directed by Tim Dietlein, it runs through July 1 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

“Les Blancs” depicts the waning days of colonialism crossing into the 20th century as it reveals the impossible moral choices faced by individuals who must reconcile personal happiness with idealism. It is rich with music and dance and set in and around a mission compound in Africa. The time is yesterday, today, and tomorrow– but not very long after that. Written by Lorraine Hansberry, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs through July 3 at the Rogue Machine Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.

Enjoy life more by seeing a show today!

“Scene in LA” May 2017 by Steve Zall and Sid Fish

Here’s what’s happening this month in the Southern California theatre scene:


OPENING

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 “The Gary Plays” chronicles the odyssey of unemployed actor Gary Bean, Mednick’s everyman/anti-hero who has been hailed by KCRW as “a sort of L.A. Leopold Bloom.” Audiences can choose to follow Gary’s journey over the course of three evenings — or view all six plays on a single Sunday. Written by Murray Mednick, and directed by Guy Zimmerman, it runs May 4 through June 4 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 323-882-6912 or visit www.openfist.org.

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“Tales of Modern Motherhood: This Sh*t Just Got Real” is a heartfelt comedy about the uncertainties of becoming a parent, the FEAR of being a parent, and the reservations of why I didn’t just settle for a dog. It addresses the good, the bad and the ugly truth about what really happens behind closed doors and gives a very honest perspective on the hardest job in the world, PARENTING! Written by Pam Levin, and directed by Mark Hatfield, it runs May 4 through June 15 at the Other Space at Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.talesofmodernmotherhood.com.

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“Fefu and Her Friends” On a seemingly ordinary day, a group of women gather to plan a philanthropic fundraiser. As the evening unwinds, the world dips into the surreal and their secrets, fears, and frustrations with society and each other come to light. Featuring an international cast of women, Fornés’ 1977 play explores how women across the world are subtly pressured to conform to an ideal of meekness and femininity. Written by María Irene Fornés, with music by Daniel Szabo, and directed by Kate Jopson, it runs May 5 through May 28 at the Hollyhock House in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.circlextheatre.org/fefu.

 

“Hello Again” is based on the 1897 play La Ronde by Arthur Schnitzler. It focuses on a series of love affairs among 10 characters during the 10 different decades of the 20th century. LaChuisa’s musical adaptation follows the structure of Schnitzler’s original material closely, often replicating fragments of his dialogue, detailing a daisy chain of sexual encounters and love affairs. Unlike the book, each scene is set in a different decade of the 20th century and in non-chronological order, allowing for a large and varied pastiche of musical styles ranging from opera to 1970s disco. Written by Michael John LaChiusa, with music by Brenda Varda, and directed by Richard Van Slyke, it runs May 5 through May 28 at the Chromolume Theatre at the Attic in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-205-1617 or visit www.crtheatre.com.

 

“Man of La Mancha” tells the poignant story of Don Quixote and his pursuit of the impossible dream. His dream is Everyman’s dream. His tilting at windmills is Everyman’s adventure. Celebrating life – not as it is, but as it should be – is at the heart of this inspiring and unforgettable musical. The Spanish-influenced score is a musical delight, containing the magnificent and uplifting anthem to all that is best in us: THE IMPOSSIBLE DREAM. Remember what it is to believe in all that is noble, heroic and romantic with this rousing classic. Written by Dale Wasserman, with music by Mitch Leigh, lyrics by Joe Darion, and directed by Glenn Casale, it runs May 5 through May 7 at the Valley Performing Arts Center in Northridge. For tickets call 818-677-3000 or visit www.ValleyPerformingArtsCenter.org.

 

“The Monster Builder” follows Rita and Dieter, young architects, who are thrilled to meet Gregor. He’s the world’s most celebrated architect, whose buildings rise from the earth like twisted post-post-modern megaliths. So why has he taken on the remodel of a decaying boathouse, a project that was supposed to go to Rita and Dieter? They’re ready for a confrontation and to defend what they value: historic preservation and human-scale buildings. But nothing prepares them for the truth about their idol. Written by Amy Freed, and directed by Art Manke, it runs May 5 through June 4 at the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

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“The House in Scarsdale: A Memoire for the Stage” Dan O’Brien traces the roots of his family’s particular unhappiness to learn why his parents and siblings cut him off years ago. The more Dan learns about his family, the more mysterious the circumstances surrounding their estrangement become, until his world is shaken when rumors surface that his real father might be another member of the family. Ultimately, Dan must decide if his pathological pursuit of the truth is worth the risk or should he follow the advice of a psychic and make his life a never-finished work of art. Written by Dan O’Brien, and directed by Michael Michetti, it runs May 6 through June 4 at the Theatre @ Boston Court in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-683-6883 or visit www.bostoncourt.com.

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“Actually” is the story of Amber and Tom, who, finding their way as freshmen at Princeton, spend a night together that alters the course of their lives. They agree on the drinking, they agree on the attraction, but consent is foggy, and if unspoken, can it be called consent? Actually invites the audience to explore the complex dynamics of sexual assault and consent. Written by Anna Ziegler, and directed by Tyne Rafaeli, it runs May 10 through June 11 at the Audrey Skirball Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

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“Good People” centers on life in South Boston, a working-class neighborhood on hard times, which is no joke for single mother Margaret Walsh. Fired from her job, facing eviction and with nowhere to turn, she and her grown, disabled daughter, represent a large portion of today’s society. Will she get a break from her young manager at the Dollar Store or the landlady with a craft business selling googly-eyed rabbits, or the man from her past, now a successful doctor, who left town at a crucial moment long ago? Written by David Lindsay-Abaire, and directed by Gail Bernardi, it runs May 12 through June 17 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

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“Lucky Stiff” a hilarious musical murder mystery farce mixing diamonds, mistaken identities and a body in a wheelchair (oh, and puppies!), in this all singing, all dancing, killer musical comedy!  In fact, you’ll die laughing! Written by Lynn Ahrens, with music by Stephen Flaherty, lyrics by Lynn Ahrens, and directed by Stephen Van Dorn, it runs May 12 through June 18 at the Actors Co-op David Schall Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-462-8460 or visit www.ActorsCo-op.org.

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“The Lyons” In this scathingly funny look at a family in crisis, the Lyons family is falling apart just when they need to pull together. Rita Lyons, in a heroic effort to keep the family united while her husband, Ben, is dying of cancer, has called their grown children together to say good-bye around his hospital bed. In the ensuing maelstrom of kvetching, guilt-giving, and recriminations, they discover that despite being a family, each of them is utterly isolated. Afraid of closeness and afraid of solitude, the Lyons are unexpectedly propelled into foreign territory- human connection. Written by Nicky Silver, and directed by Scott Alan Smith, it runs May 12 through July 1 at the Road on Lankershim in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-761-8838 or visit www.roadtheatre.org.

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“The Sweetheart Deal” 1970 was a tumultuous time for Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers. Obie Award-winning writer/director Diane Rodriguez traces the history of the UFW through the eyes of two journalists who leave their comfortable middle class life in San Jose to volunteer for El Malcriado, the underground newspaper founded by Chavez and Dolores Huerta. Written and directed by Diane Rodriguez, with music by Sage Lewis, it runs May 12 through June 4 at the Los Angeles Theatre Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.thelatc.org.

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“Species Native to California” For a decade, two families—one white and progressive, one undocumented—have lived together on a Northern California wine country estate in something like harmony. But political changes and financial mishaps leave them both suddenly facing uncertain futures. As everyone clamors to save the estate, a vengeful ghost haunts the fruitless vineyard intent on breaking the balance. Mexican folklore meets Mendocino County in this homage to Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Performed in English with a liberal sprinkling of Español. Written by Dorothy Fortenberry, and directed by Eli Gonda, it runs May 13 through June 11 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 323-380-8843 or visit www.iamatheatre.com.

 

“Five Guys Named Moe” is an exuberant, international hit musical pays tribute to the music of rhythm and blues pioneer Louis Jordan. Written by Clarke Peters, with music by Louis Jordan, and directed by Keith Young, it runs May 18 through June 11 at the Nate Holden Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-964-9766 or visit www.ebonyrep.org.

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“Separate Tables” is actually a compilation of two short plays. The two pieces share a location, a dining room in a residential hotel in Bournemouth, England, and also share some of the same characters. In the first act, Table by the Window, an alcoholic left-wing writer loves the female manger of the hotel. Their world is rocked when the man’s ex-wife, a glamorous model dreading the approach of her middle age, checks into the hotel. The model has her ex in her sights. What will he do? In the second act, Table Number Seven, an ex-Army man enjoys the company of a spinster. They have things in common: Both are afraid of life and of other people in particular. When the woman’s manipulative, domineering mother exposes the man’s hidden sins, will she succeed in driving the soldier and the spinster apart? Written by Terence Rattigan, and directed by Jules Aaron, it runs May 18 through June 18 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

 

“Annie Get Your Gun” This show hits the target with every song and dance! It’s the story of Annie Oakley, one of the Old West’s greatest marksmen, and Frank Butler, who was also renowned for his amazing shooting ability. Both proud and headstrong, they compete against each other and eventually fall in love! It’s tons of fun from start to finish and of course, filled with some of Irving Berlin’s greatest hits! You’re going to love this show! Written by Dorothy Fields and Herbert Fields, with music by Irving Berlin, and directed by Tim Dietlein, it runs May 19 through July 1 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.

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“Freeway Dreams” a musical about commuters, stuck in freeway traffic, and as they wait for the gridlock to disperse they begin to daydream, their dreams emerging through songs such as ‘Manic-Depressive Blues,’ ‘A Big Woman Needs A Big Man,’ ‘…And A Pizza To Go,’ ‘My Superman’ and ‘What If The Other Guy Wins?’ hitting the mark in satirizing the L.A. lifestyle. Written by Wayne Moore, with music by Wayne Moore, and directed by Jim Blanchette, it runs May 19 through June 11 at the Write Act Repertory @ Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com.

 

“I Carry Your Heart” Phoebe is a young poet, forever living in the shadow of her estranged mother’s literary acclaim. When her mother unexpectedly dies Phoebe is left with two complicated legacies: donating her mother’s organs and reading her mother’s unpublished confessional journal. Meanwhile, Tess and her partner Lydia receive an early morning phone call, informing them that a donor heart is available for Tess – good news, but news that has come far sooner than they were prepared for. As these two families form an unlikely connection, they struggle to understand the politics and poetics of organ donation—and they dare to hope that pieces of us can live on after great tragedy. Written by Georgette Kelly, and directed by Jessica Hanna, it runs May 19 through June 10 at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.bootlegtheater.org.

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“Long Way Down” The darkly comic and harrowing story of Maybelline Ferris, a damaged young woman living with her pregnant sister Saralee and her forlorn husband, Duke, in their run-down family home north of Nashville. As the play begins, Karen, a close friend of Maybelline’s jailed older sister, marches into the house with the news that Doolee James kid came into Kindercastle today with a black eye. Doolee is beating her child. That accusation starts a chain of events that set the entire Ferris family into a downward spiral towards the plays stunning conclusion. Written by Nate Eppler, and directed by Steve Jarrard, it runs May 19 through June 18 at the Sherry Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 323-860-6569 or visit www.longwaydown.brownpapertickets.com.

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“Emmitt & Ava” a contemporary tale of love and loss. Two families, unacquainted with one another, suddenly find themselves forced to communicate on most intimate terms. Emmitt and Ava is a play as dynamic as it is relevant. Written and directed by Dominic Hoffman, it runs May 20 through June 18 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica. For tickets visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2907900.

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“Cuff Me: The Fifty Shades of Grey Musical Parody” is the hilarious parody of the Fifty Shades of Grey bestselling book/movie/t-shirt phenomenon!  Grab your bestie, your entourage, and that family member that always drinks a little too much and get ready to laugh at this irreverent, hysterical romp in an evening of goofy, satirical fun. The show bounces between nail salon gossip and an exaggerated telling of the erotic novel while the cast of four belt out parodies of songs like “Hit Me Baby” and “Call Me Maybe” while spoofing Fifty Shades of Grey! Written by Bradford McMurran, Jeremiah Albers, and Sean Michael Devereux, it runs May 23 through May 28 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-508-4200 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.

 

“Battlefield” begins as the devastation of war is tearing the Bharata family apart. The victorious new king must unravel a mystery: how can he live with himself in the face of the devastation and massacres that he has caused. Using just four actors and a musician, Battlefield has the economics of storytelling and the signature style of Peter Brook’s theater. Battlefield is an immense canvas in miniature; this central section of the ancient Sanskrit text is timeless and contemporary, asking how we can find inner peace in a world riven with conflict. Written by Jean-Claude Carrière, and directed by Peter Brook and Marie-Hélène Estienne, it runs May 24 through May 28 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org.

 

“S/He & Me” chronicles the unvarnished, complex, desperate, and often hilariously wacky story of Billings’ life, centering on the transition from the young Scott to the show-stopping Alexandra. She carries the story forward through story and plenty of songs. Written by Alexandra Billings, and directed by Joanne Gordon, it runs May 25 through June 11 at the Renberg Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-860-7300 or visit www.lalgbtcenter.org/theatre.

 

“Les Blancs” depicts the waning days of colonialism crossing into the 20th century as it reveals the impossible moral choices faced by individuals who must reconcile personal happiness with idealism. It is rich with music and dance and set in and around a mission compound in Africa. The time is yesterday, today, and tomorrow– but not very long after that. Written by Lorraine Hansberry, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs May 27 through July 3 at the Rogue Machine Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.


CONTINUING

 “Allen Wilder 2.0” a director of softcore porn returns from Hollywood to his dead parents’ house in Levittown, Long Island, to sort through his belongings and re-examine his life. Can a chance meeting with his former babysitter and his estranged niece soothe the wounds of the failure he feels? Is it too late? His search for redemption gets comic treatment in this new play. Written and directed by Matt Morillo, it runs through May 21 at the Lounge Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7792 or visit www.kadm.com.

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“Harold and Maude” This is a stage adaptation of the movie about a 19 year-old boy who finally learns how to truly live when he meets that delightfully wacky octogenarian, Maude. Harold is the proverbial poor little rich kid—his alienation has caused him to attempt suicide several times, though these incidents are more cries for attention than actual attempts. His peculiar attachment to Maude, whom he meets at a funeral (a mutual passion) is what saves him and what captivates us. Written by Collins Higgins, and directed by Brandon Baer, it runs through May 21 at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-828-7519 or visit www.morgan-wixson.org.

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“The Awful Grace of God” is actually an evening of six original one-act plays:
Off, set in 1972 Flushing, Queens, New York, explores the effect that violence has on two friends and how their personal experiences of our world’s brutality influence their ability to cope with their respective lives.
Surrender, set in present day Porch, New England, is an exploration of a couple’s search for meaning and the power of their love for each other after the passing of their child. The play looks into the potential interpenetrative nature between heaven and earth.
Willy and Rose, set in a present day Motel Room, depicts two people’s struggle to love each other and survive in a harsh world. The play explores desperation, aggression and fear expressed through their tragic love affair.
The Long Walk Home, set in 1950 in New York City, is a story exposing powerlessness, loss and the courage of a family to continue on after unspeakable harm has been done while in the grip of addiction.
Need (Shelter from the Storm), set in present day in a Psychotherapist’s office in New York, explores the pure force of love and how that love transcends all boundaries when discovered.
Through, set here in the present, is a play about transformative suffering in adversity depicting one person’s journey from bondage into freedom.
Written by Michael Harney, and directed by Mark Kemble, it runs through May 28 at the Other Space @ The Actors Company in West Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7784 or visit www.plays411.com/graceofgod.


Enjoy life more by seeing a show today!