This Week in L.A. Theatre

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IN THE NEWS


  • The 27th Annual LA STAGE Alliance Ovation Awards nominees have been announced. Leading the pack this year with the most nominations is La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts.
  • Supported by a grant from the County of Los Angeles through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the Santa Monica Playhouse presents Make IT!?, a pastiche of performance art, poetry, physical theatre, and mime, weaving together disparate stories about people finding themselves in awkward, funny, heart-wrenching, and ultimately relatable situations in a desperate attempt to make it in this vast city we call Los Angeles. Scripted by Playhouse Playwright-in-Residence Evelyn Rudie and helmed by Co-Artistic Director Chris DeCarlo, Make It!? is the latest devised play to develop from the Short Burst® Theatre project. At Santa Monica’s Miles Memorial Playhouse Nov 4, 5 & 6.
  • Native Voices at the Autry presents its 6th Annual Short Play FestivalTake Back The Land, exploring such environmental issues such as climate change and pollution, legal debates surrounding borders and resources, and personal and spiritual connections to the land. Selected by a national panel, the plays, by Native American playwrights from across the country, will be workshopped and read by the Native Voices Artists Ensemble. The plays are then considered for the Von Marie Atchley Excellence in Playwriting Award, a $1,000 cash prize based on the creative use of the competition theme, originality, theatricality, execution, and audience response. The eight selected plays will be performed Nov 14 at La Jolla Playhouse in San Diego.

PREMIERES


  • American Legion Hollywood Post 43 is premiering Everything In Between—four generations of vets, dealing with their own difficulties, collaborate to help a young man coming home from the war in Afghanistan—written by Rebecca Stahl and directed by John DeFusco. This site-specific, immersive production opens on Veterans Day, Nov 11, in the American Legion Historic Cultural Monument Building at 2035 N. Highland Avenue in Hollywood.
  • Having made its debut at Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Thrones! The Musical Parody is now having its LA premiere. Scripted by Chris Grace, Zach Reino, Al Samuels, Nick Semar and Dan Wessels, this 90-minute distillation of six seasons of Game of Thrones is directed by John Flynn, with choreography by Kimberly McVicar. Opens Nov 19 at Hudson Mainstage in Hollywood.
  • East West Players is presenting the West Coast premiere of Leah Nanako Winkler’s Kentucky—a contemporary coming-of-age story in which identity, religion, and love collide. Directed by Deena Selenow. Opens Nov 16 at the David Henry Hwang Theater in Little Tokyo. The production is supported by the S. Mark Taper Foundation Endowment.

AROUND TOWN


  • Pacific Resident Theatre is reviving Eugene O’Neill’s rarely produced A Touch of the Poet (the prequel to More Stately Mansions), set in a lowly tavern near Boston on the eve of Andrew Jackson’s Presidential election. Directed by Robert Bailey. Opens Nov 5.
  • Musical Theatre Guild’s next offering is The Spitfire Grill, based on the 1996 film, telling the story of Percy Talbot, who is attempting to find a place to make a fresh start after spending five years in prison. By James Valcq (music and book) and Fred Alley (lyrics and book), helmed by Linda Kerns, with music direction by Brent Crayon. Stars Eileen Barnett. Plays Nov 13 only, at the Alex in Glendale.
  • Renée Marino, who played Mary Delgado in the film, Jersey Boys, directed by Clint Eastwood, is performing her solo show, I Am Me, Because Of Three, written by Marino and Dante Russo, directed by Coy Middlebrook, with musical direction by Gerald Sternbach. Opens Nov 7 at Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal in NoHo.
  • Also at The Federal, The New Short Fiction Series is offering its 20th anniversary season, featuring Adela’s Pages and other stories by Pushcart Prize nominee Désirée Zamorano, performed by spoken word guru Sally Shore, with a guest cast that includes Sherry Mandujano, Jill Remez and Vanessa Suarez. Plays Nov 13.

THE THING IS…


Director ROBERT BELTRAN discusses Mariella in the Desert, written by Karen Zacarias, premiering at Casa 0101in Boyle Heights. Opens Nov 4.


Julio Martinez-hosted Arts in Review, celebrating the best in theater and cabaret in the greater Los Angeles area—airs Fridays (2-2:30pm) on KPFK (90.7FM).

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Julio Martinez

Julio Martinez

Julio pens the weekly LA STAGE Insider column for @ This Stage Magazine, as well as the monthly LA STAGE History column. He is a recurring contributor to Written By (the monthly publication of the Writer’s Guild of America) and is the TeleVision columnist for Latin Heat Entertainment. On air, he hosts the weekly Arts in Review program for KPFK 90.7 FM. An active journalist for over 30 years, Julio’s articles and reviews have appeared in Los Angeles Times Magazine, Daily Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, L.A. Weekly, Stage Raw, Backstage West, Westways Magazine, and Drama-Logue Magazine, among others.