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Archive for Stage Raw

BRONCO BILLY – THE MUSICAL at the Skylight Theatre

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

If you haven’t seen the 1980 movie Bronco Billy with Clint Eastwood and Sondra Locke (or can’t remember if you did), don’t worry. With a book by Dennis Hackin (who also wrote the novel and the movie’s screenplay), and music and lyrics by Chip Rosenbloom and John Torres, with additional lyrics by Michele Brourman, this world premiere musical version, smartly directed by Hunter Bird, is a heck of a lot funnier and way more enjoyable.
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Now running through June 30

SAMSARA at the MET Theatre

John Klopping

John Klopping

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

In 2008, the New York Times published an article about a burgeoning new enterprise in India: the establishment of surrogacy clinics catering to couples in need of a woman to bear their child.
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Now running through June 1

 

JULIUS WEEZER at the El Portal Theatre

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Terry Morgan  -  Talkin’ Broadway

To quote an obscure Elizabethan playwright, “we lucky few” have been privileged to enjoy the work of the Troubadour Theater Company for 25 years now. Its trademark — combining a play (often Shakespeare) with the music of a famous artist, then adding its own blend of anarchy and witty topical references (Hello, Game of Thrones Starbucks cup!) — remains a reliable delight.
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Ellen Dostal – Broadway World

In JULIUS WEEZER, Troubadour Theater Company uses its signature wit to turn a Shakespeare classic into a blissfully-alive rocker version of its ancient self, and the result is divine madness. You don’t need to be a Bard lover to have a great time but, if you are, you’ll be impressed by the level of classical talent on stage and the company’s ability to “speak the speech” while tickling your funny bone.
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Now running through May 19

DANIEL’S HUSBAND at the Fountain Theatre

Ed Krieger

Ed Krieger

Terry Morgan  -  Talkin’ Broadway

It’s always a nice moment when a work of art surprises me in a positive way. It reminds me of one of the reasons I love theater in the first place: the primal pull of story. It’s the delight of seeing something new when one was expecting something else.
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Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Daniel’s Husband, written by Michael McKeever and directed by Simon Levy at the Fountain Theatre, starts out decked with light comedy and glib dialogue  but midway takes a sharp turn to become relevant and affecting.
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Now running through June 23

 

THE END OF SEX at the Victory Theatre Center

Tim Sullens

Tim Sullens

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

There are at least two pitfalls for “a play of ideas” — that is, the kind of piece that George Bernard Shaw made his name on and that is specifically created to discuss and debate a particular issue. The first pitfall is that this sort of play can be talky and dry, all intellect and no plot, something Shaw was accused of more than once.
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Now running through June 2

REVOLUCIONES at the Los Angeles Theatre Center

Andrew Vasquez

Andrew Vasquez

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Too often idealists who lead revolts against fascist regimes end up assuming the same dictatorial and bloodthirsty predilections as their enemies.
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Now running through May 12

 

 

BOXING LESSONS at The New American Theatre

Jeannine Wisnosky Stehlin

Jeannine Wisnosky Stehlin

Lovell Estell III — Stage Raw

The terminally damaged clan on display in John Bunzel’s dark comedy convincingly affirms that oft quoted adage of Tolstoy’s that “every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way”.
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Now running through June 2

 

STEEL MAGNOLIAS at Actors’ Coop

Matthew Gilmore

Matthew Gilmore

Terry Morgan  -  Stage Raw

Watching this excellent current revival of Robert Harling’s Steel Magnolias at Actors Co-op, I was reminded yet again of the power of a strong ensemble. Solo shows and two-handers certainly have their place, but there is something about the interaction among a group of talented actors, where many things combine to become one greater thing, that seems to me to be the very heart of whatever magic theater creates.
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Margaret Gray – LA Times

In the first scene of the play “Steel Magnolias,” Robert Harling’s 1987 love letter to small-town Southern women, two Louisiana friends share favorites from their recipe boxes. Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake is so straightforward, it doesn’t even require an index card:
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Rob Stevens – Haines His Way

Robert Harling’s comedy/drama play Steel Magnolias premiered off-Broadway in 1987 and ran for over 1,100 performances. Read more…

 

Now running through May

THE NICETIES at Geffen Playhouse

T. Charles Erickson

T. Charles Erickson

Erin Conley – On Stage & Screen

Most people who went to college likely remember office hours as a phenomenon that you were glad existed, but rarely utilized. But in The Niceties, a play by Eleanor Burgess currently in its west coast premiere at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles, office hours become a battleground between a professor and a student who see the world very differently.
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Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

In The Niceties, playwright Eleanor Burgess constructs a dialectic between a white liberal professor of history who believes in the ideal of America despite its failings, and an angry African-American student who bitterly challenges the bedrock of her teacher’s beliefs.
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Now running through May 12

THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE at 24th Street theatre

Cooper Bates

Cooper Bates

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

Children’s author Kate DiCamillo won the 2006 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for fiction for The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, about a pretentious porcelain rabbit and the misadventures that befall him before he learns about humility and love.
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Now running through May 19

ACTORS’ GANG ONE ACT FESTIVAL at the Actors’ Gang

ag photo

Deborah Klugman – Stage Raw

This program of original work in the Actors’ Gang One Act Festival illustrates how a misguided directorial choice can undermine a strong piece of writing, while a sketchier script can be illuminated by a gifted performance.
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Now running through April 20

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