SCENE IN LA
STEVE ZALL AND SID FISH
Summer is finally here, and so is all of the fun in the sun that goes with it! Our local theatres are also supplying tons of fun in June, so don’t miss out on these fabulous opportunities, including:
“The Taming of the Shrew” Shakespeare’s rowdy romp stands as one of his sharpest and funniest scripts. No suitor can win lovely Bianca until her older sister, “Katherine the Cursed”, is married off. Can Petruchio subdue Kate’s temper and win her bountiful dowry, or will she continue her shrewish ways? Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Ellen Geer, it runs June 1 through September 29 at the Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.
“A Midsummer Night's Dream” Venture through the forest with our ardent young lovers, mischievous fairies and a ragtag band of tradespeople as they encounter a night filled with wonder, magic, and romance. Will their hopes and dreams be realized? What adventures await as nature takes its course? Written by William Shakespeare, and directed by Willow Geer and Melora Marshall, it runs June 2 through September 28 at the Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.
“A Midsummer Saturday Night's Fever Dream” How Deep Is Your Love for the Troubies?! Join them as they dig down to their roots and dust off their fairy wings, tights and white disco suits to re-imagine Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The star-crossed lovers steam and scheme, and the Bard‘s most famous fairy, Puck, will be Jive Talkin’ as this assorted band of merrymakers heats up into a Disco Inferno. The Night Fevers will break 104 and make you sweat, so don your halter-tops and Boogie Shoes and let the Troubies melt your hearts. Written and directed by Matt Walker, it runs June 7 through July 7 at the Falcon Theatre in Burbank. For tickets call 818-955-8101 or visit www.FalconTheatre.com.
“The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged)” So many plays, so little time. Shakespeare wrote 37 plays. Lovers of the Bard of Avon wish they could spend their time seeing the entire Canon at least once, if not multiple times. But life intrudes. Who has the time, between work, continuing education, the weekly poker game, driving the kids to soccer practice, taking care of the spouse, and completing all the items on the honey-do list? Well, now you can - ALL the comedies, ALL the tragedies, ALL the histories, and even a nod to the sonnets, all compressed neatly into a 97-minute package, performed by three actors. You’ll have to see it to appreciate how they do it. It’s the answer to a Shakespeare fan’s prayer. For the neophyte, it’s a chance to learn in one evening what all the fuss has been about regarding William Shakespeare. Given the breadth and depth of the Complete Works, not all of the Bard’s plays are considered equal, and special, loving attention is given to “Hamlet” and “Romeo and Juliet”. Written by Adam Long, Daniel Singer and Jess Winfield, and directed by Sarah Gurfield, it runs June 7 through June 30 at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. For tickets call 213-268-1454 or visit www.santamonicarep.org.
“Dead Man’s Cell Phone” A lonely woman is forced to confront her assumptions about morality, redemption and the need to connect in a technologically obsessed world as she steps into the life of a dead man by taking his cell phone calls. What starts as a moment of frustration quickly turns into a bond of curious loyalty when Jean finds herself caught in the middle of another man’s tangled web of relationships and family. Acting as his mouthpiece, Jean soon discovers different types of connections that go beyond the physical, tapping into the psychological, the emotional and even…the afterlife. Written by Sarah Ruhl, and directed by Richard Israel, it runs June 7 through June 30 at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center in Long Beach. For tickets call 562-436-4610 or visit www.internationalcitytheatre.com.
“The Fantasticks” It begins as a tale of young true first love, as next-door-neighbors Matt and Luisa, grown up together, fall for each other. Their fathers approve, and conspire to bring them closer together. Once the young man and woman learn of their fathers’ approval, they reject their dads’ plan (as kids always do). Matt sets off on adventures to experience the world. Luisa stays close to home, but, separated from Matt, she encounters temptations. They are each hurt a bit by the world, as the world can inflict pain and sometimes does. After a bitter taste of disillusionment, Matt and Luisa find their way back to each other, with a wiser, more mature and deeper love for one another. It’s a simple story, to be sure, but one that has resonated with audiences for half a century, with classic songs like “Try to Remember” and “Soon It’s Gonna Rain.” Written by Tom Jones, with music by Harvey Schmidt, and directed by James Fowler and Barbara Schofield, it runs June 7 through July 13 at the Sierra Madre Playhouse in Sierra Madre. For tickets call 626-355-4318 or visit www.sierramadreplayhouse.org.
“Hungry Woman” Rachel González stars in the central role of Canela Guerrero, a Chicano journalist passionate about life and her causes, who breaks off her marriage engagement to use tickets intended for her honeymoon to go to Paris to find herself and meaning in life. Her family thinks she’s a “loca” who needs medication, but she is just hungry for more. This play is intended for mature audiences; parental discretion is advised. Written by Josefina López, and directed by Corky Dominguez, it runs June 7 through June 30 at the Main Stage at Casa 0101 Theater in Boyle Heights. For tickets call 323-263-7684 or visit www.casa0101.org.
“Me Love Me” Tuck is a narcissistic libertine with a middling acting career. Gemma is a Xanax-addicted performance artist with a side career as a celebrity-liaison in a fancy Hollywood hotel. On the eve of their seventh anniversary, Tuck accidentally over-indulges at a party in the Hollywood Hills and misses Gemma’s show. Early the next morning, he’s interrupted by a knock on the door. It’s his fresh-faced, puppy-eyed biological clone, newly released from a laboratory in Westwood. As Tuck and Tuck embark on a tear of booze, drugs and clone-sex, Gemma is left to pick up the pieces of their relationship and try to move on. Written by Brandon Baruch, and directed by Marc Warzecha, it runs June 7 through June 29 at the Open Fist Theater in Hollywood. For tickets visit www.hff13.org/1146.
“Rodeo Town” Richard Hendrix is a yuppie, a dentist, a family man with a rocky marriage. He’s on his way to a dental conference in San Diego and, refusing to fly, he’s on a long road trip across the desert as he seeks the adventure of the open road. But the engine of his year-old Range Rover makes strange noises, so he pulls off the main highway and drives into a country town not located on the map, a place called Rodeo Town. Rodeo Town once thrived as a hub of the rodeo circuit, with thousands attending and a bubbling economy. But people’s tastes changed, rodeos faded from popularity, and now only a trio of cowboys remain, holding to the remnants of an old way of life. Richard approaches the cowboys (Garth, Lonnie and Kelly) looking for help, but he is soon sucked into their closed mini-society, with its own code of behavior, powered by quantities of Maker’s Mark. Richard has pulled in just in time to witness and participate in Rodeo Town’s annual ritual: The one day of the year when women are brought into town so the men can engage in pleasuring with a female companion. This year, there is just one woman, but a startling woman, and after this particular alcohol-drenched festivity, neither Richard nor the cowboys will be the same ever again. Written by Graham Bowlin, and directed by Cameron Strittmatter, it runs June 7 through June 29 at the East Theatre at The Complex in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-455-4585 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/1198.
“BOB: A Life in 5 Acts” Born and abandoned in a White Castle bathroom in Louisville, Kentucky and determined to become a “great” man, Bob takes an epic journey across America where he encounters inspiring generosity, crushing hardships, blissful happiness, stunning coincidences, wrong turns, lucky breaks, true love and heartbreaking loss. Written by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb, and directed by Chris Fields, it runs June 8 through June 30 at the Atwater Village Theatre in Atwater. For tickets call 877-369-9112 or visit www.echotheatercompany.com.
“Fathers at a Game” A high school football game. A crisp fall day. Then, things get weird. In Trey Nichols’ explosive play, fantasy and reality collide with deadly force. Moe and Edie are buddies watching their sons playing football…or are they? Something strange is gurgling underneath this harrowing and hilarious portrait of the American Dream. Be careful which side you root for. Written by Trey Nichols, and directed by Vesna Hocevar, it runs June 8 through June 29 at the East Theatre at the Complex in Hollywood. For tickets call 323-455-4585 or visit www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/1360.
“Just Imagine” transports you to another place and time, putting you 'one on one' with the musical legend who shook the world. Experience Lennon's timeless musical genius as Tim Piper takes you through John's life from tumultuous childhood to worldwide pop music superstar to groundbreaking social icon that influenced generations. Written by Tim Piper, with music by Greg Piper, and directed by Steve Altman, it runs June 8 through August 25 at the Hayworth Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-960-4442 or visit www.plays411.com/justimagine.
“One Night in Miami” It is February 25, 1964. Cassius Clay has just defeated Sonny Liston to become heavyweight champion of the world. No celebration is planned, since no one thought he would actually win. No one, except his three not-yet-legendary friends...activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke, and football player Jim Brown who throw a party for him in a small hotel. The next morning, Cassius makes an announcement that will shock the world. One Night In Miami... imagines what might have transpired on that very real, very fateful night in 1964. The civil rights struggle was ready to boil over and in less than a year, two of these friends would be dead. But on this night, the possibilities are endless. Written by Kemp Powers, and directed by Carl Cofield, it runs June 8 through July 28 at the Rogue Machine in Los Angeles. For tickets call 855-585-5185 or visit www.roguemachinetheatre.com.
“We Are Proud to Present a Presentation About the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Known as South-West Africa, From the German Sudwestafrika, Between the Years 1884-1915” a chilling and very funny new work about a group of actors who lose control of their play and discover some startling hidden truths. What could possibly go wrong when a group of eager young amateur actors attempt to dramatize the first genocide of the 20th century? Written by Jackie Sibblies Drury, and directed by Jillian Armenante, it runs June 8 through August 11 at the Matrix Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 323-852-1445 or visit www.matrixtheatre.com.
“White Trash Wedding and a Funeral” Taking place in an Illinois American Legion Post, a trailer trash bride plots to marry the dimwitted, alcoholic nephew of a septic tank millionaire and kill both of them. Drinkin’ and swearin’ and fightin’ and f#@kin’ are what’s in store for these rib-ticklin’ rednecks. Written by Mike Beyer and Bill Havle, and directed by David Chrzanowski, it runs June 9 through June 29 at the Theatre Asylum in Los Angeles. For tickets visit www.hollywoodfringe.org.
“Yes, Prime Minister” This riotous, timely and sharply satirical new take on the British corridors of power is set against the backdrop of the collapsing Euro and austerity measures in a world of 24 hour news, smart phones, and ‘sexed up’ dossiers. Join a hilarious cast of characters, ranging from the scheming Cabinet Secretary, Sir Humphrey Appleby, to the morally confused Principal Private Secretary, Bernard Woolley, and the ruthless Head of the PM’s Policy Unit, Claire Sutton, as they lurch from crisis to crisis, trying to survive a disastrous weekend that teeters on the edge of catastrophe despite their best (and worst) intentions. Will they manage to save the Euro from collapsing, resolve the energy crisis, solve the debt crisis, hide an embarrassing illegal immigrant, control the media and avoid public humiliation? Written by Jonathan Lynn and Anthony Jay, and directed by Jonathan Lynn, it runs June 12 through July 14 at the Geffen Playhouse in Westwood. For tickets call 310-208-5454 or visit www.geffenplayhouse.com.
“The Royal Family” uproarious comedy about a family dynasty of actors, a thinly disguised parody of the Barrymores, will be performed by Topanga’s own theatrical clan, the Geers. Trodding the boards isn’t all it’s cracked up to be in this clever comedy about the theater, artists and family. Written by George S. Kaufman and Edna Ferber, and directed by Susan Angelo, it runs June 22 through September 28 at the Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga. For tickets call 310-455-3723 or visit www.theatricum.com.
“Sweet Karma” Based on true events, this play tells the haunting tale of a survivor of the Khmer Rouge genocide in war-time Cambodia, who was plucked out of obscurity to star in a major motion picture and win the coveted Academy Award, only to be fatally gunned down outside his Los Angeles apartment a decade later. Written by Henry Ong, and directed by Kevin Cochran, it runs June 22 through July 14 at the GTC Burbank in Burbank. For tickets call 818-528-6622 or visit www.gtc.org.
“Catch Me If You Can” Based on the incredible true story that inspired it, this is the high-flying, splashy new Broadway musical that tells the story of Frank W. Abagnale, Jr., a teenager who runs away from home in search of the glamorous life. With nothing more than his boyish charm, a big imagination and millions of dollars in forged checks, Frank successfully poses as a pilot, a doctor and a lawyer — living the high life and winning the girl of his dreams. But when Frank’s lies catch the attention of FBI agent Carl Hanratty, Carl chases Frank to the end...and finds something he never expected. Written by Terrence McNally, with music by Marc Shaiman & Scott Wittman, and directed by Jack O'Brien, it runs June 25 through June 30 at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa. For tickets call 714-556-2787 or visit www.SCFTA.org.
“South Pacific” Based on stories from Tales of the South Pacific, James A. Michener’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 book, South Pacific will transport you to a tropical paradise during World War II. You will fall in love with the characters and rekindle your passion for the phenomenal all-time favorite songs, including “Bali Ha’i”, “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair”, “Some Enchanted Evening”, “I’m in Love with a Wonderful Guy” and “There is Nothing Like A Dame”. Written by Oscar Hammerstein and Joshua Logan, with music by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, and directed by Valerie Rachelle, it runs through July 6 at the Glendale Centre Theatre in Glendale. For tickets call 818-244-8481 or visit www.glendalecentretheatre.com.
“Ionescopade” Taken from the plays, playlets and poetry of “Theatre of the Absurd” playwright Eugène Ionesco (Rhinoceros, The Bald Soprano, Exit the King), Ionescopade is a zany musical vaudeville featuring mime, farce and parody – all hilariously balanced on the edge of madness. Written by Eugène Ionesco, with music by Mildred Kayden, and directed by Bill Castellino, it runs through August 11 at the Odyssey Theatre in Los Angeles. For tickets call 310-477-2055 or visit www.odysseytheatre.com.
So brush the sand off your feet, grab your friends and family, and go out to see a show tonight!