Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – May 26 - June 2, 2019

Theatrical, Music, and Dance Performance shows registered on the Better Lemons calendar!

For more shows visit our Calendar. For shows with a LemonMeter rating, visit our LemonMeter page.

Jamba Juice: The Musical

“Boy meets girl. Strawberry meets smoothie. Mix it all together, then just add love. This is a millennial musical comedy that takes place in a Jamba Juice. This parody musical has not and will not be approved by the Jamba Juice Corp.
Use discount code LEMONSAREBETTER for $2 off regular priced tickets ($10 instead of $12)”

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DROUGHT

“'DOUGHT' is a song-story for women. A musical battle cry. It is for the women that have been and the women to come. DROUGHT is a piece of art activism. Its aim as a piece is to challenge narratives in which women are subject to violence at the hands of male redemption, and how violence in our storytelling perpetuates violence in our culture...Using electronic music, digital landscapes and experimental prose we give voice to a voiceless character...Maybe it’s time we write our own mythology. It is time to end this Drought.”

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Grail Project

“Theatre Movement Bazaar continues its investigation into classic texts, this time inspired by the Arthur Legend and Grail Myth. Co-creators and company founders, Kronis + Alger, are joined by an ensemble of 9 actors to present this surprising and dynamic new work. GRAIL PROJECT guides us through the labyrinthine intrigues of Arthurian court life, then spins out into Perceval's Quest for the Holy Grail and his Squire's longing to be a knight. One of the most influential myths of the Western world is given a contemporary voice in this woven tapestry of original text, song, dance, humor, and expressive physicality.
2019 Ovation Award Winners for: Best Ensemble, Best Director, Best Choreography.

Use discount code KNIGHT to get $3 off regular priced tickets (pay $12 instead of $15)”

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SEVEN

“Seven walks the line between reality and fairy tale.
In an archetypal journey to find hope and truth in a dark time, Seven incorporates seven views of the world today through the lens of an archetypal shapeshifter. The Shapeshifter morphs from Knight to Thief, to Princess, to Avenger, to Engineer and Witch. This one-woman show tackles the problems we all face with heart and a little bit of humor, from politics to bubble baths.”

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What Am I Even Doing?

“'What Am I Even Doing?' is a world premiere solo show written and performed by Hollywood Fringe veteran Kelly Coughlin that is a confessional about your average existential crisis. Who hasn’t wondered ‘what am I doing with my life?’ ‘who am I?’ or ‘what now?’ Full of ups and downs, this comedic performance is relatable and heartfelt, taking patrons on a touching journey through figuring out adulthood and a life purpose that feels just out of our grasp. It will also examine some of the more “interesting” choices Coughlin has made along the way. And if you haven’t questioned your life choices, what are you even doing?”

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Living Between the Lines: When Every Tribe Isn't Your Tribe

“Born on the Mason-Dixon line, growing up between the Reagan and Clinton administrations, exploring his own sexuality in a time well before anyone knew what #toxicmasculinity even was, and discovering his identity as a first generation Asian-American immigrant, songwriter/actor/writer Michael de Lara discovered a single, undeniable truth: “I don’t fit in with anybody.” "Living Between the Lines" is a one-man musical/cabaret about never fitting into any group scored and performed on a loop pedal and guitar, and told through four days in the 1990s.”

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Butcher Holler Here We Come

“Butcher Holler Here We Come is a critically-acclaimed and award-winning original performance that descends into the interior landscape of the male psyche-in-crisis.- *Told in near-to-total darkness, with the use of headlamps to illuminate the actors while they weave in and around the audience, the play invites a visceral, terrifying, and emotionally-wrought forging of manhood as it actively interrogates itself, against the backdrop forces of an un-anthropomorphic world.”

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Monkey Mind

“MONKEY MIND is a family rock musical about a bright, precocious teenage girl named Lacy. After Lacy’s mother dies unexpectedly, it leaves her and her father overwhelmed with grief and financial worries. Lacy tries to help him out of his depression by trying to win a singing contest. However, she is plagued by negative thoughts, her MONKEY MIND (played by characters who sing and dance around her on stage). A teacher tries to instill the practice of “staying in the now” and controlling her out of control mind. But not until thoughts of suicide nearly kill her does Lacy appreciate her teaching. Use discount code LEMON and get $5 tickets”

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Hamlet

“A gender-bending immersive experience...Welcome to the Coronation of your new King Claudius, but all is not well when a Dead Ghost Cries for Revenge. This 90min Hamlet is a thriller set in the glorious back garden of TeaPop in North Hollywood. Please wear comfortable footwear. This is a semi-immersive event in a nontraditional space. There will be a strobe feel and fog.”

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The Color Collective

“The Color Collective is a comedy variety show featuring diversity and inclusion in everything from music and dance to stand-up and sketch comedy. Winners of a 2018 Encore Award and a 2018 Audience Choice Award from Better Lemons, The Color Collective strives to be a show for all people, where we can tackle topics that typically aren’t (or can’t) be covered by others...If In Living Color and SNL had a love-child, it’d be The Color Collective – a fast-paced hour-long sketch/variety show, highlighting diverse – and hilarious – players from a wide spectrum of cultural backgrounds.”

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NINE WINNING ONE-ACTS

“The Group Rep presents Nine Winning One-Acts play festival, fresh world premiere short plays chosen from more than 250 entries from around the world. The event is co-produced by Belinda Howell and Helen O’Brien for the Group Rep. All nine plays will be performed as one program, twice a week for six weeks, running June 8 through July 14. Saturdays at 4:00 pm. Sundays at 7:00 pm. Running time: 2 hours with one intermission. Warnings: Mature subject matter – suicide, adultery, prop gun, etc.”

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Blindsided

“Suicide is a difficult subject to tackle on stage, but comedian and character performer Jeannette Rizzi faces it head-on in her acclaimed solo production, Blindsided...As raw as it is funny, Blindsided is a personal journey about how Rizzi — at the age of 17 — sees her life dive into a tailspin after the suicide of her best friend Katie. Despite being the daughter of a former monk and former nun (yes, really), Rizzi nonetheless struggles to find her spiritual and emotional compass, while facing off against her debilitating anxiety and depression. Proceeds from her Hollywood Fringe performances will be donated to Teen Line, a Los Angeles-based hotline where teens can reach out to trained teen volunteers for guidance and support. To date, Rizzi has helped raise over $10,000 for various mental health services and initiatives...Blindsided is a product of Jeannette’s commitment to live, as well as her pledge to helping others who battle with their own raison d’etre.”

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No Child Left Behind

“The year is 1992 and South Africa is changing. And with terrorist Nelson Mandela being released from prison, who can tell if it’s for the best. But for one History teacher who grew up during Apartheid, making it through the first day of the school year, and her all white class being racially desegregated, is all the history she needs for one day. *Show is FREE with ticket reservation!!!!”

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My Trans Wife

“This is a true story of transition, written by, and featuring, the two women who are living it: Mara a trans woman, lived as male most of her life. Mimi, a straight ciswoman, was raised in a traditional Catholic family. They met, fell in love and got married. And everything changed. For both of them. 'My Trans Wife' is a journey through the pain, joys and laughter of their relationship, as Mara struggles with her gender identity and Mimi struggles with letting go of long-held beliefs enough to acknowledge that she could love someone like Mara...Use discount code BL and get $2 off regular priced tickets...June 9 and June 14 performances are "pay what you can." Ticket buyers for these two shows can set their own prices, although there is a suggested price of $12...[for]all ticket buyers, not just Better Lemons readers.

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Boxing Your Demons

“An immersive, participatory, dark comedy from Crooked Grin Productions (2x previous winner of both “Best of Fringe” and “Fringe Encore Award”) comes to the Hollywood Fringe Festival this June! Created by Fringe veteran Matt Soson, Boxing Your Demons is a surreal workout/wellness program led by health and fitness influencers Guy and Sheila Larpen (with their biggest fan / personal assistant, Peter) for an audience of twenty participants. Through a series of proprietary steps involving everything from cardio to smoothies, the Larpens show how to resolve and/or seal away the painful and complex conflicts of hypocrisy and cognitive dissonance inherent to modern American life in just 70 minutes!
This intimate, participatory workshop involves movement and speech from the performers and requests some physical participation from the audience in turn...Cute fitness attire, a smartphone, and personal chakra crystals recommended”

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A CABARET LINE Two Night Fundraiser for Group Rep 6/11 & 6/12

“The Group Rep presents A Cabaret Line, a Two Night Only! fun fundraiser cabaret show, directed and hosted by Bruce Kimmel, with music direction by Richard Allen, produced by Doug Haverty, June 11 and June 12 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood, California. A Cabaret Line features songs from The Great American Songbook, classic musical theatre, and rare songs from legendary flop shows performed in cabaret style by members of the Group Rep and special musical theatre guests including Kay Cole (original cast member Broadway’s A Chorus Line).”

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Macbeth

“Brace yourself for Shakespeare's wicked and bloody tragedy coming this June. One fateful decision thrusts Macbeth, a Scottish general, and his wife into a world of shadows and horror that threatens to tear their marriage and lives to pieces. Explore the corruptive side of ambition, and the line between kingship and tyranny. We look forward to plunging you into their world of shadows and taking you on the Bard's darkest of hell-rides.”

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Tabletop the Musical

“As part of our ‘Nerdy Theater’ series MB stage Creative Producers, David Evan Stolworthy and Jared Tyrel Pixler have begun work on the long term development of Tabletop (a new musical)...a universal story that is nothing short of a wish spell. ...Karen runs the local game store where Eric and his friends have gathered every week for years to play their favorite tabletop roleplaying game. His childhood friends Luke (the paladin) and Valarie (the ranger), the group’s strategist and a regular tabletop game fanatic Ken (the wizard), and his little sister Sarah (the fighter) begin their next adventure in Vaelrun while Eric’s wife, Emily, who used to play the group’s druid, is pregnant and out “attending her grove”. Everything starts to change when Brandon, Valerie’s new boyfriend, joins the group. While these friends can’t seem to pull themselves away long enough to handle their real lives, Karen watches on and wishes for an escape. Tabletop explores the way we use games to disconnect from our own realities by following the weekly fantasy adventures of these five friends.”

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Monsters of Man: A Supernatural Anthology

“'No man chases evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks' –Mary Shelley. Sometimes the things we fear are not always the creatures that go bump in the night. The Monsters of Man: A Supernatural Anthology combines an element of the every day with a splash of the supernatural. A journey through the stories and lives of individuals who will show that sometimes the most terrifying monsters of all are the ones we create ourselves.”

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CATHARSIS

“CATHARSIS is a solo performance created to process one's personal journey towards self-recognition amidst the (de)stabilizing effects of adoption. The show broadly explores the dynamic relationship between healing, movement, and visibility as Megh negotiates what it means to take space and be vulnerable as a Black femme. Megh invites audiences to occupy her [head]space as she uses movement, poetry, and sound to remember her histories and create her future.”

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Free Concert on the Lawn: Bernie Pearl Blues Band with Barbara Morrison

“Rancho Los Cerritos is back with its popular free summer concert this summer, with music on the fourth Sunday of the month during July and August. The July 28th concert features The Bernie Pearl Blues Band with Barbara Morrison. The site opens at 5 p.m. for pre-concert picnicking. Concerts run from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Guests can bring blankets or lawn chairs. Pets are not allowed.”

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Free Concert on the Lawn: The Band of the California Battalion

“Rancho Los Cerritos is back with its popular free summer concert series, with music on the fourth Sunday of the month during July and August. The August 25th concert features The Band of the California Battalion. The site opens at 5 p.m. for pre-concert picnicking. Concerts run from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Guests can bring blankets or lawn chairs. Pets are not allowed. ”

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Horny! the Musical

“Satyrs and nymphs crash the party when a woman sprouts horns right before her high-society wedding. As the horns grow, so do new...feelings. An ancient tale for modern times. Celebrating positive female sexuality in ancient Greek theater tradition.”

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Cabaret Night at Little Fish Theatre

“A cabaret night where your favorite Little Fish Theatre Company Members sing and act their favorite musical theatre songs in a variety show that is sure to delight!”

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A Night Out by Harold Pinter

“Pinter's early dark comedy about Albert, an introverted insurance firm employee still living with his co-dependent mother in South London...After his office buddies convince him to come to the firm's office party, a dire case of mistaken identity will shift Albert's life into a very disturbing direction. Originally written as a teleplay for B.B.C and Armchair Theater.”

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Naughty with a Band

“Celebrated actress and singer Pamela Shaw gets naughtier than ever with her fun, provocative, musically eclectic new show 'Naughty with a Band.' Direct from a critically acclaimed run in Australia, England, and the Edinburgh and Adelaide Fringe Festivals, this Los Angeles premiere is a musical mélange of pop, blues, and rock with a live band. Conceived and created by Shaw, this extraordinarily funny and touching show captures her journey from being a well-bred New York child doing everything “right”, to stepping into her own power and freedom as a woman...Inspired by Matilda, Roald Dahl’s book...'Naughty with a Band' delivers a mix of comedy, cabaret, dance, music, songs and poignancy from the irrepressible Shaw in a polished, professional and unflappable performance, rich in energy and sensuality...'Naughty with a Band' was first performed as 'Naughty for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival' in 2017. It played several festivals in Europe, had a month-long season at the Adelaide Cabaret Fringe Festival 2018, and the first version debuted in December 2018 in Sydney. Naughty with a Band is just finishing up a month-long run as the inaugural production at the new Cobbstar Live club in Sydney.”

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"Hello America" The Riveting New Play

“'Hello America' (Written by Brandon Rainey) is a riveting production that paints the picture of being a black man in America. These men take you on a hysterical but emotional journey of masculinity, spirituality, fatherhood, sexuality, love, lust & identity through the use of creative storytelling, monologue, audience interaction, film & music.”

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Bestseller

“A zany comic romp by internationally acclaimed playwright Peter Quilter (Glorious!, End of the Rainbow) about writers, how they write, the stories they tell and the secrets they keep. When three young novelists gather at an isolated cottage for a writer’s retreat, their hilarious books jump off the page and onto the stage.”

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Sucker Punch

“In the red corner: Leon Davidson – black British champ or Uncle Tom? In the blue corner: Troy Augustus – international powerhouse or naive cash cow? Having spent their youth in the same London boxing gym vying for the favoritism of an inspirational, foul-mouthed trainer, two former friends step into the ring and face up to who they are. By turns tender, shocking and funny, Sucker Punch asks if the right battles have been fought, let alone won. A SITE-SPECIFIC EXPERIENCE. West Coast premiere.”

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It's Personal: Los Angeles

“'It's Personal' is a collection of solo performances written and performed by the cast. Join us as we share truthful stories about Los Angeles and what it means to us! Every show, It's Personal raises money for a local charity that is near & dear to our hearts. We are raising money for Inner-City Arts this month. Help us give back to our community! @itspersonalonstage Use discount code PersonalLemons and get $5 off regular priced tickets.”

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Ready Steady Yeti Go

“Rogue Machine's 12th Season Begins in Association with the National New Play Network by presenting the Rolling World Premiere of David Jacobi's 'Ready Steady Yeti Go'...In the aftermath of a hate crime, 7th grader Goon befriends Carly, one of the victims. Their youthful romance blossoms. As the town organizes 'The Assembly to End Racism Forever,' the two must navigate the pitfalls of falling in love while dealing with the town's prying eyes, especially being under the scrutiny of Wikipedia Jones, the crime-solving son of the Chief of Police. Bad parental advice and ill-informed gestures of kindness create a white guilt perfect storm, threatening to push the course of true love down a very rocky road. This ironic modern comedy takes place in the present. Unfortunately.”

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Extraordinary Aliens

“'Extraordinary Aliens: The Play' is the incredible story of Fabianna - a foreign actress whose dream is to work in the United States. Unfortunately, dreams are a little harder to achieve once you have to worry about types of visas, deadlines, immigration fees and an attorney who seems more messed up than you. Fabianna will soon find that trouble are always around the corner - but she might find herself not completely alone along the way. The Play is based on true events”

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American Stranger the Musical

“American Stranger is the story of three siblings, two of whom are learning to understand the third who is transitioning from their brother to their sister, now known as Mary. Rejection and intolerance plagues Mary— from society and from her parents who have disowned her. However, it is the loss of her beloved girlfriend, Dionne, that haunts her the most. After Mary is taken in by her sisters in Hollywood, Brooke and Janet, she tries to pursue her artistic aspirations by selling her paintings on the streets. There, she befriends a homeless man named Jake and a transgender woman named Shannon. The streets of Hollywood become their backdrop as Mary slowly begins to understand more about herself and her new world. However, one night she is confronted by an intolerant and violent passerby. America’s growing cultural divide has made Mary a stranger in her own country. American Stranger features the acoustic versions of the songs of Laura Espinoza & Lunden Reign.”

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🍋


Now Registered on the Better Lemons Calendar – May 20 - 26, 2019

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

HISHI-KEN 〜 THE PATH OF SOUL TRANSCENDENCE〜

“The SAMURAI kills with his sword for the first time. His values broke away when he faced to the reality at the field of death." What am I?" "Why do I take my sword for? " ''What is 義/Gi?'' He gets the greatest sword after struggling to over come his weakness, what is the greatest sword? This play asks us what is the true meaning of a life. The audience will experience his journey of becoming the real SAMURAI.”

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Near Dawn

“NEAR DAWN” is a 45-minute solo play inspired by a true event, with its details based on the tradition and history of rural China in the early 1980s.”

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The Last Croissant

“Imogen and Frederick have come to this national park on their 24th anniversary in a desperate attempt to rekindle their passion. Frederick, who is played by a femme-identifying actor, is looking forward to the perfect anniversary: hiking the park’s trails, wading in the lake, and, most importantly, tracking the whereabouts of a particular bird: the Dickinson Blue-Breasted Warbler. But for Imogen, who is played by a masc-identifying actor, the woods are an entirely undesirable and ultimately unromantic place to spend an anniversary. In the very same campsite, October has arrived for a family campout to find that no one else in her family has shown up. Rather than go home, she decides to use this time to tackle the personal demons she has been running from. Meanwhile, a pair of camp hosts, Mumbo & Jumbo, are working with Ranger Dave to find the party responsible for a string of apparent campsite robberies. A true ensemble play, The Last Croissant employs magical realism, clowning, and whimsy to tell the story of nine crowded campers who hope to find what they’re looking for in the woods. .”

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Waiting

“The world has become numb to unspeakable tragedies… but how does one stay numb when terror strikes so close to home? New Concepts Theatre Company brings a new story to the stage at the Lounge Theatre this June. Winners of last year’s Hollywood Encore Producers’ Award, playwright, Nicholas De Los Santos and producer, John Mulhern, are excited to announce WAITING as their next production, presented as part of the 2019 Hollywood Fringe Festival. Tickets go on sale, May 1st. Don’t miss a chance to see the world premiere of this ensemble theatre piece, which dives into the world’s new normal: mass casualty incidents.”

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The Circle Table

“The Circle Table” explores vignettes threading characters and relationships via FaceTime calls and asks: how does digital communication hamper or enhance love, family, depression, self-exploration and fulfillment?. A formerly dorky actor reconnects with a high school crush. A friend group falters when their pal goes to a different college. That pal is clinically depressed. An aspiring fashion blogger tries not to bum out her mother. A temporarily long-distance couple flubs FaceTime sex.”

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THE HUMAN[OID] EXPERIENCE

“To begin her first novel, a cynical writer must resist the temptation to fill the void left by the nonsensical death of her admired brother. However, her only writing apparatus is her indentured Humanoid—a personal robot stocked with Netflix, porn, and existential angst.”

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Moral Fixation (or Boys Will Be Boys)

“Moral Fixation is a dark comedy that tracks Caleb and Claire as they learn what it means to be sober, grown up people in a time when morals and ideals seem to be culturally taboo. When Claire discovers that Caleb dallied with sex workers in the past, she becomes fixated on the symbolism of his actions and struggles with whether or not they define his character. And it sure would be a lot less confusing if she didn’t have her own closeted skeletons. With the help of a relative and friends, they debate whether someone deserves to be judged by the actions of their past. A dark comedy with (a wounded) heart. Use discount code BTRLMN for 10% off regular ticket prices.”

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Dancing Lessons

“A socially awkward young man asks his neighbor, a Broadway dancer whose career has been sidelined by an injury, to teach him enough dance moves so he can survive an appearance at an awards dinner. What follows is a bumpy road of self-discovery in this sweetly witty and touching romantic comedy!”

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Happy Hour

“'HAPPY HOUR' is an immersive sketch comedy in 60 minutes or less! A wild sketch show that takes the audience on a crazy roller coaster ride of hilarious ensemble sketches! Smelly yoga classes, clones, funeral cake, a bar dj and a roller coaster are just a few of the tricks that are up the sleeve of this show! 'Happy Hour' is the newest immersive sketch show from fringe veteran Nina Childs, who wrote, directed and produced the 2017 hit Fringe show, Hotcombs, Homegirls,and Homicides. This time the boundaries of the immersive elements have been pushed even further with several delights that you can taste, touch,hear and smell! See you at Happy Hour where the show is happening all around you!”

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Red, White, Black & Blue

“In 'Drowning,' recently retired Army Veteran Matthew struggles with integration back into society, the results of a recent job interview and the relationship with his little daughter, who his ex-wife is questioning whether to allow him to see or not. Will these events take him further down an approaching hole that has no escape?
'Black n Blue' see’s Tom struggling with the fallout of the most devastating event in his marriage, and whether the rift between him and his wife can be repaired. Is there any hope that their love is stronger than his pride.”

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The Masher

“Grace Jasmine's new full-length black comedy throws the audience head-first into a surreal world of #MeToo "what ifs." A female-centric play with a strong LGBTQ lead, The Masher explores the "new now"-a society where the rules of due process are gone, and something gruesome lies beneath the unassuming surface at a mundane factory job. Three totally different women, brought together by fate, discover a hidden malevolent secret and take justice into their own hands. The Masher uses grim humor to deliver an important message and explore a fantasy world that makes us ask questions about our own. What would we do to defend a friend, or a lover? How would we set wrongs right if every rule we took for granted was suddenly gone? The story ricochets between comedy and tragedy and drives home the importance of women protecting one another, and of knowing when to protect ourselves.”

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UPROOTED

“Buckle your seat belts as the creatures of Vanessa’s inner world take you on the flight of her life! A disturbance triggers violent weather in Vanessa’s inner world, endangering matriarch Elda, the elder tree, the voice of Vanessa’s wisdom. Elda leads Vanessa’s inner creatures on a journey to remind Vanessa of her strength. Uprooted eight times for her father’s career, Vanessa struggled to find the place she calls home. At five years old she embraced Hong Kong as her home where her family thrived on a magical adventure. But when her Dad accepts a job in Buffalo, NY, the home Vanessa knew disappears...Her mother’s depression weighs on Vanessa’s young heart as she faces unexpected turbulence at her middle school...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’d get to choose where home is. But is home a place or a feeling?...Uprooted is a young woman’s resilient story of growing into the strong, rooted woman she is meant to be.”

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Internal

“When the zombie apocalypse hits, the truest danger will not come from outside.
From They Played Productions (creators of last year’s immersive hit “God: the Apologies Tour” and HFF16’s horror musical “Nothing Bad”) comes a brand-new immersive horror tale that you will experience entirely by yourself. Alone on the streets of Hollywood, you will face a darkness that may devour you whole. A darkness that will give you nowhere to turn as it’s all happening directly…to…you. Note: This is a horror immersive experience for a solo audience on the streets of Hollywood. It is intended for audiences 18+ only. Audiences will need to be able to listen to audio and traverse a sidewalk for 30-40 minutes for this particular production.”

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(mostly)musicals: BODY Language

“It's time to FACE the music... (mostly)musicals is BACK on June 3, with Gregory Nabours at the piano, the open mic afterparty hosted by Mark Jacobson, and lots of awesome performers singing songs about anatomy! You'll be HEAD over HEELS for returning favorites including Michael-Leon Wooley (B'way: LITTLE SHOP, film: THE PRINCESS & THE FROG, TV: "Grace & Frankie"), Amanda Kruger (UMPO Series at Rockwell), Bella Hicks (BRONCO BILLY world premiere), Cornelius Jones Jr (RAGTIME at Pasadena Playhouse), Erica Hanrahan-Ball (SWEENEY TODD at South Coast Repertory), James Olivas (UCLA's STEEL PIER), Kelley Dorney (SINGING IN THE RAIN at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts), Kristina Weston (JERSEY BOYS), and Will Collyer - and open your HEART to exciting first-timers including Bryce Charles (RAGTIME at Pasadena Playhouse), Dino Nicandros (3-D Theatricals' THE SECRET GARDEN), Kevin Bailey (B'way THE LION KING), Leslie Rubino (LIZZIE at Color and Light Theatre Ensemble), and Michael Noah Levine (FUGITIVE SONGS at 2Cents Theatre Group)! We will also feature a sneak peek at The 2nd Annual Trump Family Special featuring TV, film, and B'way star Mary Birdsong with writer Tor Hyams! Keep your EYES open and your EAR to the ground... we'll have more to announce soon!”

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BACCALAUREATE

“... “Baccalaureate” is an autobiographical solo show focusing on one summer in the life of Saurabh Kikani, who at the age of 16 was invited to Oxford University to participate in a program for the world’s top high school students. He was also the shyest, most awkward teen in the world. Experiencing first love, bullies, and intense classes, he was in over his head. But a viewing of that summer’s hit movie, Mission:Impossible starring Tom Cruise, changed his life. Inspiring Saurabh and his nerdy friends to overcome their fears, they attempted to pull off the biggest “heist” they could conceive of – break curfew, escape out of Oxford, and take the Chunnel to spend a day in Paris. This is a coming-of-age story with jokes…and espionage.”

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Supportive White Parents

“When an Asian girl tells her parents that she doesn’t want to be a doctor anymore, she wishes on a shooting star for supportive white parents. Running time: 30 minutes.”

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The Ruffian on the Stair

“Sex. Murder. Goldfish. Set in 1964 London, this madcap gem by legendary playwright Joe Orton makes for a dangerous evening of naughty hilarity.”

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Jessie's Messy Mind

“Jessie’s Messy Mind was created by artist, activist and mother, Jessie Knowles. It brings the audience inside the world of her experiences with bipolar and schizophrenia using authentic life stories, original music, humor and hope. You'll follow Jessie as she searches for the truth about herself using the characters that makes up her inner experience, watch as Jessie goes through the rise and fall of hypo-manic love, listen as Jessie communicates with the voices in her head, and learn what really happens as she tries to express the thought process of an actual delusional state. With wild humor and enduring positivity, Jessie opens the door to a part of herself that most people still keep hidden. Jessie has struggled with the way our culture addresses and talks about mental health. She hopes that Jessie’s Messy Mind encourages people to change the way they look at their own journey and begin to talk about mental health in a new way.”

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SELFIE: Making It About Me / A Minnie Riperton Cabaret Revue

“SELFIE is first a cabaret revue of eclectic 70s chanteuse, Minnie Riperton’s, music (“Lovin’ You,” “Memory Lane”) that spans the genres of soul, funk, folk and rock. Second, it’s a celebration of the ego of singer/songwriter, Aisha Kasmir, and her fight to play any part she wants and be seen in a white-washed world. SELFIE takes you on a lighthearted, humorous and uplifting trip through self-discovery – self-doubt, self-destruction, self-esteem, self-confidence, and self-actualization.”

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45 Milligrams

“With a run time of only 25 minutes, 45 Milligrams is a hyper-short one act that symbolically examines anxiety and depression and the different ways we cope with trauma. The show centers on Joey and Denny, two roommates in a mental institution fixated on a terrifying and silent man who may or may not be real. With occasional input from their doctor, the two struggle to make sense of this mysterious third roommate through verbal sparring and physical violence. What results is a theatrical fever dream that ranges from absurdly comedic to deeply disturbing.”

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Book of Days

“Staged reading of a play by Lanford Wilson. Directed by Christian Lebano. Book of Days is about the people of a small Missouri town confronted by a violent death and forced to reconsider the truths they thought they knew. When the owner of the cheese plant dies mysteriously in a hunting accident, Ruth, his bookkeeper, suspects murder. Cast as Joan of Arc in a local production of Shaw's St. Joan, Ruth takes on the attributes of her fictional character and launches into a one-woman campaign to see justice done.”

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Four Clowns Presents: Shakedown at the Dusty Spur!

“Winner of 7 Hollywood Fringe Awards, Four Clowns makes their triumphant return with Shakedown at the Dusty Spur! They’re dishing out their signature fare of physical comedy, this time with an old western twist. The Dusty Spur Saloon is in danger! The dastardly Dallas Devereaux is threatening to shut it down. Marybeth and Maybelline Maynard have no recourse but to hire a good ol’ fashioned gunslinger to help protect their bar. Will they succeed? Or will Dallas and his henchman be too formidable to foil? It’s a rootin’ tootin’ cowboy shootin’ romp of a show that will have you cheering the heroes, booing the villains, and laughing your chaps off! ”

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Tell Me About Your Daddy

“A modern Freud makes an irreverent analysis of ’The Gay’ (deconstructing four archetypes, tribalism, & internalized homophobia) while prescribing the need to label others as a way of self-identity–until his experiment spins wildly out of control! ‘Tell Me About Your Daddy’ follows the stories of the sweet and naïve Tim the Twink, ex-Mormon gogo boy Jared the Jock, the gregarious drag queen Luscious, and the secretive and affluent Sugar Daddy Don as they struggle with the notion that ‘you are worth only as much as what others think they can get from you’. Playful, thought-provoking and unapologetically sassy!!! Plus some penis jokes. A lot of penis jokes.”

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Public Domain: The Musical

“The characters of nearly every beloved animated movie musical (from “The Little Mermaid” to “The Lion King” to “Frozen”) have not always been under the same house of mouse: they began in fairy tales and stories from the public domain.
But what about the public domain characters who have never appeared in an animated movie? In “Public Domain: The Musical,” characters from the bottom of the barrel audition with original songs to show why they deserve to have their own time in the spotlight.”

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Loot

“A bank heist, a corpse and a crazy cast of characters. Joe Orton’s darkly comic masterpiece continues to shock and delight over five decades later. Two young friends, Hal and Dennis, rob a bank next to a funeral parlor… and what safer place to hide the money than in the coffin of Hal’s recently deceased Mum? But with the coffin full up, there’s no room for the corpse, which keeps reappearing at the most inopportune times — especially when the police inspector comes calling. Nothing is safe from Orton’s savage wit, whose targets include religion, social attitudes towards death, police brutality and corruption, and everything in between.”

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Challenge Accepted - a one man motivational musical

“[This] one-hour, family-friendly motivational musical stars its writer and director Carlos Heredia. The one-man show features a musician and actor who recounts his past successes and failures — including his transition to fatherhood and battle with depression — to evaluate where he is today. This toe-tapping family friendly musical is a motivational masterpiece that will talk to your soul, and leave you with a feeling that yes, it is possible. Challenge Accepted first premiered as a semi-staged reading in the 2019 Greensboro Fringe Festival, and has been performed at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in NYC. ”

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CREDITORS BY AUGUST STRINDBERG

“Gustav befriends Adolph whom he really wishes to physiologically disassemble because Gustav has ulterior motives that unfold like a snake slowly eating its prey; it’s anything but a clean kill, though. Gustav claims he can help Adolph with some developing concerns growing worse in Adolph’s life because Gustav “was once as weak” as him, which solidifies the trust Adolph eventually finds in this stranger whom he now needs to put his life back in order as a real man would ... What connects Gustav and Adolph … what originally peaked Gustav’s interest in this fragile man he doesn’t know? Tekla, Adolph’s current wife and Gustav’s ex-lover. In truth, this is one of the most toxic love triangles in all of modern theatre with enough strange notions of masculinity, femininity and gender expectations to make a modern audience nausea ... Cynicism is salvation for Strindberg in Creditors, burning down the foundation and exposing our worst angels is how a cynic goes about reconstructing a soul from the ashes: plant a seed of doubt in the mind of a weak individual and watch it grow into a fatal existential crises, and then see how his or her lover feels about the beloved once bewitched by malevolence.”

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Lord of the Lies

“One man’s journey to the edge of the Flat Earth and back. James Kirkland is looking for the truth in a world saturated with lies. His curiosity about the nature of the cosmos has led him down many rabbit holes: through the looking glass of hallucinogens, inside an ayahuasca sex cult and deep into the muck and mire of Youtube conspiracy videos. But in his search for answers he only discovers more questions. Like: Can you become addicted to having your mind blown? If we are spinning at 1000 miles an hour why can’t we feel it? Where [in] hell was the damn curve? How do you date on the flat, still plane(t)? Can a person who ‘trusts no one’ find that love is out there? Familial relationships become strained to the point that, for James, the only way out of The Flat Earth that he finds himself on, is by pushing himself all the way to the edge. A one person show about one man who tries to save his very soul, before he succumbs to the LORD OF THE LIE.”

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Pit of Goblins

“A madcap multi-media solo show about Wayne, an optimistic serial killer who, in order to avoid capture by a local sheriff, must feed his victims to a pit of goblins in the woods. ”

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The Wedding Singer

“It’s 1985 and rock star wannabe Robbie Hart is New Jersey’s favorite wedding singer. He’s the life of the party until his own fiancée leaves him at the altar. Shot through the heart, Robbie vows to make every wedding as disastrous as his own. Enter Julia, a winsome waitress who wins his affection. But as luck would have it, Julia is about to be married to a Wall Street shark and unless Robbie can pull off the performance of a decade, the girl of his dreams will be gone forever. With an electrifying pop score that pays loving homage to the 1980s, 'The Wedding Singer' takes us back to a time when hair was big, greed was good, collars were up, and a wedding singer was the coolest guy in the room.”

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Keith Moon: The Real Me

“'Keith Moon: The Real Me' explodes on the stage with the turmoil and excitement of the wildest drummer in rock and roll. A living legend during his lifetime, Keith Moon still stands as the pinnacle of rock-star extremism—both in life and music. The play explores the mind of Keith Moon, as he attempts to save himself from the unbearable burden of living up (or down) to his self-created legend of ‘Moon the Loon'. As Keith attempts to save himself, he takes the audience on a journey through his early struggles, his joining The Who, and their rise as one of the world’s greatest rock bands. By the show’s end, the audience intimately knows the man behind the myth—his acute vulnerability and insecurity, and his struggle to escape the ever-looming rock and roll crash landing.”

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Two Girls, One Mic

“Straight up stand-up from two of L.A.'s hottest comics, Tabitha Brownstone and Joy Gohring. Joy and Tabitha are two brilliant, gorgeous, and humble women who will share their comedic tales of life in Los Angeles, cats, dating, and traveling the world.”

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Combined Artform's Pick of the Fringe

“Sixth smash year! Can’t decide which shows to see? Looking for expert advice to weed through the hundreds of shows at the Hollywood Fringe Festival? Are you looking to get experience of all this Fringe Madness, but don’t have the time? Check out Combined Artform’s Pick of the Fringe, to provide you with a taster show, featuring the best of the Fringe. Our experienced, independent judges see tons of productions across every genre then we choose, and present highlights from, 5 of the best shows at each of the Pick of the Fringe performances. Come see what all the buzz is about!”

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Movies at the Montalban

“The Montalbán, a theatre in Hollywood with a rich history, announces its June screening schedule for its popular Rooftop Movies at The Montalbán. In addition, the venue is also rolling out a new creative curation initiative: weekly themed 'Binge Weeks' for the rest of the season. The venue will also host pop-up screenings during holidays and special rooftop events between November and the first quarter of 2020. Rooftop screenings will run five nights per week—now scheduled most Wednesdays through Sundays—with double features screening on certain weekends. Doors open at 6:00pm and films start screening 10 minutes after sunset … The rooftop screening experience is meant to foster a date-night atmosphere so most nights are meant for guests who are 18-years of age or older....Posted screenings may be subject to rescheduling on certain occasions for special public or private events, so please always check the online calendar athttps://www.themontalban.com/rooftopmovies ...Please be advised that access to the 4th floor roof is via an outside staircase ONLY. There is no ADA-compliant access (yet) since this 90+ year old theater does not have an elevator at this time.”

"Jawbreaker"

“Three of the most popular girls at Reagan High accidentally kill the prom queen with a jawbreaker when a kidnapping goes horribly wrong.”

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"500 Days of Summer" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“An offbeat romantic comedy about a woman who doesn't believe true love exists, and the young man who falls for her. ”

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"3 Idiotas" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“A group of friends embark on a fun adventure determined to find a college roommate who disappeared without a trace on graduation day. ”

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"The Noble Family" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Three spoiled children who are cut off from their family fortune and forced to do the unthinkable - get a job.”

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"No Manches Frida" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Zequi, a recently released bank robber who goes to recover stolen money buried by his ditzy accomplice before going to jail.”

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"Un Gallo Con Muchos Huevos" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Toto, a young chick born the run of the litter, rises to the occasion when a rancher threatens his home and his family.”

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"Frida" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“A biography of artist Frida Kahlo, who channeled the pain of a crippling injury and her tempestuous marriage into her work.”

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"Set It Off" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Desperation drives four inner-city women to bank robbery in Los Angeles, then they start mistrusting each other.”

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"Do It Like An Hombre (Hazlo Como Hombre)" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Raúl, Eduardo and Santiago have led a happy and "straight" life since their childhood, until, one day, Santiago confesses to them that he is gay. ”

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"La Mission" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“A single-parent ex-con in a tough, minority neighborhood finds his personal values challenged when he discovers his son is gay.”

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"Billy Elliot" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“A talented young boy becomes torn between his unexpected love of dance and the disintegration of his family. ”

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"Four Weddings and a Funeral" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Over the course of five social occasions, a committed bachelor must consider the notion that he may have discovered love.”

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"Bridesmaids" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Competition between the maid of honor and a bridesmaid, over who is the bride's best friend, threatens to upend the life of an out-of-work pastry chef. ”

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"Mamma Mia!" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“The story of a bride-to-be trying to find her real father told using hit songs by the popular 1970s group ABBA.”

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"West Side Story" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Two youngsters from rival New York City gangs fall in love, but tensions between their respective friends build toward tragedy.” A multiple Oscar-winning classic contemporary (of the time) re-telling of Shakespeare's Romeo & Juliet, directed by Robert Wise, with Broadway's Jerome Robbins' iconic award-winning choreography.

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"La La Land" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“While navigating their careers in Los Angeles, a pianist and an actress fall in love while attempting to reconcile their aspirations for the future.” An homage to classic Hollywood musicals.

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"Beauty and the Beast (Live Action)" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“A selfish prince is cursed to become a monster for the rest of his life, unless he learns to fall in love with a beautiful young woman he keeps prisoner. ”

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"Hairspray" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Tracy Turnblad teaches 1962 Baltimore a thing or two about integration after landing a spot on a local TV dance show.”

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"The Hunt for Red October" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“In November 1984, the Soviet Union's best submarine Captain in their newest sub violates orders and heads for the U.S. Is he trying to defect or to start a war? ”

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"Armageddon" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“After discovering that an asteroid the size of Texas is going to impact Earth in less than a month, N.A.S.A. recruits a misfit team of deep core drillers to save the planet.”

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"Top Gun" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

Feel the need for speed. “As students at the United States Navy's elite fighter weapons school compete to be best in the class, one daring young pilot learns a few things from a civilian instructor that are not taught in the classroom.”

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"Tropic Thunder" Screening @ Rooftop Movies at the Montalbán

“Through a series of freak occurrences, a group of actors shooting a big-budget war movie are forced to become the soldiers they are portraying. ”

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Classic Movie Musicals Series at the Sierra Madre Playhouse

“During the run of its live stage musical 'Dames at Sea,' itself an homage to the optimistic movie musicals of the 1930s and 1940s, the Sierra Madre Playhouse will offer a series of screenings of classic movie musicals. The series is curated by Rich Procter, an expert in the history of American cinema and a Sierra Madre Playhouse board member. Prior to each screening, Mr. Procter will comment on an aspect of this glorious film genre, the American musical of the 30s and 40s, and cast members of Dames at Sea will sing a live musical number.”

42nd Street - Classic Movie Musicals Series at the Sierra Madre Playhouse

“['42nd Street' stars] Ruby Keeler, Warner Baxter, Dick Powell, Ginger Rogers, Bebe Daniels, George Brent. Peggy’s rise from showgirl to star is the stuff of show business dreams. '42nd Street' is full of crowd-pleasing tap dances, popular musical theatre standards, and show-stopping ensemble production numbers.”

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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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Now registered this week on the Better Lemons Calendar through July 1, 2018

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

Visit our Wakelet for more stories: https://wakelet.com/@BetterLemons


PODCAST: An interview with Ben Benjamins of "Buzz'd Out! Live!"

An interview with Ben Benjamins, show creator, animator, and host of "Buzz'd Out! Live!", an immersive one-hour game show at the Studio/Stage for the Hollywood Fringe Festival and at Pasadena Media, with extended shows this weekend at the Studio/Stage Friday, July 6, 2018, at 9 p.m. and Sunday, July 8, 2018, at 7 p.m.
Inspired by multiple game shows, "Buzz'd Out! Live!" premiered for the Hollywood Fringe Festival at Studio/Stage and nominated for Best Immersive.



Once There Was a Hobgoblin

The Hobgoblin Playhouse behind the gate. Photo by Evan Lorenzetti

"Those that Hobgoblin call you, and sweet Puck,
You do their work, and they shall have good luck."
Midsummer Nights Dream, Act 2, Sc 1

You can walk right by a time capsule without even realizing it, especially if you believe the cliche that Los Angeles has no history at all. Hidden behind a roll-up gate on a stretch of Hollywood Boulevard congested by tourists, there is a 102-year-old blackbox theater.

It looks nothing like the grand old movie palaces on Broadway in downtown Los Angeles. There is no gothic facade or grand marque; the space is neighbored by tattoo parlors and shops selling chintzy bric a bric.

The space inside is still in remarkably good condition, however, and it is filled with theatrical props and tokens from several eras. It has housed countless productions through the years, including musicals like Little Shop of Horrors and Avenue Q, as well as more off-center shows like Fluffers: Give you Hard Comedy or All About Walken, which brought an army of Christopher Walken impersonators to the stage.

And sometime later this year or maybe next, it will be torn down.

But a spirit will take over the place for a little while before it goes to make room for a breezeway of all things. Mischievous by nature, this spirit, like Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream, appears for only a moment, and meaning no harm to anyone, plays a few pranks before disappearing again. For 90 days the space will be called the Hobgoblin Playhouse, a pop-up theater if you will, and become a venue for the Hollywood Fringe Festival.

Photo by Theresa Stroll

Jenn and Greg Crafts, a couple who call themselves Fringe Junkies and enjoy a solid reputation within the festival's community, created The Hobgoblin Playhouse after persistently and patiently pestering City of Los Angeles officials to give them the space. They both speak passionately about the project, frequently completing each others sentences and thoughts, evidence of a true partnership. They will be out by June 26, just a few days after the Festival ends.

"We've heard different things about when it will be gone," Jenn says. It certainly won't be the day after the Crafts leave the space, it possibly will still be around this time next year. But the city has made it clear – the space will definitely be demolished.

"There are pros and con to this," Jenn says. "It is very sad to lose a historical theater like that, and they are gutting it to make a walkway to parking garage, which is horrifying. But they are promising to put another blackbox theater near the space"--and if they do, the Crafts will make a strong pitch that they should be the ones running it.

"We're hoping our experience in helping and empowering other artists will make us a strong candidate for managing the property," Greg says.

Jenn was up late one night doing research when she thought of the name. "I was trying to think of a name that would go with that this space is a temporary venue, that it will disappear eventually," she says. She began looking for some mythical creature and serendipitously discovered that Hobgoblins are almost exactly the definition of what she was looking for: mischievous spirits that like creating chaos, but unlike poltergeists, are essentially good.

Jenn knew right away that she wanted the name – even if she approached Greg a little tentatively at first, like "hey, this might sound a little dorky, but what do you think of calling the space The Hobgoblin?"

Greg loved the idea, but being a huge Dungeons and Dragons geek, he thought of a Hobgoblin as an evil creature armed with a javelin that can only be defeated with the roll of an eight-sided die. He was even more convinced after Jennifer made him aware of the mythical history of Hobgoblins.

They may continue to use the name for other temporary venues they create, or perhaps if they manage the space again for Fringe Festival 2019. It depends on when the city finalizes plans with the developer and tears it all down.

The Hobgoblin's location, according to Escott O. Norton of the Los Angeles Historic Theatre Foundation, actually did not begin as a theater. The Hobgoblin was built originally as a store in 1916 and it is unclear exactly when it was converted. Evidently it is also not considered a "historic theater"- the closest is right next door.

The neighboring space was opened by Mr. P. Tabor as Hollywood's first movie theater in late 1910 or early 1911, according to the Los Angeles Theatres blog. It was called the Idle Hour. You could have bought the space in 1912 for $800--a deal that an advertisement of that time warned "You will have to come on a run to get this." It is now home to a store called Stage Hollywood, whose sign advertises flirty dance-wear and fantasy costumes.

Perhaps most famously, the Hobgoblin once housed the Paul G. Gleason Theater, named for its founder and artistic director. Gleason performed in television, film and theatre, but was as much known for his teaching as his acting. The Hollywood Blvd. location was mainstay of the Los Angeles theatre scene starting in the late 90's. It was used as a venue for the inaugural year of the Fringe Festival in 2010.

After the Gleason folded in 2012, the space was vacant for about a year. The Cupcake Theater rebuilt the space, originally booking improv and comedy shows, but later they became known for musicals that made up with verve for what they lacked in budget. The Cupcake eventually outgrew the space as their reputation and fan base grew. They were the last to use it before leaving in 2016 for a new studio in North Hollywood.

When the Crafts first saw the space, the theater was still in remarkably good condition. It was pretty dusty and needed a good cleaning, but the Crafts were shocked by how workable the space still was. All the seats were still there. Costumes and set pieces had been left in the backstage area, which alone is probably larger than many theaters in Los Angeles.

There is a long wooden bar behind which are book shelves stocked with antique books from the 1930's – one title is Best Monologues from 1890 to 1900. There are boxes underneath the bar stacked as high as three feet with textbooks and scripts.

Photo by Theresa Stroll

The front lobby is dominated by a painting of a pair blue eyes on pure white skin surrounded by a shock of red hair – a piece that wouldn't have seemed out of place in A Clockwork Orange. Two pianos are still in the space--a standup in the lobby and a Grand onstage in the theater, and there's a follow spot in the lobby.

They didn't get access to the space until just a few weeks ago--barely enough time to get the space ready before its first show last Sunday night. The Crafts have experienced this last year when they took over the Studio/Stage on Western, a former photo studio with a huge cyc background.

"There was a window that had been boarded up for years, and we were going to unboard the window at 10:30 on a Friday night cause we're stupid" Jen jokes, "but then we pulled down the first board and behind that there was fabric and styrofoam and wood--" and, Greg says, "fluff and layers of black mold." Studio/Stage was in worse condition than the Hobgoblin when the Crafts took it over early last year – there were no risers and the lobby was a mess – but nonetheless they had it finished in time for the Fringe Festival in June.

When the Crafts took over the Studio/Stage space last year, Greg says, "There were a few nights when I slept there, because we were working really late, and since we maybe had rental coming in the early a.m., I said fuck it and wouldn't go home – I wouldn't want to do that at the Hobgoblin." Hollywood Boulevard can be a crazy place on the weekend, and he says there was something a little "ghosty" about the theater when they first moved in. Maybe a spirit or two is lurking in the space, but so far, they haven't revealed themselves.

After a year running that space, they feel "supremely confident" as Jenn puts it, that they can manage a second Fringe venue – in fact, their eventual goal is to operate at least five under 99-seat houses within five years. Difficulties arise, but the Crafts take the perspective that any problem can be overcome – if you hustle hard enough to solve it.

Photo by Evan Lorenzetti

The Hobgoblin is a simpler space than Studio/Stage, and lighter tech-wise, but still robust enough that people can get up on stage and tell their stories.

"There are definitely going to be some surprises at the Hobgoblin that we hadn't thought of, but we will figure it out. It's going to be fine." Jenn says. The Crafts, who jokingly suggest they might start a show called Theatre Rescue instead of Bar Rescue, have had no trouble booking the Hobgoblin. In the anything goes spirit of the Fringe, they've booked several productions with people they've never met who haven't seen the space in person.

Upcoming Fringe productions at the Hobgoblin include several solo shows, at least two Harry Potter parodies, and in what sounds like a work of pure genius, Cthulhu the Musicalbased on the work of H.P. Lovecraft and performed entirely with puppets. Another show, a "theatrical jazz-rock fusion" called Love Takes a Stand, boasts a three-piece band and backup singers – and will undoubtedly put that grand piano to use.

Photo by Evan Lorenzetti

It all goes along with the Fringe ethic, a non-curated event where anything goes and people are encouraged to put up that strange idea they've always thought about, be it an offbeat cabaret piece or a movie mashup musical just for the sheer sake of doing it. Experimentation is far more important than slick professionalism.

"What I like about Fringe is that you're not going to see a polished production of Henry V or Streetcar--" says Greg – and Jenn interjects, saying, "I don't want to see that at Fringe, If I saw someone doing Henry V at Fringe, I'd say what are you doing?--"But" Gregory continues, "I love watching people develop new stuff and have plays take their first steps at the Fringe before going on to bigger venues elsewhere."

Photo by Evan Lorenzetti

Maybe some established theatre groups are wary of the Fringe because it kills off so much of June, Greg theorizes, but you can either hate it or embrace it. The connections the Crafts have made at the Fringe are like a supportive family to them.

There are so many artists in Los Angeles possessed by the desire to create works, and that can happen almost anywhere, whether in an old photo studio on Western or an abandoned blackbox theatre on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Hobgoblin Playhouse may appear again when we least expect it in a space as yet undiscovered. Or it may disappear and leave us to wonder if we'll ever see anything like it again.