This Week in LA Theatre

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Written by Julio Martinez

Image Credit: Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake


  • The upcoming Hollywood Fringe Festival 2020 is offering Fringe Diversity Scholarships. If interested, there will be a Fringe Scholarship informational session on Nov 20 (7-9 pm) in the Ruby Theatre at the Complex. During this panel, past scholarship winners, committee members and Fringe staff will explain the scholarship application process, what the winners are required to do, and answer all questions, live! If you cannot attend, this session will be recorded and posted to FringeTV. Created in 2016, the Fringe Scholarships Program exists to expand and diversify the pool of artists producing work at the Hollywood Fringe Festival. The inaugural program offered free registrations to five Hollywood Fringe productions, and has since expanded to include 13 scholarships with free registration and a $550 stipend towards production costs. Fringe Scholarships will be awarded to first-time Hollywood Fringe producers who contribute to the ethnic, cultural, racial, mentally or physically disabled, or LGBTQ+ diversity of the Fringe community.
  • Looking to the new year, Pasadena Playhouse announces the Los Angeles premiere of Ann, written by and starring Holland Taylor and directed by Benjamin Endsley Klein (May 27-June 28, 2020; and the on-sale of tickets for The Father, written by Florian Zeller and starring Alfred Molina, translated by Christopher Hampton and directed by Jessica Kubzansky (Feb 5-Mar 1, 2020).


  • The Fountain Theatre in Hollywood is extending Los Angeles premiere of 2015 Pulitzer Prize-winning comedy-drama, Between Riverside and Crazy, by Stephen Adly Guirgis, through Jan. 26, 2020.  Stars Victor Anthony, Joshua Bitton, Lesley Fera, Liza Fernandez, Matthew Hancock, Marisol Miranda and Montae Russell, directed by Guillermo Cienfuegos.  


  • Casting is set for Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake from New Adventures, with direction and choreography by Bourne and music by Tchaikovsky which will be presented by Center Theatre Group at the Ahmanson Theatre, opening Dec 5. The role of ‘The Swan’ is performed by Will Bozier and Max Westwell. ‘The Prince’ is performed by James Lovell and Andrew Monaghan, while ‘The Queen’ is performed by Nicole Kabera and Katrina Lyndon. ‘The Girlfriend’ is also performed by Katrina Lyndon. She is joined by Freya Field and Carrie Willis. ‘The Private Secretary’ will be played by Jonathon Luke Baker, Jack Jones, Ashley-Jordon Packer and Max Westwell, supported by a company of 28. 
  • Greenway Arts Alliance has extended performances of Tony Award-winning “Best Play,” The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time by Simon Stephens (based on writer Mark Haddon’s novel of the same name). Cast features Iain Kohn, Kacie Rogers, Michael Yurchak, Joanna Strapp, Tristan Cunningham, Abe Martell, Robert Paterno, Bill Salyers, Selina Scott-Benin, Denise Moses, with Darius De La Cruz, Alexandra Hellquist, and Josh Golombek, directed by Kate Jopson. Plays through Dec 29 at Greenway Court Theatre.
  • Actor Jim Beaver (CW’s Supernatural) joins the cast as Sheridan Whiteside in the Group Rep’s production of Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman’s 1939 farce, The Man Who Came To Dinner, directed by Bruce Kimmel. Opens Dec 6 at the Lonny Chapman Theatre in North Hollywood.
  • The Broad Stage in Santa Monica presents the return of Impro Theatre with Jane Austen UnScripted on Dec 21 for two performances (4 and 8pm). In additionImpro Theatre will also be presenting WinterFest, Impro Theatre’s annual festival celebrating narrative improvisation in L.A. and the larger international improv community, Jan 6-12.


  • Laguna Playhouse announces the return of The Skivvies: I Touch My Elf, starring the comedy pop duo Luren Molina and Nick Cearley, with special guest appearances by Nick Adams, jackbenny, Erik Altemus, Emerson Collins, Spencer Curnutt, Jason Feddy, Blake McIver, Tori Roze, Brett Ryback and the Playhouse’s Veltria Roman! Two performances only, Dec 16 & 17.
  • Santa Barbara’s Ensemble Theatre Company presents the second show of its 2019-20 Season, It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, adapted by Joe Landry, from the screenplay by Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Frank Capra & Jo Swerling and directed by ETC’s Brian McDonald. The cast features Matthew Floyd Miller (George Bailey), Hannah Tamminen (Mary Bailey) and Peter Van Norden (Mr. Potter), as well as Louis Lotorto (Clarence) and Teri Bibb (multiple roles). Opens Dec 7 at The New Vic.
  • The Long Beach Playhouse will end the year with its annual production of Charles Dickens’ 1843 classic, A Christmas Carol, featuring Robb Tracy as ‘Scrooge.’ The cast features 17-members, directed by Evan Battle. The show opens Dec 7.


  • Devised Theatre Lab is The Fountain Theatre’s in-school arts education program that seeks to provide LAUSD students and their teachers with access to forward thinking theatre-making. Devised Theatre Lab will engage youth who otherwise lack access to theatre arts education in myriad methods of grass-roots, low budget theater-making to inspire innovative thinking and imaginative play. Our purpose is to encourage the next generation of theatre makers to be innovative, forward thinking, and brave. More info: email or call 323 663 1525 ext. 306

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.