Audio Interview: The cast of “The Elephant Man” at The El Portal Theatre

THE ELEPHANT MAN is based on the life of Joseph Merrick. The play opened in London in 1977. It premiered on Broadway in 1979 and won all of the major theater awards, including three Tony Awards, three Obie Awards, four Drama Desk Awards, and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award.* Enjoy this interview with the cast of “The Elephant Man” at The El Portal Theatre, playing through Apr 14th. You can listen to this interview while commuting, while waiting in line at the grocery store or at an audition, backstage and even front of the stage. For tickets and more info Click here. *taken from the website

Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – February 25 - March 10, 2019

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

Trojan Women

“Archway Theatre's immersive post-modern retelling of the aftermath of the Trojan War. Priam, Hector, and Paris are all dead. Queen Hecuba and the women of Troy are now the spoils of war, and must await their fate at the hands of the conquering Greeks.”

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Cemetery of Tortured Souls

“Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre Group proudly presents their All-New Horror-Theatre Spectacular haunted by The Golden Age of Hollywood in 1930's. While the only escape from The Great Depression were the movies, there was no escape for those entrapped by the glitter of Tinseltown: These restless spirits of stars and villains from yesteryear rise from their forgotten graves – to wander their final resting place and re-live their final moments in eternal damnation!”

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What Matters Now?/! (Another Political Pop-Up of the Theatrical Kind)

“Open Fist's annual “political pop-up” features a rotating roster of short plays by writers from across the country that explore our nation's current social and political climate and how the past year has affected us. Finding it hard to get off the couch and get to the theater? ”

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CATS!

“The record-breaking musical spectacular by Andrew Lloyd Webber that has captivated audiences in over 30 countries and 15 languages, is now on tour across North America! Audiences and critics alike are rediscovering this beloved musical with breathtaking music, including one of the most treasured songs in musical theater—”Memory”. Winner of 7 Tony Awards® including BEST MUSICAL, CATS tells the story of one magical night when an extraordinary tribe of cats gathers for its annual ball to rejoice and decide which cat will be reborn. The original score by Andrew Lloyd Webber (Phantom, School of Rock, Sunset Boulevard), original scenic and costume design by John Napier (Les Misérables), all-new lighting design by Natasha Katz (Aladdin), all-new sound design by Mick Potter, new choreography by Andy Blankenbuehler (Hamilton) based on the original choreography by Gillian Lynne (Phantom) and direction by Trevor Nunn (Les Misérables) make this production a new CATS for a new generation!...Now and Forever.”

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THE MEATBALL CHRONICLES

“The Meatball Chronicles follows one woman through humorous and sometimes heart wrenching meals that align with stories of her childhood, her relationships with men, and in particular, her complicated relationship to her mother.
Mansini crafts this piece in a way that transcends her own story into universal themes that anyone who has a family can love. As she kneads the dough and thickens the sauce through each Italian recipe, the stories associated with those recipes reveal the complex ways that families cope, laugh, grieve, and show their love through food.”

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The Judas Kiss

“In spring of 1895, Oscar Wilde was larger than life. His masterpiece, The Importance of Being Earnest, was a hit in the West End and he was the toast of London. Yet by summer he was serving two years in prison for gross indecency. Punished for “the love that dare not speak its name,” Wilde remained devoted to his beloved, Lord Alfred “Bosie” Douglas. The Judas Kiss revolves around two pivotal moments in his life: the day when, cajoled by Bosie into an ill-fated trial, he decides to stay in England and face imprisonment, and a night when, after his release two years later, the lover for whom he risked everything betrays him again. David Hare's masterful play pulses with the ecstasy and anguish of an enamored heart.”

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Native Voices at the Autry Presents Pure Native

“Brewster's back! Rising from the ashes with a slick plan for a bottled water plant on reservation land. There's mixed agreement and opposition from family and friends, including an old flame with a grudge—but is he the secret ingredient for success? This play was workshopped as Corn Soup. Native Voices at the Autry is devoted to developing and producing new works for the stage by Native American, Alaska Native, and First Nations playwrights..”

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THE ELEPHANT MAN

“'The Elephant Man' is based on the life of John Merrick who lived in London during the latter part of the 19th Century. A horribly deformed young man who has been a freak attraction in traveling side shows, John is found abandoned and helpless and is admitted for observation to Whitechapel, a prestigious London hospital. Under the care of the famous young doctor, Fredrick Treves, Merrick is educated and introduced to London society. Through their eyes, he is changed from sensational object of pity, to an urbane and witty favorite of the aristocracy and literati. It his dream that he will become a man like any other…but unbeknownst to him, he exceeds even that.”

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JOAN and WHAT DID THEY SAY - An Evening of One Acts

“An Evening Of One Acts: JOAN and WHAT DID THEY SAY
JOAN is an imaginary tale of Joan Crawford's journey through the Bardo and her adjustment to the fact that her soul will move onto the unknown. During this dream state Joan reflects on–her life–her career–her enemies–her loves–those that helped create the film legend she became.
WHAT DID THEY SAY explores gender and sexuality in an unconventional family dramedy, taking place in Los Angeles today. As experienced in today's rough political climate, families don't always share the same values. Family members can be rough among themselves, and where Julian's dad is gay, and his older sister Harper identifies as a dyke, his twin sibling Felicia struggles to understand Julian's gender identity.”

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LA DRAMA CRITICS CIRCLE AWARDS

“The Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle (LADCC), which presented its first awards for excellence in Los Angeles, Orange County, and Ventura County a half-century ago, has begun the gala celebration of its 50th anniversary by announcing its nominations for the year 2018 (Dec. 1, 2017 – Nov. 30, 2018).
The LADCC is further thrilled to announce that this historic occasion will take place on Monday, April 8, 2019 at one of the region's most historic and beautiful theatres, Pasadena Playhouse, at 39 S. El Molino Avenue in Pasadena.”

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The Mother of Henry

“In the working class melting pot that was Boyle Heights in the 1960s, five diverse employees in the return department at Sears form a tight bond as they cope with upheaval in their personal lives, their community and the rapidly changing world around them. Connie, a Latinx single working class mother, realizes her agency and discovers her true identity when the anxieties of war, civil unrest and political assassinations plaguing the country tragically affect her own life. Infused with period music and magical realism.”

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The Shape of Things

“Neil LaBute's 2001 drama “The Shape of Things” is set in a small university town in the American Midwest and centers on the lives of four young students who become emotionally and romantically involved. How far would you go for love? For art? What would you be willing to change? What price might you pay? Such are the painful questions explored in the play. A young student drifts into an ever-changing relationship with an art major while his best friend's engagement crumbles, unleashing a drama that peels back the skin of two modern-day relationships.”

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The MisMatch Game

“For a record-breaking 15th year, it's time once again to “get ready to match the stars” with a new edition of Dennis Hensley's The MisMatch Game. The side-splitting parody of the ‘70s game show has set the rafters ringing with laughter since its debut in 2004. The show the LA Times calls, “witty, ribald … an adventure in surrealist era bending” returns to the Los Angeles LGBT Center's Renberg Theatre for two hilarious shows.”

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Los Angeles Women's Theatre Festival

“The overall theme of the Festival will be I, Woman and the theme of the Opening Night GALA will be In Tribute To. The Champagne GALA and Awards Ceremony will take place on March 22, 2019 at 7:00 p.m. nd will be directed by Denise Dowse (Imposters) and hosted by Starletta DuPois (The Notebook) and Kym Whitley (Young and Hungry). The event will honor five women of exceptional achievement and contribution to the world of theatre (Eternity Awardee- Jenifer Lewis; Integrity Awardee- Leslie Ishii; Maverick Awardee- Sandra Tsing Loh; Rainbow Awardee- Whitney Weston; and posthumously, Infinity Awardee-Carol Channing. There will be special live performances in addition to the awards presentation.”

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IN RESPONSE: Year of the Woman (Still)

“Past and present issues of women including current the #MeToo movement are explored through a collection of dramatic, humorous and thought-provoking, monologues, poems and dance. All the material is written by women. Sunday performances are followed by an audience talkback.”

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Church Basement Ladies

“Church Basement Ladies, a celebration of the church basement kitchen and the women who work there, features four distinct characters and their relationships as they organize the food and the problems of a rural Minnesota church. From the elderly matriarch of the kitchen to the young bride-to-be learning the proper order of things, the show and music give us a touching, funny look at their lives as we see them handle a record breaking Christmas dinner, the funeral of a dear friend, a Hawaiian Easter Fundraiser, and a steaming hot July wedding. They stave off potential disasters, share and debate recipes, instruct the young, and keep the Pastor on due course while thoroughly enjoying, (and tolerating) each other. Funny and down to earth, you will recognize these ladies as they begin to see the Church year unfold from below the House of God.”

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The Sunshine Experience

“So do a little dance! Make a little love! Get down tonight with The Sunshine Experience – the nation's premier tribute to KC and the Sunshine Band. “Shake, Shake Shake Your Booty” to their funky tunes and fall in love with KCSB's triple-platinum sound all over again! ‘Cause “That's the way–uh huh, uh huh–I like it!” The Sunshine Experience delivers a high-energy, adrenaline-pumping show with spot-on musical arrangements and amazing choreography.”

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A Terrible Show for Terrible People

“A Terrible Show for Terrible People is a raunchy and rambunctious, non-verbal solo clown performance that is both boner- and vomit-inducing. Physical comedian Bonnie He takes the audience through a voyeuristic window into personal tragedy, triumph, and titillation. Mostly titillation. Hehe. TIT-illation. You're not just watching a Terrible Show – you're participating in the destruction of common decency.”

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HEISENBERG

“LAGUNA PLAYHOUSE is thrilled to present a co-production with the Rubicon Theatre Company, the critically acclaimed (LA Times Critics' Choice) production of HEISENBERG, written by Simon Stephens (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time) directed by Katherine Farmer (South Pacific, Gulf View Drive) and starring Faline England (Valentine's Day) & Joe Spano (Hill Street Blues and NCIS). Comments Artistic Director Ann E. Wareham and Executive Director Ellen Richard, “What a special opportunity to co-produce this critically acclaimed production with the Rubicon Theatre Company. Simon Stephens has written a funny, tender and quirky love story that celebrates human relationships in all their complexity. Faline England and Joe Spano are giving masterful performances under the brilliant direction of the gifted Katharine Farmer.”

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The Second Coming of Klaus Kinski

“Fresh off an LA Stage Alliance Ovation nomination for Lead Actor in a Play, WTFN brings back Andrew Perez in the Encore Award-winning THE SECOND COMING OF KLAUS KINSKI!...resurrected for 3 consecutive Friday nights — March 22, 29 & April 5 at the Pico Playhouse...Klaus Kinski is one of the most celebrated and controversial actors in the history of world cinema. The reckless abandon with which he approached both life and art left him tortured, demonized and worshipped. He now resurrects to shake your souls with one last command performance. THE SECOND COMING OF KLAUS KINSKI.”

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Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – February 18 - 24, 2019

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

MOVES at The Montalbán

“Break the Floor Productions in partnership with The Montalbán in Hollywood present MOVES at The Montalbán, a festival that offers audiences the chance to see the latest emerging talent in the world of choreography and dance. Over the course of the inaugural festival's three-day engagement, the inside of the historic theatre will host engaging live dance performances while dance classes will abound on The Montalbán's rooftop deck. All styles of dance will be seen and taught over the weekend with pre- and post-show entertainment as well. ”

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Les Miz And Friends! A Puppet Parody

“A very human production of “Les Miserables” comes to a halt when the lead actor of Jean ValJean goes missing. In his place, a friendly puppet offers to play the role—though he's never seen the show.
Both a loving homage and a brutal deconstruction of the classic Broadway musical, LES MIZ AND FRIENDS! follows a revolution of its very own—as the puppets attack all the show's shortcomings and decide to transform it into something better.
Full of audience interaction, improvisation, foul language, parody and original music, LES MIZ AND FRIENDS! will delight Les Miserables lovers and haters alike.”

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FREE Staged Reading of Intimate Apparel

“Staged reading of the play. Written by Lynn Nottage. Directed by Michael T. Kachingwe. In 1905 New York, Esther, a Black seamstress, lives in a boarding house for women, and sews intimate apparel for clients who range from wealthy white patrons to prostitutes. One by one, the other denizens of the boarding house marry and move away, but Esther remains, lonely and longing for a husband and a future. Her plan is to find the right man and use the money she's saved to open a beauty parlor where black women will be treated as royally as the white women for whom she sews.”

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POP Presents The Magic Flute

“POP returns to the comfortable 350 seat El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood with another crazy spin on a Mozart classic. Unlike any Magic Flute you've ever seen, this one is going to be “super”. Papageno, Tamino, and the gang are transported to the land of 90s video games with a new English libretto by Josh Shaw and Scott Levin. With two Sunday matinees and a kid friendly setting, this a perfect opera to bring the entire family to see.”

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POP Presents Madama Butterfly

“So what if… what if a brash American naval officer and a young Japanese girl met and fell in love? How would they communicate? (Certainly not in Italian!) In POP's most ambitous production to date, Artistic Director Josh Shaw's long-time dream of a bilingual Madama Butterfly comes to life at The Aratani Theatre in Little Tokyo. With a new libretto by Josh Shaw and Eiki Isomura, all Japanese roles will be sung in Japanese (by Japanese-American artists) and all American roles will be sung in English. This is a co-production with Opera in the Heights (Houston). This production is sponsored in part by an Innovations Grant from Opera America.”

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Telenovela

“Force of Nature is proud to present the return of the hilarious hit comedy “Telenovela.” The story follows the bitter and melodramatic rivalry between the Lajarra and Azucar families, Mexico's biggest wine and tequila makers, and their fight for power. Passion, revenge, betrayal, grapes and tequila are all in a day's work. “Telenovela” is a colorful, high-octane comedy that affectionately honors the famous melodramatic “novelas” of Spanish TV that will keep you laughing from beginning to end.”

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Rooftop Movies at the The Montalbán

“The Montalbán's rooftop oasis – outfitted with a bar, concession stand and full kitchen – provides an open-air movie theatre experience complete with a large projection screen, state-of-the-art projector, noise-cancelling headphones, fresh-popped popcorn and even blankets for a chilly night...The Montalbán's staff curates films from all eras including Hollywood classics, cult favorites, select current releases, premieres and special presentations with cast and crew when possible. Doors open at 6:00pm...DRINK beer, wine, mixed drinks and the ever-popular hand-crafted Ramos Sangria; DINE Umami Burger…continues as the venue's rooftop culinary partner (serving Impossible Burgers); PLAY a game of giant Jenga or ham-it-up in the selfie-friendly Simple Booth area; or CHILL in a relaxing beach chair or loveseat while listening to a hand-selected musical soundtrack (over the speakers or in your headphones) until the movie begins.”

"Mean Girls" screening @ Rooftop Movies at The Montalbán

Anti-bullying cult classic, written by Tina Fey. “Cady Heron [Lindsay Lohan] is a hit with The Plastics, the A-list girl clique at her new school, until she makes the mistake of falling for Aaron Samuels, the ex-boyfriend of alpha Plastic Regina George [Rachel McAdams].” - IMDb

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"Grease" screening @ Rooftop Movies at The Montalbán

Because “Grease Is The Word.”

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"La La Land" screening @ Rooftop Movies at The Montalbán

A multi-Academy Award winning film and contemporary musical. “While navigating their careers in Los Angeles, a pianist and an actress fall in love while attempting to reconcile their aspirations for the future.” - IMDb

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"Dirty Dancing" screening @ Rooftop Movies at The Montalbán

Because “Nobody Puts Baby In A Corner.”
“Spending the summer at a Catskills resort with her family, Frances "Baby" Houseman [Jennifer Grey] falls in love with the camp's dance instructor, Johnny Castle [Patrick Swayze.] - IMDb

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Maple and Vine

“Katha and Ryu have become allergic to their 21st century lives. After they meet a charismatic man from a community of 1950's re-enactors, they forsake cell phones and sushi for cigarettes and Tupperware parties. In this compulsively authentic world, Katha and Ryu are surprised by what their new neighbors – and they themselves – are willing to sacrifice for happiness.”

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Suprema

“It's 1940, and celebrated psychologist William Moulton Marston has decided that he wants to create a comic book heroine who stands for valor and love in a world dominated by men and war. Over the course of a single evening, Marston, his wife Elizabeth, and their lover Olive must convince DC Comics executive Max Gaines of the value of such a heroine while downplaying their own unorthodox lifestyle.”

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The Glass Menagerie

“An innocuous visit from a potential suitor unsettles the sheltered Wingfield family. Matriarch Amanda fiercely protects her adult children from the harshness of others, but doesn't realize that her own eccentricities are the biggest threat to their psychological survival. Brimming with poetic language and indelible characters, this play about the enduring but limiting nature of love and family made Tennessee Williams a household name.”

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The Women of Shakespeare

“Back by popular demand, Warriors for Peace Theatre presents another night of The Women of Shakespeare. Come and take a journey through the world of Shakespeare through the eyes of glorious women. This is an opportunity for some of LA's most exciting actresses to delve into the most compelling characters in William Shakespeare's litany of work. Under the direction of Susan Angelo, one of the foremost Shakespeare instructors and directors in the Los Angeles area...Following the performance there will be a programmed talk back with director, Susan Angelo, WFP Theatre executive director, Christopher Loverro, and the stars of Women of Shakespeare. In keeping with WFP mission, the talk back serves as an opportunity to dialogue with the actors and creative team, who are comprised of military veterans and civilians, about the healing effects of art.”

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MATRIARCH

“The Roots and Wings Project Founder/Creative Director Jesse Bliss presents MATRIARCH an unorthodox and intersectional theatrical exploration of the roles women play in a patriarchal society and the urgent need to transform the dynamic. Made possible by a grant from the California Arts Council Cultural Pathways.”

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Friday Features – Sweet Shows This Coming Week

Better Lemons has lots of registered shows and events and lot of them have Critics and Audience reviews posted. Here you can see their favorites and when you click on a title, you will see all the critics' and audience reviews and ratings. From there you can choose what your adventures this weekend will be. We wish you a fantastic weekend!

The Gin Game

A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN

SWEAT

SWANSONG

Resa Fantastiskt Mystisk

Martians – An Evening With Ray Bradbury

“BLACK!”

A View From The Bridge

The Rescued

Fallen Saints: Dark

Gloria

ROMEO AND JULIET

BREADCRUMBS

FIRE IN A DARK HOUSE

UK Underdog

Brimstone

26 PEBBLES

Showpony

A PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY

PARADISE – A Divine Bluegrass Musical Comedy

Aleichem Sholom! The wit and wisdom of Sholom Aleichem

The Marriage Zone

What Happened When

Old Clown Wanted

ROPE

All Night Long

THE CAKE

I AM CHARLIE

American Hero


Events Opening This Week

THE GLASS MENAGERIE @ International City Theatre

August 22, 2018 8:00 pm

The iconic American classic that launched the career of American playwright Tennessee Williams, this autobiographical “memory play” captures the fragility and stifled yearning of characters clinging to hope against the harsh realities of a ...read more


A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE @ El Portal Theatre

August 23, 2018 7:30 pm

Thursday Night Theater Club presents Arthur Miller's famed play, A View From The Bridge. When two of Eddie Carbone's wife Beatrice's cousins from Italy come to stay with them, their neice Catherine falls in ...read more


THE MAN WHO SAVED EVERYTHING @ Theatre West

August 24, 2018 8:00 pm

Theatre West is thrilled to present the world premiere of Benjamin Scuglia's “THE MAN WHO SAVED EVERYTHING” – Directed by Michael Van Duzer, produced by Ernest McDaniel and Garry Kluger. THE MAN WHO SAVED ...read more


TURN OFF THE LIGHTS @ McCadden Place Theatre

August 24, 2018 8:00 pm

The McCallister family live in a modest house, in a nice neighborhood of Los Angeles. Charlotte and James have 4 grown up children. Daisy the selfie lover and Logan, the hopelessly in love kid; ...read more


Activist Theater Company Launches Inaugural Season in support of Los Angeles Justice Fund

The Thursday Night Theater Club's inaugural season to begin with the morality play, “A View from the Bridge” by Arthur Miller, to benefit families in the Los Angeles area.

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA (August 14, 2018) - Activist theater group Thursday Night Theater Club (TNTheaterClub) opens its inaugural season with Arthur Miller's “A View from the Bridge” on August 23rd, at the historic El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. The LA Justice Fund will receive a percentage of each ticket sold during the 10-week run.

“A View from the Bridge” tells the story of Italian-American dock workers in New York as they navigate the ethics of undocumented immigration and its repercussions while dealing with their sexuality in a new country where their lives were under scrutiny. Thursday Night Theater Club gives this play a new relevance in today's context of the global attitudes toward immigration policies (I.C.E.) and the conflicts over marriage equality.

When the play first appeared, it was viewed as a parable about McCarthyism. Eddie's ratting on Rodolpho to immigration authorities was the equivalent of “naming names.” Given such topicality, you might expect A View from the Bridge to be hopelessly dated. Just the opposite is true. After all, betrayal wasn't limited to the ‘50s. Nor was homophobia and the havoc it wreaks on a household and a community.” -- The Advocate, February 17, 1998

The season will continue with back-to-back plays by Mark SchultzAaron Sorkin, and more, while bringing new life to the classic morality play format. Artistic directors Alice L. Walker and Tom Vitorino founded Thursday Night Theater Club with the intention of bringing timely and timeless works to the Los Angeles area.

We want to showcase plays that get into that moldable part of you, that maybe make you question your assumptions--how you think about ethics and policy,” says Walker.

The company will donate a portion of each ticket sold to a relevant charitable organization based on the themes of each play performed. The Los Angeles Justice Fund, which provides legal support and counsel for immigrant families, will be the first recipient.

Walker continues, “There is fabulous theater in LA, but it isn't always accessible,” noting that ticket prices for live theater in the area can be a barrier. “We're performing every Thursday. When you leave, we want you to think ‘Yeah, this is something I can do', and then we'll see you again 10 weeks later.”

Tickets are now on sale starting at $20 at ThursdayNightTheaterClub.com. The production opens August 23rd, and plays on Thursday nights through October 25th at El Portal Theatre: 5269 Lankershim Blvd, North Hollywood.

Robyn Cohen (“The Life Aquatic”, James Franco's Studio 4) is directing “A View from the Bridge”. Tom Vitorino, Alice L. Walker, and Samantha Jo star. They are joined by Mark Morante, Jack Menzies, Robin Roth, Julisa Gonzalez, and Jeremy Falla, Guy Nardulli, and Zack Sayenko.  (More info on the cast can be found here: ThursdayNightTheaterClub.com/hero)

ABOUT THURSDAY NIGHT THEATER CLUB

Established in 2018 as an artistic response to social injustice, Thursday Night Theater Club's mission is to ferociously explore morality plays that toy with ethics, law, and social constructs, while taking an active role in the local community. Co-artistic directors, Alice L. Walker and Tom Vitorino, helm the endeavor with a passion for exploring the human experience, no matter the medium. The company performs Thursdays at the intimate El Portal Theater, one of Los Angeles's most beautiful historic spaces.

For more information & tickets:  ThursdayNightTheaterClub.com
Facebook: facebook.com/ThursdayNightTheaterClub
Instagram: instagram.com/TNTheaterClub
Twitter: twitter.com/TNTheaterClub

ABOUT THE L.A. JUSTICE FUND
Launched in 2017, the L.A. Justice Fund has granted $7.4 million to increase access to legal representation and counsel to individuals and families dealing with deportation and removal proceedings in Los Angeles County. The Fund seeks to reinforce a safety net that is pro-family, pro-economic growth, and pro-civil and human rights. The L.A. Justice Fund is a partnership with Los Angeles County, the City of Los Angeles, the Weingart Foundation and the California Community Foundation (CCF). Cities across the country have duplicated this innovative cross-sector approach.  For more information: CalFund.org/lajusticefund