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.

This Week in LA Theatre

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By Julio Martinez

IN THE NEWS


  • Latino Theater Company and the LATC are hosting a “Mardi Gras” wine tasting event to benefit the Latino Theater Company and the Los Angeles Theatre Center’s artistic and educational programming. The evening features six wine stations courtesy of RabbleWine Company, each with a themed silent auction table and appetizers provided by Don Francisco’s Coffee. There will be live music from the EV Trio. Mar 2, 5:30-8pm, at LATC.
  • The 26th Annual Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival is being held Mar 22-25, featuring a roster of artists co-hosting three days and five programs at Theatre 68 in NoHo. This year’s overall theme is “I, Woman.” The lineup includes The Champagne Gala and Awards Ceremony, directed by Denise Dowse, honoring five distinguished women for their contributions to theatre, hosted by Starletta DuPois and Kym Whitley (Mar 22); Against All Odds, hosted by Dawn Didawick and Rosie Lee Hooks (Mar 23, 3pm); One Voice, Many Stories, hosted by Karen A. Clark and Roger Guenveur Smith (Mar 23, 8pm); Family, Food and Freedom, hosted by Margaret Avery and Jude Narita (Mar 24, 3pm); and Rise Up, hosted by Fay Hauser-Price and Kat Kramer.

PREMIERES


  • Élan Ensemble presents the premiere of How We’re Different From Animals, based on short stories from No One Belongs Here More Than You, by Miranda July. The ensemble includes Julian Juaquin, Adam Lebowitz-Lockard, Tarah Pollock, Elmira Rahim, and Danielle Reynolds, directed by Jonathan Muñoz-Proulx. Opens Feb 22 in Atwater Village Theatre.
  • IAMA Theatre Company, in association with the Latino Theater Company, is presenting the premiere of Canyon, by Jonathan Caren. In a backyard, deep within a canyon during Labor Day weekend, 2016, two families are rocked by an unpredictable accident that changes their lives forever. Directed by Whitney White. Stars Stefanie Black, Luca Oriel, Geoffrey Rivas, Brandon Scott, Adam Shapiro, and Christine Woods. Opens Feb 28 at LATC in downtown L.A.
  • The Zephyr Theatre in West Hollywood is hosting the premiere of Attack Of The Second Bananas, a “killer comedy” written by Gina Torrecilla. Features Jean Marie Baiardi, Katie Canavan, Tom DeTrinis, Adam Huss, Travis Leland, Tim McKernan, Kendra Munger, Jeanne Simpson, and MaryAnn Welshans, directed by Ryan Bergmann. Opens Mar 1.

AROUND TOWN


  • After a year, They Played Productions continues its Captivated modern trilogy take on Frankenstein. This unconventional and unique retelling of the horror story is completed with Captivated: You, an immersive production that makes “you” the final character. Written and directed by Erik Blair; starring Stepy Kamei, Sarah Morris, Josh Ritz, Glenn David, Katie Conrad, Erik Blair, Austin Schumacher, and Thea Rivera. Opens May 12 at a secluded warehouse (location disclosed to ticket holders) in Silverlake.
  • Laguna Playhouse presents the Wallis Annenberg Theatre production of Blues In The Night, conceived and directed by Sheldon Epps, with musical direction by Abdul Hamid Royal. The cast will feature Yvette Cason, Jenna Gillespie, Chester Gregory, and Paulette Ivory. Opens Feb 24 at the Laguna Playhouse in Laguna Beach.
  • Theatre of NOTE announces its production of 1=0, written by Joshua Fardon, following the journey of an unemployed, divorced theoretical physicist who has an online relationship with a man claiming to be a Syrian refugee. Directed by James R. Carey. Featuring Michelle Hilyard, Andrea Ruth, Will McFadden, Sigi Gradwohl, and Kerr Lordygan. Opens Feb 28 at Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood.
  • Italian Comedy Club is presenting My Big Gay Italian Wedding, by Anthony Wilkinson, asking if a large, loving Italian family can come together, despite multiple obstacles, to celebrate the marriage of two men deeply in love. Directed by Gianfranco Terrin. Opening Mar 8 at Hudson Theatre Mainstage in Hollywood.
  • Cal State Fullerton’s spring semester begins with Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, following a destitute Russian aristocrat who returns home to find her family in a financial crisis. Translated by Paul Schmidt; directed by Maria Cominis. Opens Mar 8 in the Young Theatre on campus. The spring season continues with Ellen McLaughlin’s adaptation of the classic Greek comedy, Lysistrata, inspired by Aristophanes. Directed by Rufus Bonds Jr. in the Hallberg Theatre on campus (Apr 12-May 5).

SOLO MOJO


  • The Lounge Theatre in Hollywood is hosting She’s History! A Play About Women Who Make And Made History, written and performed by Amy Simon, celebrating Women’s History Month, featuring the words and personas of Bella Abzug, Shirley Chisholm, Nancy Pelosi, Abigail Adams, Malala Yousafzai, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and many more. Mar 10 at The Lounge.

THE THING IS…


Director Deena Selenow and cast members discuss Fountain Theatre’s West Coast premiere of Hype Man, written by Idris Goodwin. Features Chad Addison, Matthew Hancock, and Clarissa Thibeaux. Opens Feb 22.

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

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