This Week in LA Theatre

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Written By Julio Martinez

Image credit: The 27th Annual LA Stage Alliance Ovation Awards held at Center Theatre Group/Ahmanson Theatre on January 17, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ryan Miller/Capture Imaging)


  • Center Theatre Group will offer a Spanish language open-captioned performance of Latin History for Morons, written by and starring John Leguizamo, on Oct 18 at the Ahmanson Theatre. The show will be performed in English with Spanish translations running simultaneously on an open caption screen. Audience members wishing to view the open captions can request seating when purchasing tickets, which are available online at using promo code LHFMSL or in person at the Center Theatre Group Box Office, in Downtown L.A.


  • Antaeus Theatre is presenting the West Coast premiere of The Abuelas, a surprise visit from two strangers exposes a devastating secret in this visceral look at the repercussions of Argentina’s “Dirty War,” written by Stephanie Alison Walker. Stars Denise Blasor, Irene DeBari, David DeSantos, Seamus Dever, Carolina Montenegro and Luisina Quarleri, directed by Andi Chapman.  Opens Oct 11 at Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale.
  • Theatre 68 in NoHo is presenting the premiere of Death With Dignity…Comes In A Milkshake, probing the thin line that separates those that inhabit the Therapist’s chair, with those that sit opposite, written by Sam Henry Kass.  The ensemble includes Tamara Braun, Hansford Prince, Jonathan Moreno, Paul Jacek and Thomas F. Evans, directed by Ronnie Marmo. Opens Oct 18.
  • Hollywood Pantages Theatre will be presenting the Los Angeles premiere of the national tour of Anastasia, transporting the audience from the twilight of the Russian Empire to the euphoria of Paris in the 1920s, as a young woman sets out to discover the mystery of her past. Created by Terrence McNally (book), Stephen Flaherty (music) and Lynn Ahrens (lyrics), directed by Tony-winning Darko Tresnjak. The cast stars Lila Coogan, Stephen Brower, Jason Michael Evans, Joy Franz, Tari Kelly, Edward Staudenmayer and Victoria Amelia Bingham and features a 19-member ensemble. Opens Oct 8.
  • Circle X Theatre Co. announces the Southern California premiere of punkplay, a coming of age story in the form of a mixtape, a theatrical love letter to loud music, irresponsible behavior and the “beating heart of authenticity,” written by Gregory S. Moss, co-directed by Circle X Theatre’s Founding Artistic Director Matt Bretz & current Associate Artistic Director Lisa Sanaye Dring. Composition and Musical Direction by Rob Cairns and Beth Thornley.  The cast features Kylr Coffman, Dempsey Bryk, Mathew Dunlop and Sadie Kuwano. Opens Nov 16 at Atwater Village Theatre.


  • Open Fist Theatre Company is offering Neil Simon’s musical fable, Fools, set in 1893 Ukraine, wherein a young tutor arrives in Kulyenchikov after only to discover that the village is cursed. Music & lyrics by Phil Swann & Ron West, directed by Ron West, music direction by Jan Roper, choreography by Louisa Kendrick Burton. Features an 18-member ensemble. Opens Oct 12 in Atwater Village Theatre.
  • Musical Theatre West opens its 67th season with the 10-time Tony-nominated musical Something Rotten! at the Carpenter Performing Arts Center (Oct 18-Nov 3). Music and lyrics by Wayne Kirkpatrick and Karey Kirkpatrick and book by Kirkpatrick and best-selling author John O’Farrell. It’s the 1590s in London, and brothers Nick and Nigel Bottom are desperate to write a hit play, but they are stuck in the shadow of that Renaissance rock star, William Shakespeare….so they write a musical. Directed by Josh Grisetti with Eric Sciotto as choreographer. Orchestra under the direction of Dennis Castellano.  Stars Eric Petersen (Nick Bottom) and Beau Brians (Nigel Bottom).
  • What If? – A Musical Parody directed by Bruce Kimmel, with musical direction by Richard Allen, will be performed for two nights only, Oct 23 and 24, as a fundraiser for The Group Rep Theatre Company at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood, one of the oldest producing theatre companies in greater Los Angeles.  A parody of notable musical show tunes, features the talents of Brittney Bertier, Daniel Bellusci, Hartley Powers, Laura Wolfe, and Robert Yacko.


  • Theatre West is once again hosting The Italian in Me, an accelerated full immersion Italian lesson about Cinema, Sex, Saints and Federico Fellini, all set in the Eternal City, Rome, written and performed by Dina Morrone, directed by Peter Flood. Plays Nov 9 & 10.
  • Hudson Guild Theatre is hosting Treya’s Last Dance, a modern-day exploration of fractured pasts and hopeful futures, a bittersweet story about the universal themes of grief, identity and sexuality, written by and starring Shyam Bhatt, directed by Poonam Basu, music composed by Archita Kumar.  Now open, plays through Oct 23.


  • Playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis shares how he came to write Between Riverside And Crazy, winner of the Pulitzer Prize in Drama. Opens Oct 19 at the Fountain Theatre in Hollywood, directed by Guillermo Cienfuegos. Stars Victor Anthony, Joshua Bitton, Lesley Fera, Liza Fernandez, Matthew Hancock, Marisol Miranda and Montae Russell.


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

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.