I'm heading to LA next week. Have tickets Girlfriend at Kirk Douglas- what other shows do I need to see?
Super-hot ticket right now is DOMA's staging of AMERICAN IDIOT. This company has been doing incredible work recently (AVENUE Q, DREAMGIRLS, JC SUPERSTAR) in a small 99-seat theater. Reviews for AM IDIOT have been stellar -- I won't be seeing it for another couple weeks -- and for $30, it'll probably be well worth it. http://rd2.domatheatre.com/americanidiot/
I've also seen some terrific reviews for the Antaeus Theater Company production of Inge's PICNIC in North Hollywood. http://antaeus.org/shows/picnic/
Lastly, BENT is opening next week at the Mark Taper Forum. No idea how good this will be, but with a cast including Andy Mientus and Jake Shears (from Scissor Sisters) it certainly holds promise. https://www.centertheatregroup.org/tickets/bent/
For other L.A. theater ideas, check out Bitter Lemons: http://socal.bitter-lemons.com/
Thank you- I think I'll see both Picnic and Bent
have you heard anything about
The Glass Menagerie
Danny and the Deep Blue Sea
Off the Kings Road
was looking at catching a couple of those too.
I see everything at the pantages, Ahmanson, Mark Taper forum, Kirk Douglas, Geffen Playhouse, and The wallis center. (Hollywood bowl annual musical too) no were else.
For July I'm seeing Girlfriend at Kirk Douglas next week.
Bent at Mark Taper forum week after
Spamalot at Hollywood bowl week after that.
I haven't seen it at the Geffen but MURDER FOR TWO was really delightful in NYC and its the same cast. Westwood is a very quaint area of Los Angeles and fun to explore too.
I will also be in Orange County for a couple of days. Is Laguna Playhouse worth checking out? What type of quality are their productions?
It's been a few years, but when I have been to the Laguna Playhouse, the cast included numerous Broadway veterans. The productions were cleanly staged, if not revolutionary.
Current production is "Footloose" based on the original screenplay playing July 8-August 9, 2015, The Laguna Playhouse is located right next door to the Festival of Arts Pageants of the Master which attracts sell-out crowds nightly. Traffic in the summertime is a problem but lots of park and ride trolleys to the theatre are available.
One of the best OC regional theatres which was the winner of the L.A. Ovation Awards this past year for "Ragtime" is 3-D Theatricals located in Fullerton, CA at Plummer Auditorium. They run productions for 3 weeks in Fullerton and then for an extra week at the Redondo Beach Performing Arts Center. Their current production is the West Coast premiere of "Tarzan: the Stage Musical" playing in the OC from July 11-July 26, 2015. Tickets can be bought using Goldstar and I have not had a bad seat yet at any of the productions that I've seen there.
Finally there is Musical Theatre West in Long Beach which is the original L.A. Civic Light Opera and has been doing musical productions in the Southland for 62 years. Their current production opens tonight a rarely seen musical, "Singing in the Rain". The run is for 3 weeks on weekends, July 10-26. Some tickets are sold with Goldstar but for this production looks like many are already sold out.
Do NOT rely on Bitter Lemons for anything. They charge shows to be reviewed. If you want to know what's going on in the LA theatre scene, I suggest you go to PLAYS411.com, BrownParerTickets.com, or Goldstar.
Orange County, check out South Coast Rep, or the OCPAC. Laguna Playhouse is hit or miss and it's a long drive out there.
Ahhh I miss SoCal!
I used to go to Ahmanson and Pantages in LA and the OCPAC/SCFTA for touring shows.
Where exactly in Orange County will you be staying? I agree, the Laguna Playhouse is kind of a ways out there and might not be worth the drive, but of course it depends on where you are to start with.
I used to be a regular at Rockwell Table and Stage when they still hosted the For The Record Series. Rockwell still has these dinner theater type of shows. They currently have Cruel Intentions, which I've heard good things about. The For The Record Series unfortunately does not have anything in LA until August.
I'm not sure when you'll be in or for how long, but The Skivvies are playing Rockwell Table and Stage on July 20 with some if their best guests in a long time--Analeigh Ashford, Jeremy Jordan, Nicole Parker, and Laura Bell Bundy among others.
is anyone familiar with The Little Fish Theatre? How are their productions?
"Do NOT rely on Bitter Lemons for anything. They charge shows to be reviewed."
Not entirely true.
The "paid-for" reviews are located in a separate, distinct section and constitute a very minor portion of what's available on their website.
Bitter Lemons' main feature, the Lemonmeter, collects reviews from press & theater bloggers throughout Southern California. For example: The entry for DOMA's American Idiot currently lists 17 different reviews and Picnic lists 14 (including the L.A. Times and 2 from here at BWW). Not a single one of those is from any of BL's paid reviewers.
Gary Marshall's small theatre in Burbank, the Falcon theatre, sometimes has interesting productions, even original works from actors. Scott Caan is (was)mounting his second play there this summer.
If you are in LA. PICNIC at Antaeus is a must.
One of the best productions I have seen (anywhere) this year.
Sorry to piggy back on this thread, but I figure there are plenty of LA people with their eyeballs on it.
Have there been any developments in the LA scene since the Equity ruling on minimum wages for smaller theatres? Any closed up shop, shortened seasons, canceled productions etc?
"Thank you- I think I'll see both Picnic and Bent have you heard anything about Bad Jews The Glass Menagerie Danny and the Deep Blue Sea Off the Kings Road was looking at catching a couple of those too."
Bad Jews is very very good, and it's playing for another week. The cast is wonderful and I can't wait to see more shows by the playwright after seeing this one. Definitely also a show for anyone who can relate to family dysfunction, regardless of religion.
This is not exactly LA but I'm also planning to take a trip down to SD to see 'Up Here' at La Jolla Playhouse, which starts next week.
I found Bad Jews so boring. The book? sounded so amateurish. I was sitting there with this face -________-
"Have there been any developments in the LA scene since the Equity ruling on minimum wages for smaller theatres? Any closed up shop, shortened seasons, canceled productions etc? "
According to this HuffPo column, posted last week, the battle is still ongoing but is currently in a "lull" period.
I just got back from seeing Girlfriend at the Kirk Douglas, and it was so touching.. Very authentic young love story. I couldn't wipe the grin off my face the entire time. It's closing this weekend, but I highly recommend if anyone has been curious to see it.
I also saw American Idiot at DOMA last week, my first time seeing any production of that show. The acting and singing were great, and the guy who plays St. Jimmy killed it. My issues with the show were mostly with the source material.
Some great theater in LA lately! Can't wait to see Picnic this Friday, too.
Picnic @ Antaeus is amazing. One of the best productions that I have seen this year (anywhere). I wish I were in LA again so I could see it again. It has been extended through next week. Catch it if you can.
Picnic was indeed great. I thought Daniel Bess and Ross Philips were phenomenal in it.
Does anyone have any other good LA theater suggestions, or promising shows coming up?
I'm considering seeing In the Heights at Candlelight Pavilion in Claremont, since I never got to see it on Broadway..
GreenSharpie said: "Picnic was indeed great. I thought Daniel Bess and Ross Philips were phenomenal in it.
I agree. Terrific play and production. (Who knew that 1950s Kansas could be so sexy?) I saw the "Stuffed Peppers" cast also, and could not imagine better performances. The chemistry between all the actors (Bess, Philips, Jordan Monaghan, Connor Kelly-Eiding, especially) was perfect.
ICYMI, Antaeus made a fun promo video for the show. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ga6L3Tx8HMY
I saw Pinter's THE HOMECOMING last week at Pacific Resident Theatre in Venice. Again, it's an excellently acted production -- even expat Brits seem to like it. http://www.british-weekly.com/?p=17600 But it is Pinter, so will not be to everyone's taste.
BENT ends its run at the Taper this weekend. If you haven't caught it yet, this is your last chance!
Sondheim's ASSASSINS is opening at the Pico Playhouse tomorrow. http://assassinsmusicalla.com/ I haven't been to this theater before, but figured I'd check it out. (A little theater in Silverlake did a marvelous production of ASSASSINS a number of years ago. It works very well in a small venue.)
I'm also looking forward to THESE PAPER BULLETS at the Geffen, with music by Billie Joe Armstrong. It starts September 8 for a 6-week run. http://www.geffenplayhouse.com/more_info.php?show_id=223
Which, curiously enough, overlaps with AMERICAN IDIOT RELOADED. DOMA has been saying it will be "bigger & better" than their recently ended production and "with a few new surprises". It's only scheduled for 9 performances, beginning October 2, and is almost sold-out.
I only know enough at present about the LA theater scene to steer anyone clear of Bitter Lemons for guidance. They are as fully an industry sanctioned review web/hub as you'll ever find. In many cases the reviewers selected are more press agents than critics. And the fact, as is said here, that they are paid for their "opinions" does not surprise me.
I hate DOMA Theatre Company. They are so annoying. For example. If you go on instagram and search "pantages" or "ahmanson".. Theatres here in LA, they tag ALL their pictures with tags that have nothing to do with it. It gets annoying because A: you want to see pictures of the tag you searched B: it has nothing to do with it and C: they post sooo many pictures with countdowns and stuff. NO ONE CARES. I have talked to them and they are so rude. I will never go there. I would never spend my money on small theatre companies or school productions. That's just me. I stick to the best LA has to offer: the Pantages Theatre (season tickets), Ahmanson Theatre, Kirk Douglas Theatre, Mark Taper Forum, Wallis Center, Geffen Playhouse, and LA Theatre Works. I more than just try to see everything. I will see it :p I love live theatre so much. Btw, the pantages is the only theatre in LA that doesnt have some sort of rush option. (they do have lottery depending on the touring show)
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