Category Archives: Theatre

The theatre. The theatre. What’s HAPPENED to the theatre?

Mary Poppins – Ahmanson Theatre

Wow…Ashley Brown AND Gavin Lee! Absolutely amazing performances! I love how Bert is completely in control of the set and lighting – at least when Mary lets him. During “Jolly Holliday”, a couple in the chorus were wearing the film version costumes! Well at least Dick Van Dyke’s costume…Julie Andrews’ costume was trimmed down (at best). I really like Mary and Bert’s costumes (pink dress and purple tux – but not pimpish…English). She actually said supercalifragilisticexpialidocious backwards! And so did Bert! And then they spelled it out! To be fair I’m quite fond of Ms. Andrews’ recitation and Mr. Van Dyke’s “indubitably”. No loving to laugh? No man with a wooden leg named Smith? Sure I’m satisfied with the show’s conclusion, I just love that song. Similar fate for the Dawes, Tomes, Mousely, Grubbs, Fidelity Fiduciary Bank and Stay Awake. I like the replacement …I just miss it. OMG!!! Step … Continue reading →

Noises Off! – Camino Real Playhouse

MUCH better than Fullerton’s debacle (http://www.unfiltered.bullfrog117.com/2008/11/11/noises-off-csu-fullerton/). It was essentially a black box/cabaret theatre so seeing the set rotate was very mesmerizing (they chopped the set into three pieces so that they could play one of those sliding tile games and get things rotated around). The acting was superb, the set was beautiful, the costumes were wonderfully 70s and the pace was PERFECT!

Spamalot – OCPAC

I love that the Knights Who No Longer Say Ni made a David Letterman joke, (I’m not throwing stones, I’ve slept with all the knights on my staff; stupid human tricks) and John O’Hurley LOST IT! It was beautiful and hilarious and the single reason worth seeing the whole show (I saw it in Vegas 2 years ago). But then…did O’Hurley really lose it or convincingly act like he lost it? Apparently they did the same joke the night before, but then when our friends saw it a week later, it was a completely different joke! So it’s improvised every night. So is O’Hurley acting surprised because he’s prepared for hilarity or is he not preparing and losing it? A lot of my old review (viewable hereSpamalot (The Vegas Edition)) still applies…tragically. Eric Idle just isn’t as good at adapting his material as Mel Brooks is (although that remains to … Continue reading →

Legally Blonde – OCPAC

Basically they took the movie – which on it’s own is very smart and very clever – and made it all over the top instead of amplifying some moments and letting good moments from the movie stand. For example – the Greek Chorus of sorority girls? INSPIRED! But on the other hand… Emmett was around too much. Made her more blonde than she was in the movie. Fine he’s got a “Chip On His Shoulder” and a nice back story, but it makes her a weaker female role model. Callahan was too sinister too early. You never liked him at all, which makes his exit much more predictable. Adding the Irish bit took away from Vivian and Elle’s growing friendship, making her sudden transformation awkward. Sure the Irish bit is fun, but weird choice. Going to the restroom at the scene of the crime for the court finale was ridiculous. … Continue reading →

Fiddler On The Roof – OCPAC

Featuring Topol! Apparently there’s more than one Fiddler movie (one of which Topol was the star of). Sorry! The most interesting aspect of seeing this show again after so many years (not since before I was in the show my sophmore year at OCHSA – as Avhram and a bottle dancer!), and especially now that I’ve thoroughly absorbed Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice (the 2005 movie, the Marvel comic adaptation), is the parallels between the two stories. Obviously research was required, and the following was thusly learned: Fiddler on the Roof is based on Tevye and his Daughters (or Tevye the Milkman) and other tales by Sholem Aleichem, originally written in Yiddish and first published in 1894 [placing them about a century behind Ms. Austen’s tale]. Tevye the Dairyman ([ˈtɛvjə], Yiddish: טבֿיה דער מילכיקער Tevye der milkhiker) is the protagonist of several of Sholem Aleichem’s stories. The character became best … Continue reading →

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – OCPAC

************* *UPDATE* – 7/19/2009 ************* Me Ol’ Bamboo and Posh were too slow. Posh is kind of understandable for the actor, but the only excuse for Bamboo is that they dont have enough offstage chorus people covering vocals for the exerting dancers. I mean I just saw the 83 year old Dick Van Dyke do it at tempo without the choreography, so do they really even have an excuse? And they modified the roll off choreography that Potts leads slightly (Laura noticed it and I agree with her). Truly Scrumptious was too fast. They also didn’t do the talking intro for it (you’d had to be called somethig lovely like toot sweets). I actually heard Lord Scrumptious (who is double cast as Baron Bombast) be angry at Potts for his invention ruining the factory with the dog whistle. The kids steal the show everytime. It’s still very cute (Hushabye Mountain … Continue reading →

MooNiE and BrooN – Nine O’Clock Playhouse, Los Angeles

Moonie as broon and broon as moonie Straightjacket escape – 1st time in 5 years or so Bed of nails used the spotlights to an amusing end Guitar and Saw Jam Session Quiz Illinois Talulah Can operate his cell phone Regular Coke Lucky Brand Diet Coke Mother often calls him Jeff/Geoff Leaky basement I staring at you right now Said “Hey, Tom” to Tom Cruise Squirrel infested garage Has shrapnel in his chest Secretly thinks he’s more talented than the other Sadie Wrangler California Thought this quiz was a stupid idea Nicknamed “Doobie” as a boy Never been to Alabama Brain swelled up once Has mad ice sculpting skillz Woke up once in a tent in a river

Rent: The School Edition – Corona Del Mar

Very polished preview. Only one stop per act. Really good caliber performances from the leads…even by non-high school standards. Obviously they can’t say f***. The big problem song obviously is La Vie Boheme: They can say masturbation but they can’t say erection? They can’t say dyke. They jumped a section with lyrics right before the talking interlude…marijuana? Roger is phenomenal and this is his first onstage performance ever! He’s a sophmore varsity football player and he’s got a really good voice. 30 hi-quality cordless mics! Fancy LED footlights and high end lighting throughout! Really good show! Check it out before the protests shut it down!

Bronzeville – The New LATC

Delightful straight play about an African American family that moves to California after the Japanese internment of the 1940’s, allowing them possession of an interred family’s house with one caveat…a young American man from that Japanese family has evaded internment by hiding in the attic! Now this family must adjust to this new surrogate family member in a situation akin to the plight their culture found itself in before Emancipation…a desperate struggle for freedom against an oppressive government. Meet the Goodwins: Patriarch Jodie, leading his family West from Mississippi to Los Angeles; His grandmother Janie, the aging matriarch and reigning chef of the house; His brother Felix who won’t be forced into the military just because the family has a history of fighting for a country that doesn’t recognize their rights…he just wants to play jazz; ….