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Archive for Neal Weaver – Page 2

DESSA ROSE – The Chromolume Theatre at the Attic

James Esposito

James Esposito

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

This 2005 musical, here receiving its Los Angeles premiere, was written by Lynn Ahrens (book and lyrics) and Stephen Flaherty (music), based on the novel by Sherley Anne Williams. It’s set in the American South in 1847 and deals with two strong-minded, volatile women.
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Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

The 2005 off-Broadway Dessa Rose, a little gem of a musical by the team of Ahrens & Flaherty (Once on This Island, Ragtime), is getting a strong production by the Chromolume Theatre in its Los Angeles debut.
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Now running through February 25

THE WATSONS GO TO BIRMINGHAM – 1963 at the Hudson Backstage

Jamal Y. Speakes Sr.

Jamal Y. Speakes Sr.

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

The Watsons of Flint, Michigan are an African-American family of five: dad Daniel (Marcus Clark-Oliver), mom Wiloma (Tiffany Coty), sons Byron (Javen Marquise Smith) and Kenny (Ken Ivey), and daughter Joetta (Victoria Elizabeth Newman). Byron is the family bad boy and the despair of his parents.
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Now running through February 25

A DELICATE SHIP at the Road on Magnolia

(Photo by Brian M. Cole)

(Photo by Brian M. Cole)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Sarah (Paris Perrault) and her boyfriend Sam (Philip Orazio) are enjoying a quiet Christmas Eve at home when they are interrupted by an imperious knocking at the door. The visitor is Nate (Josh Zuckerman), Sarah’s friend since childhood and perhaps her former lover.

Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

The Road Theatre Company is currently presenting the West Coast Premiere of playwright Anna Ziegler’s A Delicate Ship at their space on Magnolia Blvd. in North Hollywood. It’s a delicate memory play with three thirty-something characters who constantly break the fourth wall….
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Now running through March 11

 

FREUD’S LAST SESSION at the Odyssey Theatre

(Photo by Enci Box)

(Photo by Enci Box)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

George Bernard Shaw once observed that it is useless to argue with a clergyman because his livelihood depends on his not changing his mind. But the remark could equally well be applied to anyone whose career depends on defending and maintaining a particular point of view —and that could be said of both the protagonists in Mark St. Germain’s play.
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Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Dr. Sigmund Freud was born to Jewish parents in the Austrian Empire in the mid-19th Century. He came to regard the monotheistic God as an illusion based on the infantile emotional need for a powerful, supernatural pater familias. He believed that in modern times (early 20th Century) religion could be set aside in favor of reason and science.
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Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

Philosophers, theologians, believers and nonbelievers from a broad spectrum of cultures and faiths have been arguing about God’s existence for centuries. In Freud’s Last Session, playwright Mark St. Germain crystallizes the essence of the debate, creating a fictional encounter between Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis and a famous skeptic, and Irish-born C.S.
Lewis, a scholar, novelist and devout Christian…
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Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

Freud! Lewis! Rumble in the library!

More or less.

Mark St. Germain’s two-character play, “Freud’s Last Session,” at the Odyssey through March 4, doesn’t rise to fisticuffs. But his imagined debate between the father of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, and author and newly converted Anglican, C.S. Lewis, is as contentious as a heavyweight fight.
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Now running through March 4

BUGABOO & THE SILENT ONE at the Lounge Theatre

(Photo by Billy Baque)

(Photo by Billy Baque)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Bugaboo (Bug) is the nickname of a feisty blue-collar woman (Heidi Sulzman) who’s incarcerated in the Henderson County, West Virginia jail on a drug charge. She’s been alone in her cell for 42 days, which is hard on her because she’s a compulsive non-stop talker and has been deprived of an audience.
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Now running through February 24

ASHES TO ASHES at the Odyssey Theatre

(Photo by Ed Krieger)

(Photo by Ed Krieger)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Playwright Debbie Bolsky set out to write a classic old-style madcap comedy, but what she produced is a singularly improbable farce.
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Now running through January 14

NEW YORK WATER at the Pico Playhouse

(Photo by Michael Lamont)

(Photo by Michael Lamont)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Playwright Sam Bobrick gained much of his early experience in the world of TV sitcoms, and that has left its mark. New York Water is a rather generic example of the genre — with cardboard characters and action largely dictated by neither plot nor character, but by the need to keep grinding out laugh lines. There’s not much concern with credibility or even probability. Read more…

Now running through December 17

PACIFIC OVERTURES – Chromolume Theatre at the Attic

Photo by Ederson Vasquez

Photo by Ederson Vasquez

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Premiering in 1976, this unique and unusual musical, with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, book by John Weidman, and additional material by Hugh Wheeler, has no love story and no romantic ballads. Instead, it provides a lively impressionistic history of the Westernization of Japan, from 1853, when Commodore Perry opened up the isolated nation to world trade, to the present.       Read more…

Now running through December 17

MAGIC FRUIT- Cornerstone Theatre Company at The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles

(Photo by Jenny Graham)

(Photo by Jenny Graham)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

This Cornerstone Production of Magic Fruit, written by Michael John Garces and directed by Shishir Kurup, is a dystopian fantasy, loosely based (oddly enough) on Mozart’s The Magic Flute. It asks the question, along with several others: Can we produce enough food to feed Earth’s ever-growing population without destroying the planet?
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Now running through December 11

 

WAKE at City Garage Theatre

Photo by Paul Rubenstein

Photo by Paul Rubenstein

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

City Garage Theatre has been one of the more interesting companies in L.A., and their work has always been polished and professional. Director Frederique Michel and producer Charles Duncombe are good people. But over the years they have seemed to become more aggressively stylized in their work.
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Now running through December 17

YOHEN at East West Players

(Photo courtesy East West Players)

(Photo courtesy East West Players)

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

Set in 1986, Philip Kan Gotanda’s Yohen depicts the unraveling of a 37-year marriage. Although it tumbles off-track in its final third, the play to that point is an astute portrayal of the dynamics of a failed intimacy.
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Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

The title of Philip Kan Gotanda’s play, Yohen, refers to the unpredictable changes that take place when pottery is placed in the kiln. The result may be disastrous, or it may create an unexpected treasure. His play refers to the disruptive changes which occur in a human relationship over the course of years.
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Frances Baum Nicholson –The Stage Struck Review

Eighteen years ago, Danny Glover and the late Nobu McCarthy shared the stage of East West Players in Philip Kan Gotanda’s “Yohen,” about the struggles of an couple coming to terms with the husband’s retirement after 37 years in the military.
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Now running through November 19

THE RED DRESS – Argyle Road Productions at the Odyssey Theatre

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Playwright Tania Wisbar is the daughter of a German father and a Jewish mother, both of whom were prominent members of the German film world in the 1930s. But when she was just six months old, her parents divorced, and she and her mother fled German to escape the growing Nazi threat.
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Now running through November 19