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Archive for El Portal Theatre

A Conversation with Matt Walker and Beth Kennedy, the King and Queen of Troubie Land

weezer david 3x750

Ellen Dostal – Broadway World

When it comes to developing a loyal fan base, Troubadour Theater Company has found the secret: do outstanding work, stay true to your aesthetic, and give the people what they want – a great time at the theater. Artistic Director Matt Walker started the troupe and, with the help of longtime friend and foil, Beth Kennedy, continues to lead his merry band into the great theatrical unknown. Next up for the company is JULIUS WEEZER, which combines Shakespeare’s JULIUS CAESAR and the music of Weezer to tell its tale of political intrigue Troubie style. Today, they talk about what it’s like putting together a new show and why they keep on coming back for more.

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THE ELEPHANT MAN at El Portal Theatre

David Ruano

David Ruano

Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

In the lobby of the theater in a plastic case, there is a life-size reproduction of the skeleton of Joseph Merrick, or “John” as he is referenced in the script for The Elephant Man. The night this reviewer attended, there was a small crowd gathered around it, staring in wonder and disbelief, and many expressions of sympathy arose about the hideous deformities this human being was forced to live with during his brief life.
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Now running through April 14

 

THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTANA CLAUS – Troubadour Theater Company at The El Portal Theatre

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Ellen Dostal – Broadway World

What would Christmas in LA be without the Troubies? A lot less funny.

Happily, artistic director, writer, and head jokester Matt “Mashup” Walker and his coterie of clowns aren’t about to let anyone down. Not only are they back with their seventeenth annual holiday show, they’re proving just how smart they really are when it comes to delivering a performance that has its finger on the pulse of what’s happening now.
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Now running through December 30

CASH ON DELIVERY at the El Portal

Photo by Ed Krieger

Photo by Ed Krieger

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Michael Cooney’s Cash on Delivery typifies the sort of humor you find in a quintessential English farce. It’s very funny when it’s well done and a big boring yawn when it’s not. I’m pleased to report that the production at the El Portal, directed by Cooney’s father Ray (who was knighted for his contributions to British theater) falls in the former category. Read more…

Now running through December 20.

THIEVES at the El Portal Theatre

Photo by Ryan Miller

Photo by Ryan Miller

Pauline Adamek  – Stage Raw

Three siblings and their father — all estranged — reunite at their mother’s ramshackle country homestead shortly after her death to uncover her will and to sling recriminations at each other. Despite its flashes of black humor, Charlotte Miller’s gutsy, messy and heavy-duty family drama Thieves is about as jolly as that hackneyed premise suggests. Read more…

Now running through April 4.

 

DORIS AND ME at the El Portal Theatre

Photo by Ed Krieger

Photo by Ed Krieger

Les Spindle –  Edge on the Net

Thanks to fans of iconic movie star Doris Day, this past April felt like a month-long Day-fest in cyberspace, as postings about the reclusive performer’s unexpected appearance at her 90th birthday celebration flooded social media for several weeks.  Read more…

Now running through August 3.

MODROCK at El Portal

Bob Verini – ArtsInLA

ModRock is a train wreck, the waste of a perfectly good idea for a jukebox to rifle, namely the array of 1950s and ’60s British hits that transformed the pop music scene worldwide and eventually made its way to our shores as the “British invasion.” As British invasions go, ModRock is Dunkirk.   modrockRead more…

Now running through July 14.

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Astra Dance Company

 

The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari presented by Astra Dance Company.

 

Pauline Adamek – ArtsBeatLA

Astra Dance Company has interpreted the twisted, sinister plot and expressionistic style of the 1920s silent horror film classic to produce a gorgeous if disquieting acrobatic ballet. A breathtakingly talented troupe of 17 neoclassical dancers, contortionists and circus artists emote and perform the melodramatic tale of murder and mystery against a projected backdrop of animation and abstract, jagged settings. Best friends Francis (a superb Gaston Askey) and Alan (Olivia Bollfrass) vie for the affections of pretty Jane (Amy Highfill). When the menacing Dr. Caligari (Roger Fojas) comes to their small German town with his traveling carnival, a series of inexplicable murders send the townspeople into a frenzy of panic and mistrust.   Read more…