Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – April 8 - 14, 2019


MoniqueLeBleu

MoniqueLeBleu

Event Editor, Registered Critic, Writer


Theatrical shows registered on the Better Lemons calendar!
For more shows visit our Calendar.
For shows with a LemonMeter rating, visit our LemonMeter page.

Son of a Bitch

“Lee Atwater changed the American political playbook. Through his wedge issue tactics, smear campaigning, and diabolical media strategy, he orchestrated George H.W. Bush's 1988 Presidential campaign and became one of Washington's elite power players. But, by age 40, Lee Atwater was dead, his spectacular career over in a flash, and his legacy just another story to spin. SON OF A BITCH chronicles Atwater's transformation from a scrappy Southern strategist, to the “lying, character-assassinating, knife-fighting son of a bitch” he eventually became. Spanning the course of ten years, the play examines the legitimacy of Atwater's “crimes”. Was he a “bad boy”, a victim of his time, or the product of American ambition?”

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Why did the chicken cross the road?

“‘Why did the chicken cross the road?' follows each of the words in that joke as a character. Throughout the play's two acts, each word tries to figure out their meaning as individual words and within the joke, as they all attempt to reach the ‘real world'. The play is as ridiculous as the joke, but nonetheless, it is rooted in very serious themes. The words are a joke to the entire world, but that becomes the most meaningful part of who they are, and the most redemptive. After a sold-out run in London last year, ‘Why did the chicken cross the road' is proud to have its American premiere at HFF!”

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VICTORIA GORDON - LIVE AT THE HOLLYWOOD FRINGE

“Cabaret, classic showtunes, and comedy–what more do you need? Absolutely nothing, so join Victoria Gordon and her three-piece band for an hour of beloved standards and hilarious vignettes.”

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Sorry About My Friend

“Sorry About My Friend is making its premiere run at HFF. Inspired by true events, the play follows the journey of college students, Alyssa and Rachel, through their tumultuous years as roommates at Texas Tech University in Lubbock from 2006-2010. This quirky odd couple, with perfectionist Rachel and wild child Alyssa, learns even fast friendship has its hiccups. A dramedy in eight vignettes, clocking in at an hour, Sorry About My Friend visits the fall and spring semesters of each year at school.
In the era of female empowerment, come celebrate the complicated beauty and power of female friendship. Obsessive Rachel plays by the rules while wisecracking Alyssa writes her own rulebook. Will the girls' differences build a bond like Thelma and Louise or burn down a city like Joan and Bette? Please join us June 10th- 29th at the Stephanie Feury Studio Theatre – 5636 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90038 – for a show that will make you thankful you've already graduated. ”

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A Year in Dragonfly

“WORLD PREMIERE OF A Year in Dragonfly, a one-woman show dictating the survival story of her journey after being brutally attacked by the man she loved. Told in all original spoken word and song, she narrates her navigation back from the darkest corners of fear, shame, and depression associated with domestic abuse.”

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Revoluciones

“A highly theatrical fever-dream that employs magical realism to tell the kaleidoscope journey of a strong and passionate woman facing an impossible tragedy. A desperate mother searches for her disappeared son amidst a totalitarian regime in an unnamed Latin American country. Produced by the Latino Theater Company in association with Mexico's Foro Shakespeare, an independent non-profit space that generates and develops projects of direct social impact through the performing arts. Presented in Spanish with English supertitles.”

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One Slight Hitch

“It is Courtney's wedding day, and her mom, Delia is making sure that everything is perfect. The groom is perfect, the dress is perfect, and the decorations (assuming they arrive) will be perfect. Then, like in any good farce, the doorbell rings. And all hell breaks loose. So much for perfect.”

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The Root Beer Bandits - a Rootin' Tootin Wild West Musicale

“The marshallARTS Family Series presents The Root Beer Bandits –A Rootin' Tootin' Wild West Musicale, at the Garry Marshall Theatre in a new, updated pull-out-all-the-stops version complete with live band, added songs, a revised book, and all-new costumes for its 15th anniversary...When Polly delivers a letter to Sheriff Bailey of Sarsaparilla City, they discover that Copper Penny is scheming to steal the city's famous root beer supply. With Sally Sue Tucker, a trailblazing female entrepreneur named helping her, and Sheriff Bailey, Polly sets things right and makes it clear that everyone is capable of greatness, no matter what their circumstances may be. Hold onto yer hats, ‘cuz laughs are sure to be a-plenty in this high-paced vaudevillian show including a chase, a Ho' Down, a sing-off at high noon, and although the show has a surprise ending, its no surprise that girl power saves the day!”

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FAMOUS

“Set in 1994, Famous takes audiences into a world ruled by sex, money, and power taken at any cost. Just nominated for his first Oscar, Jason Mast is throwing a celebratory party at his Hollywood Hills home that serves as the backdrop for an intricate plan to confront his past with the night unfolding at an adrenaline-rushed pace. Driven by a devastating need to expose the truth, Jason's attempt to control the outcome of the evening ignites a chain of events that push the boundaries of real friendship and reveals the true cost of fame.”

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Side Man

“A staged reading of Side Man will be performed as a selection in Sierra Madre Playhouse's ongoing Off the Page series of play readings.
The story: Set in 1953 and traveling to 1985, this lovely and poignant memory play unfolds through the eyes of Clifford, the only son of Gene, a jazz trumpet player, and Terry, an alcoholic mother. alternating between their New York City apartment and a smoke-filled music club, Clifford narrates the story of his broken family and the decline of jazz as popular entertainment. Clifford recalls the key moments in his life, such as the day when he, fresh out of college, picked up his first unemployment check and was congratulated by Gene and his bandmates. Gene's music career on the big band circuit ultimately crumbles with the advent of Elvis and rock-n-roll. Terry begs him to get a nine-to-five job to support the family, but Gene refuses to enter the “straight world” of regular paychecks, mortgages, and security. For Gene, who knows jazz better than his own son, music is not just a job; it's his life. their marriage slowly dissolves and young Clifford is witness to it all. as things worsen, Clifford assumes the role of parent and throws the hopeless Gene out of his mother's apartment. When an adult Clifford visits Gene in a rundown jazz club after years of separation, he requests that the old man play his mother's favorite song, the old standard 'Why Was I Born?'”

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Miss Coco Peru: Have You Heard?

“The return of the legendary Miss Coco Peru in her latest solo show. Miss Coco loves to reminisce. In fact, she's very good at it. In 'Have You Heard?,' Coco performs some of her favorite monologues and songs spanning her long career, as well as some new stuff too. Whether you've heard all or some of these stories or you're a Coco virgin, come see why Lily Tomlin called Coco, “one of the last great storytellers,” and experience the trailblazing Queen who elevated drag whilst still wearing sensible heels.”

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Richard III: Hour of the Tyrant

“A radical edit of Shakespeare's text, one that focuses on 'What makes a nation submit to a tyrant?' Yet fundamentally this remains a character piece, an exploration of the tragedy that is the life of one of the Bard's greatest villains.”

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Transference

“In Transference, a woman awakens from hypnotherapy and remembers all of her past lives…and that her therapist has been the love of her life in every lifetime. This world premiere dark romantic comedy tells the story of a woman hoping to get it right at long last, or at least not get murdered this time. Expert psychology gives way to pithy metaphysical repartee gives way to death threats. It's truly a love story that explores the most important question in any relationship: How long can you hold a grudge? ”

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Next to Normal

“Launching the season of family is the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, “Next to Normal” by Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey. The production open April 12, 2019 and is directed by Artistic Director Craig Tyrl. 'Next to Normal' tells the story of Diana Goodman and her family, struggling to find happiness and normality against a twenty-year backdrop of bi-polar disorder, depression, and grief. The musical examines mental illness and its powerful impact on the family unit. ”

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Anna in the Tropics

“Nilo Cruz's poignant and poetic 2003 Pulitzer Prize-winning play captures 1929 Florida at a time when cigars were still rolled by hand and lectors were employed to educate and entertain the immigrant workers. The arrival of a new lector is cause for celebration, but when he reads Anna Karenina to the cigar rollers, he unwittingly becomes a catalyst in the lives of his avid listeners, for whom Tolstoy, the tropics and the American dream prove a volatile combination.”

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DR. NYMPHO VS. THE SEX ZOMBIES

“Celebration, under the artistic direction of Michael A. Shepperd, Cherry Poppins and Orgasmico present a very special guest production, the 2018 Hollywood Fringe Festival award-winning burlesque rock musical (Best Musical, Best World Premiere & Bechdal Wallace Award), DR. NYMPHO VS. THE SEX ZOMBIES ... Every family has issues. No issues run deeper than those of the brilliant pathologist and matriarch Dr. Nimfa Delacroix. She was a nymphomaniac in the past but now lives a “normal life” with her nuclear 21st-century family. All of her demons must be confronted however, when the outbreak of a deadly STD launches in Atlanta, turning its residents into zombies that promises the end of civilization. Can Nimfa unite her family? Can she overcome her past? Can she save the world? Find out in 'DR. NYMPHO VS THE SEX ZOMBIES!'”

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The Rape of Lucrece

“One of history's darkest crimes is one of Shakespeare's darkest works. Parental Discretion Advised, Graphic Content The ancient Roman legend of Lucretia is said to have been the catalyst for the Empire to become a Republic. Shakespeare takes a glimpse into the depraved mind of Tarquin as he assaults his friend Collatine's wife, Lucrece, who takes her own life out of shame. Listen in to our own radio adaptation of this violent, profound, and beautifully-written epic. ”

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Lock Your Heart, Elder P.

“What if your 'person' comes along right when you've been forbidden to find one? A Mormon tragedy in one act. Elder P. happily accepted the call to serve a Mormon mission in Sweden. He started out with the best of intentions: to serve the Lord faithfully, chastely, and exclusively for two years. He promised to lay aside all personal relationships for that entire time, subjecting himself instead to the constant scrutiny of a 24/7 working missionary companion. Then she showed up…”

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Back Bog Beast Bait

“A shack in a swamp. A woman hires two gunslingers to help her defend her home against a mysterious and ravenous beast intent on destroying the human race. Everyone feels the presence of the beast, but no one can prove it's real. Maybe the only way to protect ourselves is to lay our bodies bare on the altar and call forth our worst fears, our biggest regrets, and the baddest evil we can dream up. This production of Back Bog Beast Bait comes to you from Scavengers, a collective of artists who value the gritty, sensory worlds Sam Shepard spent his life meticulously creating.”
Better Lemons readers receive $5 off with the discount code ANWLemon when you purchase your tickets.”

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Neighborhood Watch

“When the head of a Neighborhood Watch program gets fed up with the goings-on in her neighborhood, she takes things into her own hands. A comedy about what goes on in the neighborhood and who's watching.”

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The Living Room

“A comedy about death, conceived in grief, birthed by Amrita Dhaliwal & Gemma Soldati. These Accountants of Death work tirelessly to record the death toll. Confined to The Living Room, the occupational hazards wear on these two clowns as they learn the meaning of life and death. An absurd and physical jaunt brimming with existential phone calls, impaired dancing and the love of a goldfish. Students of Dr. Brown, Spymonkey's Aitor Basauri, Paolo Coletto and Teacher's for Cirque du Soleil's, John Gilkey's Idiot Workshop in Los Angeles, Amrita Dhaliwal and Gemma Soldati have devised a clown show inspired by their loss of loved ones. Devised and developed at The Lyric Hyperion Theatre, this show rides the very fine line between comedy and tragedy. Employing physical and absurdist theatre techniques, this show leaves the audience laughing and crying and thrust out into the night to ponder it all.”

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Tapping My Way To The Nuthouse

“Santa Monica Playhouse Benefit Series and Jassem Inc present in collaboration with Jessica Lynne Johnson a preview or a premiere of Lynne Jassem's (From Homo to Como) latest show Tapping My Way To The Nuthouse. A one performance only special event...A burgeoning neurotic evolves into a full-fledged tap dancing, mime, storytelling, multimedia, nutcase…Come watch the trip!   DOES INSANITY WIN? Take the travails of a burgeoning nutcase…throw in a little OCD, mix with a bissel paranoia…and you are up and down in the world of tap and mime and characters galore…a multi-media dance journey through the insanity of showbiz.”

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Spring Awakening

“Teens Take on the Multiple Tony Award-winning, Coming-of-Age Musical 'SPRING AWAKENING' at the Stella Adler Theatre. Directed by 14-year-old George Baron and Featuring a Young Adult Cast.”

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Houdini in "The Grim Game"

“Everyone is invited to step back into 1919 — one hundred years ago — and see this lost classic as it was meant to be seen, with live accompaniment by the doyen of silent film musicians, Michael Mortilla, and violinist Nicole Garcia. This exciting event will be introduced by Houdini expert John Cox (www.wildabouthoudini.com). Michael will talk about the importance of music in the silent era. The Grim Game is a silent drama that showcases Houdini's astonishing, world-famous talents as an escapologist, stunt performer and aviator. The film presents a series of Houdini's trademark stunts and escapes and builds to an airplane pursuit climaxed by a mid-air collision.”

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Oracles and Miracles

“Oracles and Miracles, by Norelle Scott, based on the best-selling novel Oracles and Miracles by Stevan Eldred-Grigg, follows the journey of two working-class sisters growing up in Christchurch, New Zealand. Born in 1929 they are children of the Depression. They grow to adulthood through the time of the Second World War, and become mothers in the Baby Boom of the early fifties. Nick-named Ginnie and Fag the sisters are driven by the hope of a better life, consumed with love stories, romantic ideals, and luxuries they can only dream of. Told with humor, passion, insight, and authenticity, ‘Oracles and Miracles' celebrates the lives of courageous women..”

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Catastrophe!

“'Catastrophe!' is a comic exploration of the modern world as seen through the eyes of the clown. Philadelphia theatre artist Hank Curry explores the pitfalls and pratfalls of modern life as he tries on several unique identities, each with their own troubles and travails. Run away and join the circus of modern society with this new play that reveals and celebrates the commonalities that make us human in ways that can be challenging but are ultimately joyful.”

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DOGS: The Musical

“A musical comedic ode to our favorite pets, and a loving parody of musicals, 'DOGS' is about a pack of stray pit bulls that get separated and adopted. Although they fight their new domestic lives, they learn to stop worrying and love humans. 'DOGS' follows a pack of pit bull mixes as they live proudly on the street… until they're found by the pound and put into adoption. When the alpha of the pack reveals to his new owners that he and dogs everywhere can speak, humans realize they're no longer on top of the food chain.

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Ripple

“The last century has undergone a sensational transformation inspired by our innate desire to provide a brighter future for the generations to come. But what happens when one generation's hope for the future steals the hope of another's?”

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HOLLYWOODN'T

“Lisa Verlo performs HOLLYWOODN'T a solo show and personal journey across Hollywood's unsettling sexual landscape, directed by and developed with Jessica Lynn Johnson. A musical memoir told with candor and insight into the life of an actress before women dared to speak up. With original songs co-written with Frank Simes, Musical Director for The Who, Lisa Verlo brings humor and a light heart to a heavy subject. Creative visuals and video projections add to the multimedia recounting of her experiences on the casting couches of LA. Hollywoodn't was featured, on Wednesday, February 13, as part of SOLOFEST 2019 at the Whitefire Theatre, the largest solo theatre festival on the West Coast.”

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ASSMONKEY

“ASSMONKEY: In Conversation is a hilariously fast faced and upfront tale of anxiety, crutches and the characters you discover when you're on road to recovery. The show takes a sideways look at mental health and ways in which we may hit the self destruct button. ASSMONKEY merges comedy genres through stand up, spoken work, silly songs and character work. Abetted by some “semi” scientific research, you'll encounter some bizarre renditions of personalities from Sophia's past, from doctors to yoga teachers. We'll take you on an uplifting journey from addiction to self help and wellbeing. Expect silliness, wank jokes, bad costumes, flailing and maybe even a little tenderness.”

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meg jo beth amy & louisa

“From the team that brought you the 2017 Hollywood Fringe International Award Winner & Pick of the Fringe, 'LADIES IN WAITING: THE JUDGEMENT OF HENRY VIII' comes their next project…Not Your Marmee's Little Women. Assigned with the super boring task of writing a morality tale for girls, Louisa May Alcott finds herself in a state of writer's block. That is until she turns to figures and stories from her own life. Lines between fact and fiction begin to blur, as 'Little Women' is played out upon the stage. Louisa must confront her characters, family, and a demanding public. Life may be the best inspiration, but what if you are afraid to learn who you are? ”

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I Could Take a Nap, but Killing Myself would be more Productive

“School president, award-winning debater, perfect GPA, dreamy boyfriend. What doesn't 18-year-old Sofia have? The strength to keep living. After taking her life, Sofia is stuck in limbo and relives her last memories in an effort to understand what went wrong. The stage becomes a life-sized version of her journal as she makes her way through the incidents preceding her death. We meet her family and friends in her journal; explored through home videos, original music, and theater. Step inside the mind of modern adolescence.”

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FERTILE: A Conversation About the Expectation of Procreation

“Jenny has a plan. A plan to get pregnant. Everyone keeps telling her that time is running out, she just turned 35, after all. So, when those pesky urine tests keep coming back negative, Jenny decides to take action and fix the problem. That's when she runs into real problems and real questions about fertility and motherhood. As Jenny faces the world of “mom options” – egg freezing, in-vitro, adoption, and more – the conversation about the expectation of procreation really begins. Taking into account a whirlwind of outside opinions from her mom, her friends, doctors, a beloved neighbor – and even God – Jenny must ultimately look within to discover what motherhood means to her, what it means to be Fertile.”

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