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Archive for May 2022

SLEEP WITH THE ANGELS, Latino Theater Co. at The Los Angeles Theatre Center

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

In Sleep With the Angels, directed by Jose Luis Valenzuela, playwright Evelina Fernandez portrays a fragmented family of Latinx extraction — but the truths she seeks to convey might resonate anywhere. Read more…

Now through June 26

BELOVED at The Road Theatre

Photo by Michele Young

Photo by Michele Young

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Beloved, a world premiere play by Canadian playwright Arthur Holden, opens in a waiting room outside a counsellor’s office at a posh school, where an affluent upper-middle-aged couple await news of their son. Thirty minutes have gone by since they’ve arrived, and no one has summoned them in, or explained why they’ve been called. Stephen (Sam Anderson), grown choleric and hostile, declares his intent to barge into the counsellor’s inner sanctum despite being asked not to enter. His wife Dorothy (Taylor Gilbert) cautions restraint, but she too is anxious and upset, and will become more so as the situation unfolds. Read more…

Now through June 19

UNTITLED BABY PLAY at IAMA Theatre Company at Atwater Village Theatre

Photo by Jeff Lorch

Photo by Jeff Lorch

Dana Martin – Stage Raw

Nina Braddock’s new work, Untitled Baby Play, is a whole pandemic in the making. The play seeks to address the question every reproductively abled person is confronted with: “Are you going to have a baby?”  IAMA Theatre Company’s world premiere production bravely confronts the subject of whether or not to reproduce, but too often circumvents the nuances of the conversation surrounding the subject of parenthood. Read more…

Now through June 27

HAMLET at Antaeus Theatre Company

Photo by Frank Ishman

Photo by Frank Ishman

Terry Morgan – Arts Beat LA

At this point, Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a theatrical peak so frequently attempted that you can see, as on Everest, the frozen bodies of thespians who chanced and failed the perilous ascent on the way. And yet this dissuades absolutely no one to take on the challenge, seemingly again like Everest in the words of mountaineer George Mallory, “Because it’s there.” Thankfully in the new production of Hamlet by the Antaeus Theatre Company the summit is impressively attained, due to Ramón de Ocampo’s brilliant lead performance and Elizabeth Swain’s assured direction. Read more…

Tracey Paleo – Gia On The Move

It is a badass, nail-biting event akin to a Celebrity Death Match of iambic pentameter gone wild as Ramón de Ocampo takes the stage in the lead role as the Prince of Denmark.  Never – have you seen Antaeus Theatre Company quite like this. Read more…

Now through June 20

METAMORPHOSES at A Noise Within

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Tracey Paleo – BroadwayWorld

In a word…Delicious. A Noise Within winds down its 2021-22 season with playwright Mary Zimmerman’s primal retelling of Ovid’s METAMORPHOSIS. It is nothing short of spectacular. Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

In 1996, playwright/director Mary Zimmerman adapted some Greek myths from the classic poem Metamorphoses by Ovid. A full production was first done at Chicago’s Lookingglass Theatre Company which transferred to off-Broadway in 2001 and moved to Broadway in 2002. It was later restaged at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. Now Pasadena’s classic repertory theatre company, A Noise Within, has mounted a fresh take on the material. Read more…

Now through June 5

OUR TOWN at South Coast Repertory

Photo by Matt Gush/SCR

Photo by Matt Gush/SCR

Dana Martin – Stage Raw

It may seem like nothing much happens in Thornton Wilder’s most important work, Our Town. It is a play, after all, about ordinary people living ordinary lives. But the 1938 Pulitzer Prize winner is quietly deep and profoundly moving. Edward Albee once described Wilder’s play as “the greatest American play ever written.” Read more…

Now through June 4

 

SONDHEIM ON SONDHEIM at Ophelia’s Jump

Photo by Randy Lopez

Photo by Randy Lopez

Steven Leigh Morris – Stage Raw

Originally conceived and directed by James Lapine for a brief Broadway stint in 2010, this revue of Stephen Sondheim’s life and work received a new charge of pertinence in the wake of Sondheim’s death in November at the age of 91. The show includes a strong video presence of the composer-lyricist via interviews for the Broadway production plus prior interviews on various TV outlets. In many ways, these interviews are the show’s highlight, providing context for the potpourri of Sondheim’s songs across the spectrum of half a century of Broadway theater. Read more…

Now through June 5

 

AFTERGLOW at the Hudson Theatre

Photo by Mati Gelman

Photo by Mati Gelman

Harker Jones – BroadwayWorld

Relationships are complicated. And whether it’s marriage, friendship, or with your cat, they become exponentially more complicated when there are more than two people involved, which is what gay married thirtysomethings Josh (Noah Bridgestock) and Alex (James Hayden Rodriguez) discover through their open relationship when Josh breaks the cardinal sin of polyamory… Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Have you ever been in a threesome? Or attempted a triad relationship? That is the gist of S. Asher Gelman’s three-hander one-act Afterglow, at Hollywood’s Hudson Mainstage thru July 24. Josh (Noah Bridgestock) is a New York theatre actor married to Alex (James Hayden Rodriguez) a chemist. After nine years together, they are successful enough to afford a kick-ass apartment and are contemplating having a child through surrogacy. As the action opens, Josh and Alex are amid some hot sex play with their latest pickup, Darius (Nathan Mohebbi). Read more…

Extended through October 9

KING LEAR at The Wallis

Photo by Jason Williams

Photo by Jason Williams

Steven Leigh Morris – Stage Raw

Shakespeare’s play gets a Wooster Group-ish makeover in John Gould Rubin’s modern dress staging for the Wallis. Tech is omnipresent, almost omniscient. Narrow, vertical panels on both sides of the stage provide screens for Keith Skretch’s projection design, featuring striking images of fires and floods now generally associated with climate change. Read more…

Tracey Paleo – Gia On The Move

After three years of preparation, The Wallis somehow made the decision to greenlight a befuddling presentation of one of Shakespeare’s most powerful plays and its chief character in the process.  The result is detritus. Read more…

Now through June 3

LADCC Announces Officers and Members for the 2022-2023 Season

LADCC Logo

The 2022 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle is pleased to announce its current officers and members for the upcoming 2022- 2023 season. Founded in 1969, the Circle currently includes 17 critics covering productions across the Greater Los Angeles area.

The Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle has held its first election since the COVID lockdown. The new slate of officers consists of President Jonas Schwartz-Owen (TheaterMania, BroadwayWorld/LA), Vice President Dana Martin (Stage Raw), Treasurer Hoyt Hilsman (Cultural Daily, Pasadena Now, Riot Material), Secretary Terry Morgan (Stage Raw, ArtsBeatLA.com) and Web Content Editor Ellen Dostal (BroadwayWorld/LA, Musicals in LA). LADCC welcomes its new officers for the 2022-2023 season.

Nominations for the upcoming LADCC Awards, which will include award recipients for both 2020 and 2021, will be announced shortly.

The current 2022 membership of the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle (in alphabetical order): Lara J. Altunian (Stage Raw, L.A. Dance Chronicle), Katie Buenneke (Stage Raw, TheaterDigest.substack.com), Peter Debruge (Variety), Ellen Dostal (BroadwayWorld/LA, Musicals in LA), Margaret Gray (L.A. Times), Hoyt Hilsman (Cultural Daily, Pasadena Now, Riot Material), Deborah Klugman (Stage Raw, ArtsbeatLA.com, GiaOnTheMove.com), Harker Jones (BroadwayWorld/LA, ArtsInLA.com, LA Weekly), Dany Margolies (ArtsinLA.com, Southern California News Group), Dana Martin (Stage Raw), Myron Meisel (Stage Raw), Terry Morgan (Stage Raw, TalkinBroadway.com, ArtsBeatLA.com), Tracey Paleo (BroadwayWorld/LA, GiaOnThe Move.com), Melinda Schupmann (ShowMag.com, ArtsInLA.com), Jonas Schwartz-Owen (ArtsinLA.com, Theatermania, BroadwayWorld/LA), Don Shirley (Angeles Stage on Substack) and Rob Stevens (HainesHisWay.com).

For more information, photos or press interviews, please contact David Elzer/DEMAND PR at 818/508-1754 or at davidelzer@me.com

HADESTOWN at the Ahmanson Theatre

Photo by T Charles Erickson

Photo by T Charles Erickson

Jonas Schwartz-Owen – Theatermania

There’s a gargantuan myth surrounding the opening of Hadestown at the Ahmanson Theatre. Not the Greek tragedy of Orpheus and Eurydice, which this musical does borrow, but the legend of the juggernaut Broadway production that opened in April 2019. Arriving with 14 Tony nominations and eight awards in tow, the production almost dares the audience to not be absorbed by the fandom and hype. Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Even though Hadestown is mostly set in hell, it’s a lively and jazzy version of the fearsome place. Anais Mitchell has created an amazing piece of theatre with her book, music and lyrics and director Rachel Chavkin has put a special spin on the characters and action. It’s like two classic Greek love stories rolled into the biggest, rowdiest New Orleans Mardi Gras party ever. If hell is like this, I want to book my ticket now! The National Tour played the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles recently and will play the Orange County Performing Arts Center soon. Read more…

Now running through May 29

TAMBO & BONES at the Kirk Douglas Theatre

Photo by Craig Schwartz Photography

Photo by Craig Schwartz Photography

Terry Morgan – Stage Raw

If one reads in the press that a new play is a “minstrel show,” it might give one pause about seeing said show. Historically, minstrel shows were racist entertainment in which White people wearing “blackface” makeup depicted African-Americans in a derogatory way. These shows were mostly popular in the 19th century, but regrettably carried into the 20th century as well. Fortunately, Dave Harris’s play Tambo & Bones only takes on the format of minstrelsy to examine and debunk it, and has more on its mind than just that. Read more…

Now through May 29