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Archive for Neal Weaver – Page 2

DISINHERIT THE WIND at The Complex

Photo by Ed Krieger

Photo by Ed Krieger

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

When I was in college, I decided I should take some psychology courses to better understand myself and my fellow man. I signed up for Psych A, and discovered to my dismay that it was entirely concerned with statistics and testing methods, with nary a useful insight to be found. Read more…

Erin Conley – On Stage and Screen

In the middle of act one of Disinherit the Wind, now playing at The Complex in Hollywood, something rather unusual is asked of the audience. The main character, Bertram Cates (portrayed by the playwright, Matt Chait) leads everyone in the room, actors and patrons alike, in a brief meditation. Read more…

Now running through April 9

DIE MOMMIE DIE at the Celebration Theatre at the Lex

Photo by Matthew Brian Denman

Photo by Matthew Brian Denman

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Cross-dressing actor-comedian Charles Busch wrote this glossy movie parody as a vehicle for himself in the central role of has-been movie star, Angela Arden. He performed in the play in Los Angeles several years ago, and his Angela was subtle and elegant. But now actor Drew Droege is giving him a run for his money….Read more…

Now running through March 26

THE NORMAL HEART at Chromolume Theatre

Photo courtesy Chromolume Theatre

Photo courtesy Chromolume Theatre

Neal Weaver – Stage Raw

At intermission, one woman audience member declared that Larry Kramer’s autobiographical play is terribly dated — an assertion I feel obliged to refute. While it’s true that the issues it deals with are no longer burning with the white heat they once generated, the piece itself is now old enough to qualify as a historical artifact. Read more…

Now running through March 19

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

KING HEDLEY II at the Matrix Theatre

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Photo by Oliver Bokelberg

Deborah Klugman – LA Weekly

August Wilson’s King Hedley II takes place in the 1980s when Reaganomics, and the notion that wealth trickles down from the rich to the poor, was the hypothetical order of the day. The reality, of course, is that no such trickling took place; the poor, black and white, grew poorer than ever, a circumstance we see in the struggle of Wilson’s title character to earn a living for himself and his family, and to garner, against odds, some measure of self-respect.    Read more…

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

This play by the late August Wilson is part of his 10-play series about the black experience in each of the decades of the 20th century. This one is set in the 1980s. The title character, King Hedley II (Esau Pritchett), is a proud but thwarted black man, whose face is bisected by a livid scar, the result of a razor attack.   Read more…

Now running through February 12

FUGU at the Pico Playhouse

Photo by Michael Lamont

Photo by Michael Lamont

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

We don’t usually think of the Japanese as being on the side of the angels during the Holocaust. This play reveals how, when the Nazis began rounding up the Jews in Lithuania, the Japanese ambassador signed exit visas for 6,000 of them and sent them to Kobe, Japan to form a settlement. Read more…

Now running through March 19

 

BECKETT5 at the Odyssey Theatre Ensemble

Photo by Ron Sossi

Photo by Ron Sossi

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

The late playwright and novelist Samuel Beckett did not make things easy for his audiences. He was first of all an arch-minimalist, reducing his works to the barest possible form. He often eschewed plot, multiple characters, dialogue or hope, concentrating on people who somehow find a way to go on, even while facing the pointlessness and miseries of their lives.

Read more…

Dany Margolies – The Daily Breeze

Just the name conjures a headache in some and bliss in others. Playwright Samuel Beckett is considered one of the most-influential 20th-century playwrights, certainly within Theatre of the Absurd style, his “Waiting for Godot” at the peak of those works.

Read more…

Now running through March 5

BRILLIANT TRACES AT The Underground Theatre

 

 (Photo by Daniel J. Sliwa)

(Photo by Daniel J. Sliwa)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Henry (Juan Lozano), a reclusive hermit, is asleep in his bed in a remote cabin in the wilds of Alaska during a white-out blizzard. The door bursts open and a young woman, Rosannah (Roxanna Kaye), enters, wearing a wedding gown complete with veil. Read more…

Now running through February 11

SANTASIA at the Whitefire Theatre

Photo by Michael Duisenberg

Photo by Michael Duisenberg

Neal Weaver – Stage Raw

The creators of Santasia, Shaun and Brandon Loeser, have been serving up their particular brand of zany, snarky holiday cheer for 16 years —this year makes 17 — but time hasn’t mellowed them and they haven’t lost their edge. Read more…

Now running through December 25

A TELENOVA CHRISTMAS CAROL at Archway Studio Theatre

TCC pics8

(Photo by Adam Neubauer)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Ebenezer Scrooge becomes miserly tequila manufacturer Pedro Azucar in this Mexican-American variation on Charles Dickens’ durable (and sometimes inescapable) Christmas classic. The script is by Adam Neubauer and Sebastian Munoz, who directs the piece and also plays Pedro with exuberant and deliberate hamminess.    Read more…

Now running through December 18

A NICE FAMILY CHRISTMAS at The Lonny Chapman Theatre

(Photo by Doug Engalla)

(Photo by Doug Engalla)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Playwright Phil Olson seems to have been of two minds about what sort of play he wanted to write — a snarky comedy about a bickering dysfunctional family, or a sweet uplifting holiday tale. So he tried for both. Read more…

Now running through December 18

WHEN JAZZ HAD THE BLUES at the Matrix Theatre

(Photo by Ed Krieger)

(Photo by Ed Krieger)

Neal Weaver  – Stage Raw

Pianist/composer/arranger Billy Strayhorn (Frank Lawson) grew up in a family dominated by his alcoholic, abusive and homophobic father.  His first love was classical music, but he was gay and black, and in the 1930s and 40s gay was emphatically frowned upon, and the classical establishment was almost entirely white.   Read more…

Now running through December 18