Thursday, 12 September 2013 01:28

Theatre Review - The Twilight Zone: Unscripted

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“Imaginative & Hysterically Funny Is “The Twilight Zone: Unscripted”

Wow. Talk about a blast from the past. Rod Serling was made famous his narration, writing and producing one of the most original and iconic TV shows in history. And now you can see it live on stage at The Falcon Theatre in Burbank, CA but with an amazing twist of humor, originality and definitely a lot of fun as the audience itself contributes to the plots.

Set in basically four separate skits that are ‘themed’ by the audience’s suggestions, no show will ever be the same. No night will have the same comic bits and no night will be remembered the same way. What you will remember is the amazing Improv Theatre Company under the direction of Jo McGinley and Stephen Kearin (both performers in the show as well!).

If you are not familiar with, or have never seen, improvisational theatre, it is a must to watch it for yourself. There is no script and only a tiny amount of props. With that said and some small suggestions from the audience, they literally create the episode, ‘write’ the script and perform a one-time only original comedy piece right in front of your eyes. Why is it one time only? Because the performers don’t know what they’re going to say or do until they actually do it. It is so much fun to watch and immensely funny!

For this reviewer, one segment involved one of the noisiest ‘lost’ pocket watches you’ll ever see. Another involved an alien race testing super strength on a gas station attendant in the 50s and yet another involved being in Germany whilst a super-secret psychic experiment was going on. The performers where all very witty, charming and yes, hysterical, while feeding off of each other’s improvisational contributions while remaining in character. The wonderful and unique mood music and lighting also added to the overall clever improvisation as done by their lighting designer Leigh Allen, and sound and music designer Allen Simpson.

Now of the ensemble of talent. Watching Jo McGinley and Brian Lohmann play off each other was a pure comic joy, while the comic cleverness of Brian Michael Jones, Lisa Frederickson, Nick Massough and Mike McShane was as equally hysterical to watch as they played off each other and bounce one bit off the other.

Dan O’Connor has a variety of hysterical comical voices and faces as does both Edi Patterson and Stephen Kearin who just spark with energy and inventiveness. Paul Rogan does accent in the most hysterical fashion and, along with the charm and wit of Kelly Holden-Bashar, Ryan Smith and Lauren Rose Lewis, this makes for an amazing mix of fun and comedy! Oh, and watching the comic timing and inventiveness of Michele Spears and Floyd VanBuskirk will have you laughing out loud more than once!

If you like comedy, whether you are familiar with improvisation or not, and, you happen to love The Twilight Zone series, you are in for a clever company of actors who will make you laugh so much you’ll probably want to come and see the show at least one more time. (Keep in mind again that you’ll never see the same show twice!) Check them out at (Cue the music!) “You will be trapped in yet another hysterically original “comic” dimension…called…’The Twilight Zone’!”

Pic 001 – In the picture: Lisa Fredrickson, Kelly Holden-Bashar, Brian Michael Jones, Stephen Kearin, Lauren Rose Lewis, Brian Lohmann, Nich Massouh, Jo McGinley, Mike McShane, Dan O'Connor, Edi Patterson, Paul Rogan, Ryan Smith, Michele Spears, Floyd VanBuskirk

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Lorenzo Marchessi

Based in Southern California, not far from Downtown Hollywood - Lorenzo Marchessi. has always enjoyed movies, music and theatre first hand. Currently living in the San Fernando Valley Area called the ‘No Ho Arts District properly’ (Originally from Chicago!) – More than fond of Sci-Fi, Action, Adventure, Dramas, Animation, Independent Films and of course Comedies. I like the short film and the long film (as long as their good!) I saw my first film at the age of six - HELLO DOLLY and I saw LOGAN'S RUN ten times in the theatre! Having actually worked in the production of Film, TV, Radio and live Theatre I can always understand the work that goes into creating ANY Movie, Television Show, Theatre Production, DVD, CD's and even Live Concerts. I love to write and been doing it for decades - literally! I always appreciate any feedback or comments! P.S. My all-time favorite film is ITS A WONDERFUL LIFE along with THE LITTLE MERMAID and THE DESCENDANTS, my favorite TV series of all-time is STAR TREK as well as FRINGE and THE BIG BANG THEORY, my favorite performing artist of all-time is BARRY MANILOW, my favorite actor of all time MR. JACK LEMON and my favorite theatrical productions to date is WICKED and THE PRODUCERS. Contact: Lorenzo M. at !

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