"MEET THE PUBLICISTS" PANEL PODCAST

Better Lemons and Theatre West hosted “Meet the Publicists” featuring several of LA's premier publicists for a panel discussion of theatre publicity, marketing, and promotion.

The following publicists were on the panel:

Tim Choy (Davidson & Choy Publicity)
DAVIDSON & CHOY PUBLICITY (Press Representatives) resume includes the original Evita through The Book of Mormon and stints with American Ballet Theatre and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Clients include Actor's Gang, Broad Stage, El Capitan Theatre, Ford Theatres, Hollywood Bowl, Lythgoe Pantos, Pasadena Playhouse, Segerstrom Center, Shakespeare Center LA, The Soraya, and Walt Disney Imagineering.

Lucy Pollak (Lucy Pollak Public Relations)
Lucy Pollak has been providing publicity services to the Los Angeles arts community for the past 27 years for companies including 24th STreet Theatre, Antaeus Theatre Company, The Echo Theater Company, Fountain Theatre, International City Theatre, L.A. Theatre Works, Latino Theater Company at the LATC, Los Angeles County Arts Commission, Odyssey Theatre Ensemble, Padua Playwrights, Theatre Planners, Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum; numerous independent theater and dance productions; and large events and festivals such as the annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration at The Music Center.

From 1981 to 1990, she was production manager/staff producer at the Odyssey Theatre, where she co-produced over 100 productions with artistic director Ron Sossi.

She is the recipient of a Los Angeles Drama Critic's Circle Award (Master Class), an LA Weekly Award (Mary Barnes), four Drama-Logue Awards (Mary Barnes, Idioglossia, Accidental Death of An Anarchist, It's A Girl!), and a Women in Theatre Recognition Award. She has served on the boards of directors of the Los Angeles Theatre Alliance (now L.A. Stage Alliance), Women in Theatre and P.A.T.H. (Performing Arts Theatre for the Handicapped).

Philip Sokoloff
PHILIP SOKOLOFF has been a publicist for 24 years. He represents over 100 live attractions and several dozen feature films annually. His long-term clients include Theatre 40, Edgemar Center for the Arts, Sierra Madre Playhouse, Robey Theatre Company, Arena Cinelounge, Dean Productions and more.He is a member of the Public Relations Society of America. He has also produced for stage and television and has been an actor for 49 years.

Lynn Tejada (Green Galactic)
For 25 years, Green Galactic Founder Lynn Tejada has been the go-to publicist in Los Angeles for alternative art and culture producers, representing clients on a local, regional, national, and international scale. Since 1994, her promotions and client-base has included music of all sorts, theatre, art, film, dance, and more.

Tejada is also drawn to helping charities and nonprofit clients – she currently sits on the board of Linda Carmella Sibio's Bezerk Productions, Dance Camera West and on the advisory board of Lauren Segal's Give A Beat. She is also on the Honorary Board of Flea's Silverlake Conservatory of Music and sat on the board of humanitarian nonprofit NextAid for many years.


Steven Sabel's Twist on the Trade: Social Theatre

I’ve never been big on social theatre. Not that I don’t think that theatre can and sometimes should make people think, but I’m a classicist who believes in subtlety. No one ever changed their mind about much of anything by being hit over the head, or force fed with a message. The best way to affect social change through performance is doing a show containing those “ah-ha” moments that strike audience members on their drive home from the theater. The classic masters were – well – masters at this.

Aristophanes sent a message of peace to his fellow Athenians, while highlighting the power of the feminine force through humorous metaphor with his “Lysistrata” without losing its entertainment value by drilling home his message to the populace.

Shakespeare was able to make his point about anti-Semitism by giving Shylock his famous speech, wrapped inside a mostly comic play he knew would appeal to his audience. In fact he almost pandered to their views, and then sort of snuck his message in under the radar. He does this equally well in tragic terms with “Othello,” adding another layer of subtlety by making “the savage Moor” the most eloquent and intelligent speaker in the play, perhaps the entire canon.

Sophocles used a dressing of anti-tyranny for his fellow democratic Athenians to sneak in his messages regarding loyalty to a higher power and the bonds of family over government and society when he wrote “Antigone.” Jean Anouilh used the classic Greek tragedy 2,385 years later to sneak those messages past the Nazi regime in occupied France.

Moliere used his comedies to take stabs at hypocrites of all sorts, and though he was regularly condemned by the religious, political, and medical profession leaders of his time because his attacks hit them too close to home, he was popular with the public who consumed his works with fervor. He wrote 31 of the 85 plays performed at the theatre in the Palais-Royal in Paris over a 14 year period. In today’s modern French, a tartuffe is a hypocrite, and a harpagon is a greedy miser – names of two of Moliere’s most famous characters that have now become part of the French lexicon. How’s that for making an impact?

Too many of today’s playwrights lack the creative subtlety to send their social message to an unsuspecting audience. Instead they write directly to the audience they already have. They preach to the choir. This does not affect any social change. It convinces no one of anything. It merely creates an echo chamber of like-minded people congratulating themselves and each other for sharing the same view – often a tunnel vision view. There is nothing clever about that, and thus not very interesting. It may have some entertainment value, but it isn’t opening new minds to new points of view. If anything, it only pushes potential new audiences away. In essence, a hammer head message accomplishes the exact opposite of what social theatre should be aimed at doing – opening the message to new minds through subtlety.

Much of today’s social theatre is a result of social theatre, in that a group of like-minded friends get together and say: “let’s put on a play!” The play is their social outlet, not unlike a bowling league or softball team. Rehearsals become a place to hang out with friends, and performances become not much more than a precursor to socializing at a local bar or house party. The audience is composed of friends and family members like the backyard productions we used to put on for our parents as kids. Any social message contained in the material actually takes a back seat to the true intent of the gathering: maintaining a social calendar for the participants. It’s a “play” date for grown-ups.

Benedict Knitterbatch

All of that is fine indeed. As I mentioned, some people join bowling leagues, others join softball teams. Some people form book clubs, knitting circles, and model airplane societies. We are social animals, and we like to surround ourselves with like-minded people who share our same interests. The difference is in the professed intent. I’ve never heard of a knitting circle with a “mission” to affect social change through the scarves and beanies they create.

On occasion, the casual hobbyist can turn their past time into some extra dollars. I know several people who place their creations on Etsy, E-bay, or other sites to make a little money by sharing their artistic hobby with others. Unlike actors, very few of these people profess to be aspiring to a career in their chosen social outlet or hobby. People who knit just aren’t that pretentious. Either that, or they have a keener sense of their own realities.

If you are an actor, it is time to examine your reality. Is your social theatre truly reaching the unenlightened masses? Is your social theatre just social theatre, filling your nights and weekends with play dates - or are you truly working toward that career by doing projects that either increase your aptitude, strengthen your skills, advance your professional network, or get you seen by a greater audience?

Have fun. It’s called a play for a reason. But if you’re just playing around with friends, then call it what it is, and build a career doing something else. No subtlety here.


PODCAST: Interview of "Coin & Ghost's" Rob Adler and Zachary Reeve Davidson, 2nd Season and 'Bad Hamlet' at 'New American'

An interview with Artistic Director and C0-Producer, Zachary Reeve Davidson, and Director, Rob Adler, of Coin & Ghost, on their world premiere play, "Bad Hamlet: An Irreverent, Interactive, Inventive Bootleg," which opens today at New American Theatre in Hollywood and their second season, MYTH-REMEMBERED.

Davidson and Adler, discuss the interactive aspect of "Bad Hamlet," which is based on the legend of “the bad quarto," and explores the "intersection of Shakespeare, memory, modern technology and Los Angeles."

"Bad Hamlet" kicks off Coin & Ghost's MYTH-REMEMBERED, which includes Cecilia Fairchild's "Mama, Mama, Can't You See," directed by Davidson, a simultaneously "modern war story and a spirit dance on the outside edge of death," and "Breakfast in Moscow," directed by Alex Demers, which is based on Chekhov’s "Three Sisters" and reimagined as a rock-opera using music from the 1979 Supertramp album, "Breakfast in America."

In addition to Davidson, the "Bad Hamlet" ensemble includes Casey Dunn, Julián Juaquín, Akshaya Pattanayak, Chris Schultz, Hannah Trujillo, Lauren Vitz, Marguerite French, and Elisa Rosin.

"Bad Hamlet" is every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8:00 p.m. from Thursday, July 25, 2019, through Saturday, August 24, 2019. Tickets are $25 for general admission. They will also offer a healthy mix of Pay-What-You-Can (PWYC) tickets for certain shows, which includes the Preview on July 25, 2019, as well as every ticket during the second and third weekends, August 1 - 10, 2019. For tickets and more information visit Coin & Ghost.

The New American Theatre is located at 1312 N. Wilton Place, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Suggested age limit is 16-years or older due to adult themes and conversations. Mobile phone use will be encouraged for this production.


The 'Brisk Festival' at The Broadwater is Underway

The Brisk Theatre Festival is underway at The Broadwater, featuring short plays, in English and in Spanish, up to 10 minutes in length and running through August 11, 2019, with eight programs consisting of six to seven plays each, several of which were created by Hollywood Fringe Festival veteran producers and other participants.

The festival opened on July 11, 2019, and two of the eight programs have been presented with six programs remaining, with several of the shows created by Hollywood Fringe Festival veteran producers and participants.

There were 350 plays submitted for consideration and of those selected for performance, 34 are in English and 20 are in Spanish. Most of the productions are produced by local theatre companies in Los Angeles, but there are also artists heralding from Mexico, Florida, and Australia in this first edition of the festival.

The best plays are to be chosen by a jury of professionals including casting directors, producers, directors, actors, writers, managers, and agents. Those chosen go on to compete in a finals weekend on Saturday, August 10, and Sunday, August 11, 2019. The best play in English and the best play in Spanish are to receive an award of $500 each.

The festival was founded by Christian Rodrigo, a Spanish producer, director, and member of The Actors Gang. Rodrigo and Mexican producer and actor Ramon Valdez will be taking the Brisk Theatre Festival to Mexico, Barcelona, and Madrid later this year and in 2020, partnering with Full Emotion, a production company that has been producing films, television, and theater for more than 12-years.

Here is a list of the remaining performances:

From Salvador Casados' "Shakespeare Love" at the 2019 Brisk Festival, at The Broadwater, Los Angeles. Photo courtesy of The Brisk Festival.

The Orange Program, with shows in English. from July 18 - 21, 2018:

"Interventions," written by Greg Lam, and directed by Hollywood Fringe veteran Megan Frances who brought "Hott Line" (2016) to Fringe, tells of a couple on a hike who find that their "special plans" are interrupted by a succession of Time Travelers.

"Grown," written and directed by Soda Persi, features Corey Lynn Howe and Adam Briggs–all Fringe veterans and of Theatre Unleashed–who together bring to Brisk a piece about the nuances of love.

"People Will Talk," directed by Todd Felderstein, and written by Scott Mullen–who brought his play "Piñata" (2017) to Fringe–, is about a surprising connection between two people, challenged by life's obstacles, who meet one night on the ledge of a 12-story office building. A story of "life, the art of listening, and everyday miracles."

Additional shows are "Anything For My Mother," "Noir Man," and "Evidences of a Contemporary Love."

The Yellow Program, with shows in English, from July 18 - 21, 2018:

"Recess," written by Cara Emily Krantz, and directed by Roe Moore who co-produced "Buzz'd Out! LIVE" at last year's Hollywood Fringe, is a tale of two children on a playground who imagine what life would be like as adults, perhaps even together.

"Jill Takes A Leap," directed by Frida De Lackner and written by Mullen, also features multi-Fringe show veteran Asia Lynn Pitts from "Mouthy Bitch" (2016), "Blackballed: The Rise and Fall of Negro League Baseball," (2018) and this year's "Olivia Wilde Does Not Survive the Apocalypse," and is about a woman trying to figure out if she's living her best life.

Additional shows are "You me. Me you," "A Streetcar Derailed," "The Heart to Heart," and "Vote for Me."

The Green Program, with shows in English, from July 25 - 28, 2018:

"To The Roof," written by Cynthia Faith Arsenault, also directed by Frances, and is about elevator riders who become more than passing strangers.

"Captive Audience," written and directed by Raymond-Kym Suttle and hot off his Fringe show this year "Yes. No. Maybe" with actress Dee Dee Stevens, together along with actor Kevin Alain bring to Brisk a piece on how "being a stand-up comedian can bring out the worst in some people. So, be careful who you captivate."

"The Landing," written and directed by Fringe veteran Prakriti Maduro, who brought "Frida Kahlo: Viva La Vida" from Venezuela to the Hollywood Fringe in 2019, brings to Brisk her show "The Landing." brings a story about a woman who appears in the middle of an empty plane, midair, and the sudden arrival of her husband.

"RIP I.N.C.," written and directed by Harim Sanchez–a Sacred Fools member and a four-show Fringe veteran who brought his show "Pagliaccis" to the Hollywood Fringe in 2017--, "follows a world where grim reapers are just cubicle workers sent out to harvest souls, and it's not as 'grim' as one would make it out to be."

Additional shows are "The Gringos are Coming," "Creeper Sunrise," and "Dog Barks, Bodybuilder Slaps."

From Ken Levine's "The Hookup," a finalist at the 2019 Brisk Festival, at The Broadwater, Los Angeles. Photo courtesy of The Brisk Festival.

The Brown Program, with shows in Spanish, from July 25 - 28, 2018:

Shows are "Pastel de Naranja," "El Asunto del Chocolate,"  "La Razon," "Somos Super Fans," "La Gran Familia," and "Cuatro."

In the Pink Program, with shows in English, from August 1 - 4, 2019:

"Fandango,"  written by Karissa Montaner, and directed by Guy Picot who brought "Cookie and the Monster" (2015), "Disasteroid!" (2018), and "Earth to Karen" this year to Fringe tells of "two estranged sisters, forced to unite and discuss the fate of their deceased father's Tapas restaurant, become heels deep in one hell of a flamenco reckoning!"

Additional shows are "Performance Review," "Dead Man's Curve," "The Next Ivan Sharanski," "Spoiler," "Doctor's Orders," and "The Silent Woman."

In the Red Program, with shows in Spanish, from August 1 - 4, 2019:

"A Dos Tumbas de Ti," written by Nancho Novo and directed by Marcel Rasquin, also features Maduro, along with Karla Solarte, about two sisters wake up in their own funeral, having died on the same night but in different accidents. They discover the bizarre circumstances of their untimely death and unveil a secret that might take them straight to the grave for a second time."

Additional shows are "Sexoral," "After Life Vacation," "Crash ¿Quien Tiene La Culpa?" "La Taza que me Mira desde la Meza," and "Mrs. Fox' Zoo."


The Brisk International Theatre Festival is underway at The Broadwater, 1078 Lillian Way, Hollywood, 90038. Tickets for program blocks are $15 - $22. For showtimes visit their website.

The Better Lemons 2019 Fringe Audience and Critics Choice Awards

As of this post, the critics and the audiences have spoken, resulting in almost 99 Hollywood Fringe productions receiving a SWEET #LemonMeter rating and 19 Fringe productions receiving #DoubleSWEET ratings (both critics and audience members agreeing on a sweet production).

It takes three reviews from critics or three reviews from the audience to generate a #LemonMeter rating.

The Better Lemons Fringe Audience and Critics Choice Awards, as well as the DoubleSweet Awards are based on the number of reviews submitted before the time of publication.

The shows with the most reviews receive the Audience and the Critics Choice Awards. The Awards are based on the number of reviews, regardless of the #LemonMeter rating of Sweet, Sweet and Sour, or Sour.

CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL THESE WINNERS who have registered their shows on Better Lemons and encouraged audiences and critics to voice their opinion about their show, regardless of the outcome!

Audience Choice Awards:

1st Place
TALES FROM THE POWDER ROOM

2nd Place
RAISED BY WOLVES
IF WE RUN

3rd Place
HOLLYWOODN'T

Critics Choice Awards:

1st Place
BOXING LESSONS
THE BULLY PROBLEM

2nd Place
POCKETS
SCARLETT FEVER
FERTILE: A Conversation About the Expectation of Procreation
THE SAME ROOM

3rd Place
(IM)PERFEKT
TRANSFERENCE
MIL GRUS
TATTERED CAPES
OLIVIA WILDE DOES NOT SURVIVE THE APOCALYPSE
WIGFIELD
SON OF A BITCH
THE SCORPION AND THE FROG: A TIME-KILLER

The DoubleSweet Awards are based on the SWEET #LemonMeter rating by both Critics AND Audience members as of Friday noon, June 5th.

DoubleSweet Awards:

(in order of most audience reviews)

RAISED BY WOLVES
IF WE RUN
HOLLYWOODN'T
THE BULLY PROBLEM
FERTILE: A Conversation About the Expectation of Procreation
THE NARCISSIST NEXT DOOR
BUNNY THE ELF LIVE!
A BIT MUCH
CRACK WHORE, BULIMIC, GIRL-NEXT-DOOR
(IM)PERFEKT
TRANSFERENCE
MIL GRUS
START SWIMMING
SUPPORTIVE WHITE PARENTS
SAVING CAIN
BATTER UP: MY BRAIN ON BASEBALL
CIRQUE DU GISELLE
THE LAST CROISSANT
PIT OF GOBLINS
OLIVIA WILDE DOES NOT SURVIVE THE APOCALYPSE
TATTERED CAPES
45 MILLIGRAMS
HOW I BECAME A SUPERHERO


The Winners at the 10th Annual Hollywood Fringe Festival Awards 2019

The 10th Annual Hollywood Fringe Festival Awards Ceremony was presented Sunday, June 30, 2019, at the Montalbán Theatre. Here are all of the winners of the Community Awards.

Top Of The Fringe

The Last Croissant

International

Hide Your Fires: Butoh Lady Macbeth

Fringe First (World Premiere)

Pockets

Cabaret & Variety

Blackboxing

Comedy

Olivia Wilde Does Not Survive The Apocalypse

Dance & Physical Theatre

Tattered Capes

Ensemble Theatre

The Last Croissant

Immersive Theatre

Vote For Murder!

Musicals And Operas

Pockets

Solo Performance

Mr. Yunioshi


The 10th Annual Hollywood Fringe Festival Awards 2019 Have Been Announced, Awards Ceremony Tonight!

The 10th Annual Hollywood Fringe Festival Awards Ceremony is tonight, Sunday, June 30, 2019, at 6 p.m. at the Montalbán Theatre!

Here are all the nominees for the community and sponsored awards.

Fringe Freaks (community-voted awards) Nominees

Top Of The Fringe
Klingon Tamburlaine
Mr. Yunioshi
Pockets
The Bully Problem
The Last Croissant

International
Hide Your Fires: Butoh Lady Macbeth
Pretty, Witty Nell
Start Swimming
What Am I Even Doing?
What I Never Told You

Fringe First (World Premiere)
45 Milligrams
Blackboxing
Pockets
Son of A Bitch
The Bully Problem

Cabaret & Variety
Batter Up! My Brain On Baseball
Blackboxing
Pick Of The Fringe – Cabaret Show
Squeeze My Cabaret
The Color Collective

Comedy
Come Back!
Crabbe And Goyle Are Dead
Olivia Wilde Does Not Survive The Apocalypse
The Mayor’s Debate Of Tranquillity Nebraska
Stuff I Think Is Funny And Good

Dance & Physical Theatre
Cirque Du Giselle
Four Clowns Presents: Shakedown At The Dusty Spur!
Mil Grus
Scarlett Fever
Tattered Capes

Ensemble Theatre
Grail Project
Saving Cain
Son of A Bitch
The Last Croissant
The Death of Sam Mobean

Immersive Theatre
Disrobed
Life Plan, Or Living Your Best Life In A Collapsing World
Matt: The Gathering
The Pod
Vote For Murder!

Musicals And Operas
Earth To Karen
Pockets
Public Domain: The Musical
Supportive White Parents
The Bully Problem

Solo Performance
Fertile
Meet Me In Mizzery
Mr. Yunioshi
Pit Of Goblins
Temple Tantrum

Sponsored Awards Nominees

2019 Unleashed Awards
Scarlet Fever
Meg Jo, Beth Amy & Louisa
Haddon Park
Sorry About My Friend
The Mayor’s Debate Of Tranquillity Nebraska

2cents Theatre Distinctive Voices Award
The Death Of Sam Mobean
Dear Jeff
Butcher Holler Here We Come
The Institute For The Opposite Of Longing
Scarlett Fever

Aunt Lyla’s Fave Fringe Flyer
Winner announced tonight! Honorable Mentions:

No More Toys
The Mayors Debate Of Tranquility, Nebraska
Cave Girl: The Musical
If We Run
Start Swimming

Fight The Power Award
Greenwood 1964
Start Swimming
No Child Left Behind
Falling On Deaf Eyes
The Bully Problem

No Room In The Green Room Award
Silent Joy
Borracho: Spanish For Drunken Bum
Tattered Capes
The Bully Problem
The Circle Table

O Face Award For Orgasmic Achievement In Theatre: “Most Orgasmic Performance”
Blaire Chandler – The Duchess & The Stripper
Yokko – Hide Your Fires: Butoh Lady Macbeth
Jim Hanna –The Mayor’s Debate Of Tranquillity Nebraska
Elisabeth Hower –Four Clowns Presents: Shakedown At The Dusty Spur!
Macy Idzakovich – Flower Society

Showorks Don’t Wait. Create! Award
Oracles & Miracles
Supportive White Parents
The Duchess & The Stripper
Earth To Karen
The Bully Problem

Soaring Solo Artist Award
Squeeze My Cans by Cathy Schenkelberg
Dear Jeff by Callie Ott
Mr. Yunioshi by Jonathan Cho
Mandy Picks A Husband by Amanda Broomell
The One-Man Improvised Musical by Conor Hanney

Standout Song Award
“Smellay Lahk A Turkay” Blackboxing
“Wanted” Pockets
“Love Triangles” Pocketmon
“The Futures Lit” One Hump Heart
“Slapfoc” The Bully Problem

Steve Kent Award
Earth Stories: Our Climate And Our Future
In Conclusion
Ghost Town
Mr Yunioshi
The Last Croissant

The Diverse Diva Award
Squeeze My Cans by Cathy Schenkelberg
(IM)PERFEKT by Jannica Olin
Chrissy Meth by Crystal Bush
Loose Underwear by Dagmar Stansova
Corina: From Lapdance to Sundance by Corina Calderon

The Golden Key
The Pod
Tales By Candlelight
Best Night Ever
Internal
Vote For Murder!

The Inkwell Theater Playwright’s Promise Award
The Institute For The Opposite Of Longing” By Lindsay Beamish and Vanessa Peters
Butcher Holler Here We Come” By Casey Wimpee
To Richard!” By Jessica Durdock Moreno
The Circle Table” By Eric Moore

The Outdoor Voices Festival “conversation Creation” Award
Cave Girl: The Musical
Blackboxing
Silent Joy
Crack Whore, Bulimic, Girl Next Door
TBD Fifth Nominee

The Paul Koslo Memorial/Met theatre Award
A Time Traveler’s Guide To The Present
Mr. Yunioshi
The Grail Project
Scarlet Fever
Pho Girl

TPP’s Trope Buster!
Batter Up! My Brain On Baseball
Blackboxing
Butcher Holler Here We Come
Mr. Yunioshi
Sins
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The Montalbán Theatre is at 1615 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028. The Hollywood Fringe Festival Closing Night Party after the awards ceremony at St. Felix, 1602 N Cahuenga Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028.


Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – June 18 - 25, 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.

PEACH BOY - A Musical Staged Reading

“The Group Rep presents a musical staged reading of PEACH BOY, based on a 200-year-old favorite fairy tale character Momotaro, book and lyrics by Tony Pinizzotto, music by Phil Luna, directed by Hisato Masuyama. PEACH BOY is a timeless tale of love, adventure, and coming-of-age; crafted to excite as it restores your faith in never being told you’re too old to dream.”

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StoryTime

“The Group Rep presents StoryTime, a story salon produced by Patricia Willson, featuring fresh, live personal stories as entertainment - - an evening of joy, sadness, and a touch of comedy on Sunday, July 14 at 7:00 pm, at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood, CA, at the edge of the NoHo Theatre & Arts District.”

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Tuesday Night Comics at North Coast Rep

“Tuesday Night Comics is arguably the funniest night of comedy in San Diego. Mark Christopher Lawrence taps into his extensive list of talented comedian friends and shares the North Coast Rep stage with them. The show is comprised of talent from all over the country with late-night television credits as well as credits from Comedy Central, HBO, SHOWTIME, ETC…RATED R.”

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Two Naked Angels

“Two Naked Angels - A Pair of Thought Provoking One-Act Plays
LOST VOICES – Three Women live ordinary lives. Behind their eyes lurks a secret each has kept buried in the deepest part of their souls until today. Today they can no longer hide their voices. Today, 7.6 Billion peoples lives hang in the balance and these three women don’t even know it.”

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We Should Hang Out Sometime

“'Experience an interactive evening with Josh Sundquist, featuring a live performance of the hilarious storytelling and comedy that has earned him over 200 million views online. Bestselling author, comic, and Paralympian Josh Sundquist tracked down all the girls he'd ever tried to date to ask why they rejected him. He shares the results of his semiscientific investigation (and yes, it's a true story) in this one-of-a-kind live performance that blends interactive storytelling with standup comedy. From a disastrous mini-golf date involving a backward prosthetic foot to a misguided 'grand gesture' at a Miss America pageant, it’s a story about looking for love—or at least a girlfriend—in all the wrong places. ”

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Accidental Joy

“Joy Perkins, a 40-year old disgruntled underachiever, has resigned herself to a life of regret and unfulfilled potential. But when world-famous guru, Niev Lapel, comes to town, Joy is determined to take one final stab at getting what she deserves and becomes a guru herself. Laden with adult language and situations, catchy original songs, and four or five murders, Accidental Joy: A New Musical, is a visionary, third-eye-opening dark comedy that speaks to the central role we play in forging our own destinies.
The Montalbán is proud to partner with Infinity Grove Entertainment to present Los Angeles audiences with a special opportunity to experience an enhanced workshop production of Accidental Joy: A New Musical, coming to the theatre for one-night-only on Saturday, June 29, 2019. Book by Marcus Terrell Smith, music by Robbie McDonald, and lyrics by both, Accidental Joy is a dark comedy musical about one woman’s incredible journey to find the guru within, and the four or five hilarious murders that follow her along the way...Deviating from the standard theater development process, Accidental Joy invites audiences to take part in a completely unique and entertaining workshop production experience using minimal sets and costumes. While these presentations of new shows are usually done for small focus groups, Accidental Joy is changing the trend in LA fashion.”

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Sum Comedy - The Set Off

“Who has the funniest set in LA?
Come check out 7 comedians compete to be The Set Off Champ!
7 minute sets, 7 Comedians, 7 minutes to crack up the audience.
Special Guest Headliner Every Night!”

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Towne Street Theatre's TST Summer Series Presents: Nights of Sum Poetry!

“Towne Street Theatre's TST Summer Series Presents: Nights of Sum Poetry! We are calling all spoken word artists, writers, rappers, and wordsmiths of LA who are looking to perform and share their truths and narratives to push the culture. The showcase will consist of spoken word theatre performance themed Push The Culture followed by an open mic, available to audience members who would like to perform!”

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TST Literary Series: The Awakening of LA Muse

“Our next Literary Series selection is The Awakening of La Muse by S.R. Strickland...Excerpts from the novel will be performed by professional actors. The Awakening of La Muse is about Muse, a sixteen-year-old American slave, driven by a secret that nurtures her spirit but binds her to a crippling silence, is petrified when she travels with her owners to Europe. The journey sweeps her from the rocky dirt roads of a plantation to the elegant avenues of Paris. In 1855, she escapes but soon learns a French bounty hunter is in pursuit. When the day of reckoning arrives, she battles for the right to liberty. A short talkback with the author immediately following the performance.”

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Reflections On A Lifetime in Theater - Nicole Cassesso & Damien Lorton

“For the first time ever, One More Productions co-founders, Damien Lorton and Nicole Cassesso will take the stage together to share colorful stories and songs from a lifetime spent in the theater...Nicole is the co-founder and Executive Director of One More Productions [and] has produced over 60 award-winning theatrical productions and special events, including co-creating and co-writing the audience favorite, The Holiday Gem...You probably recognize Damien as the voice of The GEM, Damien has been the Artistic Director of One More Productions for the past 15 years...”

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Two Noble Kinsmen

“The Porters of Hellsgate Theatre Company presents William Shakespeares The Two Noble Kinsmen, directed by Will Block. Kinsmen offers a simple, poignant message in the most gloriously messy wrapper: be good to each other says Block. Shakespeare and Fletcher channel Chaucer's original work to tremendous effect, declaring Stop. Look around. Reach out...The Two Noble Kinsmen will be the Porters twenty-ninth production along the road to completing Shakespeare's canon.”

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Double Falsehood

“The Porters of Hellsgate Theatre Company presents Double Falsehood by Lewis Theobald, adapted from Cardenio, the lost play of Shakespeare and Fletcher, directed by Thomas Bigley...'Double Falsehood' is produced with the Porters ambition of crossing every "t" and dotting every "i" along the road to completing Shakespeare's canon.”

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Vote for Murder!

“A New Immersive Game Experience! Solve and collect clues, perform tasks, commit murders, save your fellow classmates, and interrogate suspects to find which candidate is trying to steamroll their peers on their way to the top. Are you in cahoots with a killer? Or is your candidate the next victim? This is a sandbox-style immersive experience co-operative game (RPG) inspired by Clue, Mafia, and other party games.”

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Bad Hamlet

“Coin & Ghost, LA’s theatrical home for remixed mythologies, is thrilled to announce its second season: MYTH-REMEMBERED. The emerging theatre company will launch its season with the World Premiere of Bad Hamlet, an irreverent, interactive, and inventive play that places Shakespeare’s masterpiece directly up against the many interpretations of it, whether accurate, misremembered, or re-invented entirely. Devised by the ensemble and directed by Rob Adler.”

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Permanent Collection

“Staged reading of a play. Written by Thomas Gibbons. Directed by Barbara Schofield. Sterling North, the new Black director of the Morris Foundation precipitates turmoil when he insists that the Foundation museum display its stored artworks of African origin with greater prominence and in greater quantity, dismissing those who oppose him as racist. He is even prepared to go to court to challenge the will of the museum’s founder, Alfred Morris, to pursue the objective of promoting the exposure of North’s beloved African artists. Nothing is as simple as it looks. Was Morris a racist? Who decides who should see art? Who decides what we can see? Who has that right? Can a museum itself be a unified work of art? Should the last will and testament of a private collector be sacrosanct?”

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Beauty and the Beast - Gem Theatre

“Spend the holidays at home at The GEM and step into the enchanted world of Broadway’s modern classic, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast!...The classic story tells of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed into his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will doomed for all eternity. This “tale as old as time” is filled with fun for the whole family; with spectacular music, costumes, sets and grand production numbers. Be our guest and experience the magic of this timeless fairytale!”

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Crazy Horse: A Dream of Thunder

“”The American Dream has come to dominate the culture of this continent, but is it the only dream worth pursuing? Are there other dreams that might promote our success and survival better? Crazy Horse: A Dream of Thunder explores this through the lens of a single figure of the Wild West, the legendary Lakota warrior Crazy Horse, who finds himself fleeing the Indian agency in 1877 even after his pivotal victory at Little Bighorn and the destruction of General Custer. Portraying other characters in his life with a feather, shawl, or war bonnet, this thoughtful hero takes the audience on a vision quest, gathering clues from his past to unlock a future for his people. Winner of a Kansas City Fringe award & a Best of Kansas City award, this solo show is written & performed by Sam Wright and directed by Nicholas Collett.”

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TST Variety Show

“Looking for a fun night out at the theatre? The TST Variety Show is the place for you! Singing, Dancing, Sketch and Audience Interaction.
About this Event TST presents a Variety Show like NO other! Singing – Check, Sketch – Check, Dancing – Check, Audience Interaction - Check
It's Spectacular! It's Amazing! It's Incredible! It's the TST Variety Show Night - One Night ONLY.”

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The Last Days of Don Juan

“The Classical Theatre Lab’s production of The Last Days of Don Juan is presented with the support of the City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division.
The Last Days of Don Juan is the earliest known dramatic appearance of literature’s most famous (or infamous) romantic rogue. He is possibly the first of the red hot lovers. The Seducer from Seville goes from place to place, city to city, town to town, village to village, deceiving, deflowering, despoiling and devastating beautiful maiden after beautiful maiden. He is aided and abetted in his adventures by his loyal servant Catalina, who time and again helps Don Juan escape angry pursuers...This libertine lord of lust finds his fortunes begin to change after he slays the angry father of one of his conquests in a sword fight. Not long after, Don Juan finds himself opposed by supernatural forces that seek to punish him for his wicked, wicked ways. Can he seek repentance and find forgiveness in time?”

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Caucasian Chalk Circle

“Bertolt Brecht's satiric comedy of war, love and justice. Deep in the Caucasus Mountains of Georgia, a humble kitchen maid named Grusha risks her life to rescue an abandoned baby from civil war. But when the child’s aristocratic mother returns to claim him, the entire social order of a corrupt and violent world is put on trial.”

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Conversations About the GIRLS! Yes, those GIRLS! - TST Summer Series

“As part of the Towne Street Theatre Summer Series, we are proud to present this wonderful play written and directed by Sonia Jackson
Conversations ‘Bout the Girls, a fresh, inspiring performance piece, is about the relationship women have with their breasts. It brings into view the mysterious, sometimes misunderstood, and often controversial realm of women’s bodies and body images. Only 2 days so be sure to see it while its up! Great way to spend a summer night or afternoon, in the heart of Hollywood!”

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You're A Grand Old Rag

“Immigration and What it Means to Be an American
As seen through the works of the Theatre’s original
Yankee Doodle Dandy and iconic Patriot.”

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MAMMA MIA!

“Get swept away by the infectious music, uplifting story, and dazzling dance numbers that have made MAMMA MIA! a worldwide phenomenon. As wedding festivities commence on an idyllic Greek island, a young bride-to-be schemes to discover the identity of her father among three men from her mother’s past. With so many of ABBA’s timeless hits, including “Dancing Queen,” “Take a Chance,” “Money, Money, Money,” and “SOS,” this story of love and friendship is an unforgettable musical experience that will leave you dancing in the aisles! ”

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Shirley Valentine

“Known by many as the hit 1989 film starring Pauline Collins and Tom Conti. Our heroine is an ordinary English housewife. As she prepares chips and egg for dinner, she ruminates on her life and tells the wall about her husband, her children, her past, and an invitation from a girlfriend to join her on holiday in Greece to search for romance and adventure.”

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Beyond Glory

“Set against the backdrops of the Vietnam War, World War II and the Korean War, Beyond Glory tells the stirring, emotional, and heroic true stories of eight recipients of America’s highest military award, the Medal of Honor, told by one actor. Beyond Glory gathers these men together in the present to look back on the defining moments of their lives and to examine the meaning of courage, duty, and ultimately, humility. ”

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APPLE SEASON

“APPLE SEASON is produced by Moving Arts as a part of a National New Play Network Rolling World Premiere. Other partnering theaters are New Jersey Repertory Company (NJ) and Riverside Theatre (IA). Mr. Anthony and E. M. Lewis are long time collaborators, he has directed three premiere productions of E. M. Lewis’ work, plus two “Car Plays” and a one-act for the Samuel French Ten Minute Play Festival in New York...Lissie returns to her family's land after many years. A chance encounter with an old flame conjures memories she thought she'd escaped long ago. This striking new play explores family, desire, and whether to confront the tangled past -- or burn it to the ground."

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GOOD ENOUGH

“GOOD ENOUGH is the true journey of world renown author and story teller Ted McGrath. Playing 15 characters, McGrath takes us on an emotional roller coaster ride through addiction as he sabotages his family, his career and ultimately his life in the attempt to answer one question burning inside him his entire life: AM I GOOD ENOUGH? Now, having reclaimed his life and at the pinnacle of success, McGrath’s play asks each of us that same question: Are you 'Good Enough?'”

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Blithe Spirit by Noel Coward

“BLITHE SPIRIT has continued to be a smash hit comedy since it first premiered on the London and Broadway stages in 1941. This hilarious supernatural farce centers on fussy, cantankerous socialite and novelist Charles Condomine, who invites the eccentric “kooky medium” Madame Arcati to his house to conduct a séance, hoping to gather material for his next book. The scheme backfires when he is haunted by the ghost of his annoying and temperamental first wife, Elvira, who makes continual attempts to disrupt Charles's marriage to his second wife, Ruth, who cannot see or hear the ghost during the séance or afterwards. Boundless laughs and constant pandemonium ensue.”

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These Streets

“'These Streets' is a new play with original music, including musical performances. It’s 1961 at the height of the folk music scene in Greenwich Village. Eve Wilson moves to New York City with dreams of becoming a singer/songwriter. She stumbles upon the local open mic scene, where she meets other aspiring artists Ben Phillips, a talented singer and bartender struggling with stage fright, and Nancy Tate a writer who falls for Ben, proving to perhaps be the challenge he needs. She also meets folk singer Dennis McKinley. When she meets Dennis sparks fly until his new found career success creates tensions between them. Dennis then must rediscover who he is and what it is that matters to him most.”

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Twelfth Night

“A beloved Los Angeles tradition, the Festival is freewheeling, inclusive and a bit anarchic. It's an entire summer of mainstage performances, pre-show family events including workshops, a slate of extraordinary opening acts and diverting community events. Bring a blanket and a picnic to enjoy great theater in a great city. All free, all summer long. TWELFTH NIGHT. A cloud hangs over the country of Illyria as Countess Olivia mourns and Duke Orsino pines. But when Viola (a young woman with a big secret) washes onshore, it soon becomes clear that you can’t keep the human spirit down for long. Music, dance, and lovable misfits abound in one of the most beloved romantic comedies of all time, all set against the backdrop of the jazz era.”

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Pericles

“A summer season of free performances like no other! A beloved Los Angeles tradition, the Festival is freewheeling, inclusive and a bit anarchic. It's an entire summer of mainstage performances, pre-show family events including workshops, a slate of extraordinary opening acts and diverting community events. Bring a blanket and a picnic to enjoy great theater in a great city. All free, all summer long. PERICLES. Love is lost and found again in one of Shakespeare’s most spellbinding plays. The young Pericles sets out for adventure, but gets more than he bargains for. 25 years later, it’s his daughter’s turn to sail the high seas as she seeks to unravel the mystery of her birth. PERICLES is an epic tale, spanning continents and decades, complete with knights-errant, greek gods, pirates...and more than a little magic.”

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The Peter Sprague Trio at North Coast Rep

“Back by popular demand, the Peter Sprague jazz trio explores songs that resonate with the boomers. They start with The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, James Taylor, and Cream, and then for balance they play “Georgia” or add Cole Porter. The vibe is contagious and the sound pulls you in.”

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Swiped The Musical

“'SWIPED “APPily Ever After' is a modern day love story about about the life of Polly, a meticulous planner that finds herself manifesting her very first relationship using online dating apps, and all the confusion, fear, and strangeness that comes along with it. Yes, it’s a comedy, and maybe we can even call it a contemporary fairytale, but really it’s story that every 21st century human being with dreams and goals and passions can relate to. Our main character, Polly, is just that 21st century human being. After Polly’s parents split up when she was nine years old, she decided that the only way she could control her destiny was to meticulously plan out every aspect of her life, but when her boss asks her to bring her boyfriend to the company mixer she realizes the one thing that she never meticulously planned for was a relationship. This is a girl that micromanaged and manifested her sleepovers, her line position in the nutcracker, her role in student government, and even the class senior prank. I mean who wouldn’t love to see 100 micro-pigs running down the halls of a high school on ditch day? Not anybody we’d like to know. How did she miss planning for a relationship? All of Polly’s dreams had come true and now it was time for her to find….ahem…. love…… the one thing that it’s kind of starting to look like she might have been avoiding this whole time. Do Polly’s master planning and manifesting skills find her the relationship that she’s set out to have? Come see SWIPED “APPily Ever After” to find out!”

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🍋


Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – May 13 - 19, 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.

Always Open

“Nothing happens. Everything changes. 11:45 pm on a Sunday in 1994 at an all-night diner where a group of friends idle their lives away. Two new additions make them reflect on who they are. Told first inside the diner, then the same time period from outside.”

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The Rat Mentalist

“He reads minds! He sends thoughts! He eats cheese! He's a rat! Sprinkles, the Clairvoyant Rat, (with the aid of his handler and partner Christopher T. Magician) will gnaw away at your preconceived notions of reality as he demonstrates his uncanny extrasensory abilities. The impossible will seem possible as you witness him receiving thoughts from audience members, transmitting specific numbers into others' minds, swapping brainwaves with a human, and perfectly predicting future events. The unbelievable will become believable when you experience The Rat Mentalist!”

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A Streetcar Named Desire

“In the sultry streets of New Orleans, passions flare and cultures collide in Tennessee Williams' Pulitzer Prize-winning masterpiece. Blanche DuBois, a fading relic of the Old South, searches for refuge at her sister's home, only to collide with reality in the form of Stanley Kowalski, her brutish brother-in-law.”

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You Win or You Die: Tales of the Seven Kingdoms and Beyond

“Celtic Arts Center friend Becky Bishop is coming into town from Portland to play a live performance of Game of Thrones-inspired songs — both original and song covers from the series. The music is in the Celtic/world/folk and folk rock styles and featuring some fine LA players.”

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PRETTY, WITTY NELL

“HE'S BACK! Hollywood Fringe International Award Winner 2015 & 2016 – Comedy Award Nominee 2016 – famed British playwright, Ryan J-W Smith, (“The Bard Mark Two” - BBC) returns to LA with his celebrated theatre company, Rogue Shakespeare®, to present his latest comedy, PRETTY, WITTY NELL, penned in his iconic, award-winning iambic verse. PRETTY, WITTY NELL is an outrageous farce that retells the history of scandalous English actress/courtesan, Nell Gwynne – the famous mistress of the wild British monarch, King Charles II. Like all of Smith's plays, PRETTY, WITTY NELL is written entirely in rhyming iambic pentameter.”

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Swipe Right: The Musical!

“'Swipe Right: The Musical!' is just as silly and stupid as you'd hope. The story follows one woman's bold decision to swipe right and take a chance on “Mike,” a fuckboy with a heart of gold. Will they end up together? Or just bang one to three times and never speak again?... Swipe Right details the rise and fall of one brief, insignificant, dating app love affair. If you've ever been single, then you'll understand. 'Swipe Right: The Musical!' is purely about having fun and laughing at our pain. Think 'My Crazy Ex-Girlfriend' meets every bad date you've ever been on. It'll leave you screaming, 'no he didn't!' and, 'I can relate, honey.'”

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Tethered

“Tethered is a furiously paced and whip-smart tale set in the world of mid-market mayoral politics. At its core, it's a Sorkin-esque blistering portrayal of the characterizations that can both define us and hold us back. Tethered asks difficult questions and explores their implications in a manner that combines tense exchanges with astute cultural observations. It's a story about individuals that resist and embrace the labels applied to them, and the expectations placed on us in complex circumstances. How these characters navigate their values and what's politically expedient will define their moment, and ultimately ours.”

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HARVEY

“It is a spring afternoon at the Dowd family home when Elwood P. Dowd starts to introduce his imaginary friend Harvey, a six-and-a-half-foot-tall rabbit, to guests at his sister Veta's society luncheon. Horrified that the embarrassing family secret is now exposed, Veta decides to have Elwood committed to a sanitarium, but a mistake is made when Veta is committed rather than Elwood. French Stewart (“3rd Rock from the Sun,” “Mom”) and real-life wife Vanessa Claire Stewart (Laguna Playhouse's “Keely” in Louis and Keely: Live at the Sahara) star in Mary Chase's Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy that has everyone questioning what exactly is real, and who is really crazy?”

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The Pirates of Penzance

“Gilbert and Sullivan's musical comedy is packed full of sentimental pirates, blundering policemen, absurd adventures, and performed by some of the San Gabriel Valley's most talented juvenile actors and singers.”

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Hoboken

“Jack and Erica find love after a one-night stand leaves them hopelessly trying to uncover more of each other. She wants to be a famous actress and he's a mysterious Irishman who has the money to make her dreams come true – until a Russian screenplay, two million dollars in unmarked bills and taboo desires threaten to tear them apart. How much is too much?”

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Edward: Black Psycho

“After 'Edward James' is slain by police, he rises from the dead and wreaks havoc on America. Edward: Black Psycho is a one-act solo play that explores why the marginalized riot. It believes that Suppression and Oppression lead to Pain and that pain leads to revenge. The play blends horror; drama; satire and spoken word to explore the many facets of marginalization and the cycle of hurt it perpetuates.
It’s Edward’s riot … don't take it personally.”

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BECOMING PEACE: A One Woman Dramedy about Power, Culture, Violence and Nonviolence

“'BECOMING PEACE,' [is] a One Woman Rhythmic Dramedy about Power, Culture, Violence and Nonviolence - explores the little known Power and Possibility of Nonviolence (Satyagraha/Ahimsa/Peace) - and just how much Life and the World can transform when we 'attack the wrong and not the wrongdoer!'”

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Dead Accounts

“Quick-witted Jack, a banker from New York, unexpectedly returns home to Ohio after several years in the Big Apple. His smart, acerbic, and yearning-for-more sister, Lorna, and his worried and talkative mother, Barbara, immediately suspect he is in some kind of trouble. Their suspicions are confirmed when Jack's estranged wife, Jenny, comes to town and reveals that Jack has stolen 27 million dollars...this comedy tackles the timely issues of corporate greed, small-town values, and whether or not your family will always welcome you back, with no questions asked.”

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Kentwood Players Presents Pippin

“The award-winning musical PIPPIN tells the story of a young prince who longs to find passion and adventure in his life. PIPPIN originally debuted on Broadway 1972 with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Roger O. Hirson. Bob Fosse, who directed the original Broadway production, also contributed to the libretto. This beautiful and thought-provoking musical uses the premise of a magical and mysterious performance troupe, led by a Leading Player, to lead the audience through Pippins adventures.”

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Food For All

“A 412-pound man sitting in a 4-wheeled chair glutting his gut for more becomes dismayed that more is not enough. His chair rolls him nowhere but where he's always been, a prisoner in his own rage-cage, beating its bars to be free of who he is and those who put him there. It is when he stops rolling and tilts his chair backwards, seeing the audience upside down, does he see his life in true perspective and understand that more has never been enough, that enough is not in chitlins, sowbelly, and ‘lasses but just possibly in the small bite of an apple.”

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UNDERTOW

“In Bruce Ducat's play, Undertow, the crosscurrents of Jake's and Shelly's lives pull them into the depths from which there is no escape except the choice to live or not to live. To live is liberation from despair. Not to live is suicide. Can Jake find life in death? Is Shelly struggling to live, or is she already dead?”

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Mormon Playgirl

“CC Sheffield presents the many characters that make up her world- sometimes dark, sometimes hilarious, always unpredictable. From Mormon teen to the Babylon of Hollywood. Charlie Sheen, Harvey Weinstein and endless nights in the club. All the big and little triumphs that make a Mormon Playgirl.”

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No More Toys

“No More Toys follows Todd, a local college recruiter, who, after a successful presentation, returns to a high school classroom to retrieve his forgotten baseball cap. Upon his arrival, Todd realizes that something is off - and doesn't take the hint to leave and suddenly finds himself held hostage by a disgruntled student in the room.”

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BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

“Step into the enchanted world of Broadway's modern classic, Disney's BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, an international sensation that continues to amaze and delight with its captivating story of soaring romance, bright humor, and thrilling adventure. Based on the Academy Award-winning animated feature, the stage version includes all of composer Alan Menken's (The Little Mermaid and Newsies) memorable songs from the film, plus delightful new ones. Nominated for nine Tony Awards including Best Musical, it's a tale as old as time… given a fresh, inventive, lively new production you won't want to miss!”

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Fifty Shades of Melania

“Fifty Shades of Melania is a deep-dive comedic take on the various faces of the FLOTUS who doesn't really care – or does she? – and the complicated spectrum of stereotypes women constantly fight, exploit, or reverse. Victim or accomplice? Trapped or willing agent? Melania Trump is an enigma; her actions and words contradictory. As both the media and public speculate about the First Lady's true emotions concerning her husband and the presidency, she maintains an air of mystery - perhaps on purpose.”

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The Long Gravel Road

“Conjuring the spirit of Court Jester, Clown, Fool and Harlequin, The Long Gravel Road is part mythology, memoir and part invention and tells the story of thoughts inside just a few seconds in a person's mind while retrieving the morning paper. Accentuating essence of experience over rational text this work invokes French actor/director theorist Artaud's famous radical manifesto on ‘Metaphysical Mise en Scene' in which a noise, glance, gesture or touch when combined can create a feeling of unity with all things and dovetails into space where movement and sounds are more predominant than plot.”

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SPEAK I WILL: A FRACTURED SHAKESPEARE

“By piecing together some of the Bard's most famous texts, the performers create their own unique Fractured Shakespeare monologues. Don't miss Fractured Shakespeare as they combine the words of Beatrice, King Lear, Lady Macbeth, Henry V, Katherina 'The Shrew' and more, to explore issues of gender, power, identity, and love.”

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Ragtime

“Famous historical characters and a rich score propel Ragtime through a spectacular re-creation of turn-of-the-20th-century New York. Based on E.L. Doctorow's acclaimed novel, this 13-time Tony-nominated musical paints a nostalgic and powerful portrait of three people — a stifled married woman from the upper classes, a determined Jewish immigrant, and a daring young musician from Harlem — whose fates become unexpectedly intertwined.”

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Stranger Things 2: The Musical Tribute

“Before "Stranger Things 3" premieres on July 4, come recap with "Stranger Things 2: The Musical Tribute!" It's a sequel to the sold-out live show at El Cid with a book adapted from Season 2 of the Netflix mega-hit and 13 original songs inspired by the sounds of 1984 from Van Halen to Prince to Run-DMC. Fast-paced and high-octane, the ensemble cast of seven plays 21 characters.”

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Wigfield

“Wigfield — the can-do town that just may not — is shadowed by the Bulkwaller Dam, a structure the government wants to tear down. Since the 'residents' (squatters) of Wigfield have built ramshackle structures that violate all ordinances of the fire code, the government has no plans to pay for their relocation and the 'town' will be flooded. Wigfield must prove they are a town worth saving and maybe … even recognizing.”

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The Producers

“When a down-on-his-luck Broadway producer and his mild-mannered accountant come up with a scheme to produce the most notorious flop in history, things go awry when the show is a hit. THE PRODUCERS skewers Broadway traditions and takes no prisoners as it proudly proclaims itself an 'equal opportunity offender!'”

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A Terrible Show for Terrible People

“You're not just watching a Terrible Show – you're participating in the destruction of common decency. A Terrible Show for Terrible People is a non-verbal solo clown performance that Stage Raw calls 'hilarious, irreverent.' Let physical comedian Bonnie He bring you on a fun, flirtatious journey…A Terrible Show for Terrible people is winner of the 'Craziest Solo Show' from the Crazy Woke Asians Solo Performance Festival at the Santa Monica Playhouse.”

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The London Rose

“'The London Rose' tells the story of Edward, a transgender man. It's 1895 and Edward Kingsley returns to London after escaping his former life as 'Emily.' He builds his new life with help from the quick-thinking Lee, the sardonic Rosanna Winchester, and the tortured, closeted John Collins. When Oscar Wilde's conviction for homosexuality turns life upside-down in Londontown, Edward must fight for the safety of his loved ones and for his own human dignity.”

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Birthday by Michael David Ker

“After a shitty year – losing both parents, then his home in the Woolsey fire – one man attempts to rise from the ashes and celebrate LIFE in a new way. Imagine if a raging fire was outside your door, about to burn your home to the ground. You have only minutes to grab a few items and get out before everything goes up in smoke. What would you take? What would you leave behind? What do you treasure the most? This one-person-show is a comic reexamination of what's really important in life. It's about holding onto humor, hope, and trusting that something bigger is at play, even in the midst of tragedy.”

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Anne, A New Play

“In celebration of what would have been Anne Frank's 90th birthday this June, the Simon Wiesenthal Center presents a unique play that reframes Anne's story through an unconventional lens. In this new adaptation of the immortal Holocaust story, 13-year-old Anne Frank imagines her life as a young woman — safe in a post-war world. When she meets a publisher who expresses interest in her story, Anne looks back on the two years she spent hidden away with her family during the Nazi regime. This innovative production eschews traditional sets and costumes to place the audience and actors on the same dramatic plane as the characters — all real people under real circumstances — fighting for their lives, sanity and dreams of the future.”

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How To Be A Rock Star

“Artist Sam Pocker takes songs from his catalog (he recorded 7 albums in one year) and combines them with some of his large-scale performance art pieces to create an all-new show. The performance will include elements of rock, pop, opera, country, dance, musical theatre, magic, illusion, mime, spoken word, puppetry, circus arts, and glow sticks. As the self-proclaimed 'Robert Wilson of dive bars.' Pocker is looking forward to using this festival to try out some new routines along with popular favorites from his band 'The Pretty Colors.'”

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Mandy Picks A Husband

“Mandy, nearing 40, living alone in LA with her 13-year-old cat, takes the audience on a hilarious 60-minute rollercoaster ride as she relives her odyssey to find the perfect life partner while simultaneously searching to find herself. Through twists and turns, laughs and tears, Mandy continuously spins from boyfriend to boyfriend, from self-help coach to healer, on a quest to unearth the magic elixir for her unmarried soul. 'Mandy Picks A Husband' is Amanda Broomell’s new raw and witty autobiographical solo comedy of self-discovery and lifelong commitment.”

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The Notorious M.O.M.S.

“Before Seinfeld. Before Eddie Murphy. Before Robin Williams. Before Andrew Dice Clay. Before Whoopi or Wanda Sykes, there was Moms. From her start in the Vaudeville “Chitlin Circuit” to her groundbreaking political and gender-bending stance in an ever-changing world throughout the 1960s and 1970s, the spirit of Moms Mabley’s voice echos in the world of comedy today and forever. Introducing The Notorious M.O.M.S!”

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Danny and The Deep Blue Sea

“Violent, vulnerable, yearning for something. Two strangers find their way to each other in a dark and dirty bar. They are both in deep need but without the wherewithal to help themselves. They do, however, attempt to reach outside of their broken exteriors and connect. From the moment these two share the same air they engage in what Shanley refers to as, ‘An Apache Dance; a violent dance for two people’. The push/pull between them is palpable, hungered for, and may burn out as quickly as the flame was lit.”

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What I Never Told You

“An adult dramedy that reminds us why it is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. Alysha and Nick have been together for 7 years, never married and no children. After Nick arrives home beyond fashionably late for a much-needed date night out, he and Alysha begin down the road of discussing their relationship. Through arguing over things all couples can relate to, laughing at old memories, sharing secrets, insecurities, and honest thoughts of how their life could be, they ultimately remind themselves how deep their love is. A knock on the door, however, brings the world crashing down around them.”

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The Blank Theatre 27th Annual Young Playwrights Festival

“Professional actors and directors present 12 winning plays by young playwrights from across the nation during this prestigious four-week festival. Three different plays are presented each week.”

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To Richard!

“An older white lady, Carol, and a younger Latino man, Andrew, cross paths deep in the woods of Connecticut. Carol carries a monogrammed L.L. Bean canvas tote bag. And Andrew … shouldn’t his name be Andrés? After sufficiently freaking each other out, this comedy of errors quickly devolves into a soul-baring, truth-revealing tête-à-tête that both magnifies and transcends Carol’s and Andrew’s differences, proving that sometimes polar opposites have more in common than meets the eye.”

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She Kills Monsters

“How do you connect with your sister when she's dead? By ass-kicking your way through Dungeons and Dragons, of course! Qui Nguyen’s play is re-imagined with shadow puppets, soundscapes, and swords. And monsters. Lots and lots of monsters.”

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🍋


Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – May 6 - 12, 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.

Too Blunt!

“Your typical Midwestern-African American-Gay-Cat Loving-Sagittarian-Coming-of-Age Story in Los Angeles. A Black gay boy from Missouri shares his long and liberating journey to weight loss, dating in the gay-app era, while unpacking the complex intersectionality of race and sexual orientation– and the twisted heartbreak and humor that ensues.”

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Clementine

“CLEMENTINE celebrates the exhilaration of motherhood, balancing poetic passages with humorous detours into the modern realities of raising small children...[moving] forward and backward through time, exploring the pressures and the promises of parenthood. Unapologetically feminist and powerfully tender, CLEMENTINE studies a matriarchal family's traditions, exploring the connection between generations through Wish's lens as both a mother and a daughter...In this dynamic and often hilarious piece, April Wish has crafted a love letter to her daughter, Clementine, as well as to the little girl she used to be herself.”

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The Institute for The Opposite of Longing

“Please enter the Opposite of Longing Chamber and state your primary symptom of longing. And where do you feel it in your body? And how much do you feel it on a scale of 1 to 10? And are you running out of time? The Institute for The Opposite of Longing can cure that thing deep in the pit of your body. But what happens when its owners and operators can't let go of the little boy they had to give back? And can't stop reenacting the day they packed his bags and watched him go. Or tucking him in at night or talking to his empty shoes or unpacking the bag of his things they keep hidden. What happens when these are the women who are responsible for curing that thing, that thing you feel deep in the pit of your body? Please enter the Opposite of Longing Chamber. We can help you. The process is simple.”

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The Institute for The Opposite of Longing

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Radicals

“'Radicals' is a Bollywood Musical about a love story struggling to survive in the war-torn valleys of Kashmir, aimed at tackling Islamophobia and the trauma of warfare on civilians.”

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Siren Call

“The siren call is driving me to my end, like a ship to wreck on rocks”. Two frustrated actors accidentally kidnap their favorite movie star… or is it really her? What is identity in a world where myths are stronger than we dare think? A dramedy about identity and oneness, frustrated actors, classism, depression, myths and a quote by Albert Camus.”

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LOVE, MADNESS, AND SOMEWHERE IN BETWEEN

“'Love, Madness and Somewhere in Between' is a no holds barred glimpse into a mystical journey filled with love, pain, insanity, and redemption. Scattered along the way is a sprinkling of ironic comic commentary that can only come from a true survivor. “Jimmy” is not so much a hero but more a human being traversing an abusive childhood, a descent into alcoholism and finally plunging into a world of fantastical personifications which dwell amidst humanity's darkest sins. Will closure, forgiveness, and healing come in the unlikely form of the “angel warriors” – patients on the pediatric cancer ward of Children's Hospital? Does pure love, in fact, transform and redeem, or are some lives beyond salvation?”

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Tattered Capes

“In 'Tattered Capes,' it's Kevin and Stephanie Connolly's fifth wedding anniversary, and Kevin has a night of celebration planned for them. Of course, this means he won't be going out on his regular patrol of Metro City as his alter-ego, M-Pulse, the self-appointed Eminence of Electromagnetism. But things should be fine without him for one night, right? Wrong. One would think that there could be no secrets left between a husband and wife after five years of matrimonial bliss, but when a powerful supervillain's attack interrupts Kevin and Stephanie's date, a hero's unmasking bears significant consequences for the Connollys…consequences that will resonate and redefine their relationship forever. ”

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Squeeze My Cans

“A true journey in to and out of Scientology. 'Moving, hilarious, heart-breaking and redemptive.' Lets you experience for yourself how Scientology devours money and lives.' -Chicago Reader 'Schenkelberg easily switches characters and time periods with dizzying energy, that is both exhilarating and electrifying.'- Edge Media 'At the top of the best performed, brilliantly written, elegantly directed one person shows I have ever seen.'- Buzz News”

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Skylight

“On a bitterly cold London evening, schoolteacher Kyra Hollis receives an unexpected visit from her former lover, Tom Sergeant, a successful and charismatic restaurateur whose wife has recently died. As the evening progresses, the two attempt to rekindle their once passionate relationship only to find themselves locked in a dangerous battle of opposing ideologies and mutual desires. Can they find their way back to each other, or has the time for their tumultuous romance reached its end? ”

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Tigers Be Still

“'Tigers Be Still' — a ferociously funny play from New Girl writer Kim Rosenstock — centers around the infinitely-trying-to-be-optimistic Sherry Wickman, who has earned her art therapy degree and promptly moved back in with her family. Matters take a turn for the better once she gets hired as a substitute art teacher. Now if only her mother would stop hiding upstairs, her sister would stop watching Top Gun from the couch, her petulant patient would do one of his assignments, her boss would leave his gun at home, and someone would catch the tiger that escaped from the local zoo, everything would be just perfect.”

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CORINA, From Lap dance to Sundance

“Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do to keep your dream alive. CORINA: FROM LAP DANCE TO SUNDANCE is a one-woman show about finding purpose and direction to a life long dream in the least likely of places. A story of family, tradition, and perseverance.”

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Legends, Movement and Memories

“The performers include: Florence LaRue, an original member of The 5th Dimension, the pop group that so often dominated the charts in the 60s and 70s with their hit songs, will perform some of the award-winning singing group's big hits. Freda Payne will perform an excerpt from her show Ella Fitzgerald, First Lady of Song, bringing to life the immortal Ella Fitzgerald and her revered career as an extraordinary jazz singer. Sheetal Gandhi in BAHU-Beti-Biwi (Daughter-inLaw, Daughter, Wife). A tour-de-force excerpt combining dance, stirring vocalization, and percussive text that glides between humorous portraiture and active resistance. Juli Kim shares two dance works. Five Drum Dance exemplifies Korean traditional music with a touch of Western influence. New Leaf, deeply rooted in Korean “Han,” symbolically unfolds the innocence of the new leaf when there is change in life.”

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Mama Metal

“This joyfully irreverent black comedy entwines issues of identity with pop culture icons to tell a truly unique mother-daughter story. Sterling Milburn's mother is dying and Sterling is falling apart. She attempts to keep it together by rewriting the past with the help of two titans of the American theater and the world's greatest heavy metal band — but Sterling's mother refuses to follow the script. A love letter to those who shape our lives, hold us together and break our hearts.”

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Dancing to the Edge of a Cliff: One Woman's Musical Mythological Journey toward Self-Acceptance

“Incorporating music, multimedia, humor, a touch of mythology, and embodying over twenty characters, Margaret whimsically puts her psyche on stage to explore her struggle with self-acceptance and her experience of two mental breakdowns. Margaret explores not only what outside influences molded her personality when she was growing up and as an adult, but also confronts two internal voices, representing the competing compulsions of artistry (Puella) and perfectionism (Miss Perfect). Realizing in the end that what she has been taught her whole life was right, doesn't work for her.”

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Ride or Die: The Hip-Hop Musical

“Elliott and Michael are best friends. They're of different temperaments. Elliott is boisterous and outgoing. Michael is more tentative and shy. One day, Elliott dies in an accident. He's allowed to come back to earth, where he can only be seen by Michael. Elliott is tasked with finding Michael a new best friend. Only then will Elliott earn his angel wings and be allowed to ascend into Heaven. Michael wants to be friends with Ciara. Will Elliott be able to help Michael connect with Ciara, or will he mess things up for them all? Will Michael and Ciara ultimately become friends? Will Elliott earn his angel wings? The cast is unique in the fact that most of the performers are differently-abled: John JT Tucker Jr. (Elliott), has Down syndrome. He is the star of the A&E tv series Born This Way. Domonique Brown (Michael) has autism and recurs on the Netfiix series Atypical. He's the nephew of Marvin Gaye. Spencer Harte (Ciara) has autism and also recurs on Atypical. The supporting players include Coby Bird who has autism and will be a regular on a Netflix series to be announced; and Caley Versfelt, who has Down syndrome.
The rest of the cast is neurotypical and includes Brendan McCay, Stanson Chung, Alexa Russo and Callie Ott.”

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Karaoke Saved My Life

“Scotty D, just a city boy from South Detroit, invites you on a Journey, showing you how karaoke saved his life, and how it can save yours, too. With stories, power ballads, big anthems, and cheesy pop, and a bit of bopping, we might even save the World. Don't stop believing!”

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Fight Song!

“Texas. 1964. Following a deadly car crash, four cheerleaders navigate through the afterlife. Both Lucifer and God herself pay a visit, and High School drama turns into madness in this strange nightmare of a story – a never-ending fight song.”

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Fight or Flight

“Isaac Easton, a recently retired boxer, and his former sports manager open a gym together to help advance the popularity of female boxing. When their first female boxer gets into trouble only three weeks from the fight, they scramble to find a new fighter to train. Enter Zoey Jones, a young and shy fighter who has never fought in the professional circuit. Easton and Jones take a crash course in trusting and learning from each other over three weeks in preparation for the fight, and the two often butt heads. Can Jones pull out a win and save Easton's reputation and gym? Through voice-overs and grueling workouts in preparation for the fight, this one-act play shows the audience how intimate a platonic relationship between a man and woman can be, the beauty of physical strength, and what happens when you are stuck in fight or flight mode.”

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Five Pieces of Paper: Stories My Hungarian Grandmother Refused to Tell Me and Other Family Tales

“Moti Buchboot, the grandson of a Holocaust survivor, created this show in response to the 2017 Charlottesville riots. He reveals lessons learned from his Hungarian grandmother who began her life in a village in Hungary, survived the Holocaust, and eventually settled in a small town in Israel. Buchboot's tale unfolds through storytelling, Yiddish song, puppetry, and baking.”

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The Narcissist Next Door

“The power of positive thinking goes hilariously wrong when a new neighbor teaches two dispirited best friends an Ancient Peruvian Self Help Philosophy. Instead of their lives being transformed they end up held hostage by two inept kidnappers. 'Be careful who you wish for' has never been more appropriate.”

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POCKETS

“Set in the fictional British-ish kingdom of Crumpeton, POCKETS spins the tale of Bellamina Crumbledunk, a noble preteen, who becomes a pickpocket to win the attention of her overextended mother, the Duchess. Bellamina's misadventures take her into the underbelly of society, where she accidentally becomes the leader of a criminal uprising, but will she have the heart to sabotage her mother's well-laid plans for Crumpet Day? #CheckYourPockets for tickets to this fast-paced, funny, and touching period piece to find out!”

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Straight White Men Trying to Woke

“Five short comedies exploring the middle age white male struggle to fit in during these confusing times.
FANDOM – navigating politics
POLITE RACISM – analyzing ethnicity
SUICIDE PACT – tolerating millennials
BRITTLE TROMBONE – contemplating economics
FANTASY FOOTBALL – grasping identity”

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Girl From SchenectadyGirl From Schenectady

“Selected as an Honorable Mention for the Hollywood Fringe 2019 due to it's cultural theme, “Girl From Schenectady” is a story about a 38-year-old Nigerian Woman from Schenectady New York who is still a Virgin. Her story begins with her Journey to finding True Love. However, her plan is to find Mr. Right and to lose her Virginity before she turns 40. The story takes place at the Airport, while Ayo is waiting for her next flight to take off, she describes the metaphoric places she has traveled to Find True Love. She takes the Audience on a ride to her past and her Nigerian family traditions, Culture, and Values. She struggles to break free from her Nigerian Generational Cycle, Parental Divorce, Failed Marriages and to keep history from repeating itself. Ayo also takes the Audience on her dating journey starting with a Nigerian Man. She also dates a Mexican Man, an Italian Man and an African American Man. After several attempts to finding True Love and Losing her virginity before 40, she goes on a self-discovery, and Lands in the last place she ever thought she would find True Love.”

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Dames at Sea

“Ruby gets off the bus from Utah with “nothing but tap shoes in her suitcase and a prayer in her heart.” As fate would have it, she is immediately cast in the chorus of a Broadway show. When the theatre is forced to close, Ruby's songwriting sailor boyfriend persuades the Captain of his ship to allow the show to move on deck. Voila! Dames at sea! When the show's lead gets seasick, Ruby may have to go on for her. Will Ruby come back a star? Do you need to ask? Dames at Sea at once pays affectionate homage to and sends up the optimistic early Broadway musicals of the 30s and 40s. It's filled with songs, tap-dancing and romance from start to finish. It is suitable for general audiences.”

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Rory and the Devil

“During the height of The Troubles, in a rural pub on the border of Northern Ireland, Mary Friel, a barmaid, strives to maintain harmony amongst the men in her life. Ancestral legends and secrets are revisited and a cycle of violence is revealed: can they forgive injustice and cruelty from their past, or will the cycle continue? Enjoy a Guinness and whiskey as a group of actors take you to Neil Friel's pub–a safe place for a good story–until it isn't. In this bare-bones production of Rory and the Devil you can enjoy the best of what Irish storytelling has to offer.”

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Johnny '81

“It's 1981! The corpse of disco, the flames of punk, the plastic smell of new wave, and the balls of rock ‘n' roll, all converge and merge on a seemingly peaceful street in West Hollywood, CA, along with the stories of a 12-year-old boy raised by a pill-popping single mother and the many gay men in their life...Against a backdrop of music, 'JOHNNY '81' weaves together a collection of stories based on a 12-year-old boy's experience of living in West Hollywood during the early 1980s. These semi-autobiographical tales bring to life the humor and drama of how a group of gay men became strange and amazing surrogate fathers to a pre-teen boy and his younger brother...'JOHNNY '81' is like spending the day listening to an old record album, or like being at a concert, with stories that make us reflect on our lives and the world we live in, or tales that make you just want to get up out of your seat and dance!”

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Bronco Billy - The Musical

“'Voice from the Village'...is based upon one of Los Angeles greatest playwrights, Lynn Manning and his in real time visit to Skid Row Studios on Monday, August 26, 2013 for an interview on “The Qumran Report”, hosted by Melvin Ishmael Johnson to talk about his life growing up in Watts and turning a tragic situation into an art form.”

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If It Goes There

“It's Saturday night, and Erik and Connor are looking to get laid. When they try their luck on a hook-up app, the night takes a turn they never expected and their true desires are revealed.”

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A Time Traveler's Guide to the Present

“When 85% of the world is afflicted with a mysterious case of 'The Flake,' one man volunteers to travel through space and time to stop it. 'A Time Traveler's Guide to the Present' is a far-out, amped-up, one-man show about the hunt for human connection. ”

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The Scorpion and the Frog: a time-killer

“'The Scorpion and the Frog: a time-killer' is a comic interpretation of the oft-told story/fable/allegory/whatchamawhoositz about a frog who agrees to take a scorpion across a river. Will the two make it to the other side of said river? Will they learn anything? Will they grow as [an] intelligent species? Will these questions entice you to actually leave your homes and see this play?”

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Uprooted

“In 'Uprooted,' the creatures of Vanessa Boss' inner world take you on the flight of her life! A disturbance triggers violent weather, endangering matriarch Elda, the elder tree, the voice of Vanessa's wisdom. Elda leads Vanessa's inner fantasy creatures on a journey to remind Vanessa of her strength, but Vanessa's demons take control of the flight and her mind as she is moved, again and again, facing bullies, saying unexpected goodbyes to friends, and hoping for the day to come where she'll get to choose where home is. But is home a place or a feeling? Full of exciting adventure, triumph, and heartbreak, Vanessa frees herself from the restraints of her inner demons and proclaims her power to define her own fate. Uprooted is a young woman's resilient story of growing into the strong, rooted woman she is meant to be. ”

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ORANGUTAN

“Orangutan is a haunting and absurd one-woman show about the mother of a brutish (slightly orange) would-be dictator, and the tribalism that's tearing our country apart. Deutch's provocative dark comedy was inspired by Bill Maher's challenge to Donald Trump's outrageous Obama “Birther” claims. Maher offered to donate five million dollars to the charity of Donald Trump's choice if Trump produced a birth certificate that proved he was not half-ape. Trump's lawyer responded: 'Attached hereto is a copy of Mr. Trump's birth certificate, demonstrating that he is the son of Fred Trump, not an Orangutan.' Trump then sued Bill Maher for five million dollars…”

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ALL OUR PRETTY SONGS

“In this new play, Neil, a mediocre musician, and Kurt Cobain wannabe, moves to Los Angeles to “make it” as a rockstar. Through the constant ups and downs of LA living, Neil struggles between pursuing his passions or taking the practical path in life. Should he keep chasing his dreams or stop? This 60-minute three-person show explores idealism vs. cynicism, the practicality of pursuing art in a capitalist society, and millennials' struggle with mental health.”

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NAKED MAN RISING

“Aren't you tired of going to the theater and seeing the same old shit? Check out 'Naked Man Rising,' a crowd favorite from the Solo Creation Festival. We're talking sold out, folk. This tale of revenge rips through the stage like a Grindhouse film and features a balls-to-the-wall performance by Canadian Wildman and naturalist Kyle Durack. Not for your Grandma…unless, she's a badass. Winner of the Hollywood Fringe Scholarship for first-time Producers, Kyle is thrilled to bring 'Naked Man Rising' to the 2019 Fringe Festival. The writing is crisp and the play moves along at a deft pace. But the words are simply a vehicle for Kyle Durack's powerful interpretation. The Canadian actor was born with spastic diplegia cerebral palsy, and in this piece, he sheds his disability along with his clothes to reveal the inner strength concealed by a “weakened” body. 'Naked Man Rising' mixes humor and action. Durack uses his physicality well as he tells the story.”

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HELL'S FINEST

“The cult of Abaddon has a problem. The Angel of the Abyss, the figure with which they worship, is demanding a new leader. But not just anybody will qualify. Only the darkest, most demented contestants stand a chance at obtaining total power. A sadist, a murderer, and a predator, all share one common goal: to become the leader of the finest cult, the Ascendants of Abaddon. There's only one problem. In order to obtain this position, they must go up against each other in a riveting competition to impress the cult's current leader: Adam. He's spectacularly charming and possesses the uncanny ability to influence all those who cross his path. With secrets spilled and matches met, the three contestants grow more and more daring with their desperate attempts to gain total power. However, no matter what happens, no matter who lies and who cheats, Adam always calls the final shots.”

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Not Here Right Now

“The hilariously touching tale of a tall man in tight spaces, finding clarity and avoiding a quarter-life crisis in Southeast Asia, all while wearing strappy velcro sandals except to the wedding of the century. Tired of the monotony of New York City corporate life, Royce, an ambitious 20-something, trades in his promising media research career for a one-way ticket to Southeast Asia. In this live one-man show, Royce brings you on an 8-country adventure toward self-discovery. During 'Not Here Right Now,' audiences are treated to true stories and experiences of Royce's inspiring journey from corporate citizen to world traveler. The original production of Not Here Right Now was successfully funded on Kickstarter thanks to the support of 165 people from around the world.”

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IF TRUTH BE TOLD

“A raucous evening of comic stories, told by a woman who has seen a few things. Actress and humorist Jennifer Brown examines how the truth can play out in a variety of ways. What exactly is “the truth”? And when you are asked to tell the truth, whose truth do you stand in?”

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Crack Whore, Bulimic, Girl-Next-Door

“A comedic romp through depression, eating disorders and self-loathing! Crack Whore, Bulimic, Girl-Next-Door is a one-act play chronicling one woman's journey through her depression and bulimarexia. It is a painfully funny look at body image, addiction, and the obsession with fitting into society's ideal of beauty and thinness. It is part poetry and prose, part sketch and part narrative with a few snappy dance numbers mixed in. Three actresses portray one woman in various stages of her eating disorder and crippling depression. They are joined by one male actor portraying various influences in her childhood development, teenage years and young adulthood. This autobiographical theatrical experience intimately exposes the perils of womanhood, the rawness of living through sexual trauma and culminates in discovering the inner strength to live comfortably in one's own skin ”

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Mil Grus

“Previous Fringe award winners team up for this year's Hollywood Fringe to create the First official Bouffon/Clown troupe “MIL GRUS” led by world-renowned physical theater artist Dean Evans of “Honeybuns” fame. Be prepared as this motley crew of miscreants crawl out of the gutter to make you question reality in the most exhilarating way. This timeless satire features improvised feats of physical and existential comedy that defy explanation and provoke unfettered, eery glee. Come see what's behind the curtain, starting June 9, 2019, at The Mccadden Place Theatre”

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Human Fountains

“As seen on America's Got Talent (quarter-finalists) and countless television shows around the world! Prepare for a fountain show like you've never seen before! The Human Fountain's hilarious choreographed water spitting routines will keep you laughing and thirsty for more. Always making a splash on stage, literally — the group has endless tricks up their sleeves (and in their mouths) giving you performances that are one-of-a-kind. Inspired by the world's most famous fountains, the comedy group adds a human touch to give you one of the most unique experiences you've ever seen. They couldn't be more excited to premiere their full-length show for Hollywood Fringe.”

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Les Mis-Cast

“Cast members from the National Tour of 'Les Misérables' (now at the Pantages Theatre through June 2) will perform in a very special cabaret concert to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and PAWS/LA. Patrons will support two great causes as they enjoy an intimate evening of cabaret-style performances. The evening will also feature a silent auction, allowing audience members to bid on items graciously donated by the Broadway community and local businesses.”

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Funeral Potatoes

“What would you do with only a month left to live? What would you look back on with nostalgia or regret? With laughter as the best medicine, Funeral Potatoes is a dark comedy about death and friendship, examining what makes it all worth it when you've spent your entire life planning for a future you won't have.”

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Food Bowl Events: Food and Film

Food and Film - Somebody Feed Phil: Dublin

“Somebody Feed Phil: Dublin' LA FOOD BOWL FEATURED EVENT. Join Phil Rosenthal, creator, writer and producer of the hit comedy “Everybody Loves Raymond” for a special screening of his Netflix hit 'Somebody Feed Phil: Dublin' and a conversation with Phil. This fantastic event will be teamed with none other than Nick Shipp (Upper West) who will be teaming the event with a specially curated Irish themed assortment of food! Specialty drinks provided...Screening with talk-back 75 mins. Nick Shipp Meal With Phil 75 minutes will be followed by a Q&A with Phil and Arena Cinelounge-Clamorhouse-LA Times-Phil Rosenthal event.”

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Food and Film - The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover

“NC-17 LA FOOD BOWL FEATURED EVENT MON. MAY 20 - The 1989 crime drama is arguably Peter Greenaway's most famous (or infamous) film, which first shocked audiences at the 1989 Cannes Film Festival and then on both sides of the Atlantic. A gang leader (Michael Gambon), accompanied by his wife (Helen Mirren) and his associates, entertains himself every night in a fancy restaurant that he has recently bought. Having tired of her sadistic, boorish husband, the wife finds herself a lover (Alan Howard) and makes love to him in the restaurant's coziest places with the silent permission of the cook (Richard Bohringer). Sergio Corbia of Ciabatta Bar and Fabiolus Cafe crafts a specialty menu that complements Greenaway's paradoxical comments on the relations between eating and sex, love and death.”

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More about the L.A. Times Food Bowl:

The 2nd Annual Trump Family Special

“the 2nd annual trump family special original musical comedy' parodies [the] First Family in “yuge” way. What if the First Family put on a live musical TV special – just like the Brady Bunch – starring Ice Princess Ivanka, her numbnut brothers, a still-not-caring Melania, and a host of ex's and deplorables.”

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Princess Magic's Trash Fire Time Revue

“A child's birthday party takes an unexpected turn when the scheduled magician doesn't show and the job is filled by a drunk and wayward vagrant. There are prizes. You should come. Use discount code BETTERLEMONS for 20% off their regular ticket price of $15”

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THE CHRISTIANS

“As their final show of Season 27, Actors Co-op Theatre Company is proud to present Lucas Hnath's The Christians, directed by Thomas James O'Leary, produced by Carly Lopez. When the pastor of a megachurch unilaterally decides to enlighten his congregation with his own personal revelation, he is faced with doubt and dissension among his flock. Hnath's Obie Award-winning play examines the schism in today's church and the role of faith in America. ”

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StoryTime

“The Group Rep presents StoryTime, a story salon produced by Patricia Willson, featuring fresh, live personal stories as entertainment – – an evening of joy, sadness, and a touch of comedy on Sunday, May 12 at 7:00 pm, at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood, CA, at the edge of the NoHo Arts District.
Authors performing their stories include Vince Cefalu 'Eyes of A Child,” Devon Curry 'Mach Two,' Jana DiMaggio 'Conventional Wisdom,' Rick Hall 'Mom's Home Cooking,' Tripp Mills 'A Rainbow God Box,' Madeline Morgan 'Salute to Storytellers,' Candace Nicholas-Lippman 'Don't Get It Twisted, I Love My Mama,' Lila Silvern 'This Sperm is For You,' Jonathan Leigh Solomon 'Hello in There,' Lan Tran 'Overpolite, Shanghai'ed and Homeless in Vietnam,' and Pat Willson 'Momma.' ”

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SHAME OF THRONES: The Musical

“The Whitefire Theatre Musical Mondays is proud to present...the musical spoof SHAME OF THRONES: The Musical returns to L.A. for more hilarious re-imagining of the show's backstabbing siblings, clever imps and dragon mamas, all set to an addictive rock score that'll stick in your head (unless the king orders it off, natch)...Watch your favorite daring and most despised characters sing and dance towards epic plot twists and the coveted Iron Throne.”

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AVENUE Q

“The Group Rep presents AVENUE Q...This fresh and unusual Tony-award winning musical is a coming-of-age parable, addressing and satirizing the anxieties associated with entering adulthood. Its characters lament that as children, they were assured by their parents, and by Sesame Street, that they were 'extraordinary' and 'could do anything'; but as adults, they have discovered, to their surprise, that in the real world their options are limited, and they are actually ordinary like everyone else. This quirky musical ranks 24th on the list of the longest running shows in Broadway history. Avenue Q is notable for the use of puppets, animated by unconcealed puppeteers. ”

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THE COLUMBINE PROJECT

“In remembrance of the 20th Anniversary of the Columbine High School shooting, Loft Ensemble and the Whitefire Theatre are co-producing and reviving Paul Storiale's award-winning drama The Columbine Project directed by Bree Pavey. An atemporal retelling of the events leading up to, during and following the April 20, 1999 shooting at Columbine High School, the play challenges what we think we know about the victims, families, teachers and the shooters themselves. Praised by LA theatre critics, survivors and families of the victims. The Columbine Project was created from direct correspondence with people involved in and affected by the event”

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Let's Write a Musical

“Let's Write a Musical is an emotional rollercoaster ride of music, laughter, and tears. David Hamilton decides to write a musical after he is diagnosed with cancer. While the couple deals with the ups and downs of their cancer journey, so are the characters in the musical on a rollercoaster ride of mishaps and shenanigans.”

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Aristophanes' THE BIRDS

“When the world has gone to the birds, the cuckoo is king. Two shiftless con men scheme to exploit the power of the birds by encouraging them to build a fortress in the sky, from where they can lord over mankind and Gods alike. Aristophanes' classic comedy THE BIRDS is about corruption, weakness, and power; how easily people are exploited based on fear, ego and greed; and how even noble ideas may be corrupted if those who have power are irresponsible and/or selfish. (Sound like anything going on now? Hm? Too soon?) Or, as John Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton said to an Anglican bishop, 'Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men…'”

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Jordan Maverick, History Teacher

“Welcome to the school of hard Glocks. Jordan Maverick is one of the nation's most highly-trained teachers – an excellent marksman, a black belt in Jujitsu, and an engaging History teacher. But when he transfers to one of the most dangerous schools in the country, he'll face one of his biggest fears: co-teaching with the loose cannon Miss Pitts. Can they find a way to work together in time to solve the school's problems? This favorite from Season 13 of Serial Killers at Sacred Fools returns as a complete production at this years Hollywood Fringe.”

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Come Back!

“'Every day's a goddamn audition.' Based on the 'Serial Killers' 2018 Playoffs winner, 'COME BACK' is the hilarious yet touching story of Edie and Petey Stevenson, an overbearing stage mother and her hapless son, attempting to stage a 'comeback' performance. One of three shows Sacred Fools is proud to present as part of this year's Hollywood Fringe.”

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The Drag Queen of the Year Pageant Competition Award Contest Competition

“Who is the best Drag Queen in the whole wide world? Now's your chance to find out — at the first ever Drag Queen of the Year Pageant Competition Award Contest Competition. Millions of the best Drag performers from around the world applied, but only eight will compete, carefully chosen by a mysterious group of anonymous Drag Elders. ▪︎ The contestants are (in alphabetical order) Abhora (Miami, FL); Astrud Aurelia (Phoenix, AZ); Calypso Jeté (Los Angeles); Lyle (Los Angeles); Gigi Monroe (Juneau, AK); Kat Sass (Chicago, IL); Sabbyiana (Montebello, CA); and Aurora Sexton (Los Angeles). ▪︎ Judged upon the criteria of Presence, Energy, Nuance, Integrity, and Stunningness, this is a pageant for everyone — Drag Queens, Drag Kings, Trans Artists, Hyper Queens, Bio Queens, AFAB Queens — from first-timers to established pageant powerhouses. ▪︎ The celebrity guest host is Jackie Beat. The judges are (in alphabetical order) Nicole Byer, Jiggly Caliente, Landon Cider, Gia Gunn, Sharon Needles, Peppermint, and Willam.”

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5 Women Wearing the Same Dress

“During an ostentatious wedding reception at a Knoxville, Tennessee estate, five reluctant, identically clad bridesmaids hide out in an upstairs bedroom, each with her own reason to avoid the proceedings below. They are Frances, a painfully sweet but sheltered fundamentalist; Mindy, the cheerful, wise-cracking lesbian sister of the groom; Georgeanne, whose heartbreak over her own failed marriage triggers outrageous behavior; Meredith, the bride's younger sister whose precocious rebelliousness masks a dark secret; and Trisha, a jaded beauty whose die-hard cynicism about men is called into question when she meets Tripp, a charming bad-boy usher to whom there is more than meets the eye. As the afternoon wears on, these five very different women joyously discover a common bond in this wickedly funny, irreverent and touching celebration of the women's spirit.”

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Hide Your Fires: Butoh Lady Macbeth

“'Hide Your Fires: Butoh Lady Macbeth' brings the audience alongside the accursed spirit of Lady Macbeth to experience her nightmare of stifled ambition, unfulfilled desire, and ultimate loss. Telling the story solely through her perspective, this production fuses Japanese Butoh dance, movement, and various texts to take you inside the mind and body of one of Shakespeare's most famous villains.”

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Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – April 29 - May 5, 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.

How I Became A Superhero

“...An ensemble comedy about a couple that leaves the world of online activism and leaps into the business of vigilante justice! Running at the 2019 Hollywood Fringe Festival in June, this is a bright show for anyone who has ever dreamed about being amazing...a family friendly comedy that brings comic books to life, with comic book page sets, sound effects, and lights.”

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SugarFree: Foster Care Cognitive Dissonance

“SugarFree Foster Care combines the difficult journey of foster youth through my perspective as both a social worker and foster child...interspersed [with] poetry, personal narrative, humor, and real-life experiences for a theater experience that tugs at the heartstrings of our greatest human needs in the midst of the social welfare system's inadequacies.”

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Lend Me A Tenor

“Winner of 3 Tony Awards and 4 Drama Desk Awards LEND ME A TENOR combines a chain-reaction of mistaken identity, plot twists, double entendres and the constant slamming of many doors to create one of the funniest farces to grace the American stage in the last 30 years. A sensation on Broadway and in London's West End, LEND ME A TENOR pays homage to the madcap screwball comedies of the 1930's, guaranteed to leave audiences howling hysterically with laughter and walking out the door with a warm smile. ”

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GEORGE.

“Told through the creation of his first three films, ‘George' is the story of how a young man from Modesto, California became George Lucas. With each act following a different film, George will learn all of the skills that eventual led to the creation of ‘Star Wars.' ”

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Raised By Wolves

“You learn to survive quick when you're being dragged behind a team of sled dogs. A comedy about a girl and her dogsled team navigating the rocky terrain of growing up and her quest to become the alpha of her own pack. ”

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Widows Anonymous

“In the circle that is Widows Anonymous, five characters come together to share stories, secrets and the brutal humor that is being a widow in modern times. As they discover, there is no short cut, no alternate route, and the only way out is through. Welcome to the front lines.”

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Bat Knight!

“The dynamic duo have finally made it to the Hollywood Fringe Festival! Little do Batman and Robin know, the Joker's latest scheme will give them the ride of a lifetime. Race through the streets of Gotham with Batman, Robin, Batgirl, Superman, Alfred the Butler, and many more members of the Bat Family in this dark and hilarious interactive musical parody that puts you, the audience, in the middle of the action. Bring the whole family to battle The Joker, Harley Quinn, Catwoman, the Penguin, and the rest of the Dark Knight's rogues gallery, and celebrate the Batman universe in this side splitting night of Bat-Mania! ”

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Olivia Wilde Does Not Survive The Apocalypse

“A hack director and a snooty actress stumble 300 years into the future. America has been taken over by a fascist government, which believes that entertainment is the key to control. As the only remaining people on earth with any artistic talent the director and actress are forced to put on a play. But if they fail to entertain the masses they will be executed on live television. ”

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TOBINCON

“Actor and comedian Tobin Mitnick sheds light on three con men that are using their style-savvy to manipulate a generation of young Americans through the unregulated Wild West that is the Internet. In its world premiere, one-man comedy TOBINCON dives into the grotesque and hilarious world of online grifters—the Body Prophet, the Rhetorical Bad Boy, and the Compassionologist—with sketch and stand-up, in order to show us that the game may have changed, but the players are all still here. But Mitnick also answers a lingering question: When you spend so much time rubbing shoulders with these types, will it rub off on you? In other words, can you con yourself? Only TOBINCON has the answers!”

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CINDERELLA TOPSY TURVY – A Tender Gender Bender Romantic Musical Fairy Story for Pride 2019

“A Tender Gender Bender Romantic Musical Fairy Story. A delightful re-imagining of the classic Cinderella tale brings you upside-down casting – half original practices, half Gilbert and Sullivan, half just plain fun. Meet a handsome Prince, silly stepsisters, a befuddled king, and an out-of-the-box steampunk Fairygodmother. Added delights are the outrageously playful period costumes and the heart-warming romance that blooms with the assistance of a glass slipper, a feather duster, and a truly magical wand. A gentle prod at stereotypical gender roles, this light-hearted send-up is a hilarious twist on the classic tale.”

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La Traviata

“Giuseppe Verdi and Librettist Francesco Maria Piave's classic Italian opera based on the play La Dame aux Camélias adapted from the novel by Alexandre Dumas...Southern California native Christopher Job...makes his L.A. Opera debut. After a decade of work at the Metropolitan Opera, and making two appearances last season with the L.A. Phil.”

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The Same Room

“'A dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity…' Well, not quite. Thyma and Aspid find themselves trapped in a barren room with two locked doors, but where are they? What sets them free? And most importantly, what happens after this? 'The Same Room' explores human compassion in a new light and begs the question- What becomes of us when we refuse to heal?”

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Lincoln 2020

“Like a lot of people today, campaign manager Tess Baker is sick of politics. She's just about ready to throw in the when somebody wakes up a candidate she can work with – Abraham Lincoln. Will he be a good President in 2020 America? Will he even win? You decide! That's right, the play has two endings and your vote counts!”

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Bunny the Elf LIVE!

“A Musical Theatre Nerd, forced by her family to give up her dreams, gets a real job in the real world… as a toy store Christmas elf. An uplifting coming of age comedy about finding where one's talents, or lack thereof, fit in the world. Christi Pedigo's YouTube sensation Bunny the Elf will be sharing her elfing journey LIVE! On stage! With new material and a special update on what's next for Bunny.”

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FEELING LUCKY

“A comedy about men and women straddling the elusive line between true love and a broken heart who discover that in the game of love what you see is not always what you get.”

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Victress Burlesque Presents: ShipwRACKed

“Introducing Victress, the L.A.-based comedy burlesque troupe, flipping traditional burlesque on its head with a character-fueled strip show. The premise is simple: Comedic monologues lead into cheeky choreographed dance numbers that will make your heart go pitter-pat. Their newest show, “ShipwRACKed,” premieres in a 5-show limited run as part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival. It's a naughty'cal adventure stacked with quips, ships, n' nips. Get ready for a burlesque show like you've never seen before.”

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And Now It's All This!

“A play about when John Lennon said the Beatles were bigger than Jesus and the fallout that ensued.”

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A Walk in the Woods at North Coast Repertory Theatre

“What really goes on behind the scenes of tense arms negotiations between powerful nations? Set in the midst of the Cold War, Lee Blessing's gripping play, A WALK IN THE WOODS, is especially relevant today. With talks seemingly at an impasse, the American and Soviet negotiators agree to meet informally while strolling through the peaceful forest. Their revealing and absorbing conversations, laced with warmth and humor, evolve through debate and discord, exploring unexpected and uncharted territory. Nominated for a Pulitzer and a Tony Award, Blessing's dramatic comedy was inspired by historic conversations between negotiators Paul H. Nitze and Yuli A Kvitsinsky who left the official 1982 Geneva sessions for an unofficial “walk in the woods.” For those yearning for a more enlightened world, this play is shrewdly observant and resonates with the ring of political truth ”

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Impro Theatre's Twilight Zone UnScripted at North Coast Rep

“From the darkest corners of reality, to the land of the unexplained – Impro Theatre's Twilight Zone Unscripted pays homage to Rod Serling's breakthrough sci-fi series “The Twilight Zone.” Enter the wondrous dimension of imagination, as completely improvised episodes are created with every performance.”

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You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown

“Based on the beloved comic strip “Peanuts” by Charles Schulz, this revue of songs and vignettes tells the story of some typical days in the life of Charlie Brown. From running after the school bus to spying the cute little red-haired girl at lunch, Charlie Brown deals with the fun and frustrations of life with his friends Lucy, Linus, and Schroeder; his kid sister Sally; and his faithful companion, Snoopy. With charm, wit, and heart, “You're A Good Man, Charlie Brown” is fun for all ages.”

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Chico's Angels: Fly Chica Fly

“A live comedy production that parodies the 1976–1981 television series Charlie's Angels. Three of LA's favorite drag queens star in the title roles — Kay Sedia (Oscar Quintero), Chita Parol (Ray Garcia), and Frieda Laye (Danny Casillas). In this brand new episode written by Oscar Quintero and Kurt Koehler, young hopeful stewardesses are disappearing, and it's up to Chico's Angels to fly the “not-so-friendly skies.” Can the Angels solve the case? Fasten your seat belts, turbulence was never this spicy!”

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BE A GOOD LITTLE WIDOW

“Young newlywed Melody has never been to a funeral – until her husband dies in a plane crash. Expected to instantly assume proper widowhood, Melody is left to wonder, what's the right way to grieve? Fortunately, her mother-in-law is a professional. Widow, that is. Under her guidance, Melody must try her best to be a good little widow.An emotional comedy about loss and longing from Peabody Award-winning Writer/Producer of NBC's Hit “This Is Us.” Bekah Brunstetter will be participating in a talk-back following the performance on Saturday, June 1st. ”

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ROOTS

“Theatre of NOTE continues its 2019 season with ROOTS:...four wonderfully strange world premiere short plays, written by four accomplished Theatre of NOTE-grown playwrights, which together usher audiences through the complexity of the human condition. A dark comedy for dark times unfolds at a wedding…in either a sitcom or just a disturbed mind (Deadpan). A one-night stand takes a Kafkaesque turn. Is this stranger the one? Or just something very strange (The Smell of Something to Eat)? A story of people who probably definitely love each other, as they encounter tectonic distress (Big Ones). Escaping Soviet Russia, a young woman goes on to found modern conservative philosophy before becoming the subject of her own musical theater production (Rand!). Everyone has their own journey, but we all start at our ROOTS. ”

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Thank You For Loving Me

“August and Bobbie have been broken up for weeks. Bobbie comes back to the apartment she left to pick up the last of her things. Like a manic, time-jumping fever dream- they recreate all of their highs and lows of their relationship. Only, they have differing memories and perceptions of the events. 'Thank You For Loving Me' explores still loving someone yet knowing it is time to say goodbye.”

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Town Brawl

“Inspired by the outrageous stories found on Nextdoor.com, Town Brawl is your chance to witness petty and absurd neighborly drama being settled in a no holds barred town hall meeting. If you hate your neighbors you'll love our show.”

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Daniel's Husband

“Daniel and Mitchell are the perfect couple. What isn't so perfect is that Daniel desperately longs to be married, but Mitchell doesn't believe in it. When a life-altering event throws the couple into crisis, Mitchell must use the laws of his own heart to fight the rules of law. Michael McKeever's funny, passionate and poignant play takes an unflinching look at how we choose to tie the knot — or not.”

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Bronco Billy - The Musical

“The country's going crazy; partisan politics, civil rights threatened, technology exploding. That's right, it's 1979! Somewhere in America's heartland, with more heart than sense, Bronco Billy struggles to keep his traveling Wild West show alive. But when Billy and his ragtag troupe of misfits meet Antoinette, a Manhattan heiress on-the-run, the ride gets even wilder as she turns Billy's world upside down.”

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The Taming of the Shrew

“Directed by Alicia Patterson and Rose Fliegel, the production's focus will be less about the masculine versus feminine and more about the imposed imbalance of power...to directly confront these issues and start a discussion by engaging the audience with a comedic show which portrays how power politics affect the dynamics of a dysfunctional love story.”

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Horny-The Musical

“In Horny-The Musical, we meet Emily. Social-climbing as quickly as possible away from her embarrassingly bohemian mother into the arms of the most eligible bachelor and heir to the Smitt Family Wineries, Emily is the luckiest girl in the world…until she starts to grow horns right before the wedding. Her new social circles could never accept such a thing, so she must resolve the problem before her new fiance––not to mention her new mother-in-law––finds out. Knowing her mother's sexually free nature, she wonders if its genetic and braces herself for the answer to the question: Who is my father? This simple question unleashes an avalanche of satyrs and nymphs from a different world…party-crashing her high-society wedding rehearsal and upending her carefully-constructed plans with wild debauchery and mayhem. If that weren't enough, as prudish Emily's horns continue to grow, so do new…feelings. ”

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Batter Up: My Brain on Baseball

“Brett Moore is totally enamored with baseball, and has been for 25 years. In that time, he's memorized more about baseball than anyone with access to the Internet could possibly need to know. Come watch him perform his amazing feats of baseball memory that are unnecessary, stunning, and highly entertaining and wax poetic about his favorite obsession in a unique solo show that connects patrons and the performer through the love of our national pastime! ”

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Sex With Strangers

“In 'Sex With Strangers,' failed novelist Olivia meets Ethan, a celebrated (and much younger) writer made famous by his sexcapade tell-all blog, at a snowbound bed and breakfast, and their mutual attraction quickly gets hot and heavy. As a weekend tryst develops into a long-term romance, their personal and professional lives collide. Ethan seeks legitimacy, dismissing his bad boy reputation as nothing more than an invented character. Olivia has her doubts, but craves for the literary fame Ethan can offer her. Ambition, identity and trust are in play when online personas clash with real world expectations in this smart, steamy take on modern love.”

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Captivated: You

“A warehouse sits alone at the edge of Silverlake. The story within its walls has already caused the disappearance of a dozen women and a reporter hot on the trail. Now you have come to help the reporter's friend find the truth.
Inside there may be danger. Inside there may be horror. But in the end, there will be one question for you to answer: Who is the actual monster here? Captivated is a modern retelling of the classic horror story Frankenstein. They Played Productions brings you this psychological-horror immersive production where you, the audience, become a character in a story based on the classic tale Frankenstein. YOUR decisions will matter. YOUR choices will lead to one of 45 different endings. YOU will decide who survives…and who dies.”

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A Falling Star At Buzzard's Roost

“A FALLING STAR AT BUZZARD'S ROOST follows hard-touring retro-Rockabilly band, MAUREEN & THE MERCURY 5, performing at a kitschy, Alabama Drive-Inn Diner (off-season). When Maureen plugs in her vintage Elvis mic, she triggers otherworldly powers from the famous “moon rock”, sending the band, their manager and even the diner owner back to the first days of Rock & Roll! The reluctant time-travelers find love and learn life lessons as they struggle to get back to present day — set to the music of Rockabilly Jump Swing Band Maureen & the Mercury 5 (aka M&M5) and Alt-Country Outlaws The Flutterbies.”

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The Winners at the 50th Annual 'LA Drama Critics Circle' Awards Ceremony Held at the Pasadena Playhouse

The 50th Annual LA Drama Critics Circle Awards at the Pasadena Playhouse, Monday, April 8, 2019. (Photo by Better Lemons)

The LA Drama Critics Circle (LADCC) held their 50th Annual Awards ceremony at the landmark Pasadena Playhouse where Better Lemons was in attendance to live tweet the evening's festivities and entertainment, Monday, April 8, 2019.

Wenzel Jones presided over the festivities, and Christopher Raymond served as music director with musical performances by Kristin Towers Rowles, Constance Jewell Lopez, and Zachary Ford.

There were four recipients of the 2018 Production award: Cambodian Rock Band (South Coast Repertory), Come From Away (Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre), Cry It Out (Echo Theater Company), and Sell/Buy/Date (Geffen Playhouse / Los Angeles LGBT Center).

Better Lemons' Chief Operating Officer Stephen Box (Left,) Publisher Enci Box, and Playwright & Screenwriter Steven Vlasak at the 50th Annual LA Drama Critics Circle Awards at the Pasadena Playhouse, Monday, April 8, 2019.

The Antaeus Theatre Company received the most awards, with three of its productions winning a combined seven trophies. Celebration Theatre's Cabaret took home six awards, the most awards for a single production, including one for Revival. Tom Hanks received a lead actor award for his performance as Falstaff in The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles production of Henry IV in a competitive category. 17 awards were presented in other categories with 17 productions taking home the honors.

In its inaugural this year, the Theater Angel award was presented to Yvonne Bell in recognition of her "long career devoted to fostering theater in Los Angeles ... [and] successful fundraising campaigns" to help open several cultural institutions, such as The Museum of Contemporary Art and the California Science Center.

Eight previously announced special awards were presented, including the Margaret Harford Award for sustained excellence in theater to Sacred Fools Theater Company and the Ted Schmitt Award for the world premiere of an outstanding new play to Lauren Yee for Cambodian Rock Band.

The LADCC was established in 1969  “to foster and reward merit in the American Theater and encourage theater in Los Angeles,” the LADCC site quotes from an announcement in the L.A. Times of that year.

Here is the list of award recipients as announced during Better Lemons' live coverage on Twitter:

Featured photo by Enci Box - Theatre patrons in the courtyard of the Pasadena Playhouse for the 50th Annual LA Drama Critics Circle Awards, Pasadena, California, Monday, April 8, 2019. Enci Box contributed to this story and photos.


STAGES OF DOUBT: AN ANALYSIS OF THE KENNEDY ASSASSINATION IN AMERICAN THEATRE – PART 4

To read Part 1 of this series, please click here.

To read Part 2 of this series, please click here.

To read Part 3 of this series, please click here.

One of the wilder interpretation of the history of the assassination must surely be The Life and Times of Lee Harvey Oswald Or, The Most Unnatural Murder and Dastardly Assassination of John F. Kennedy by that Bloodthirsty Villain Lee Harvey Oswald (or someone else), as represented by our best hand-carved Marionettes and life-like Mannequins of Choicest Linden Wood.

Conceived, written and directed by Vít Horejš and performed by the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre, this 2017 production at La MaMa Experimental Theater was part Howdy-Doody Show part Greek Tragedy with nine puppeteer-performers, a chorus of a dozen demonic ventriloquist dummies and a cast of over 50 Marionettes.

The whimsy one normally expects from puppetry was apparent in portraying the John Kennedy puppet a knight in shining armor, Jackie as a royal princess, and Joe Kennedy a King. Lyndon Johnson was depicted as a cook, John Connelly in cowboy regalia and Castro as a boasting spirit with an insanely long beard.

Oswald was more recognizable, garbed as seen in the infamous photo taken in the backyard of their home on Neely Street by Marina, with Oswald holding the rifle that would kill Kennedy and the pistol that was used to kill Dallas police officer J.D. Tippit some 45 minutes after the assassination.

The work touched on numerous conspiracy theories but committed to none of them, nor did it limit itself to the events at Dallas, but explored the assassinations of Bobby Kennedy and Rev. Martin Luther King as well.

The focus of the production seemed to be that as the characters on stage were manipulated by the puppeteers so destiny moved the historical figures towards their historical fates.

A assortment of musical productions have endeavored to capture the essence and consequences of the assassination. In 1983 Leslie Bricusse and Allan J. Friedman opened One Shining Moment: A musical Celebration of John F. Kennedy. Destined to be reworked often up through 2012 the multi-media production used actual footage to display the Kennedys world from the start of his presidential bid until November of '63.

In 1997 Dublin, Ireland saw the opening of JFK: A Musical Drama, music by Will Holt, with book and lyrics by Holt and Tom Sawyer. The hope was to take the show to the Great White Way, which was not an impossibility as in 1970. Holt and Gary William Friedman were the talents behind the hit show The Me Nobody Knows, one of the first rock musicals to reach Broadway.

The show opened with the widowed Jackie informing the audience that she intended to tell them the story of her husband, before the historians "get it wrong."

The musical concerned itself with the struggle of the three Kennedy sons – Joe, John and Bobby to live up to their father's ambitions for them. Later their struggle would be to break free of those ambitions. The play hints that John's fate was sealed by his decision to withdraw from Vietnam, a favorite myth put forth by the conspiracymongers.

What the CT community point to in substantiating their claim that Kennedy was ready to pull the US forces out of Vietnam is an interview with Walter Cronkite on September 2, 1963 in which Kennedy made the following statement:

“I don't think that unless a greater effort is made by the Government [of South Vietnam] to win popular support that the war can be won out there. In the final analysis, it is their war. They are the ones who have to win it or lose it.”

You'll find this quote in scores of pro-conspiracy books and hear it in the film JFK, but you are never given the complete quote, Kennedy goes on to say:

‘But I don't agree with those who say we should withdraw. That would be a great mistake. I know people don't like Americans to be engaged in this kind of an effort. Forty-seven Americans have been killed in combat with the enemy, but this is a very important struggle even though it is far away.”

Would Kennedy have pulled us out of Viet Nam if he had lived is impossible to say, but prior to his assassination there was no indication on his part that he intended to do so.

JFK: A Musical Drama offered an array of historical characters on stage other than the Kennedy clan; Bull Connor, Medger Evers, LBJ, Fidel Castro, Nixon and others. After a good deal of reworking it crossed the pond to Broadway in 1998. Critics found it so scant on dialogue many regarded it more of a operetta than a musical. The show did not find favor and soon closed, inspiring one Irish wag to quip "Can you remember where you were when they shut JFK?"

But the most distinctive as well as the most insightful musical involving the assassination must go to Stephen Sondheim's Assassins with book by John Weidman. This 1990 show was concerned not with just the story of JFK, but with the phenomenon of political violence in this country. To that end it presented the history of the men and women who assassinated a U.S. President or made the attempt. Some like John Wilkes Booth are well known to most Americans others like Charles Guiteau, Leon Czolgosz, Giuseppe Zangara and Samuel Byck are not.

The final scene takes place on the sixth floor of the Texas School Book Depository where a hesitant and undecided Lee Harvey Oswald is confronted by the ghost of Booth and other assassins who entice him slowly to the window and convince him that pulling the trigger on his Mannlicher-Carcano is the answer to all his pain.

Photo: The cast of "The Magic Bullet Theory." Credit: Amani/Wood Photograph

L.A.'s Sacred Fools Theater offered a “Dr. Strangelove” redo on the events in their 2012 black comedy The Magic Bullet Theory by Terry Tocantins and Alex Zola. This misconceived mixture of political murder and merry mayhem began with Charlie Harrelson appearing before the Warren Commission with the truth about the assassination of JFK. The father of actor Woody Harrelson, Charlie Harrelson killed US District Judge Jon H. Wood. During a six hour standoff with Texas police prior to his arrest the coked out Harrelson threatened suicide and claimed to have murdered JFK. He admitted later that the statement was made in "an effort to elongate my life." Nevertheless he became a favorite suspect for the CT community. Tocantins and Zola took a Monty Python approach to the overabundance of conspiracy theories, presenting bumbling glassy knoll shooters, a dim-witted Oswald and clichéd Mafia hit men who all but sweated ragu sauce. The punch line of this show was that JFK's shooting wasn't so much the result of a conspiracy as a boo-boo.

...to be continued