LA THEATRE BEAT
STEVE ZALL AND SID FISH
The Fourth of July is not the only thing exploding this month – so is the local theatre scene! Just look at all these:
“The Cake” Della, a baker who makes cakes, has her life turned upside down when the girl she helped raise comes back home to get married, and the fiancé is actually another woman. She can't really make a cake for such a wedding, can she? For the first time in her life, Della has to think for herself. Written by Bekah Brunstetter, and directed by Jennifer Chambers, it runs July 1 through August 6 at the Echo Theater Company - Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater Village. For tickets call 310-307-3753 or visit www.EchoTheaterCompany.com.
“Danny and the Deep Blue Sea” Danny seems incapable of tender emotion, while Roberta is distrustful of men in general – yet they decide to spend the night together, and the possibility of a meaningful relationship begins to emerge—the first for both of them. Written by John Patrick Shanley, and directed by Carl Weathers, it runs July 1 through September 10 at the Edgemar Center for the Arts in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-392-7327 or visit www.edgemarcenter.org.
“Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris” three generations of one family gather to clean out their grandmother's attic, ultimately helping them to come to terms with the past. Brel's romantic tunes range from heartbreaking to hilarious to the absurd. Written by Jacques Brel, with music by Jacques Brel, and directed by Dan Fishbach, it runs July 1 through August 27 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 Ext. 2 or visit www.OdysseyTheatre.com.
“It’s Only Lipstick” is acclaimed actress Claudia DiMartino’s inspiring and heartwarming story of surviving the dysfunction of an Italian-American family in Brooklyn to weathering the instability of being a marketing executive in the beauty industry in corporate America. Written by Claudia DiMartino, and directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson, it runs July 6 through August 17 at the Whitefire Theater in Sherman Oaks. For tickets visit www.itsonlylipstick.brownpapertickets.com.
“The Marriage Zone” Cal and Beth are selling their home. They’re visited by Skip and Ellie, an engaged couple, eager to buy their first home. They’re joined by Mike and Liz, who decided to drop by and take a peek at the house for sale. The three couples get to chatting and begin to marvel at just how much they have in common. Written and directed by Jeff Gould, it runs July 8 through August 27 at the Secret Rose Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 323-960-7784 or visit www.Plays411.com/marriagezone.
“Other Desert Cities” The manicured life of a conservative actor-turned-politician and his impeccable wife is upset when relatives arrive at their Palm Springs home for the holidays — including politically liberal daughter Brooke who’s about to publish a tell-all memoir. Written by Jon Robin Baitz, and directed by Mary Jo DuPrey, it runs July 8 through September 30 at the Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.
“Born for This” Detroit teenagers BeBe and CeCe Winans are invited to join Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker's Praise The Lord Network. Jim and Tammy become an unlikely surrogate family as the two teenagers rapidly become the hottest stars in televangical America. Eventually crossing over to mainstream fame, Bebe must learn to reconcile the temptations of fame and fortune with the things he ultimately values more. Written by Charles Randolph-Wright and BeBe Winans, with music by BeBe Winans, and directed by Charles Randolph-Wright, it runs July 11 through August 6 at the Eli & Edythe Broad Stage in Santa Monica. For tickets call 310-434-3200 or visit www.thebroadstage.com.
“Any Night” when a troubled young dancer moves into a new apartment she finds herself inexorably drawn into the world of her seductive upstairs neighbor. Soon she begins to suffer from nightmares and strange behaviors in her sleep. This show is a psychological thriller about love, trust, and the immeasurable power of the subconscious. Written by Daniel Arnold and Medina Hahn, and directed by Elizabeth V. Newman, it runs July 13 through July 30 at the Sacred Fools Theater Company in Hollywood. For tickets call 512-496-5208 or visit www.anynightaustin.com.
“The Gingerbread Lady” Set in New York City in 1972 after Evy’s short stay in rehab, her best friend, the age-defying Toby, her daughter Polly, and Jimmy Perry, a gay actor, all try to help her adjust to sobriety with a jolly birthday party. Enter Lou Tanner, a former lover, who ends up giving her a black eye. Written by Neil Simon, and directed by Drew Fitzsimmons, it runs July 14 through August 19 at the Westchester Playhouse in Westchester. For tickets call 310-645-5156 or visit www.kentwoodplayers.org.
“The Marvelous Wonderettes” At the 1958 Springfield High School prom, we meet Betty Jean, Cindy Lou, Missy and Suzy- the Marvelous Wonderettes. The girls serenade us with classic 50s hits including Lollipop, Dream Lover, Stupid Cupid, and Lipstick on Your Collar. 10 years later they reunite at their class reunion and discover that no matter what life throws their way, they will conquer it together. Features over 30 classic 50s and 60s hits including It’s in His Kiss, It’s My Party, Son of a Preacher Man, and Rescue Me. Written by Roger Bean, and directed by Robert Marra, it runs July 14 through August 27 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.
“Peter Pan” In this high-flying Tony Award-winning musical, Peter and his mischievous fairy sidekick Tinkerbell visit the nursery of the Darling children late one night and with a sprinkle of pixie dust begin a magical journey across the stars that none of them will ever forget. Features the iconic songs "I'm Flying," "I've Gotta Crow," "I Won't Grow Up," and "Never Never Land.” Written by J.M Barrie, with music by Mark “Moose” Charlap and Jule Styne, lyrics by Carolyn Leigh, Betty Comden and Adolph Green, and directed by Yvette Lawrence, it runs July 14 through July 23 at the Kavli Theatre at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza in Thousand Oaks. For tickets call 800-745-3000 or visit www.cabrillomusictheatre.com.
“Blinded” Seventeen years ago, Donald walked in on his mother in bed with someone other than his father. Whatever he saw that day was so devastating that his psyche refused to see another thing from that moment on. At 35, the hysterically blind Donald visits NYC's best shrink, Bob Schneiderman. However the doctor's unorthodox remedy includes an affair with Schneiderman's young, beautiful wife. Written by Joni Ravenna, and directed by T.J. Castronovo, it runs July 15 through August 13 at the Write Act Repertory at The BrickHouse Theatre in North Hollywood. For tickets call 800-838-3006 or visit www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2993431.
“The Devil’s Wife” is a harrowing comedy that goes to hell. A handsome and wealthy landowner who woos three sisters isn’t what he seems. But neither are they. Written by Tom Jacobson, and directed by Eric Hoff, it runs July 15 through August 20 at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-761-7061 or visit www.SkylightTix.com.
“Sequence” For twenty consecutive years, Theo has successfully bet double or nothing on the Super Bowl coin toss, until he is confronted by Cynthia, who claims to have figured out his secret. Professor Guzman is on the verge of a groundbreaking discovery, when one of her students defies probability by getting all 150 multiple-choice questions wrong on his exam, but it’s not until he shows up at her office in the middle of the night that she’s able to determine if it’s simply bad luck. The two narratives intertwine to examine the interplay between logic and metaphysics, science and faith, luck and probability. Written by Arun Lakra, and directed by Bruce Gray, it runs July 20 through August 20 at the Theatre 40, in the Reuben Cordova Theatre in Beverly Hills. For tickets call 310-364-0535 or visit www.theatre40.org.
“As You Like It” Unable to act on their feelings and forced into exile in the Forest of Arden, lovers Rosalind and Orlando become entangled in a beguiling game of love, lust and mistaken identity. It subverts the traditional rules of romance, confusing gender roles, nature and politics to reflect on how bewildering life can be. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Rob Clare, it runs July 27 through September 10 at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale. For tickets call 818-506-1983 or visit www.Antaeus.org.
“Ball Yards” A Los Angeles Dodgers game is broadcast by a blithely detached announcer during the onset of nuclear winter. The Grand Kleagle of the Ku Klux Klan prefers to learn golf fully hooded and robed. All-American football great Conquistador O’Malley abandons the gridiron for the seductive, near-naked sport of springboard diving. A network sports producer attempts to coerce a Jewish female member of an Olympic field hockey team into pretending that she has a connection with an anti-Semite. A sports commentator copes with gender transition. Written by Chuck Faerber, and directed by Richard Kuhlman, it runs July 29 through August 27 at the Zephyr Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-7738 or visit www.Plays411.com/ballyards.
“The Stolen Child” is an emotional thriller that follows an estranged couple as they return to their deserted cabin in the woods to pack it all up. When a storm moves in they find themselves stranded. A mysterious child appears at their door…could this be their stolen child come home? Written by Jennifer Rowland, and directed by Denise Blasor, it runs July 29 through September 3 at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 213-761-7061 or visit www.SkylightTix.com.
“The Two Gentlemen of Verona” is a wonderfully upbeat coming-of-age comedy in which four young people struggle to define themselves while dealing with the complicated feelings of early adulthood. This is a free performance. Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by David Melville, it runs July 29 through September 3 at the Old Zoo in Griffith Park in Los Angeles. For tickets call 818-710-6306 or visit www.iscla.org.