Ellen Dostal

In addition to being part of the west coast Broadway World team, Ellen also publishes two popular Southern California Theatre Blogs - Musicals in LA and Shakespeare in LA. An actress, singer and voiceover artist, she is also a producer with the Academy for New Musical Theatre, and works with the development of new musicals across the country.
MOST POPULAR ARTICLES
LAST 30 DAYS

BWW Reviews: Shakespeare UnScripted Turns Comedy into ArtBWW Reviews: Shakespeare UnScripted Turns Comedy into Art
Posted: Apr. 6, 2014


BWW Reviews: Independent Shakespeare Co. Freshly Spins ROMEO AND JULIETBWW Reviews: Independent Shakespeare Co. Freshly Spins ROMEO AND JULIET
Posted: Apr. 14, 2014


BWW Reviews: City Shakes Offers a Milder Version of THE MERCHANT OF VENICEBWW Reviews: City Shakes Offers a Milder Version of THE MERCHANT OF VENICE
Posted: Mar. 30, 2014


LAST 365 DAYS

BWW Reviews: The Troubies' A MIDSUMMER SATURDAY NIGHT'S FEVER DREAMBWW Reviews: The Troubies' A MIDSUMMER SATURDAY NIGHT'S FEVER DREAM
Posted: Jun. 10, 2013


BWW Reviews: THE POKEMUSICAL Goes on an AdventureBWW Reviews: THE POKEMUSICAL Goes on an Adventure
Posted: Jun. 24, 2013


BWW Interviews: Glory|Struck Productions' BARE: An Inside LookBWW Interviews: Glory|Struck Productions' BARE
Posted: Sep. 3, 2013


BWW Reviews: 50 SHADES! The Musical - A Parody With Balls!BWW Reviews: 50 SHADES! The Musical - A Parody With Balls!
Posted: Mar. 3, 2014


BWW Reviews: BARE Revival Hits it MarkBWW Reviews: BARE Revival Hits it Mark
Posted: Sep. 9, 2013


BWW Reviews: THE PRODUCERS - Another Big Hit for 3-D TheatricalsBWW Reviews: THE PRODUCERS - Another Big Hit for 3-D Theatricals
Posted: Feb. 6, 2014


BWW Reviews: Independent Shakespeare Co. Freshly Spins ROMEO AND JULIETBWW Reviews: Independent Shakespeare Co. Freshly Spins ROMEO AND JULIET
April 14, 2014

Independent Shakespeare Co. once again showcases its intuitive ability to re-imagine Shakespeare for a modern-day audience with an intimate production of his classic romance, Independent Shakespeare Co. ROMEO AND JULIET
BWW Reviews: Shakespeare UnScripted Turns Comedy into ArtBWW Reviews: Shakespeare UnScripted Turns Comedy into Art
April 6, 2014

No one is standing on ceremony in Impro Theatre's latest comedic invention, SHAKESPEARE UNSCRIPTED. On the contrary, the only formality you'll find here is the kind you leave at the door when you step foot into the theater.
BWW Reviews: City Shakes Offers a Milder Version of THE MERCHANT OF VENICEBWW Reviews: City Shakes Offers a Milder Version of THE MERCHANT OF VENICE
March 30, 2014

The young, relatively new, City Shakespeare Company is offering a 90-minute modern take on Shakespeare's THE MERCHANT OF VENICE now through April 12, but the well-intentioned effort produces mixed results.
BWW Reviews: A Noise Within's Dark World of MACBETHBWW Reviews: A Noise Within's Dark World of MACBETH
March 20, 2014

The bleak and barren world in A Noise Within's MACBETH is as much an outward visual of the inner state of Shakespeare's title character as it is the setting for the story itself. Moody, shrouded in shadows, and sparsely but strikingly accented, it has the look and feel of a timeless purgatory.
BWW Reviews: BATTLEDRUM's Drummer Boys Bond Over BattleBWW Reviews: BATTLEDRUM's Drummer Boys Bond Over Battle
March 12, 2014

The shining moment in this 70-minute Civil War musical comes in the final scene when the entire cast executes Ameenah Kaplan's dramatic drum choreography with exciting precision. It's a thrilling conclusion to an otherwise plodding musical by Doug Cooney (book & lyrics) and Lee Ahlin (music).
BWW Interviews: Elijah Alexander Goes Deep into the Psyche of MacbethBWW Interviews: Elijah Alexander Goes Deep into the Psyche of Macbeth
March 10, 2014

Stepping into the role of Macbeth is not for the faint of heart. It's a dark spiral of a ride that requires an actor to completely immerse himself in the evolution of evil within a character. Classically-trained actor, Elijah Alexander, talks about his journey preparing to play the role for A Noise Within and what he's learned from touring the country in this fascinating in-depth interview.
BWW Interviews: Playwright Vickie Ramirez Discusses STAND-OFF AT HWY #37BWW Interviews: Playwright Vickie Ramirez Discusses STAND-OFF AT HWY #37
March 7, 2014

What would you do if the government decided to build a road through your backyard without asking, without having the right, and without any regard for what you think? Playwright Vickie Ramirez examines the subject in her latest play, STAND-OFF AT HWY #37, now on stage at the Wells Fargo Theatre for Native Voices at the Autry.
BWW Reviews: 50 SHADES! The Musical - A Parody With Balls!BWW Reviews: 50 SHADES! The Musical - A Parody With Balls!
March 3, 2014

Girls' night out just got a whole lot sassier now that 50 SHADES! THE MUSICAL has arrived in LA for a month's run at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, and women are coming out in droves to see what a group of comedy writers have done with their not-so-secret obsession. I'll say this - it's got balls alright.
BWW Reviews: Billy Campbell in The Old Globe's THE WINTER'S TALEBWW Reviews: Billy Campbell in The Old Globe's THE WINTER'S TALE
February 27, 2014

It is one of the most wondrous moments in all of Shakespeare's plays; the moment near the end of The Winter's Tale when the statue of Hermione comes to life. Whether it is magic, divine intervention, or merely the resolution of a well-concealed plot, it doesn't matter. It never fails to leave me with a catch in my throat and a feeling of awe at the ability of theatre to engender so affecting a response.
BWW Reviews: Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Porters, in HENRY VBWW Reviews: Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Porters, in HENRY V
February 22, 2014

If 'all the youth of England are on fire,' as the first speech of HENRY V's Act II declares, then all the Porters of Hellsgate have carried the torch forward with guns blazing. Without a doubt, this is the Porters' finest stage work to date and a testament to the kind of theatre magic that can be created out of thin air by the willing and able.
BWW Interviews: The Wild World of 50 SHADES! THE MUSICALBWW Interviews: The Wild World of 50 SHADES! THE MUSICAL
February 19, 2014

It's coming. Yes, it's really coming. 50 Shades! The Musical is about to open in Los Angeles on February 25th and audiences have never been crazier over a show than this one.
BWW Reviews: Love is Love in Inner Circle Theatre Company's R+J EQUAL LOVEBWW Reviews: Love is Love in Inner Circle Theatre Company's R+J EQUAL LOVE
February 19, 2014

Inner Circle Theatre Company explores the essence of love in its debut production, R+J EQUAL LOVE, directed by Casey Kringlen and adapted by Kringlen and Liz Nolan. In two acts, each slightly less than an hour, they tell the love story of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet twice, with two women in the title roles in the first act and two men in the roles in the second.
BWW Reviews: THE PRODUCERS - Another Big Hit for 3-D TheatricalsBWW Reviews: THE PRODUCERS - Another Big Hit for 3-D Theatricals
February 6, 2014

If life really is about not taking anything too seriously, as Mel Brooks would have us believe, then do yourself a favor and see 3DT's production of The Producers. It may be politically incorrect but it's the funniest version of this musical I've ever seen and it will push you to have a good time in spite of yourself. Yes, it's another one of my must-see musicals of 2014.
BWW Reviews: The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley Brings a Classic to LifeBWW Reviews: The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley Brings a Classic to Life
February 3, 2014

An hour and a half east of L.A. in Rancho Cucamonga, The MainStreet Theatre Company puts on a Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA) season at Lewis Family Playhouse. Of that season, one of the shows is specifically chosen for the very youngest audience members and this year it's The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley.
BWW Reviews: Cabrillo Music Theatre Paints the Town FOREVER PLAIDBWW Reviews: Cabrillo Music Theatre Paints the Town FOREVER PLAID
February 2, 2014

Four guys who know there's nothing better than being inside a good tight chord are working their extraordinary vocal magic in Stuart Ross' Forever Plaid at Cabrillo Music Theatre. With incredible musicianship and a flawless blend, these clean-cut dapper lads are a dream for the roughly 90-minutes they cover some of the greatest hits of the 1950's.
BWW Reviews: Open Fist Theatre Company's Must-See Musical, James Joyce's THE DEADBWW Reviews: Open Fist Theatre Company's Must-See Musical, James Joyce's THE DEAD
January 27, 2014

When a show moves me like this one did, it's worth raving about. Minus the bombardment of glitz and flash so often shoe-horned into modern day musicals, the remount of Open Fist Theatre Company's James Joyce's THE DEAD is instead that rare production that breathes life into our hearts with its singular connection to our humanity.
BWW Reviews: LET'S MISBEHAVE: The Music and Lyrics of Cole PorterBWW Reviews: LET'S MISBEHAVE: The Music and Lyrics of Cole Porter
January 27, 2014

International City Theatre opened its 29th season this past weekend with the California premiere of LET'S MISBEHAVE: The Music and Lyrics of Cole Porter. The relatively new musical by Karin Bowersock (book) and Patrick Young (musical arrangements) weaves together more than thirty Cole Porter standards in a story that could easily have been created from one of the composer's own lyrics.
LA's Next Great Stage Star Competition Digs Deep into New MusicLA's Next Great Stage Star Competition Digs Deep into New Music
January 17, 2014

Contestants in LA's Next Great Stage Star competition had an exciting second week on Sunday, January 12th. The theme for this round was Breaking New Ground - A Little New Music, and featured songs from some of today's most up and coming musical theatre writers.
BWW Reviews: Laguna Playhouse's RING OF FIRE Needs More HeatBWW Reviews: Laguna Playhouse's RING OF FIRE Needs More Heat
January 17, 2014

Jukebox musicals come in all shapes and sizes. Some find a way to integrate the songs of a particular group or singer in such a way that the end result is more than satisfying as an evening of theatre.
BWW Reviews: Kritzerland's New Kids in TownBWW Reviews: Kritzerland's New Kids in Town
January 8, 2014

Make way everybody, we've got some new kids in town and they're out to take over musical theatre one song at a time. Of course, I'm referring to Kritzerland's latest cabaret show at Sterling's Upstairs at The Federal. On Sunday, January 5th, Bruce Kimmel's New Kids in Town! featured nine terrific up-and-coming young people ranging in age from 9 to 18.


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