This Week in LA Theatre

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Written By Julio Martinez

Image credit: The 28th Annual LA Stage Alliance Ovation Awards held at The Theatre at Ace Hotel on January 29, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Ryan Miller/Capture Imaging)

  • Hollywood Fringe Festival has announced Off-Season Hours, anticipating the 2020 Fringe Fest, offering networking and support. All Off-Season Hours will be hosted at the Broadwater Plunge in Hollywood on Nov 8, 12, Dec 10, 14, Jan 14 and Feb 11, 2020.  Other off-season Fringe Fest events include an encore presentation of Disrobed, written by Steven Vlasak, directed by Brian Knsson (nominated for Best Immersive Show at the 2019 Fringe Festival), moving to Studio C, opening Nov 2 (Saturdays only); and How to Produce a Hollywood Fringe Show, a three-hour workshop taught by Matthew Quinn, a 20-plus year veteran producer and eight year HFF Venue Manager, taking place at Studio C on Oct 17 and 26.


  • Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood closes its 2019 season with the premiere of Fruition, by Alexis DeLaRosa. In a lawless, dystopian near future, four strangers with no reason to trust each other must decide if they can work together to survive the deadly storm outside, while they face the threats they pose to one another, directed by Lauren Smerkanich, with original music by Hauk Heimdallsman. Cast includes Alexis DeLaRosa, Faith Imafidon, Kathleen O’Grady, Trevor H. Olsen and Travis York. Opens Nov 7.
  • United Stages (formerly Australian Theatre Company) and The Skylight Theatre Company are presenting the first professional Aboriginal production in Los Angeles, the Gin and Tonic Theatre’s American premiere of The 7 Stages of Grieving, a comprehensive account of Australia’s Aboriginal people and their struggle to survive, written by Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman, directed by Jason Klarwein. Opens Nov 1 at Skylight Theatre in Hollywood.
  • The Montalbán in Hollywood is hosting the premiere of The Soul of Broadway – Impossible Dreams, a one-night-only concert, bringing a fresh perspective to Broadway songs, starring Terron Brooks, with backup vocals by Fredericka Meek, Rhett George and Natalie Machen, musical direction by pianist Mark Vogel, leading a four-piece band. Plays Nov 3 on the Montalbán’s main stage.
  • The Broadwater Black Box in Hollywood is hosting the Pandelia’s Canary Yellow Company premiere of Defenders, following three American G.I.s who are shipwrecked on the remote island of Hrisey off Iceland’s northern coast when Iceland was threatened with invasion by Germany in WW2. Written by Cailin Maureen Harrison, and directed by Reena Dutt. Cast includes John P. Connolly, Tavis Doucette, Una Eggerts, Spencer Martin and Bryan Porter. Opens Nov 9.


  • A Noise Within in Pasadena is presenting Sam Shepard’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Buried Child, detailing, with wry humor, the disintegration of the American Dream. Production stars Geoff Elliott, Deborah Strang, Michael Manuel, Frederick Stuart, Zach Kenney, Angela Gulner and Apollo Dukakis, directed by ANW Producing Artistic Director Julia Rodriguez-Elliott. Opens Oct. 19.
  • La Mirada Theatre presents the second show of its 2019-2020 season, Roald Dahl’s Matilda, The Musical, the story of an extraordinary girl, daring to take a stand against the tyranny of adults who seek to crush her imagination. Book by Dennis Kelly, music and lyrics by Tim Minchin, musical direction by Jennifer Lin, choreography by Kate Dunn and directed by Michael Matthews. The Cast features Audrey Cymone, Michael A. Shepperd, Erica Hanrahan, Nicole Santiago, Constance, Danil Chernyy and Brandon Rogers.  As well as a sixteen member supporting ensemble. Opens Oct 26.


  • Odyssey Theatre and Fishamble: The New Play Company present the U.S. premiere of Before, a new play with music, influenced by the golden era of the Hollywood musical, created and performed by Irish writer/performer Pat Kinevane, featuring the voices of Clelia Murphy, Kez Kinevane and Alex Sharpe. Inside Clery’s of Dublin, on the very day this iconic department store shuts for good, Pontius is trying to choose a gift for his estranged daughter, whom he hasn’t seen for almost 20 years. Directed by Jim Culleton, music composed by Denis Clohessy and choreographed by Emma O’Kane. Opens Nov 14.
  • Lee Strasberg Theatre in Hollywood is presenting Orry, the funeral of three-time Oscar winner and Hollywood legend, costume designer Orry-Kelly, with whip-tongued  commentary from the deceased guest of honor, written and performed by Nick Hardcastle (based on the memoir, “Women I’ve Undressed” by Orry-Kelly). Directed by Wayne Harrison, music direction by Anthony Zediker.  Opens Nov 2 .
  • Latino Theater Company is presenting two international solo productions. Aliens, Immigrants & Other Evildoers, a sci-fi “Latino noir” satire, inspired by interviews with immigrants who crossed the border to escape economic despair and war, that spotlights anti-immigrant hysteria. Created, performed and directed by New Orleans-based performance artist José Torres-Tama, opens Oct 24 at downtown L.A.’s Los Angeles Theatre Center. Sponsored by SPAIN arts & culture, Spanish performance artist Marta Carrasco returns to the Latino Theater Company with her newest work Perra de Nadie (“Nobody’s Bitch”). In the deepest part of everyone, where the underworld of vulnerability, madness, tenderness and fragility exist, lives Lili. Created, performed and directed by Carrasco, presented in Spanish with English supertitles. Opens Oct 10.


  • Director Kiff Scholl, playwright Cailin Maureen Harrison and cast members (Matthew Downs, Abby Eiland,Ty Mayberry, Shaw Purnell, Leilani Smith) discuss Last Swallows, running through Oct 20 at The Other Space @The Actors Company in West Hollywood.

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.

Join us Saturday, October 12th for Connect and Collab: Building community amongst Directors, Playwrights, Dramaturgs, and Literary Managers. Admission is $5, click here to register today!

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.