SCENE IN LA

BY

STEVE ZALL AND SID FISH

 

December 2012

 

Whether you buy a tree from a lot, assemble on from a box, or chop one down from a hill, it’s bound to be a heartwarming sight this season – and equally uplifting are the many new shows hitting the stage this month, including:

 

OPENING

 

“The Gayest Christmas Pageant Ever!” opens at the time for the annual holiday production for a struggling gay theatre company. Jim, the pot-smoking straight tech guy offends the eclectic playwright, causing him to walk out and take his script with him. Now the crazy and drama-addicted team has just a few weeks to produce…the gayest Christmas pageant ever! This holiday camp-fest is a fast-paced comedy packed with hilarious dialogue and 40 over-the-top characters…meant for non-conservative adults of all ages! Written by Joe Marshall, and directed by Paul Storiale, it runs December 2 through December 30 at the Avery Schreiber Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-766-9100 or visit www.averyschreibertheatre.com.


 

“Donny and Marie - Christmas in Los Angeles” In the holiday tradition of the “Osmond Family Christmas” television specials, the legendary Donny and Marie invite all Southern Californians to celebrate the joy of the season in true Osmond fashion. With a dash of Christmas spirit and the entertainers’ trademark show-stopping production numbers, this show features Christmas songs and cheer plus hits from their illustrious careers, transporting audiences into a heartfelt nostalgic journey that will create present-day holiday memories to last a lifetime. Throughout the show, audiences will be charmed by the trademark stage presence that has solidified Donny and Marie’s position in the pantheon of international stardom, enriched by their candid revelations about the triumphs and travails that accompany five decades of life in the spotlight. Written by Donny and Marie Osmond, it runs December 4 through December 23 at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. For tickets call 800-982-2787 or visit www.broadwayla.org.


 

“The Rainmaker” focuses largely on the fate of Lizzie, who lives on a family farm with her brothers and father in the Dust Bowl during the Depression. She capably takes care of the men in her house, but there’s an emptiness in her life. She has no one of her own, and she dreams of a husband and children. A visit to her cousins, actually a failing attempt to find a prospective mate, has left her more frustrated than ever. The recurrent reminders that she is considered “plain” by her family and herself do not relieve her fears of winding up as the “maiden aunt”. Written by N. Richard Nash, and directed by Jack Heller, it runs December 6 through March 24 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-392-7327 or visit www.edgemarcenter.org.

 

“I’m Dop3!” At the age of three, Afia Fields found herself engulfed in flames during a tragic fire in a basement playroom in her Baltimore home. The conflagration took the lives of her cousin and her baby brother. Two of her other cousins escaped. Afia herself sustained third-degree burns and emerged from a coma three months later. The damage done to her by the fire was the ultimate form of identity theft. She is not, as she would tell you, a burn victim, but rather a burn survivor. Possessed of limitless quantities of pluck and grit, she became a motivator, bringing healing and comfort to others dealing with challenge and adversity. The inspirational figure had dreams of her own, as well, as she pursued a career in the entertainment industry. Written by Afia Fields, and directed by Debra De Liso, it runs December 7 through January 19 at the Elephant Studio Theater in Hollywood. For tickets call 443-928-5941 or visit www.saiproarts.org.

 

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed ReinDOORS” It's Strange Days in the North Pole when a reindeer named Rudolph is born with a glowing red nose. Finding no Hello I Love You at the Reindeer Games, Rudolph is left alone with his Roadhouse Blues. Only when he meets the darling doe Clarice, does he proclaim, "You Light My Fire!" But can Rudolph save Christmas by leading the Reindeer Riders On The Storm and help Santa Break On Through the blizzard? Whip up some season cheer in your Soul Kitchen and meet the Troubies down on Love Street for an unforgettable show - you're sure to Love Her Madly! Written and directed by Matt Walker, it runs December 7 through January 13 at the Falcon Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.falcontheatre.com.


 

“In Heat in Hollywood Ho Ho Ho” A holiday treat - not for the whole family! IT'S THE HOLIDAYS ... a perfect time to be sexy, hip, and irreverent and to take that delirious and thrilling joy ride through life. A Merry holiday journey. Written by David Trudell, and directed by Michael Kearns, it runs December 8 through December 23 at the Skylight Theatre Complex in Los Angeles. For tickets call 702-582-8587 or visit www.katselastheatre.com.


 

“A Snow White Christmas” A classic tale told through a star-studded cast including Neil Patrick Harris and Ariana Grande, with uproarious humor, lavish sets, spectacular costumes, and contemporary pop hits including “Firework” by Katy Perry, “Power of Love” by Huey Lewis and the News, and “Thriller” by Michael Jackson. It's a traditional British Panto in every way. Written by Kris Lythgoe, with music by Michael Orland, and directed by Bonnie Lythgoe, it runs December 13 through December 23 at the Pasadena Playhouse in Pasadena. For tickets call 626-356-7529 or visit www.pasadenaplayhouse.org.

 

“Christmas My Way” From the team that created My Way, the hottest musical revue in America right now, it's beginning to look a lot like a free, fresh, knocked-out coo-coo Sinatra Christmas, complete with 40 swingin' hits perfect for the holidays. Nothing is silent about this night where 4 exciting Broadway singers serve up cool versions of Sinatra mainstays like "Fly Me To The Moon," "New York, New York," "That¹s Life," "Love and Marriage," "I Get A Kick Out of You," "I've Got You Under My Skin," and "The Lady is a Tramp". Plus, they make a little hey-hey with groovy versions of such Sinatra Christmas hits like "Mistletoe and Holly," "The Christmas Song," "Christmas Memories," "Winter Wonderland," "Silver Bells" and "I'll Be Home for Christmas”. Toss in Rat Pack-ish versions of "Twas the Night Before Christmas" and "The Twelve Days of Christmas". Written by David Grapes and Todd Olson, it runs December 15 through December 31 at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 866-811-4111 or visit www.elportaltheatre.com.


 

“The Addams Family” Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has grown up and fallen in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family. A man her parents have never met. And if that weren't upsetting enough, she confides in her father and begs him not to tell her mother. Now, Gomez Addams must do something he's never done before - keep a secret from his beloved wife, Morticia. Everything will change for the whole family on the fateful night they host a dinner for Wednesday's "normal" boyfriend and his parents. Written by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, with music by Andrew Lippa, and directed by Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch, it runs December 18 through December 30 at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-556-2787 or visit www.SCFTA.org.


 

CONTINUING

 

“It’s A Wonderful Life: A Radio Play for the Stage” takes place at KAWL, a struggling 1940s radio station that good-hearted owner Michael Anderson is barely keeping alive. He calls on some old friends (with big personalities) and some less-than-professional station employees to offer up the touching masterpiece in what might sadly be the station’s last live show. But it is the holidays, a time when miracles can happen. Written by Frank Capra, adapted by Jim Martyka, and directed by Erin Scott, it runs through December 15 at the Missing Piece Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-849-4039 or visit www.theatreunleashed.com.


 

“Are You There God? It's Me Karen Carpenter” Loosely based on Judy Blume’s popular coming of age novel published in 1970, this musical parody lovingly recalls the sights, sentiments, and SOUNDS of the era with such songs from the Carpenters catalog as Rainy Days and Mondays, Close to You, Top of the World, and We’ve Only Just Begun. New to this production and just in time for the holidays, music from the cherished holiday album Carpenters Christmas Portrait. Come watch Margaret as she moves to New Jersey, falls in love with the boy next door, enters sixth grade, joins an all-girl group, obsesses about bras and sanitary belts, and (finally!) becomes a woman – all while singing the hits of the Carpenters! Written and directed by Dane Whitlock, it runs through December 16 at the Hudson Theatres – Hudson Mainstage in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7738 or visit www.plays411.com/karencarpenter.


 

“Natalie Portman, the Musical!” Is a sketch comedy musical that looks at movies, musicals, and celebrity. We go through the life of Natalie Portman, what may or may not have happened, stopping along the way at all her major movies and life events. We are also lead through Ms. Portman’s life by a special “well-known” celebrity (who changes at each performance). Written and directed by Brittany Garms, with music by Frankie Marrone and Tara Pitt, it runs through December 22 at the Chromolume Theatre At The Attic in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-510-2688 or visit www.plays411.com/natalieportman.


 

“A Christmas Carol” Ghosts remind stingy mercenary Ebenezer Scrooge that ‘mankind should be his business’ which is a haunting reminder to everyone! This carol of redemption seeks to reclaim Scrooge’s heart and in its song, elevates us all. The production incorporates original songs and carol arrangements, as well as a post-show snowfall in front of the theatre. Written by Charles Dickens, and directed by Tim Dietlein, it runs through December 24 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.


 

“Sherlock's Last Case” Picking up where Conan Doyle's stories ended, the play centers on a death threat against Holmes by the "son" of his late nemesis, Professor Moriarty. The plot twists and turns until Holmes finds himself imprisoned in a dank cellar, trapped and for the first time in his illustrious career surprised by human behavior. Written by Charles Marowitz, and directed by Larry Eisenberg, it runs through January 13 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 818-763-5990 or visit www.plays411.net.


 

We wish you a merry Christmas, we wish you a merry Christmas, we wish you a merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

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