Stan Zimmerman's MEET & GREET Comes to Theatre Asylum, 6/8-28
MEET & GREET, a new comedy play by tv veterans Stan Zimmerman (The Golden Girls, Roseanne, Gilmore Girls) & Christian McLaughlin (Married with Children, Desperate Housewives) and directed by Stan Zimmerman (Entertaining Mr. Sloane, Blink & You Might Miss Me, A Tuna Christmas), will be presented by Combined Artform at Hollywood Fringe 2014. The outrageous comedy features an all star cast, including Daniele Gaither (Mad TV, Groundlings), Teresa Ganzel (Wall-E, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson), Carolyn Hennesy (True Blood, General Hospital), Paul Iacono (G.B.F., The Hard Times of RJ Berger) and Vicki Lewis (NewsRadio, Chicago on Broadway). It runs for five performances at Theatre Asylum, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd in Los Angeles on Sunday June 8th at 4pm, Saturday June 14th at 7pm, Sunday June 22nd at 7pm, Wednesday June 25th at 8:30pm and Saturday June 28th at 7pm. Tickets are $15 online or $20 at the door.
MEET & GREET is a one act comedy about four actresses of a certain age - a Broadway diva (Carolyn Hennesy), an unhinged ex-sitcom star (Vicki Lewis), her ditzy blonde bombshell former co-star (Teresa Ganzel), and a volcanically tempered African-American reality show star (Daniele Gaither) - are all up for the same part in a new sitcom pilot. They meet at a network casting office in the San Fernando Valley presided over by a catty, gay young male assistant (Paul Iacono). Old rivalries come screaming to the surface, egos clash, hair is pulled and a shocking revelation forces them to question their entire existences.
ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM:
STAN ZIMMERMAN (Director/Co-Writer) with his writing partner James Berg, worked on such classic series as The Golden Girls and Roseanne (penning the controversial 'lesbian kiss' episode), both of which received WGA Award nominations for Best Comedy Writing. Other writing credits include the ABC tv movie Annie, Gilmore Girls, the Lifetime sitcom Rita Rocks (which they also created) and both Brady Bunch movies. Stan was host/showrunner on the Bravo series Situation:Comedy produced by Sean Hayes.
He made his stage directing debut with Gemini (Celebration Theatre), followed by A Tuna Christmas (Theatre Asylum) starring Mindy Sterling and Patrick Bristow, Spike Heels (Actor's Circle Theater), Entertaining Mr. Sloane (Actors Company Theatre) with Olivia d'Abo and Ian Buchanan. Stan won Best Director (LA) from BroadwayWorld for Blink & You Might Miss Me (Asylum Lab, Hollywood Fringe, Renberg Theatre, SF Fringe, Chutzpah Festival-Vancouver and XL Cabaret- NYC). He is also directing a second Fringe show, Susannah Blinkoff's musical memoir, Daughter Of... at Three Clubs Cocktail Lounge.
With Christian McLaughlin, Stan wrote IT'S ON!, their tv theme song musical, which he directed workshops starring Megan Hilty, Nolan Funk and Alan Thicke (Falcon Theatre) and then at NYMF (Signature Theatre) with Sheryl Lee Ralph, Mindy Sterling, Paige Davis and Michael Urie. www.zimmermanstan.com
CHRISTIAN MCLAUGHLIN (Co-Writer), along with Valerie Ahern, worked on the infamous Married with Children. They've also written for Desperate Housewives, Hannah Montana, Hot Properties, Clueless, Rita Rocks and Hollywood Heights. The team had stints on the daytime soaps - The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful. They created and executive produced MTV's Emmy nominated steamy soap opera Spyder Games. Christian produced and directed a live stage production of The Phacts of Life in Los Angeles. He gained notoriety in his early twenties with the publication of his novels, Glamourpuss and Sex Toys of the Gods. Christian and Valerie are currently working on the Disney Channel hit series, Jessie. With Stan, he wrote the 21st and 22nd Divas Simply Singing! benefits. Meet & Greet was part of The Blank Theatre's Living Room Series for new readings in LA.
ABOUT THE CAST AND DESIGN TEAM:
DANIELE GAITHER (Desiree White) is most widely recognized from the Emmy-winning comedy variety series, MADtv (FOX). She broke into television in the cast of TV Guide Editor's Pick Hype, an outlandish prime time sketch comedy series on the WB, then went on to star in the NBC prime time summer comedy series The Rerun Show. Featured alongside the "25 Funniest Comedians in Los Angeles" in Los Angeles Magazine's 2005 Comedy Issue, she has appeared in guest starring roles on numerous half hour comedies such as Tyler Perry's House of Payne (TBS), Key and Peele (Comedy Central) and Real Husbands of Hollywood (BET). After graduating from Northwestern University, she showcased her celebrity impersonations and original characters as a member of the Groundlings Main Company in Los Angeles. She currently appears in the improv show The Black Version at the Groundlings.
TERESA GANZEL (Teri Valentine) has a long resume of television comedy such as her 35 appearances of sketches and panel with Johnny Carson for the last decade of his reign on The Tonight Show. She was a regular on several series such as The Duck Factory with Jim Carrey, Teachers Only with Lynn Redgrave, and Roxie with Andrea Martin, and some very funny pilots that never made air. She has guest starred in countless sitcoms, game shows (Pyramid) and TV movies including cult favorite Carol Burnett's mini-series, Fresno. Film work includes being Jackie Gleason's wife Fancy in the film The Toy and playing opposite Jeff Goldblum in the comedy horror film Transylvania 6-5000. Besides her voice over work (Wall-E, Up) she has been doing more theatre such as starring in the play Viagara Falls that has toured cross country including off Broadway. And she just returned from North Carolina playing Truvy in Steel Magnolias with a wonderful Broadway cast.
CAROLYN HENNESY (Margo Jane Marsden) dazzled as the deliciously vicious "Rosalyn Harris" on Alan Ball's critically acclaimed HBO seris True Blood, wreaked havoc with her A-bomb one liners as "Barb" on ABC's Cougar Town and is known by kids across America as the hilariously haughty, "Mrs. Chesterfield" on Disney Channels' Jessie. She is probably best know, however, for her works as "Diane Miller" on ABC's long running General Hospital, which she was nominated for a Daytime Emmy Award.
On the big screen, Hennesy's credits include Click starring Adam Sandler, Legally Blonde 2 with Reese Witherspoon, Terminator 3 starring Arnold Schwarzenegger and the upcoming films: Hybrid with co-star Paul Sorvino, Dance Off, and Mostly Ghostly 2 with Ryan Ochoa. Indie series fans know her from Motherlover, Acting Dead and Single Siblings.
Hennesy has appeared in over one hundred stage productions worldwide, having received her training at the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London. Comic timing was honed as a member of the Groundlings Sunday Company and in ACME Theatre's main company. Among other accolades, the LA Drama Critics Circle has distinguished her with the Natalie Schafer Award and the LA Stage Alliance has honored her with an Ovation Award.
Additional creative endeavors include a successful career as a write, creating the wildly popular Pandora (Bloomsbury USA) children's book series as well as penning the New York Times best seller, The Secret Life of Damien Spinelli (Hyperion). She is also the host of Animal Magnetism which can be heard every other Sunday on www.ubnradio.com, dedicated to preservation and conservation of creatures great and small.
PAUL IACONO (Casting Assistant) is a graduate of NYC's Professional Performing Arts High School, best known for his portrayal of the title character on MTV's The Hard Times of RJ Berger. Paul was first featured on The Rosie O'Donnel Show after she discovered his unique talents for impersonation Frank Sinatra and Ethel Merman at the age of 8. Starting out as a child actor in the NYC theatre scene, Paul appeared in over 100 theatrical productions, including Noel Cowards's Sail Away at Carnegie Hall with Elaine Stritch, Mame opposite Christine Ebersol at the Papermill Playhouse, Transport Group's The Dark at the Top of the Stairs with Michael Pawk and John Guare's Landscape of the Body at the Signature Theatre with Lili Taylor and Sherie Rene Scott. On the big screen, Paul starred in MGM's remake of Fame, No God No Master with David Stathairn and Darren Stein's teen comedy, G.B.F. Upcoming films include films include Drew Barrymore's Animal, Rhymes with Banana with Zosia Mamet and Judith Light, and Unreachable by Conventional Means with Alexandra Daddario and Tovah Feldshuh. As a creator, Paul wrote and produced the NY play, Prince/Elizabeth, and is development on his second pilot, GIG'ted. He was named one of OUT Magazine's 100 most influential gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender people of 2013.
VICKI LEWIS (Belinda Reid) is perhaps best known as Beth on the hit NBC series, NewsRadio. She also starred on Three Sisters (with Dyan Cannon) for NBC. Other guest star and recurring roles include: Doll & Em (HBO), How I Met Your Mother, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Middle, Austin & Ally, Bones, Grey's Anatomy, Melissa & Joey, Seinfeld, Murphy Brown, Grace Under Fire, Home Improvement and Norm. She starred in the made for television movie Bye Bye Birdie (with Tyne Daly) and the feature films - The Ugly Truth, Godzilla, Mousehunt, Pushing Tin, I'll Do Anything and Breakfast Of Champions. Her voice can be heard as Deb/Flo in Pixar's blockbuster Finding Nemo and in the upcoming sequel Finding Dory. Other animation includes: Batman, Justice League, Sonny with a Chance, Phineas and Ferb, Mission Hill, King of the Hill and Rugrats. She starred on Broadway in the Tony nominated shows Damn Yankees, Chicago and Pal Joey (opposite Patti Lupone and Peter Gallagher) for Encores!, and was a soloist with The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall. She received an Ovation award for her performance in the world premiere of Michael John laChuisa's Hotel Cest L'amore at The Blank Theatre, and was nominated for an Ovation award for her performance in How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying at Repise!. She won the Carbonell Award for her performance in Hello Dolly and was nominated for a Carbonell for her performance in Annie. www.Vickilewis.com
COMBINED ARTFORM/MATTHEW QUINN (Producer) has been involved in theatre production and venue management for well over 20 years in San Francisco and Los Angeles, where he owns and operates Theatre Asylum- Elephant Space. He created Combined Artform in 1998 to produce full and co-productions, explore multi-media, including live online internet programming and be an active member in the performance community. Stand out productions include Santaland Diaries, now in its 12th year at the Eureka Theatre (SF) , Blink & You Might Miss Me, Jane Austen Unscripted (w/ImproTheatre), A Tuna Christmas, Pulp Shakespeare, How to Survive a Zombie Apocalypse- US Version and Tilted Frame. He is on the advisory board and active supporter of the Hollywood Fringe Festival and on the NYU West Coast Gallatin Alumni Board. In 2010 he started the Asylum's Best of the Fringe (Encore Awards) and from it has co-produced extensions of Pulp Shakespeare, Pokemusical and Sunny Afternoon.
ABOUT THE SCHEDULE, PRICING, ETC.
MEET & GREET will play for only five performances - Sunday June 8th at 4pm, Saturday June 14th at 7pm, Sunday June 22nd at 7pm, Wednesday June 25th at 8:30pm and Saturday June 28th at 7pm. All shows will be at Theatre Asylum 6320 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood, CA 90038.
Tickets are $15 online or $20 at the door. General seating. Tickets can be purchased at: http://hff14.org/1517
Running time is one hour and twenty minutes. No intermission.