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Archive for On Stage and Screen

FRANKENSTEIN at A Noise Within

Craig Schwartz

Craig Schwartz

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Since the publication of Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein in 1818, it has been interpreted and adapted in many ways. In 2011, a stage adaptation by Nick Dear debuted at the National Theatre in London, and this weekend its California premiere opened at A Noise Within in Pasadena.
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Now running through September 8

 

THE UNAUTHORIZED MUSICAL PARODY OF A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN at Rockwell Table & Stage

Bryan Carpender

Bryan Carpender

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

There’s no crying in baseball, or at Rockwell Table & Stage, where the Unauthorized Musical Parody of A League of Their Own is currently hitting a homerun.
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Now running through September 29

INTO THE WOODS at the Hollywood Bowl

Craig T. Mathew and Greg Grudt/Mathew Imaging

Craig T. Mathew and Greg Grudt/Mathew Imaging

Jonas Schwartz – Arts In LA

Dreams can come true. The Hollywood Bowl, under the auspices of Broadway director Robert Longbottom, has collected remarkable talent to present the classic Into the Woods. The actors invest in their roles and treat this vast arena as an intimate space, providing almost 16,000 audience members a giant thrill.
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Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

There is always something special about seeing Into the Woods performed outside, and there is plenty of magic to be found in the all-star production at the iconic Hollywood Bowl.
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MISS SAIGON at the Pantages Theatre

Matthew Murphy

Matthew Murphy

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Miss Saigon, the musical by Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil with lyrics by Boublil and Richard Maltby Jr., opened this week at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood following a successful Broadway revival in 2017 and 2018. Based on Puccini’s opera Madame Butterfly, it takes place in 1970s Saigon during the Vietnam War and tells the story of a South Vietnamese woman and a United States Marine who fall in love.    Read more…

Margaret Gray – LA Times

“I’m an American. How can I fail to do good?”

That’s the rhetorical question sung by the ex-G.I. Chris in the musical “Miss Saigon,” which opened last week at the Hollywood Pantages — one that resonates differently now than it would have in 1978, when the scene is set, and in 1991, when the musical premiered on Broadway.     Read more…

Now running through August 11

 

FRIENDS! THE MUSICAL PARODY at the Kirk Douglas Theatre

Benjamin Skigen

Benjamin Skigen

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Fans of the TV show Friends who want a night off from watching reruns on Netflix might be tempted to check out FRIENDS! The Musical Parody, currently in its Los Angeles premiere at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, where it opened Wednesday in a guest production after successful runs Off-Broadway and around the country. But ultimately, this parody is about as uneven and frustrating as season nine, with weak music and lyrics sucking the potential fun out of a solid concept.
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Now running through August 4

THE CAUCASIAN CHALK CIRCLE at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center

Jenny Graham

Jenny Graham

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Set up as a play-within-a-play, the action of Bertolt Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle, currently playing at Antaeus Theatre Company in Los Angeles, begins in the lobby.
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Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

One can see why Antaeus Theatre Company has decided to revive Bertolt Brecht’s The Caucasian Chalk Circle now. It’s a play in which the rich are revealed to be monsters of ego and avarice — where one wealthy woman even chooses an array of fancy clothing over saving her infant child.

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Now running through

 

 

SCRAPS at the Matrix Theatre

I.C. Rapoport

I.C. Rapoport

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Geraldine Inoa’s incisive character-rich drama, directed by Stevie Walker-Webb at the Matrix Theatre, examines the impact of institutional racism on a group of young people in the aftermath of their friend’s murder by police. The off-beat title is a reference to the origin of African-American soul food, prepared by slaves from the scraps their “owners” left for them after they took all the good parts for themselves.
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Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

We are sadly used to hearing high-profile stories about young, unarmed black men shot by white police officers, but what happens when the media attention fades and the victim’s family must find a way to continue living after their world has been shattered? This is what playwright Geraldine Inoa explores in Scraps, a play currently in its west coast premiere at the Matrix Theatre Company in Los Angeles.
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Now running through September 15

THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG at the Ahmanson Theatre

Jeremy Daniel

Jeremy Daniel

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

The tone for the farce that is The Play That Goes Wrong is set long before the curtain rises. Frazzled cast members wander the audience, asking questions such as if anyone has a dog they can borrow for the second act, as others attempt to fix the constantly malfunctioning set.
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Katie Buenneke – Stage Raw

The Play That Goes Wrong, a British production at the Ahmanson by way of Broadway and, as the title would indicate, nearly everything goes wrong, as planned. The show is quite funny at times, with moments so hilarious you’ll laugh until you cry, but it’s too long, and loses the comedic momentum it builds for itself.
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Jonas Schwartz – Theatermania

The Play That Goes Wrong stabs you in the funny bone over and over. A mastery of pratfalls and a love letter to bad acting (cowritten by Mischief Theatre company members Henry Lewis, Jonathan Sayer, and Henry Shields), the comedy is such an adrenalin rush, audiences at the Ahmanson Theatre will be panting heavier than the actors forced to contend with a collapsing set.
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Now running through August 11

INDECENT at the Ahmanson Theatre

Craig Schwartz

Erin Conley – On Stage and Screen

Those of us who frequent the theater do not need to be convinced of this art form’s importance. But there are some stories that really drive this home, emphasizing the true power of theater, particularly when the world wants to prevent a story from being told.
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Now running through July 7

THE LAST FIVE YEARS – After Hours Theatre Company at The Other Space at The Actor’s Company

 KJ Knies

KJ Knies

Erin Conley -  On Stage and Screen

After Hours Theatre Company made a name for themselves as innovators in Los Angeles theater with last year’s hit immersive production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, where audience members donned hospital gowns and participated in pre-show activities, becoming a part of the asylum.
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Now running through July 14

DANA H at the Kirk Douglas Theatre

CCraig Schwartz

CCraig Schwartz

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

When playwright Lucas Hnath (A Doll’s House, Part Two, The Christians) was in college, his mother, Dana Higginbotham, went through a traumatizing ordeal. Dana struggled to speak about this painful experience with her son, so he eventually had fellow theater creator and collaborator Steve Cosson interview her about it. Hnath then adapted these interviews to create Dana H., a play currently in its world premiere at Center Theatre Group’s Kirk Douglas Theatre.
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Now running through June 23

DIANA OF DOBSON’S AT Antaeus Theatre Company’s Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center

Geoffrey Wade Photography

Geoffrey Wade Photography

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

It is rare to see a play written in 1908 that can be described as feminist, but Diana of Dobson’s, currently playing at Los Angeles’s Antaeus Theatre Company in a rare production, is a delightful surprise.
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Now running through June 2