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Archive for Troubadour Theater Company

Troubies, Tanner, and a Top Tenth list

Matt Walker and Rick Batalla. Photo by Douglas Leadwell.

Matt Walker and Rick Batalla. Photo by Douglas Leadwell.

Don Shirley – Angeles Stage

Plus ‘Annie,’ ‘Clyde’s,’ ‘Invincible,’ Sheldon Epps’ memoir.

Tis the season for Troubadour Theater’s annual holiday hoot. As usual, it’s a refreshing antidote to too many competing “Christmas Carol”s.

This year Troubies director Matt Walker takes aim at the 1988 shoot-’em-up film “Die Hard.” Its setting — a corporate holiday party in a Century City high-rise — is the excuse for the timing in December. The Troubie title is “Die Heart,” because the show includes melodies and riffs, if not the precise lyrics, of some of the songs from the rock group Heart. Read more…

DIE HEART, Troubadour Theater Company at the Colony Theatre

Matt Walker and Rick Batalla. Photo by Douglas Leadwell.

Matt Walker and Rick Batalla. Photo by Douglas Leadwell.

Terry Morgan – Stage Raw

There has been much discussion in recent years on social media concerning whether or not the 1998 film Die Hard qualifies as “a Christmas movie.” On the surface, the Bruce Willis actioner may not seem to be a good candidate for “holiday classic,” what with its brutal murders, hangings and cocaine abuse. Indeed, the “classics” are rather a motley bunch, including mutant reindeer, a near suicide off a bridge, a child’s malnourished Christmas tree and the vanishingly unlikely spectacle of a rich miser suddenly becoming empathetic. Here to answer this controversial question with a definitive yes, the Troubadour Theater Company’s Die Heart (Die Hard featuring the music of the band, Heart) is a hilarious adaptation of its source material that will make the holidays much brighter. Read more…

Through December 18

Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Announces 2020-2021 Award Recipients

LADCC LogoThe Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle is proud to announce the award recipients for 2020 and 2021. Poor Clare (The Echo Theater Company) and The Father (Pasadena Playhouse) received the prestigious Production award, with additional honorees named in 18 other categories.

In total, 13 different productions were honored, celebrating a wide range of Los Angeles theater. Pasadena Playhouse’s The Father received the most awards for a single production and the most awards overall, with nine.

This year, out of an abundance of caution, the LADCC will once again forgo its annual event ceremony and will instead send the plaques to the honorees. Congratulations to all of the award recipients!

The complete list of award recipients for 2020 and 2021 is as follows:


  • Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • The Father, Pasadena Playhouse

McCulloh Award for Revival

  • My Fair Lady, Dolby Theatre

Lead Performance

  • Jordan Hull, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • Alfred Molina, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse

Featured Performance

  • Sue Cremin, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse
  • Ann Noble, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • Michael Sturgis, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company

Ensemble Performance

  • Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • The Father, Pasadena Playhouse

Solo Performance

  • Jim Ortlieb, Stand Up If You’re Here Tonight, VS. Theatre Company & Circle X Theatre Co.


  • Chiara Atik, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • Florian Zeller (translation by Christopher Hampton), The Father, Pasadena Playhouse

Writing Adaptation

  • Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, An Octoroon, The Fountain Theatre

Musical Score

  • Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez, Frozen, Hollywood Pantages Theatre
  • David Yazbek, The Band’s Visit, Dolby Theatre

Music Direction

  • John Bell, My Fair Lady, Dolby Theatre
  • Andre Cerullo, Hamilton, Hollywood Pantages Theatre
  • Adrian Ries, The Band’s Visit, Dolby Theatre
  • Ryan Whyman, Lizastrata, Troubadour Theater Company


  • Jess Coffman, Suzanne Jolie, L.T. Martinez, Matt Walker, Lizastrata, Troubadour Theater Company
  • Christopher Gatelli, My Fair Lady, Dolby Theatre


  • Alana Dietze, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company
  • Jessica Kubzansky, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse

Set Design

  • David Meyer, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse
  • Frederica Nascimento, An Octoroon, The Fountain Theatre

Lighting Design

  • Elizabeth Harper, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse
  • Natasha Katz, Frozen, Hollywood Pantages Theatre
  • Azra King-Abadi, Poor Clare, The Echo Theater Company

Costume Design

  • Christopher Oram, Frozen, Hollywood Pantages Theatre
  • Halei Parker, Lizastrata, Troubadour Theater Company
  • Catherine Zuber, My Fair Lady, Dolby Theatre

Sound Design

  • John Zalewski, The Father, Pasadena Playhouse


  • Kaitlyn Pietras, Jason H. Thompson, Revenge Song, Geffen Playhouse
  • Finn Ross, Frozen, Hollywood Pantages Theatre

Streaming Design

  • Corwin Evans, Bree Pavey, UnRavelled, Global Brain Health Institute, based at the University of California, San Francisco; and Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin, Ireland
  • Andrew Schmedake, The Ballad of Emmett Till, The Fountain Theatre


  • Lily Bartenstein, Prop Design, Lizastrata, Troubadour Theater Company
  • Jeremy Chernick, Visual Effects, Frozen, Hollywood Pantages Theatre
  • Joe Seely, Puppet Design, The ODDyssey, Troubadour Theater Company

Every effort has been made to ascertain proper credits for our award recipients. We regret any errors or omissions. Any that come to our attention will be corrected on our LADCC website and (when applicable) on a recipient’s award plaque.

The Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle was founded in 1969. It is dedicated to excellence in theatrical criticism, and to the encouragement and improvement of theatre in Greater Los Angeles.

The 2020-2021 membership consisted of:
Lara J. Altunian, Stage Raw, L.A. Dance Chronicle
Katie Buenneke, Stage Raw, Theater Digest
Erin Conley, On Stage & Screen
Peter DeBruge, Variety
Ellen Dostal, BroadwayWorld, Musicals in LA
Lovell Estell III, Stage Raw,
Margaret Gray, Los Angeles Times
Hoyt Hilsman, Cultural Daily, Pasadena Now, Riot Material
Harker Jones, BroadwayWorld,
Deborah Klugman, Stage Raw, Capital and Main, Gia On The Move
Dany Margolies,, Southern California News Group
Dana Martin, Stage Raw
Myron Meisel, Stage Raw
Terry Morgan,, Stage Raw
Steven Leigh Morris, Stage Raw
Melinda Schupmann,,
Jonas Schwartz-Owen,, BroadwayWorld,
Don Shirley, Angeles Stage
Rob Stevens,

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.
Read more…

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.
Read more…

Now running through May 19

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.

Read more…

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.
Read more…

Now running through December 30



Photo by Jill Mamey

Pauline Adamek  – Stage Raw

The talented Troubadour Theatre Company once again presents their annual holiday-themed show featuring their signature brand of madcap nonsense. Their tried-and-tested formula: Take a Christmas story, add some pop songs and send it up. Read more…

Now running through January 17.

THE SNOW QUEEN – Troubadour Theater Company at the Falcon Theatre

Photo by Jill Mamey

Photo by Jill Mamey

Bob Verini -   Arts In LA

As surely as the Rockettes annually turn out to Occupy Radio City, Troubadour Theater Company uses December to command Burbank’s Falcon Theatre for a celebratory holiday mash-up of some sort of Christmas tale and a particular pop songbook. The Snow QUEEN, the sixth such expression of wassail I’ve encountered, is one of the company’s very finest: clever and vulgar and warm by turns, always funny and marked by superior theatricality. Read more…

Jonas Schwartz -  TheaterMania

For anyone who hasn’t gotten enough of Frozen or this blustery season of Once Upon a Time, the members of the comedy group The Troubadours have taken on the original Andersen tale, The Snow QUEEN, with their usual brand of buffoonery, including a toe-tapping song list by the rock group Queen. Read more…

Pauline Adamek  – Stage Raw

The Troubadour Theater Company’s annual Christmas show is a fan favorite, but happily it’s not all about the in-jokes (and there are many). This wacky retelling of Hans Christian Andersen’s slightly obscure and dark fairytale focuses on a pair of Danish friends who become separated due to the whim of an evil Snow Queen. Read more...

Now running through January 18.



ABBAMEMNON at the Falcon Theatre

Photo by Chelsea Stton

Photo by Chelsea Sutton

David C. Nichols – LA Times

Aeschylus meets Agnetha, Björn, Benny and Anni-Frid in “ABBAMEMNON,” the latest deconstruction from Troubadour Theater Company. The classic Greek playwright, Swedish pop group and incomparable troupe may never be quite the same again, and neither will audiences. Read more…

Steven Leigh Morris  – LA Weekly

There are no sly topical winks in Kenneth Cavander’s problematic adaptation of the Oedipus trilogy. Cavander’s new play, The Curse of Oedipus, which just opened at Antaeus Company, is pure classical gas.

Nor are there any modern-day army fatigues or national insignias worn on shoulders in Casey Stangl’s beautiful, skillful staging — performed confidently and clearly —, accompanied throughout by Geno Monteiro’s drumming on an array of percussive instruments. Read more…

Now running through July 13.


Bob Verini – ArtsInLA

The 10th-annual holiday show from Troubadour Theater Company, Walkin’ in a Winter One-Hit-Wonderland, proves to be the occasion for walkin’ down Memory Lane with the previous nine. There’s plenty of reminiscing; video footage of past productions; and in-jokey references to company members and past characters that invest the tight (an intermissionless 90 minutes) event with a real inside-baseball, for-the-cognoscenti feel.

Photo by Chelsea Sutton

Photo by Chelsea Sutton

Margaret Gray – LA Times

Arthur Rankin Jr. and Jules Bass surely never imagined that the Winter Warlock from their 1970 TV Christmas special “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town” would go into improv. The Troubadour Theater Company (“the Troubies”) first cast the Warlock in “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Motown” at the Falcon Theatre in 2004. The breakout star, known fondly as Winter, has become a staple of their annual holiday mash-ups.
Read more…

Les Spindle – Frontiers L.A.

The unique group known as the Troubadour Theatre Company, founded in 1995, largely focuses on wacky spoofs that combine commedia del arte, musical theater and sketch comedy. The company offers fast-paced parodies of classic works (often Shakespeare) and bizarre mashups of popular entertainment (as in 2011’s divine A Christmas Westside Story, which simultaneously skewered Leonard Bernstein’s Broadway classic and the vintage film A Christmas Story).
Read more…

Now running through January 19.