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Sibling rivalry and one-upmanship reach sinister heights when two sisters with diametrically opposed beliefs clash in Colette Freedman's patchy black comedy. The setting is a small East Coast university town. Gretchen (Vanessa Waters), a gay journalist, becomes incensed and decides to publish an editorial damning the anti-gay decrees from the liberal-arts college president. Problem is, this president is her abusive, homophobic older sister, Kate (director Elise Robertson). Gretchen's act of public humiliation ignites an all-out war between the sisters as the pair dredge up recriminations, accusations and even threaten blackmail. Meanwhile Gretchen's cute and sporty young lover, Janna (Jade Sealey), is unaware she might get hit by some shrapnel.
A wonderful musical celebration of the 1930s and 1940s, depression, World War II and post war is the fifth and final production of The Colony Theatre Company’s 36th season. THE ALL NIGHT STRUT, conceived and originally directed and choreographed by Fran Charnas, bursts onto the multi-tiered stage giving us a superb look at the joys and memories of two decades in song and dance. In two fabulous acts and 28 songs, the evening is filled with jazz, blues, bebop and classic American songs as we travel through the Jazz Age, Harlem, the renowned El Morocco nightclub, Swing and the Stage Door Canteen.
The 1966 Broadway suspense/thriller WAIT UNTIL DARK, written by Frederick Knott (who wrote “Dial “M” for Murder”) arrives at the Group Rep at the Lonny Chapman Theatre beginning April 1, 2011. A blind woman, Susy Hendrix (Liza de Weerd) finds herself in a frightening situation when her husband Sam (Bert Emmett) innocently comes into possession of a doll filled with drugs. Three crooks enter her apartment to find the doll, and Susy becomes the innocent target of their deception and manipulation.
Debra Ehrhardt was born in Jamaica. Her lifelong dream always was to come to America. In her one-woman show, Jamaica, Farewell playing at the Falcon Theatre in Burbank, she tells the story of how she achieved that dream, but not without a great deal of hardship. However, Debra manages to make her ordeal into a delightful comedy, and in so doing, endears her audience with her talent and personality.
Written between 1881—1883, Italian author Carlo Collodi’s cautionary fable Pinocchio is about a mischievous wooden toy who dreams about becoming a real boy. The tale has been adapted for the stage by Tony Award winner Lee Hall and directed by Stephen Rothman. This delightful, if slightly dark, play is perfectly suited for the Deaf West Theatre’s signature, award-winning combination of signed and voiced theater. The familiar story is colorfully presented using the Italian tradition of commedia dell’arte, which is a form of physical comedy that uses masks, archetypal characters, slapstick, pratfalls and sight gags.
On Sunday March 20 Broadway's Young Cossette of Les Mis pretty Demaree Alexander brought her cabaret act to Sterling's Upstairs @ Vitello's with a bevy of talented guests on board. This young lady has a background not only in Broadway pop music but also in country; consequently, she nicely essayed a variety of musical styles alone and in duets with Kevin Odekirk, Dee Dee Magno-Hall, Jess Buda, Maura Hanlon Smith and brother Braden Danner. It was a lovely laid-back evening with Alexander's cute, easy going delivery and not without some exciting musical surprises.
Theatre Unleashed launches its edgy and ambitious 2011 season with the acclaimed dramedy from Aaron Kozak, winner of top honors at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. 3 years ago, I met this new NoHo Theatre Company. Their members were filled with hope and dreams and great drive and determination. Although, their goals were ambitious, I had this gut feeling they would succeed!
The Birthday Boys is a dark comedy that entwines you into the story as only "intimate theatre" can do.. The Birthday Boys is well directed by Jacob Smith and has an extremely talented cast. The three Marines 'privates Chester Gullette (Gregory Crafts), Lance Tyler (Sean Fitzgerald) and Colin Carney (Jim Martyka) deserve a standing ovation after every performance.
This a play not to be missed. The play has humor, suspense and a non judgemental attitude towards our military and war. Set in 2006 Iraq, the play tracks three United States Marines who have been taken hostage, bound and blindfolded, as they do whatever's necessary to keep their sanity and stay alive.
Check the website for more details. www.theatreunleashed.com.
DATES AND TIMES:
March 4-April 2
Fridays and Saturdays, 8 p.m,
*Meet and greet with artists after each show
4934 Lankershim Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601
General Admission: $15
Please NOTE: All active and veterans of the military get in free with military ID.
$1 from every ticket sold will be donated to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
The subtitle of the world premiere musical Having It All - Take Flight - speaks volumes. Five women, from totally different walks of life, are in the waiting area of a New York airport, each with a problem that needs attention. What happens to them over the course of 100 minutes gives this introspective a la Sondheim or Jason Robert Brown musical its punch and substance. With five stellar singers/actresses and fluid direction from Richard Israel Having It All has hit written all over it. It truly soars.
This, my second viewing of the smash hit Tony Award winning musical Avenue Q, was even more joyous than the first. This little show, like a Sesame Street for adults, plays out like life - only bigger - with funny situations, great one-liners and tantalizing music, each and every tune a winner. The show leaves you craving more, but unfortunately you only have until Sunday, March 6 to see it, before it moves along on tour.
The amazing artistry of manipulating these puppets onstage entails far more than just pulling the strings and supplying the voice for the appropriate character. Each actor behind the puppet is giving a full-out emotional performance. You have to watch the puppet in motion and the actor to get the full effect. Directed expertly by Jason Moore, the cast of characterizations include Princeton and Rod played by David Colston Corris, Kate Monster and sexy slut Lucy played by Ashley Eileen Bucknam
Catholic Girl - photo by Chelsea Sutton
Is The Catholic Girl’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity a one-woman show or is it a two-hander play? Now playing at the Falcon Theatre in Toluca Lake, and written by and starring Anne Hendy, this light comedy feels somehow as if it is both. Or perhaps it began life as a one-woman show but later was expanded?
Whatever the case, The Catholic Girl’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity starts off well, with its first two scenes involving two actors, but quickly reverts back to its true core, a one-woman confessional with direct to audience address. Thankfully, the introspective monologues are kept to a minimum and there are plenty of great scenes between our hapless heroine and a motley assortment of men who might prove to be the recipient of her virtue.
Cyrus Alexander is the guy playing all the other male roles – and even one hilarious woman in drag – and he gives an exceptional performance throughout the evening. A highlight is a scene where our Mid-western virgin participates in an evening of ‘speed dating’. This calls for a virtuoso exercise in lightning-quick costume changes from Alexander as he whizzes through a parade of deviants and weirdos. Hendy’s play is a gift to any talented male actor, seeing as he gets to play so many diverse roles. Alexander is so brilliant as each of his distinct characters that he almost overshadows our leading lady and playwright. Director Gregg W. Brevoort deserves some credit for eliciting superb performances from his cast, given the slight material.
One aspect of the staging was a bit awkward, with our leading lady all but grunting as she shifted a central, padded bench set-piece around the stage that seems unnecessarily weighty given its apparent need for mobility. The remaining sets of solid-looking, semi-arch shaped ‘brick’ walls, designed by Keith Mitchell, served their purpose.
While mildly amusing, Hendy’s play doesn’t offer much that is revelatory about a Catholic woman’s guilt, sexual repression, conscience-wrestling and ultimate sexual liberation. But it does provide some funny and poignant scenes and proves a pleasant diversion.
The Catholic Girl’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity
4252 Riverside Drive in Burbank,
Runs until Sunday, March 6, 2011
Wed.—Sat. at 8pm, Sundays at 4pm
Approximately 90 minutes, no intermission
$29.50 – $32.00
Purchase tickets here or call (818) 955-8101
Some Like It Freaky By Christine Palau In writer-director, Adam Neubauer's play, MELODRAMA, which runs through March 12 at Zombie Joe's Underground, John (Robert Walters) suffers mild bouts of hysteria after his father's death a couple years earlier. His inept struggle to find his dad’s assassin lends itself to a deluge of perversity and high-jinx. Part musical, part sitcom, it's the quintessential, self-conscious, Valley romp that both haters and 818-ers are sure to get a kick out of. It's Weho Meets Noho...with a dash of Chatsworth.