Theatre West is presenting 10 diverse solo pieces in “Solopalooza 2.022,” curated by Dina Morrone, May 21-August 7.
With amazing stories, most based on remarkable real-life experiences, with a few fantastic characters to spice up the mix, this solo festival is not to be missed. Some have music, some comedy, and some are dramatic; all are worth seeing for yourself.
Here’s the schedule of our writer-performers and their shows:
May 21 and May 22: “The Italian in Me” by Dina Morrone. An Italian-Canadian actress goes to Rome, lands a gig as a TV host, runs into producers, priests, perverts and characters straight out of a Fellini movie, and then meets the Maestro himself, Federico Fellini.
June 5: “She Is History” by Amy Simon. A survey of the many gifts with which we have been graced, thanks to the accomplishments of women.
June 11: “From a Yardie to a Yankee” by Sardia Robinson. In a classic immigrant story, a Jamaican woman comes to America in pursuit of her dreams.
June 19: Etta Mae Mumphries, and the Rest Is History by Karen Bankhead. Etta Mae will regale you with anecdotes of the many Black historical figures and celebrities she has met over the decades. Also featuring the musical stylings of singer Pam Trotter. A special show for Juneteenth.
June 25 and June 26: “The Life and Times of A. Einstein” by Kres Mersky. Einstein’s secretary provides special insights into the life and career of the world’s most famous scientist.
July 9 and July 10: “As Always….Jimmy Stewart” by Steve Nevil. Steve portrays the beloved movie star in his senior years, reflecting back on his life and career.
July 15, July 16, July 17: “Men, Money and Madness” by Tessa Bell. The title pretty much says it all. This is a song-filled cabaret entertainment, giving a modern woman’s perspective on the subjects at hand.
July 22, July 23, July 24: “18 Minutes of Fame” by Barbara Minkus. Co-written by Susan Morgenstern. This is a musical memoir of a long and accomplished career in show business, from off-Broadway to Broadway to Hollywood, finding romance along the way.
July 29: “Too Old, Too Asian, Too Short” by Pamela Najera. Rebelling against the future planned for her, Pamela became a professional dancer and a magician’s assistant. She was told by others that she was too old, too Asian and too short to succeed. She showed them all. Special appearance by Magic Castle magician Alexander Great.
August 6 and August 7: “Versatile” by Kevin Neighbors. As a half-Black gay man, Kevin navigates multiple identities. His coming-of-age story relates how he became the complete whole of his different parts.
About “Solopalooza 2.022”
“Solopalooza 2.022” is produced for Theatre West by Dina Morrone, and associate producer Bonnie Kalisher Dukes.
About Theatre West
Established in 1962, Theatre West is the oldest continually running professional theatre company in the city of Los Angeles. It is a membership collective of actors, playwrights, directors, and technicians. Theatre West’s alumni members include Ray Bradbury, Beau Bridges, Richard Dreyfuss, Sally Field, Betty Garrett, Martin Landau, Lee Meriwether, Jack Nicholson, Carroll O’Connor, Sherwood Schwartz, Joyce Van Patton, and Paul Winfield. Theatre West has produced more than 300 plays and musicals. Of these plays, nearly 70% are original works developed in its workshops and many have led to Broadway, regional tours, and feature films including A Bronx Tale by Chazz Palminteri and A Very Brady Musical by Lloyd Schwartz and Hope Juber. Our season continues with WestFest (a festival of new works), a new play by one of the company’s resident playwrights in September 2022, and “Moose on the Loose” by Dina Morrone in March 2023. Storybook Theatre’s “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” is running Saturday matinees until June 2022. Theatre West is supported in part by The Ahmanson Foundation, California Arts Council, Peter Glenville Foundation, Kaplan-Loring Foundation, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture, Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, National Endowment for the Arts, and Lloyd E. Rigler- Lawrence E. Deutsch Foundation.
Covid-19 safety protocols in effect on performance dates will be observed. As of this writing, that means that audience members must wear masks and be vaccinated (and able to show a vax card or digital record).
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