Around the Town

by

Steve Zall and Sid Fish

June 2018

 

Here are some of the shows you can see in our local theatres this month:




“Alice and the Fabulous Tea Party” Vaudeville, burlesque, panto, farce and fantasy combine to make this a no-holds-barred evening of hilarious theatre. Set in a fabulously overdone and wild garden-themed Victorian salon, Alice (now a grown woman) returns to Wonderland at the invitation of her old friend, the Queen of Hearts. Once there, she finds that things are just as madcap and nonsensical as ever. Written and directed by Chris DeCarlo & Evelyn Rudie, with music by Evelyn Rudie, it runs June 1 through June 30 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 2 or visit www.santamonicaplayhouse.com/alice-pride-2018.

“Bearing Witness” Thomas Bird’s autobiographical solo show is the moving father-son story of Bird’s relationship with his World War II veteran dad and their mutual healing from the traumas of battle and the Holocaust. In the play, Bird travels to Mauthausen concentration camp to honor the memory of his father, an Army doctor who cared for survivors upon the camp’s liberation. As Bird conjures the spirits of his father and the camp’s victims, he recalls his own wartime experiences in Vietnam along with a long-held secret his dad revealed just before his death. In “bearing witness” himself, Tom is finally able to find some peace. Written by Thomas Bird, and directed by Brian Delate, it runs June 1 through June 17 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“Cabaret” Wilkommen. Bienvenue. Welcome. This is The Kit Kat Klub... the seediest, sexiest nightclub in Berlin. In here, life isn’t just beautiful - it’s downright dangerous. If you’re not careful, you could lose your perspective on the world outside. Fight that urge. RESIST. Celebration Theatre presents Kander & Ebb’s dark, eerily relevant masterpiece like you’ve never seen it before. Written by Joe Masteroff, based on the play by John Van Druten and stories by Christopher Isherwood, with music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and directed by Michael Matthews, it runs June 1 through July 15 at the Celebration Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-957-1884 or visit www.celebrationtheatre.com.

“An Evening of Betrayal” An evening celebrating two masters of language, Harold Pinter and William Shakespeare, as they investigate the same subject: Betrayal. The first half will feature Harold Pinter's "Betrayal" in its entirety. After a short intermission, the same four actors will perform an abridged one-hour adaptation of "Othello", told backwards to mirror the structure of Pinter's "Betrayal". Written by Harold Pinter and William Shakespeare, and directed by Elizabeth Swain, it runs June 1 through June 24 at the THEATRE 68 in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3415884.

“Parade” is a tragic and true story of the 1913 trial of a Brooklyn-born Jewish factory manager Leo Frank who was accused of raping and murdering a 13 year old employee, Mary Phagan. Already guilty in the eyes of those around him, the trial, sensationalized by the media, aroused anti-Semitic tensions in Atlanta and the state of Georgia. Written by Alfred Uhry, with music by Jason Robert Brown, and directed by T.J. Dawson, it runs June 1 through June 10 at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts in Cerritos, then June 15 through June 24 at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center in Redondo Beach. For tickets visit www.3dtheatricals.org.

“Coriolanus” An allegory for today’s tumultuous times, Shakespeare’s searing tragedy is a cautionary tale of political manipulation and revenge. Rome, a city where the one-percenters rule, is led by a populist general who has nothing but contempt for the common people and is unable to reconcile his disdain for the citizens with his love of country. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Ellen Geer and Melora Marshall, it runs June 2 through September 23 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“Newsies” They delivered the papers, until they made the headlines! Newsies, the smash-hit, crowd-pleasing new musical from Disney will ignite the stage in La Mirada. Written by Harvey Fierstein, with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman, and directed by Richard J. Hinds, it runs June 2 through June 24 at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts in La Mirada. For tickets call 562-944-9801 or visit www.lamiradatheatre.com.

“Next to Normal” has been called one of the best musicals of the 21st century and its soundtrack one of the best original soundtracks in a musical due to its graceful handling of its dark, complex subject matter and its moving and brutally honest exploration into pain. Written by Brian Yorkey, with music by Tom Kitt, it runs June 2 through June 17 at the Hillcrest Center for the Arts in Thousand Oaks. For tickets visit www.panicproductions.org.

“A Midsummer Night's Dream” Theatricum brings back its signature production, an audience favorite with a set design unrivaled by any other theater - because it's the real thing. The most magical outdoor setting in Los Angeles is once again transformed into an enchanted forest inhabited by lovers both fairy and human. Shakespeare conjures a world of wonder, magic and romance where comical misunderstandings and the pain of unrequited love are resolved, and all is reconciled through midsummer night revelries and the enduring power of nature. Buffet dinners with a costumed cast of fairies in attendance take place in the theater's adjacent gardens prior to Thursday evening performances on Aug. 2; Aug. 9; Aug. 16; and Aug. 23. (Separate admission, or combo packages available.). Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Willow Geer, it runs June 3 through September 3 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“Henry IV” an evening of Shakespeare's finest comedy and most touching drama with Fallstaff, starring Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks. Written by William Shakespeare, adapted by Daniel Sullivan, and directed by Daniel Sullivan, it runs June 5 through July 1 at the Japanese Garden on the West Los Angeles VA Campus in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.shakespearecenter.org.

“Long Day’s Journey Into Night” Haunted by the past but unable to face the truth of the present, James and Mary Tyrone and their two sons test the bonds of a family caught in a cycle of love and resentment. As day turns to night and each member of the family indulges in their vices, the truth unravels leaving behind a quartet of ruined lives. Written by Eugene O’Neill, and directed by Sir Richard Eyre, it runs June 8 through July 1 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-746-4000 or visit www.TheWallis.org/LongDays.

“Write Me a Murder” Julie Sturrock, wife to ruthless business man Charles Sturrock, longs to write mysteries. When she meets David Rodingham, a young writer whose home Sturrock has just bought, they dream up the perfect murder plot. Written by Frederick Knott, and directed by Michael-Anthony Nozzi, it runs June 8 through July 15 at the Pierson Playhouse in Pacific Palisades. For tickets call 310-454-1970 or visit www.theatrepalisades.org.

“100 Aprils” mines the dark humor of oppression and creates a story that illuminates the struggle of all marginalized people. It is both timely and universal in scope. John Sapian is a modern-day Don Quixote. He and his family are second generation Armenians whose parents escaped the Genocide. John believes that a tormentor is pursuing him. Is the enemy a haunted memory from his childhood or is he real? Written by Leslie Ayvazian, and directed by Michael Arabian, it runs June 9 through July 16 at the Rogue Machine Theatre (in The Met Theatre) in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.

“Lysistrata Unbound” In this newly imagined, dramatic version of Aristophanes’ Lysistrata, an aristocratic Athenian matron is crushed by fateful events and gradually transformed into the most celebrated anti-war activist of the ancient world. Written by Eduardo Machado, and directed by John Farmanesh-Bocca, it runs June 9 through August 4 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“Clybourne Park” A spin-off of Lorraine Hansberry’s groundbreaking drama A Raisin in the Sun, this razor-sharp satire examines race and real estate in a fictional Chicago neighborhood. Smart and funny, this Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning play featured the evolution of a house, acting as the focus of reactions to the shifting racial landscape of a community. Written by Bruce Norris, and directed by Matt August, it runs June 10 through June 24 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach. For tickets call 949-497-2787 or visit www.lagunaplayhouse.com.

“Skeleton Crew” follows four co-workers—Faye, Dez, Reggie and Shanita—at a Detroit auto factory in 2008. The play highlights the layered relationships and drama of blue-collar workers navigating the instability and uncertainty in their personal lives and at work. Each character’s patience and loyalty are tested as the plant’s future comes into question and they are forced to make hard choices to ensure their individual survival. Written by Dominique Morisseau, and directed by Patricia McGregor, it runs June 13 through July 8 at the Gil Cates Theater at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“The Crucible” is a classic parable of mass hysteria that draws a chilling parallel between the Salem witch hunts of 1692 and McCarthyism, which gripped America in the 1950s, remains eerily timely in today’s climate of fake news. Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum, its own history firmly rooted in the McCarthy-era Hollywood blacklist — when actor Will Geer and his wife, Herta Ware, created the theater as a haven for blacklisted actors — opens a new production of Miller’s modern classic. Written by Arthur Miller, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs June 16 through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“Their Finest Hour: Churchill and Murrow” This full-length play sheds light on the unique relationship between Winston Churchill and Edward R. Murrow during the early years of WW II when England was under attack by Hitler’s air-force. Murrow, who was covering the war for CBS Radio News, not only became friendly with Churchill, but had a passionate and adulterous love affair with the Prime Minister’s daughter-in-law. Written by Willard Manus, and directed by Stu Berg, it runs June 16 through July 22 at the Write Act Repertory @ the Brickhouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3328722.

“Sweet Charity” The story centers on Charity’s life as a dance hall hostess “with a heart of gold”, determined to break out of the Fan-Dango Ballroom. Her misadventures in 1960s New York take her from a zany night with Italian film star Vittorio Vidal (in which she ends up alone in his bedroom closet), to dating the neurotic and shy Oscar Lindquist. When Oscar proposes, he insists he doesn’t care about Charity’s profession. But in the end, he does care very much and Charity is soon back to having her toes and heart stepped on in the ballroom. But not before singing and dancing to such rousing Broadway classics as “Big Spender,” “If My Friends Could See Me Now,” “Where Am I Going,” and “There’s Gotta Be Something Better Than This.”. Written by Neil Simon, with music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields, and directed by Kathleen Marshall, it runs June 20 through July 1 at the UCLA's Freud Playhouse in Westwood. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.reprise2.org.

“The 39 Steps” Hitchcock meets hilarious in this fast-paced comedy mystery thriller for anyone who loves the magic of theater. Train chases, plummeting planes and old-fashioned romance lead to a death-defying finale as a cast of four actors breathlessly reenacts hundreds of characters, locations and famous scenes from Alfred Hitchcock’s 1935 film of the same name. Written by Patrick Barlow from the novel by John Buchan, and directed by Jamie Torcellini, it runs June 22 through July 8 at the International City Theatre Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.InternationalCityTheatre.org.

“Pump Boys and Dinettes” Out there on Highway 57 in North Carolina, somewhere between Frog Leap and Smyrna, sits a gas station across from the Double Cupp Diner. The Pump Boys and Dinettes know what you want and they’ve got what you need: gasoline and comfort food. Fill your tank and fill your belly: The Energy Duet. They’ve also got a whole bunch of toe-tappin’, hummable country/pop tunes guaranteed to show you a good time. Written by John Foley, Mark Hardwick, Debra Monk, Cass Morgan, John Schimmel and Jim Wann, with music by John Foley, Mark Hardwick, Debra Monk, Cass Morgan, John Schimmel and Jim Wann, and directed by Allison Bibicoff, it runs June 23 through July 29 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.

“The Blade of Jealousy” Dashing Melchor moves to Los Angeles to meet his online dating connection but unexpectedly falls in love with a mysterious veiled lady (Magdalena), and she with him. He later meets her sans veil but is unimpressed, thus igniting Magdalena’s jealousy – of herself! A farcical amalgam of disguise and deception ensues. Written by Henry Ong, and directed by Denise Blasor, it runs June 24 through August 26 at the Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks. For tickets visit www.thebladeofjealousy.brownpapertickets.com.

“Our Very Own Carlin McCullough” A single mother discovers that her ten-year-old daughter is a tennis phenomenon. When a young, dedicated coach takes Carlin under his wing, her meteoric rise takes shape and this threesome struggles over what is best when building up a champion. Written by Amanda Peet, and directed by Tyne Rafaeli, it runs June 27 through July 29 at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.org.

“The Chalk Garden” An outdoor production of Enid Bagnold’s unique comedy that blends witty humor with insightful truths. Dyed-in-the-wool British dowager Mrs. St. Maugham is an eccentric with two obsessions: caring for her troubled teenage granddaughter and growing a traditional English garden in the harsh chalk soil of the surrounding grounds. When the mysterious Miss Madrigal, with her keen knowledge of gardening, is hired as a governess despite her lack of references, she brings along a dark secret. Written by Enid Bagnold, and directed by Susan Angelo, it runs June 30 through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.

“The Death and Life of Mary Jo Kopechne” tells the story of an American tragedy from the point of view of the victim – a young woman who became famous one night in 1969 when the car she was in plunged off a bridge on Martha’s Vineyard on the way back from a midnight tryst on the beach. A prominent United States senator who’d had too much to drink was at the wheel. He survived. She didn’t. Mary Jo Kopechne was a Democratic campaign worker and idealist with ambitions of running for the Pennsylvania State Assembly. A demure Catholic with little experience with men, she was not the type to have an impulsive sexual adventure with a married man. But does she say no to a man of considerable power and influence, a man who could help advance her career, a man she also may have admired? A dilemma that has become particularly prominent in the #MeToo era we are living through. In his hotel room Ted Kennedy is frantically trying to devise some way out of this potentially career-ending disaster when his two dead brothers and his father miraculously show up to help him try to salvage not only his political future but the family’s reputation. They are deep in damage control scenarios when there is a knock at the door. They open it to discover Mary Jo Kopechne standing there, soaking wet, and very angry. The Kennedys try desperately to persuade her to help them cover up the incident. The decision that she has to make in the next few hours will determine not only Ted Kennedy’s fate but also that of the entire nation, perhaps for decades to come. Written by Peter Lefcourt, and directed by Terri Hanauer, it runs June 30 through August 12 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-4418 or visit www.Plays411.com/MaryJo.




...and, if you hurry, there's still time to catch these ongoing productions:



“Antigone, or We Are Rebels Asking for the Storm” Creon is King of Thebes, ascending to the throne after the death of his brother King Oedipus, and the deaths of Oedipus’ sons Eteocles and Polyneices in a civil war. Creon, an autocrat who rules with an iron fist, has considered Polyneices a political rival, and so decrees that he should remain unburied on the battle field, to be devoured by worms and vultures. Polyneices’ sister Antigone defies Creon and buries her brother, though it means she will surely be executed. She refuses to retract her defiance and unwittingly becomes the face of a movement, changing her sister Ismene and husband Haimon’s lives forever. Written by Sophocles, translated by Kenneth Cavander, adapted by Matt Minnicino, and directed by Amanda McRaven, it runs through June 2 at the Bootleg Theater in Los Angeles. For tickets call 330-209-7711 or visit www.fugitivekind.org.

“Seminar” four aspiring writers, (all in their 20s, acquainted with each other and living in New York City), have just hired world renowned writer, editor and teacher Leonard for a 10 week “seminar” to teach them how to be better writers and help move their careers along. However, they have absolutely no idea what they've gotten themselves into in this funny and provocative play. Written by Theresa Rebeck, and directed by Melanie Weisner, it runs through June 2 at the Thymele Arts Theater in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.thepopuptheater.org.

“The Sisters Rosensweig” The story, set in the early 1990s, is centered on three sisters—each extraordinary in her own way. There’s Sara, the successful banker, whose 54th birthday brings everyone together at her London flat. Pfeni is the globe-trotting journalist. And Gorgeous is an irrepressible radio host. This smart, funny and enthralling play looks at the quest for love, acceptance and self-fulfillment. Written by Wendy Wasserstein, and directed by Casey Stangl, it runs through June 2 at the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-708-5555 or visit www.scr.org.

“The Giant Void in My Soul” A quixotic quest, between friends, leads to new adventures in temptation, self-examination, sensation, and even procreation. While on a journey to fill the void, Cubría’s characters mine the comic ironies of searching for meaning in life. Ever curious, they forge ahead in optimism. Written by Bernardo Cubría, and directed by Felix Solis, it runs through June 3 at the Pico in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.thegiantvoid.eventbee.com.

“Native Son” Suffocating in rat-infested poverty on the South Side of Chicago in the 1930s, Bigger Thomas struggles to find a place for himself in a world whose prejudice has shut him out. After taking a job in a wealthy white man's house, Bigger unwittingly unleashes a series of events that violently and irrevocably seal his fate. Written by Nambi E. Kelley from the novel by Richard Wright, and directed by Andi Chapman, it runs through June 3 at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale. For tickets call 818-506-1983 or visit www.Antaeus.org.

“The Chosen” A silent father, an ancient tradition and an unexpectedly important game of baseball forge bonds of lifelong friendship between two Jewish boys from “five blocks and a world apart” in this funny, poignant, timely and timeless father-son story about recognition and acceptance of “the other”. Written by Chaim Potok, adapted by Aaron Posner and Chaim Potok, and directed by Simon Levy, it runs through June 10 at the Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-663-1525 or visit www.FountainTheatre.com.

“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” a young woman in a provincial town, and a Beast, who is actually a handsome young Prince who lives in a luxurious castle in France. When an Old Beggar Woman, who is actually an Enchantress, asks the Prince for shelter from the freezing cold, the Prince shuns the beggar for her repulsive appearance, at which time the Enchantress appears transforming the Prince into a Beast for his cold-hearted and selfish ways. The Enchantress casts a magic spell upon the Prince’s entire castle, including his good-natured servants, who are transformed into household objects to reflect their different personalities. Ashamed of his new appearance, the Beast conceals himself inside his castle with a magic mirror as his only window to the outside world, and an enchanted rose, which will bloom until he turns 21 years of age. Time is running out. If the Beast can learn to love a woman and earn her love in return before the final petal falls off the rose, the curse will be broken and he will return to his original self as a Prince. But, if not, he will remain a Beast forever, and all the members of his household will be doomed as well for all eternity. Written by Linda Woolverton, with music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice, and directed by Rigo Tejeda, it runs through June 10 at the CASA 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights. For tickets call 323-263-7684 or visit www.casa0101.org.

“Lost & Found: A Guilt Trip through Show Business” is the show business memoir of Steven Shaw. Steven grew up in Brooklyn. Turning to show business after first trying out for the Detroit Tigers, Steven pursued acting as a young man but was frequently unemployed. He found success running the properties department at New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theatre for nine years, and subsequently working as a Broadway stage manager for twenty years, working on the biggest shows with the most important directors and the most legendary stars. Returning to acting in his early 60s, he finally struck performing gold and has appeared in over sixty feature films and television episodes (Suburbicon, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Two and a Half Men). His previous appearances at Theatre 40 include On Borrowed Time and Breaking and Entering. Written by Steven Shaw, and directed by Joan Darling, it runs through June 10 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets visit www.theatre40.org.

“My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy” is the hilarious tale of Brad Zimmerman’s struggle to fulfill his dream and make it as a comedic actor in New York. One-part standup, one-part theatrical, and all parts uproarious, the show has garnered rave reviews wherever it has played, including sold-out runs off-Broadway and at dozens of other venues throughout the USA. Written and directed by Brad Zimmerman, it runs through June 10 at the Colony Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 855-448-7469 or visit www.mysonthewaiter.com.

“Twelfth Night” a 400-year-old play about people seeing what they want to see, instead of what is. We all see ourselves in Twelfth Night: Wise fools, foolish sages, true lovers, false lovers, brave women, and cowardly men. All ruled by Fortune, or Chance, or Karma – a whirligig of Time, which, as it turns, eventually brings all things ‘round. Sit back and enjoy some of the most beautiful language ever written, in one of the most charming stories ever told. Written by William Shakespeare, adapted by Lance Davis, and directed by Lance Davis, it runs through June 10 at the Parson’s Nose Theater in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-403-7667 or visit www.parsonsnose.com.

“Wiesenthal” As Holocaust survivor and the world’s most renowned hunter of Nazi war criminals Simon Wiesenthal is about to retire, he recounts for an audience the stories of his most famous cases of bringing wrongdoers to justice. Playwright Tom Dugan portrays Wiesenthal. Written by Tom Dugan, and directed by Jenny Sullivan, it runs through June 13 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-3606 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“The Tragedy: A Comedy” a wholly immersive theatrical experience, centering around three literary/talent managers – Larry (Malcolm Barrett, Timeless), Lisa (Tina Huang, Rizzoli & Isles), and Derek (Brandon Scott, Guerrilla), who go on a psychedelic mushroom trip, hoping they'll be struck with a brilliant idea that will save their failing business. Instead, the mushrooms reveal a chilling truth: their whole lives are the subject of a tragic play, with an audience of people watching their every move. As Larry slips deeper and deeper into his role as the tragic hero, Lisa and Derek undertake a mad quest to escape the confines of the play and save their friend. Greek goddesses, self-help cults, and inter-dimensional portals all set the stage for this interactive dark comedy about characters trapped inside a tragedy. Written by D.G. Watson, and directed by Ahmed Best, it runs through June 14 at the Pico Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.ammotheatre.com.

“Forever Bound” Are we all savages? A rare book dealer's desperate scheme to avoid bankruptcy goes shockingly awry in this darkly funny literary thriller with a surprise twist. Written by Steve Apostolina, and directed by Ann Hearn Tobolowsky, it runs through June 16 at the SANKALPA PRODUCTIONS Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 323-960-4429 or visit www.plays411.com/foreverbound.

“Match” Mike and Lisa Davis arrive at the apartment of Tobi Powell, who lives alone in Inwood, on the northern tip of Manhattan. They are there to interview him about his life as a dancer and choreographer, but it is soon evident that their agenda is as multilayered as the life story that Tobi begins to tell them. What happens next will either ruin or inspire them—and definitely change their lives forever. Written by Stephen Belber, and directed by Bruce Starrett, it runs through June 16 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.

“Mr. Pim Passes By” This delightful comedy tells of what happens when appealing Mr. Pim, who has much trouble with names, drops in one day. Mr. Pim announces that the former husband of the lady of the house, thought to be deceased, is alive. Since the lady is married now, she is a bigamist. Her present husband is upset no end. Then Mr. Pim passes by again, confessing that he was confused and it is safe to assume that the lady’s first husband is dead, as they originally believed. Without telling her husband, the lady uses the knowledge to get what she wants and to force her husband to permit his niece to marry the young artist who loves her. Written by A.A. Milne, and directed by Jules Aaron, it runs through June 17 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.

“Ripe Frenzy” submerges us in the before, during and after of a mass shooting at a small-town high school theatre, during opening night of its 40th production of Our Town. Told from the perspective of the mothers of the town, the play questions our own culpability in the perpetuation of mass shootings in our country. Written by Jennifer Barclay, and directed by Alana Dietze, it runs through June 17 at the Greenway Court Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-673-0544 or visit www.GreenwayCourtTheatre.org/RipeFrenzy.

“Sex” Margy LaMont, an entrepreneur as well as a prostitute, is the most successful sex worker in Montreal. That city becomes too hot for her when a society matron attempts to frame her for a crime she did not commit. She heads for the Caribbean, and later for a swank enclave in New York. She acquires lovers along the way, including Gregg, an English naval officer who has some entrepreneurial ideas of his own; and Jimmy, a younger man who will be the heir to a fabulous fortune, who is smitten with her. Between the police, criminals, hypocritical high-society types, and two men who really love her, Margy has her arms full. Written by Mae West, and directed by Sirena Irwin, it runs through June 17 at the Hudson Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.dime.io/events/buzzworks-sex.

“Violet” Leaving her North Carolina home behind, Violet boards a bus and travels through the segregated South to be healed by a minister, convinced he can heal her scar, while discovering the true meaning of beauty along the way. Written by Brian Crawley, with music by Jeanine Tesori, lyrics by Brian Crawley, and directed by Richard Israel, it runs through June 17 at the Actors Co-op Crossley Theater in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-462-8460 or visit www.ActorsCo-op.org.

“Bad Jews” A beloved grandfather has died and a treasured family heirloom with religious significance is up for grabs — but who’s the most deserving? Bossy, overbearing, self-declared “super-Jew” Daphna? Her wealthy cousin Liam, just returned from skiing with his shiksa girlfriend, Melody? Or Jonah, Liam’s younger brother, who finds himself in the impossible position of peacemaker as the two rivals argue, insult and try to outwit each other to the bitter, hilarious end? Written by Joshua Harmon, and directed by Dana Resnick, it runs through June 17 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.

“Bordertown Now” Twenty years after their searing hit Bordertown premiered, the Playhouse sends LA’s very own Culture Clash back to the border to investigate. Re-imagined, remixed and fully reloaded, Bordertown Now is an irreverent sometimes hilarious exploration of the regions and people at the center of one of America’s most hot button and controversial issues. Energized with new material ripped from the headlines and developed and directed by Obie award-winning Diane Rodriguez, the nation’s premier Chicano/Latino performance trio continues to redefine the boundaries of theatre and break down the divisions between cultures. Written by Ric Salinas & Herbert Sigüenza with new material by Richard Montoya, and directed by Diane Rodriguez, it runs through June 24 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.

“Cult of Love” IAMA concludes its 10th anniversary with the final installment in Leslye Headland’s “Seven Deadly Plays” cycle — a black comedy that explores the final sin of “pride” through one family's feverish clash over who is right and who is crazy. The Dahl family gathers to celebrate Christmas in their rural Connecticut home. Raised as strict Christians and overachievers, the four adult children (along with their partners) have grown into varying degrees of belief and success. Their initially joyful reunion quickly reveals an American family riddled with competition, xenophobia and mental illness. Written by Leslye Headland, and directed by Annie Tippe, it runs through June 24 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 323-380-8843 or visit www.iamatheatre.com.

“Ice” Two baseball players from Sinaloa, Mexico arrive in the U.S. with big dreams... but no documents. Armed with their Tia's famous salsa recipe, the pair works day and night to make their taco truck the “Uncle Sam” of mobile restaurants. Will a contest to be “the most American food truck” at Dodger Stadium for the 4th of July prove to Immigration and Customs Enforcement that they belong? For adults and kids 8 and up. Written by Leon Martell, and directed by Debbie Devine, it runs through June 24 at the 24th Street Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-745-6516 or visit www.24thstreet.org.

“Sholom Aleichem” This new musical, performed in English with just a taste of Yiddish, follows the life of the beloved Yiddish story-teller and his mespoche, spinning tales of his loves and losses, his fame and his failures, his travels, his travails and the tremendous joy and optimism that kept him going against all odds. Written by Chris DeCarlo and Evelyn Rudie, with music by Ben Weisman, Emery Bernauer, Evelyn Rudie and Sholom Aleichem, and directed by Arthur R. Tompkins, it runs through June 24 at the Santa Monica Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-394-9779 Ext. 1 or visit www.santamonicaplayhouse.com/aleichem-sholom.html.

“Wood Boy Dog Fish” the cricket is killed, a blue poltergeist haunts us all, the legendary Dogfish monster preys on our greatest fears and a little wooden puppet struggles to discover what it means to be real. Written by Chelsea Sutton with Rogue Artists Ensemble, with music by Adrien Prévost, and directed by Sean T. Cawelti, it runs through June 24 at the Garry Marshall Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.GarryMarshallTheatre.org.

“Hair” defined the “rock musical,” exuberantly celebrating the hippie counterculture, anti-war movement and sexual revolution of the 1960s with a rainbow score of hits – including “Aquarius,” “Hair,” “Easy to be Hard,” “Be In,” “Where Do I Go?” “Good Morning Starshine,” and “Let the Sunshine In” – that have become ingrained in pop culture. Written by James Rado, with music by Galt MacDermot, lyrics by James Rado, and directed by Michael Arabian, it runs through June 30 at the Palace Theatre in Los Angeles.

“Her Portmanteau” a family rifles through their literal and emotional baggage in this taut and poignant drama about relatives, legacy, and connection. This family drama, penned by first generation Nigerian-American storyteller Mfoniso Udofia, chronicles the triumphs and struggles of a tenacious matriarch and two daughters. The mother and one of her daughters have called the United States home for many years. And the other daughter’s arrival raises heart-wrenching questions about the power of place, family bonds, and how we define our relationships over space and time. Written by Mfoniso Udofia, and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, it runs through June 30 at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-683-6801 or visit www.BostonCourt.com.

“One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest” When Randle Patrick McMurphy gets transferred to a mental institution, he encounters Nurse Ratched who runs the psychiatric ward with an iron fist, keeping her patients cowed through abuse, medication, and sessions of electroconvulsive therapy. The battle of wills between the rebellious McMurphy and the authoritarian Ratched soon escalates, leaving no one in the ward left unscathed. The experience begins the moment you check-in. All audience members are encouraged to take part in our immersive preshow where you can freely explore the asylum, interact with the characters, take “medication,” and discover the secrets of the ward and those who inhabit it. Once the performance of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest commences, audiences can choose between two different viewing experiences. “Acute Patients” sit on stage and will have the opportunity to interact with the characters and the space during the performance. “Chronic Patients” will be stationary throughout the performance and will enjoy the show from a more traditional theatrical vantage point. Written by Dale Wasserman based on the novel by Ken Kesey, and directed by Jonathan Muñoz-Proulx, it runs through July 1 at the SIXO1 Studio in Burbank. For tickets visit www.CUCKOOSNESTLA.com.

“Red Speedo” Ray’s swum his way to the eve of the Olympic trials. If he makes the team, he’ll get a deal with Speedo. If he gets a deal with Speedo, he’ll never need a real job. So when someone’s stash of performance-enhancing drugs is found in the locker room fridge, threatening the entire team’s Olympic fate, Ray has to crush the rumors or risk losing everything. A sharp and stylish play about swimming, survival of the fittest, and the American dream of a level playing field - or of leveling the field yourself. Written by Lucas Hnath, and directed by Joe Banno, it runs through July 1 at the Road on Magnolia in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-761-8838 or visit www.roadtheatre.org.

“Trump in Space” Four hundred years from now, thanks to the stripping away of EPA regulations, the earth has blown up. Two human factions survive and are on the hunt for Polaris 4, a planet capable of sustaining human life. One faction, the United States of Commerce, lives by a motto of “opportunity at any cost.” Ruled by The Executive, his chief representative in space is starship Captain Natasha Trump, a lineal descendant of Donald J. Trump. Competing with her to reach Polaris 4 first is a resistance called The Separatists, gathered on the Starship California and led by President Gary Hart, Natasha’s ex-lover. Which faction will be the first to reach Polaris 4 and establish the New Cosmic Order? Written by Gillian Bellinger and Landon Kirksey, with music by Tony Gonzalez and Sam Johnides, and directed by Frank Caeti, it runs through August 17 at the Second City Hollywood Studio Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-464-8542 or visit www.secondcity.com/shows/hollywood/trump-in-space.

 

Enjoy life more – see a show tonight!