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FUN HOME at the Ahmanson Theatre

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Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times

Erin Conley – OnStage

Don’t be misled by the sight of three adorable children bouncing around and singing “come to the fun home.” In this case, ‘fun’ is short for ‘funeral,’ and while little about the tragic tale could actually be described as fun, it can certainly be described as some of the very best storytelling modern musical theater has to offer. Read more…

Now running through April 1

2016 LADCC AWARDS NOMINEES AND INFORMATION

This year the Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award ceremony will take place on March 20, 2017, at the Colony Theatre at Burbank Town Center, 555 N. Third Street, Burbank. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for a reception with a cash bar, and the show will begin at 7:30 p.m. There is ample, free, on-site parking.

Tickets are $40.00 and can be purchased at  2017criticsawards.brownpapertickets.com (a small service fee applies), or, depending on availability, at the door.

Nominees are entitled to one complimentary ticket apiece and should RSVP to criticsawards2017@gmail.com. All questions regarding the event should also be directed to this address.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Following is a list of special awards and nominees:

The Margaret Harford Award for sustained excellence in theatre: Antaeus Theatre Company.

The Polly Warfield Award for an excellent season in a small to mid-size theatre, sponsored by the Nederlander Organization: Rogue Machine Theatre.

The Ted Schmitt Award for the world premiere of an outstanding new play: Aliza Goldstein for A Singular They, originally produced by the Blank Theatre.

The Kinetic Lighting Award for outstanding achievement in theatrical design, sponsored by Kinetic Lighting: lighting designer Jared A. Sayeg.

The Joel Hirschhorn Award for outstanding achievement in musical theatre: Cabrillo Music Theatre.

 The Milton Katselas Award for career or special achievement in direction, sponsored by the Beverly Hills Playhouse: Maria Gobetti.

 The LADCC’s newest award, the Gordon Davidson Award for distinguished contribution to the Los Angeles theatrical community: I Love 99.

 

 ANNUAL AWARD CATEGORIES 

Production

  • A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group, Ahmanson Theatre.
  • Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Disgraced, Center Theatre Group, Mark Taper Forum.
  • Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Urinetown the Musical, Coeurage Theatre Company.

 

McCulloh Award for Revival (plays written between 1920 and 1991)

  • Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Endgame, Center Theatre Group, Kirk Douglas Theatre.
  • Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Center Theatre Group, Mark Taper Forum.
  • West Side Story, Musical Theatre West, Carpenter Performing Arts Center.

Lead Performance

  • Hugo Armstrong in All the Way, South Coast Repertory.
  • Andrew Bongiorno in The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Ginna Carter in The Eccentricities of a Nightingale, Pacific Resident Theatre.
  • Kate Morgan Chadwick in Bed, The Echo Theater Company.
  • Darren Criss in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Hollywood Pantages Theatre.
  • Hari Dhillon in Disgraced, Center Theatre Group, Mark Taper Forum.
  • Rebecca Gray in One of the Nice Ones, The Echo Theater Company.
  • Connor Kelly-Eiding in Dry Land, The Echo Theater Company.
  • Matt Orduña in Bars and Measures, The Theatre @ Boston Court.
  • Gedde Watanabe in La Cage aux Folles, East West Players.
  • Jacqueline Wright in Blueberry Toast, The Echo Theater Company.

Featured Performance

  • JD Cullum in Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Bo Foxworth in Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Lena Hall in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Hollywood Pantages Theatre.
  • Steve Hofvendahl in The Engine of Our Ruin, The Victory Theatre.
  • Bess Motta in The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Jessica Pennington in The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Victoria Ortiz in The Super Variety Match Bonus Round!, Rogue Machine Theatre.

Ensemble Performance

                                         

  • Ameryka, Critical Mass Performance Group, The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles.
  • Casa Valentina, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Center Theatre Group, Mark Taper Forum.
  • The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

 Solo Performance

  • Deborah Puette, Captain of the Bible Quiz Team, Rogue Machine Theatre.

Direction

  • Tim Dang, La Cage aux Folles, East West Players.
  • Kari Hayter, Urinetown the Musical, Coeurage Theatre Company.
  • Ricardo Khan, Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Michael A. Shepperd, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Casey Stangl, Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Darko Tresnjak, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group, Ahmanson Theatre.

Writing

  • Ayad Akhtar, Disgraced, Center Theatre Group, Mark Taper Forum.
  • Idris Goodwin, Bars and Measures, The Theatre @ Boston Court.
  • Erik Patterson, One of the Nice Ones, The Echo Theater Company.
  • Jason Wells, The Engine of Our Ruin, The Victory Theatre.

 

Musical Score

  • Noah Agruss, Bars and Measures, The Theatre @ Boston Court.
  • Steven Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group, Ahmanson Theatre.
  • Jason Robert Brown, The Bridges of Madison County, Center Theatre Group, Ahmanson Theatre.

 

Music Direction

  • Bryan Blaskie, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Paul Litteral, Louis & Keely: ‘Live’ at the Sahara, Geffen Playhouse.
  • Marc Macalintal, La Cage aux Folles, East West Players.
  • Gregory Nabours, Urinetown the Musical, Coeurage Theatre Company.

 

Choreography

  • Hope Clarke, Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Reggie Lee, La Cage aux Folles, East West Players.
  • Janet Roston, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.
  • Leslie Stevens, The Full Monty, 3-D Theatricals.

Set Design

  • Tom Buderwitz, Casa Valentina, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Alexander Dodge, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group, Ahmanson Theatre.
  • David Gallo, Empire the Musical, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.
  • Michael Navarro, My Mañana Comes, The Fountain Theatre.

Lighting Design

  • Brandon Baruch, Urinetown the Musical, Coeurage Theatre Company.
  • Ken Billington, Dreamgirls, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.
  • Rui Rita and Jake DeGroot, Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.XXX
  • Tim Swiss, Dream Boy, Celebration Theatre.

 Costume Design

  • Kate Bergh, Casa Valentina, Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Amy Clark and Mark Koss, The Little Mermaid, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.
  • A. Jeffrey Schoenberg, Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.
  • Anthony Tran, La Cage aux Folles, East West Players.

Sound Design

  • John Farmanesh-Bocca and Adam Phalen, Tempest Redux, Odyssey Theatre Ensemble and New American Theatre.
  • John Gromada, Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Rebecca Kessin, Dream Boy, Celebration Theatre.
  • Eric Snodgrass, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

Specialty: Fight Choreography

  • Jen Albert, Punch and Judy, The School of Night, Ruby Theater at the Complex.

Specialty: Wigs, Hair and Makeup

  • Rick Geyer, Casa Valentina, The Pasadena Playhouse.
  • Jessica Mills, Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

Productions that have garnered nominations:

 

The Boy from Oz (Celebration Theatre) 9
Cloud 9 (Antaeus Theatre Company) 8
Fly (The Pasadena Playhouse) 5
La Cage aux Folles (East West Players) 5
Casa Valentina (The Pasadena Playhouse) 4
A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder (Ahmanson Theatre) 4
Urinetown the Musical (Coeurage Theatre Company) 4
Bars and Measures (The Theatre @ Boston Court) 3
Disgraced (Mark Taper Forum) 3
Dream Boy (Celebration Theatre) 2
The Engine of Our Ruin (The Victory Theatre) 2
Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Hollywood Pantages Theatre) 2
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (Mark Taper Forum) 2
One of the Nice Ones (The Echo Theater Company) 2
All the Way (South Coast Repertory) 1
Ameryka (Critical Mass Performance Group) 1
Bed (The Echo Theater Company) 1
Blueberry Toast (The Echo Theater Company) 1
The Bridges of Madison County (Ahmanson Theatre) 1
Captain of the Bible Quiz Team (Rogue Machine Theatre) 1
Dreamgirls (La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts) 1
Dry Land (The Echo Theater Company) 1
The Eccentricities of a Nightingale (Pacific Resident Theatre) 1
Empire the Musical (La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts) 1
Endgame (Kirk Douglas Theatre) 1
The Full Monty (3-D Theatricals) 1
The Little Mermaid (La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts) 1
Louis & Keely: ‘Live’ at the Sahara (Geffen Playhouse) 1
My Mañana Comes (The Fountain Theatre) 1
Punch and Judy (The School of Night) 1
A Singular They (The Blank Theatre) 1
The Super Variety Match Bonus Round! (Rogue Machine Theatre) 1
Tempest Redux (Odyssey Theatre Ensemble/New American Theatre) 1
West Side Story (Musical Theatre West) 1

 

FINDING NEVERLAND at the Pantages Theatre

Photo by

Photo by Jeremy Daniel

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Finding Neverland was a charming, heart-warming 2004 film about British playwright J.M. Barrie and the family that inspired him to write his immortal classic Peter Pan. Read more…

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning… Peter Pan is an iconic story, and the musical adaptation of Finding Neverland, currently playing at the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles, tells but one iteration. Read more…

Now running through March 12

ONCE ON THIS ISLAND at Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts

Photo by Isaac James Creative

Photo by Isaac James Creative

Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

The visuals are gorgeous in 3–D Theatricals’ production of the infrequently produced “Once on This Island.” Costuming, lighting, choreography — everything that appeals to the eye gets a lavish treatment in this lively….. Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Once on This Island is a little gem of a show that has rarely been seen on local stages. It was written by Lynn Ahrens (book and lyrics) and Stephen Flaherty (music) based on the novel My Love, My Love or The Peasant Girl by Rosa Guy. Read more…

Now running through March 5

CANNIBALS ALONE at The Belfry Stage, Upstairs at the Crown

CA4

Photo by Lonni Silverman

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

Steph Deferie’s Cannibals Alone bears the surface markings of a timely dystopian drama, with an all-female cast of tough characters you wouldn’t want to mess with. The feminist angle is commendable; otherwise, the play lacks cogency and reeks of bad TV melodrama of the sci-fi variety. Read more…

Now running through March 5

 

LYRICS FROM LOCKDOWN at the ACTORS GANG

LYRICS FROM LOCKDOWN - 2

Deborah Klugman – Capital & Main

Somewhere in the middle of Bryonn Bain’s soulful one-of-a-kind show, the playwright/poet/performer recounts an interview between himself and a public defender. Their talk takes place in an interrogation room in a New York City police precinct, where Bain has been wrongly detained on criminal charges. The Nuyorican Grand Slam Poetry champion and teacher of incarcerated youth explains to the legal aid attorney that the situation at hand is a case of mistaken identity…Read more…

Now running through February 26

ZOOT SUIT at the Mark Taper Forum

zoot

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Erin Conley – OnStage

It is not every day that a hat receives entrance applause at the theater. However, it is also not every day that Zoot Suit returns to Center Theatre Group’s Mark Taper Forum, the very theater that commissioned and hosted its world premiere in 1978. Read more…

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Luis Valdez, founder of El Teatro Campesino and writer/director of the 1978 play with music Zoot Suit, says in his program notes for the current revival at the Mark Taper Forum, “On opening night, when the character of El Pachuco, memorably played by Edward James Olmos, swaggered onto the Taper stage, Chicano theatre became American theatre.” Read more…

Frances Baum Nicholson – The Daily Breeze

The return of Luis Valdez’s groundbreaking musical “Zoot Suit” to the Mark Taper Forum is less of a theatrical milestone than it is a major cultural event.   Read more…

Pauline Adamek – ArtsBeatLA

Swinging social commentary abounds with the lively, if overlong Zoot Suit, a mostly upbeat revival now playing at the Mark Taper Forum. With swagger and flair, Demian Bichir haunts the stage as ‘El Pachuco’ – the play’s Zoot-suited narrator – singing and growling in a (sometimes) unintelligible yet authentic Pachuco idiom. Ann Closs-Farley’s costume creations deserve special mention for their vibrancy, as does Maria Torres for her superb choreography. Read more…

Now running through March 26

33 VARIATIONS at the Actors Co-op

33 VARIATIONS - 6

(Photo by Lindsay Schnebly )

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

33 Variations starring Jane Fonda appeared on Broadway in 2009 and played the Ahmanson Theatre in 2011. Now Actors Co-Op in Hollywood is offering the area’s first intimate production. Read more…

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

This play by Moises Kaufman is an extraordinary piece of work — rich, multifaceted and multilayered, both disturbing and reassuring. Nominally, it’s about a piece of music: Beethoven’s 33 Diabelli Variations, which he wrote based on a waltz by Anton Diabelli. Read more…

Now running through March 26

946: THE AMAZING STORY OF ADOLPHUS TIPS at the Wallis Center for the Performing Arts

946TheAmazingStoryofAdolphusTipsSteveTanner

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

The Wallis in Beverly Hills has brought back Kneehigh, the English theatre company that presented Brief Encounter at the venue in 2014. The company also appeared locally in 2015 at South Coast Repertory with their take on Tristan & Yseult. Now they are back with , a mixed bag of an undertaking….Read more…

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

William Faulkner’s famous quote “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” is reconfigured in the new presentation by Britain’s Kneehigh Theatre into the refrain, “Not gone, just gone away,” referencing how history is always with us.    Read more…

Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

Like a cat that doesn’t want to be caught, theater that satisfies adults and children can be elusive. But Britain’s Kneehigh theater company caught an adorable cat firmly by the scruff with the company’s “946: The Amazing Story of Adolphus Tips,” at the Wallis in Beverly Hills through March 5….Read more…

Now running through March 5

LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT at the Geffen Playhouse

Photo by Chris Whitaker

Photo by Chris Whitaker

Jonas Schwartz -  Arts In LA

Mary Tyrone is the female Hamlet. She’s a role that measures an actress’ stamina, talent, and resourcefulness. No wonder many top-echelon actresses such as Jessica Lange, Katharine Hepburn, and Vanessa Redgrave jump at the role. This time, it’s Jane Kaczmarek who takes on the challenge….Read more…

Pauline Adamek – ArtsBeatLA

With a running time of three hours and 20 minutes, including an intermission, this theatrical experience really is a long haul. Eugene O’Neill’s semi-autobiographical four-act drama charts the dysfunction that permeates the Tyrone family— James and Mary and their sons Edmund and Jamie.  Read more…

Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

“I was so healthy before Edmund was born,” says matriarch Mary Tyrone in playwright Eugene O’Neill’s epic “Long Day’s Journey Into Night,” considered a masterpiece of American theater of any era.   Read more…

Now running through March 18

CLAUDIO QUEST at Chance Theatre

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Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

I have never been much of a video game player. Truthfully I haven’t played one since the very early versions of Pong and PacMan started replacing pin ball machines in bars to give customers something to do while drinking. So I was a bit leery about seeing the new musical Claudio Quest…..Read more…

Katie Buenneke – Stage Raw

Beating a video game is no simple feat, and neither is writing a musical — especially a new musical about video games. Unfortunately, while the characters in Claudio Quest, now playing at the  in Anaheim, are able to save the day, the show itself can’t beat the final boss battle: being an unequivocally good piece of theater. Read more…

Now running through February 26

FOR PIANO AND HARPO at the Falcon Theatre

Photo by Sasha Venola

Photo by Sasha Venola

Rob Stevens – HainesHisWay.com

Oscar Levant was a pianist, composer (“Blame It On My Youth”), actor (An American in Paris & The Band Wagon for starters), television personality (talk and quiz shows) and professional neurotic with an acid tongue and a quick retort for everything and everybody, including himself. Read more…

Melinda Schupmann – Arts In LA

Noted musician, composer, and author Oscar Levant was one of those larger-than-life figures prominent from the 1930s until his death in 1972. In his New York days, he was a member of the Algonquin Round Table along with Dorothy Parker, Alexander Wollcott, and Robert Benchley. Read more…

 

Now running through March 5