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Archive for May 2017

THE LYONS at The Road Theatre on Lankershim

Michele Young

Michele Young

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Playwright Nicky Silver has written over a dozen plays which have mostly been produced off-Broadway and at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company in Washington, D.C. South Coast Repertory produced his Pterodactyls and Raised in Captivity in the early 1990s. Read more...

Lovell Estell III – Stage Raw

Nicky Silver’s mordant comedy revisits the familiar generative terrain of the dysfunctional family coping with life’s difficulties — and themselves. Read more…

Now running through July 1

HELLO AGAIN at Chromolume Theatre at the Attic

(Photo by James Esposito)

(Photo by James Esposito)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

This long one-act by Michael John LaChiusa (The Wild Party) is a musical update of Arthur Schnitzler’s 1900 play La Ronde which, shocking for its time, featured 10 interconnected sexual encounters. The structure and the characters’ names are Schnitzler’s, though the Young Thing has been transformed from female to male to embrace a broader sexual spectrum. Read more…

Now running through May 28

 

LUCKY STIFF at Actors Co-op

Michael Lamont

Michael Lamont

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

It’s hard to imagine a more far-fetched plot than the one that animates this zany musical by Lynn Ahren (book and lyrics) and Stephen Flaherty (music), based on The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo by Michael Butterworth.    Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Lucky Stiff is a 1988 musical farce with book and lyrics by Lynn Ahrens and music by Stephen Flaherty. It was the team’s first collaboration…..Read more…

Now running through June 18

ACTUALLY at the Geffen Playhouse

Christ Whitaker

Photo by Chris Whitaker

Margaret Gray – LA Times

He said, she said. Then he said more, and then she said more. They both kept saying things. But no matter how much they said, it was impossible to determine what had actually happened between the two freshmen in the Princeton University dorm room when they were very drunk. Was it consensual sex or rape? Read more…

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

“Um, actually.” These seemingly innocuous words are critical to the events of the aptly named Actually, a new play by Anna Ziegler currently playing at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles in a co-world premiere with the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Read more…

Dany Margolies  -  Arts In LA

We see the kiss twice: once at the play’s beginning and once at its end. Her hands express her uncertainty. They don’t push him away, but they don’t embrace him. Her left hand hovers near his shoulder, a question mark over the moment and certainly over the play. Read more…

Now running through June 11

THE SWEETHEART DEAL at the Los Angeles Theatre Center

Grettel Cortes Photography

Grettel Cortes Photography

Deborah Klugman – Capital & Main

Written and directed by Diane Rodriguez, The Sweetheart Deal is an amiable blend of political agitprop and audience-pleasing melodrama that unfolds against the backdrop of the struggle to empower the United Farm Workers union. Read more…

Now running through June 4

THE DESIGNATED MOURNER at REDCAT

K. HO

K. HO

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

Sometimes a play finds its moment long after its premiere and initial exposure to the world. Read more…

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

Wallace Shawn is a powerhouse storyteller, and the story he spins in The Designated Mourner is a riveting tale.    Read more…

Now running through May 21

THE HOUSE IN SCARSDALE: A MEMOIR FOR THE STAGE at The Theatre at Boston Court

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Jonas Schwartz -  TheaterMania

Dan O’Brien has written an American gothic tale on a par with Pulitzer Prize winner Sam Shepard’s best works. Like many of the characters in Shepard’s plays, the protagonist seeks the truth, but the answers will not assuage his guilt or pain. Read more…

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Early in Dan O’Brien’s intense and lyrical play, a scene transpires between Dan (Brian Henderson) the playwright’s alter ego, and Skip (Tim Cummings), a childhood acquaintance and the son of his wealthy grandfather’s second wife. Read more…

Frances Baum Nicholson – The Sun

There are two ways to approach Dan O’Brien’s “The House in Scarsdale: A Memoir for the Stage.” Read more…

Margaret Gray – LA Times

In “The House in Scarsdale: A Memoir for the Stage,” the poet and playwright Dan O’Brien dramatizes a mystery of his past. His fictive alter ego, also named Dan O’Brien (played by Brian Henderson), is a writer in his late 30s whose parents recently, with no explanation, severed ties with him. Read more…

 

Now running through May 22

 

OF MICE AND MEN at The Belfry Stage at the Crown Theater

Photo by Lonni Silverman

Photo by Lonni Silverman

Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

No American writer chronicled the unpleasant reality of the Depression era with more clarity and inventiveness than John Steinbeck. His gift for creating memorable characters underscores his best work, and this is no truer anywhere than in his 1937 novella about the ill-fated relationship between two itinerant migrant workers in Salinas Valley. Read more…

Now running through May 13

 

MIDDLETON at Chance Theatre

Photo by Doug Catiller

Photo by Doug Catiller

Jonas Schwartz -  TheaterMania

Middletown, a delicate, essentially plotless play about Anywhere, U.S.A., and how human connection is essential for our survival, requires actors to be able to fill the void that playwright Will Eno has left in the script. Read more…

Now running through May 19

ARCHDUKE at the Mark Taper Forum

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Erin Conley – OnStage

Most people know about the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, the event historically seen as the inciting incident of World War I. But what do we really know about the assassins? In Archduke, a new play by Rajiv Joseph currently making its world premiere at Center Theatre Group’s Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles, we look at the weeks leading up to the 1914 assassination and the unlikely path of a few young men who are recruited into terrorism at a particularly vulnerable time in their lives. Read more…

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

What drives a young person to commit an act of terror? Is he propelled by his own volition or are there other, more sinister individuals or forces pulling the strings?

Now running through June 4

 

THE BODYGUARD at the Pantages Theatre

The Bodyguard

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Not many musicals literally start with a bang. In the case of The Bodyguard: the Musical, now playing at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles, an opening gunshot was both very startling and pretty effective at getting the stragglers to settle into their seats. Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

The 1992 film The Bodyguard starred Kevin Costner in the title role and featured the film debut of singing superstar Whitney Houston. The film received seven Golden Raspberry Award nominations, including Worst Picture, and has a score of 32% on Rotten Tomatoes yet it was the second highest grossing film worldwide that year. Read more…

Dany Margolies – The Daily News

If in 1992 the films on your must-see list included “Reservoir Dogs,” “The Player,” “Howard’s End,” “Orlando” or even “Wayne’s World,” Lawrence Kasdan’s “The Bodyguard” probably didn’t make the cut. But that film has indeed been musicalized and brought to the stage, adapted by Alexander Dinelaris. Its national tour is basking at Hollywood’s Pantages Theatre, where the late Whitney Houston’s legion of fans can hear her megahits receive full power-ballad treatment. Read more…

Now running through May 21

PERICLES – The Porters of Hellsgate at the Whitmore-Lindley Theatre Center

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

As a theatre critic, I’ve reviewed a lot of Shakespeare’s plays, but this is the first time I’ve seen anyone, in this case George Wilkins, credited as a collaborator in the writing. Read more…

Now running through June 4