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Archive for Reviews

THE SNOW GEESE at Independent Shakespeare Co.

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Photo by Grettel Cortes

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

Sharr White’s play, The Snow Geese, is clearly inspired by such classics as The Seagull and The Cherry Orchard and is trying to be an American equivalent, which is an admirable undertaking. Unfortunately, naming one’s play after waterfowl doesn’t make one Chekhov. Read more…

Now running through April 19

BUILDING THE WALL at the Fountain Theatre

Photo by Ed Krieger

Photo by Ed Krieger

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Robert Schenkkan’s play, set in 2019, is a dystopian vision of what life in Trump-land might be like two years hence.

In a prison meeting room, a black woman, Gloria (Judith Moreland) is interviewing Rick (Bo Foxworth), a white prisoner. She offers him a chance to tell his side of the story. But the two are wary of each other. At first, he refuses to cooperate with her, but when she prepares to leave, he relents. Read more…

Deborah Klugman – Capital & Main

Prolific playwright Robert Schenkkan won a 1992 Pulitzer Prize for his series of one-acts, The Kentucky Cycle, and a 2014 Tony Award for Best Play for All the Way, about the efforts of Lyndon Baines Johnson to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He wrote Building the Wall in response to the election of Donald Trump. Read more…

Now running through May 21

A WRINKLE IN TIME at the Sierra Madre Playhouse

Photo by Gina Long, courtesy Sierra Madre Playhouse)

Photo by Gina Long, courtesy Sierra Madre Playhouse)

Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

Imaginative direction, striking designs and two vivid performances bring the thrilling journey of Madeleine L’Engle’s science-fantasy novel “A Wrinkle in Time” to life onstage at Sierra Madre Playhouse. Read more…

Now running through April 22

AH WILDERNESS at A Noise Within

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Photo by Craig Schwartz

Frances Baum Nicholson – The Daily Breeze

When one thinks of Eugene O’Neill, one thinks of wrenchingly serious plays, but “Ah, Wilderness” gives him a chance to explore the comparative innocence of a life he wished he could have lived.  Read more…

Now running through May 20

 

RECIPIENTS OF THE 48TH ANNUAL LADCC AWARDS

Congratulations to all the recipients of the 48th annual LADCC awards.  They are as follows:

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.

The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

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

Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum.


Lead Performance

 Andrew Bongiorno in The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

Ginna Carter in The Eccentricities of a Nightingale, Pacific Resident Theatre.

Hari Dhillon in Disgraced, Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum.

 Featured Performance

 JD Cullum in Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

Bo Foxworth in Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

Bess Motta in The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

Ensemble Performance

 Casa Valentina, The Pasadena Playhouse.

Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Center Theatre Group/Mark Taper Forum.

Solo Performance 

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

 Direction

 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.

Erik Patterson, One of the Nice Ones, The Echo Theater Company.

 Musical Score

Steven Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre.

Music Direction

 Bryan Blaskie, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

Choreography

 Janet Roston, The Boy from Oz, Celebration Theatre.

Set Design

 Alexander Dodge, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, Center Theatre Group/ Ahmanson Theatre. 

CGI/Video Design

 Brad Peterson and David Gallo, Empire the Musical, La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.

Lighting Design

 Rui Rita and Jake DeGroot, Fly, The Pasadena Playhouse.

 Costumes

Kate Bergh, Casa Valentina, The Pasadena Playhouse.

A. Jeffrey Schoenberg, Cloud 9, Antaeus Theatre Company.

 Sound Design

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.

The following special award winners were previously announced:

2016 Margaret Harford Award for sustained excellence in theatre

Antaeus Theatre Company.

2016 Polly Warfield Award for an excellent season in a small to mid-size theatre

Rogue Machine Theatre.

2016 Ted Schmitt Award for the world premiere of an outstanding new play

Aliza Goldstein for A Singular They, originally produced by the Blank Theatre.

2016 Kinetic Lighting Award for outstanding achievement in theatrical design

Jared A. Sayeg.

2016 Joel Hirschhorn Award for outstanding achievement in musical theatre

Cabrillo Music Theatre.

2016 Milton Katselas Award for career or special achievement in direction

Maria Gobetti.

 2016 Gordon Davidson Award for distinguished contribution to the Los Angeles theatrical community

Pro99.

 

FAIRLY TRACEABLE at Native Voices at the Autry

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Photo by Craig Schwartz

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Native rights activist Mary Kathryn Nagle is an attorney as well as a playwright. Her latest work, Fairly Traceable, now premiering at Native Voices at the Autry, is a legal drama that pits a group of environmentalist lawyers representing a Native American tribe against a conglomeration of oil companies whose activities in the Louisiana bayou have devastated the region and the community.    Read more…

Now running through March 26

STILL LIFE at Rogue Machine at The Met

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

Though it aspires to be profound, Alexander Dinelaris’s’ aptly titled Still Life can’t transcend its commonplace dialogue or the limitations of an inadequately conceived central character.   Read more…

Now running through April 23

PARADISE LOST: RECLAIMING DESTINY at Greenway Court Theatre

Photo by Anthony Roldan

Photo by Anthony Roldan

Paul Birchall  – Stage Raw

You don’t need to brush up on your Milton to enjoy this splendid adaptation of his great epic Paradise Lost, which tells the story of Satan’s consignment to Hell and Adam and Eve’s fall from Eden. Jones (Welsh) Talmadge, creator of this gorgeous and dynamic shindig, has crafted the work into a ballet, with Cirque Du Soleil-like acrobatic undercurrents. Read more…

Now running through April 2

 

LETTERS FROM GAY YOUNG MEN at Studio C

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Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

The inspiration for this show was drawn from Letters to a Young Poet, the famous tome by the great Austrian romantic poet, Rainer Marie Rilke. Rilke wrote the letters to a young Austrian Army cadet who had sought advice on whether he should pursue a career in the army, or become a poet. Read more…

Now running through April 2

 

AT HOME AT THE ZOO at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts

Zoo Story

Photo by Kevin Parry

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

As the story goes, someone — a friend, a roommate or a lover — said to Mr. Albee, “Edward, you will be thirty years old tomorrow, and you don’t have a damn thing to show for it.” Stung by this comment, Albee sat down and, overnight, wrote a long one-act about a volatile encounter between two men — a complacent middle class guy named Peter, and an impoverished eccentric named Jerry, on a bench in Central Park. Read more…

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

“Do you want to know what happened at the zoo?” If you do, make your way to the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, home to the new Deaf West production of Edward Albee’s At Home at the Zoo—although be warned, the actual answer to that question is far from the point of the piece. Read more…

Now running through April 2

MARRIED PEOPLE: A COMEDY at the Zephyr Theatre

(Photo by Sascha Knopf)

(Photo by Sascha Knopf)

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

As its title implies, Married People: A Comedy concerns the ups and downs of two married couples. Written by Steve Shaffer and Mark Schiff, both long-time standup comics, it’s less a play than a compilation of sitcom shtick with a sizable sprinkling of borscht-belt humor.    Read more…

Now running through April 2

ARTIFICIAL FLOWERS at Zombie Joe’s Underground

Photo Courtesy of Zombie Joe's Underground

Photo Courtesy of Zombie Joe’s Underground

Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

The folks at Zombie Joes continue to expand the theatrical palate with this engaging two-character psychological drama, written and directed by Emily Charouhas. Read more…

Now running through March 11