Archive for April, 2010

ABSINTHE, OPIUM, & MAGIC Returns, hosted by The Actors’ Gang

April 23, 2010

If you missed its extended run in Hollywood last year, I strongly suggest you check out the Grand Guignolers’ restaging of ABSINTHE, OPIUM, & MAGIC:  1920s SHANGHAI coming to The Actors’ Gang at the Ivy Substation in Culver City.  Read the review to get a feel for the good times you are in store for…

 

ABSINTHE, OPIUM, & MAGIC:  1920’s SHANGHAI

Popular entertainment will always cater to the lowest common denominator.  Regardless of your highfalutin’ thoughts of “art and culture,” what people want is titillation and escape:  graphic violence, high cut slits, and low cut blouses.

And you get it in spades.  Take a look at the top selling video games and films of the recent past:  you’ve found sex, drugs, and explosions larger than California’s current budget woes.

So what does it take to get an audience out for live theater?  One draw should be an experience unlike any found at home or the cinema.

Debbie McMahon’s Grand Guignolers take that to heart, and provide a fully encompassing presentation that begins outside the door to the theater, and continues to pull you in during a fully immersive evening of entertainment.

If only every lobby and pre-show was so buzzing with activity, revelry, and joy.
Sigh…

Thematic content includes:  Sex, Violence, Self Destruction, Drug Use, Puppets, Singing, Dance/ Movement, Lowbrow, Humor

Absinthe, Opium, & Magic: 1920’s Shanghai
5/7 to 5/29 Th F Sa $25-$30
8pm pre show & Absinthe
8:30 curtain
Suggested Dress: Vintage/ Cocktail NO LATE SEATING
Map of the Ivy Substation
Purchase tickets
Visit the Grand Guignoler website
Visit The Actors’ Gang website
Contact the production/ producers

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Rehearsal Photos of MEET ME @ METRO May 2, 2010

April 23, 2010

Here are some rehearsal photos the Watts Village Theater Company has shared with us for their upcoming project, MEET ME @ METRO on Sunday, May 2nd.








See and download the full gallery on posterous

Photos by Dawid S. Jaworski

 
The MTA is teaming up with six theater/ performance companies to create an amazing day of FREE site specific performance.

MEET ME @ METRO is an exciting, interactive, trans-disciplinary theatrical journey, taking place at Metro stops between Downtown Los Angeles and the community of Watts. Using theater, dance, puppetry, music and even food, this eclectic happening will explore cultures that often converge aboard Metro that are rarely examined or understood.

Performances will take place along the Metro Purple, Red and Blue Lines starting at Union Station and ending at the Watts Towers. A Metro Day Pass or any other valid Metro pass is required for the entire performance. The FREE ticket gets you your Metro Day Pass, additional service fees included, and access to all the performances!

Please note, at this time, both the 11am and 4pm shows are at capacity… HOWEVER, as long as you purchase an MTA day pass ($5) and meet up at the East portal to Union Station (by the Bus Plaza) before show time, YOU CAN CATCH THIS SHOW!  The entire performance is taking place in underutilized public spaces.  I strongly recommend that if you are interested in being a part of this one of a kind performance, buy your day pass and show up 15 minutes before showtime at the East portal to Union Station.  Look for a person wearing a MEET ME @ METRO t-shirt, and stay close as you follow this guide for two hours of site specific performance.

A special benefit dinner for the Watts Village Theater Company follows the 4pm performance at Watts Amphitheater ($10.)  VIP passes are also available ($20) 

Sunday, May 2nd, 11am and 4pm, FREE.
Map of Union Station
Both the 11 and 4 o’clock shows are currently at capacity.
The producers urge interested participants to sign up on a wait-list.
Purchase WVTC dinner benefit
Purchase VIP passes

Visit the websites of Participating Companies
Collage Dance Theatre
East L.A. Rep
Epic Megalopolis Productions
MooDoo Puppets
The Nonsense Company
Watts Village Theater Company

 

Thomas Hampton Reviews ROB ZABRECKY, TINA LENERT, & ARDAN JAMES at the Palace of Mystery

April 23, 2010



Each seat in the room is full of drunken revelers, traveling businessmen, fellow performers, industry regulars, and the excited folk who have scored their first invite to a last bastion of both live entertainment and the private supper club, the World Famous Magic Castle.

Rob Zabrecky takes the stage, and playfully toys with a live electrical wire that appears from behind the top curtain, hanging enticingly, just within reach.  When he finally grasps the end of this seemingly innocent instrument of death, the house goes black as a visible electrical shock plummets Zabrecky to his death, now slumped stage right.

Rob’s imminent re-animation sets the tone for the entire performance to come, inviting his audience with him in to a realm of possibilities, the unknown, the silly, and macabre.  A world where death is not the end, nor a beginning, but a path in to another dimension that both straddles the workaday world the audience enters the performance space from, and extends in to the unused, forgotten, and feared realms of their under-taxed minds.

Rob’s audience is led on this journey by two other solid performers, Tina Lenert and Arden James.  Both Ms. Lenert and Mr. James’ performance styles are firmly rooted in classic mime and clown technique, and bring fantastic control and physicality to the table.  In fact, Tina Lenert was one of the founding members of the L.A. Mime Company, before she began incorporating magic in to her act.

What Zabrecky, Lenert, and James accomplish at the Palace of Mystery is no short feat.  A culmination of over three years of work, this new show, and it’s star attractions, work together to serve the audience a fully thought out meal, rather than the multitude of side dishes that many “group” magic shows feel like.  The three have taken the time and care to work each other in to their acts in thoughtful, purposeful ways, presenting an evening accessible to all tastes that transcends their individual performances.

Zabrecky, Lenert, and James have elevated their individual acts in a collaboration that leaves their participants excited, happy, full of wonder, and most importantly, deeply satisfied.

Thematic Content includes:  Redemption, Love, Self Destruction, Singing, Live Music, Dance/ Movement, Highbrow, Lowbrow, Humor.

ROB ZABRECKY is playing the PALACE OF MYSTERY with
TINA LENERT and
ARDAN JAMES
4/19 to 4/25 two shows nightly 8pm and 10pm
Visit the Magic Castle’s website
The Magic Castle is a private club in Hollywood.  You must be a member or have a guest card from a member to gain admittance.
The Magic Castle has a strict dress code and rules.

Press Photos of SECOND Filament Theatre Company

April 21, 2010

Here are some Press Photos for the Los Angeles premiere of SECOND, presented by Filament Theatre Company.






See and download the full gallery on posterous


SECOND is a choreography of seven actors and three cameras unfolding through separate, concurrent scenes staged in a private home in Echo Park.
The audience will be divided amongst three rooms: as one scene plays out live in the room, the other two scenes are captured by live cameras and presented cinematically, allowing each audience a unique experience while still sharing the same story.

This is the Los Angeles premiere of SECOND, by Neal Utterback.  This production is directed by Joe LaRue, produced by Celeste Den, and stars Hilario Saavedra, Kristin D’Andrea, Carla Nassy, Tane Kawasaki, Jason Bonduris, Chad Christopher Kline, and Marco Neves.

Thematic content includes:  Redemption, Love, Adultery, Sex, Violence, Self Destruction, Singing, Humor.

SECOND runs 5/6 to 5/29
Th, F, Sa (and W 19th & 26th) 8pm  $20
Map of Laveta Villa
Buy Tickets
Visit the Filament Theatre Company website
Read the press release for SECOND

SECOND presented by Filament Theatre Company 5/6 to 5/29

April 21, 2010

 

SECOND is a choreography of seven actors and three cameras unfolding through separate, concurrent scenes staged in a private home in Echo Park. The audience will be divided amongst three rooms: as one scene plays out live in the room, the other two scenes are captured by live cameras and presented cinematically, allowing each audience a unique experience while still sharing the same story.

This is the Los Angeles premiere of SECOND, by Neal Utterback.

Thematic content includes:  Redemption, Love, Adultery, Sex, Violence, Self Destruction, Singing, Humor.

SECOND runs 5/6 to 5/29
Th, F, Sa (and W 19th & 26th) 8pm  $20
Map of Laveta Villa
Buy Tickets
Visit the Filament Theatre Company website
Read the press release for SECOND

ROB ZABRECKY at the Magic Castle 4/19 to 4/25 Press Photos

April 19, 2010

ROB ZABRECKY begins a weeklong stint at the PALACE OF MYSTERY tonight, at Hollywood’s renowned Magic Castle.

Here is a taste of Rob’s talent and style.

Thematic Content includes:  Redemption, Love, Self Destruction, Singing, Live Music, Dance/ Movement, Highbrow, Lowbrow, Humor.

ROB ZABRECKY is playing the PALACE OF MYSTERY with
TINA LENERT and
ARDAN JAMES
4/19 to 4/25 two shows nightly 8pm and 10pm
Visit the Magic Castle’s website
The Magic Castle is a private club in Hollywood.  You must be a member or have a guest card from a member to gain admittance.
The Magic Castle has a strict dress code and rules.

ENCORE L’AMOUR! Press Photos

April 19, 2010

We caught the closing night of ENCORE L’AMOUR last night at Highways Performance Space.  It was an incredible evening of clowning, music, and dance, featuring a talented corps brought togeather by NATHALIE BROIZAT and JEAN-PAUL MONSCHE.











Thematic content includes:  Dance/ Movement, Love, Highbrow, Live Music

ENCORE L’AMOUR! runs from 4/16 to 4/18 $20
F,Sa 8:30pm Sn 7pm
Map of Highways Performance Space
Buy Tickets
Visit the Highways website
Visit the Nathalie Broizat website

ROB ZABRECKY plays the Magic Castle 4/19 to 4/25

April 19, 2010

Thematic Content includes:  Redemption, Love, Self Destruction, Singing, Live Music, Dance/ Movement, Highbrow, Lowbrow, Humor.

ROB ZABRECKY is playing the PALACE OF MYSTERY with
TINA LENERT and
ARDAN JAMES
4/19 to 4/25 two shows nightly 8pm and 10pm
Visit the Magic Castle’s website
The Magic Castle is a private club in Hollywood.  You must be a member or have a guest card from a member to gain admittance.
The Magic Castle has a strict dress code and rules.

MEET ME @ METRO May 2, 2010

April 19, 2010

The MTA is teaming up with six theater/ performance companies to create an amazing day of FREE site specific performance.

MEET ME @ METRO is an exciting, interactive, trans-disciplinary theatrical journey, taking place at Metro stops between Downtown Los Angeles and the community of Watts. Using theater,dance, puppetry, music and even food, this eclectic happening will explore cultures that often converge aboard Metro that are rarely examined or understood.

Performances will take place along the Metro Purple, Red and Blue Lines starting at Union Station and ending at the Watts Towers. A Metro Day Pass or any other valid Metro pass is required for the entire performance. The FREE ticket gets you your Metro Day Pass, additional service fees included, and access to all the performances!

A special benefit dinner for the Watts Villiage Theater Company follows the 4pm performance at Watts Ampitheater ($10.)  VIP passes are also available ($20) 

Sunday, May 2nd, 11am and 4pm, FREE.
Map of Union Station
Both the 11 and 4 o’clock shows are currently at capacity.
The producers urge interested participants to sign up on a wait-list.
Purchase WVTC dinner benefit
Purchase VIP passes

Visit the websites of Participating Companies
Collage Dance Theatre
East L.A. Rep
Epic Megalopolis Productions
MooDoo Puppets
The Nonsense Company
Watts Village Theater Company

FERAL FOOD TRUCK FOOD OF LOS ANGELES

April 13, 2010

The French Naturalist

This Sunday offers an opportunity to witness the premiere of a rather interesting show, FERAL FOOD TRUCK FOOD OF LOS ANGELES.  This fake nature tour, led by The French Naturalist, is a piece of site specific performance art taking place in Echo Park, in and around Echo Lake, where the Lotus flowers used to bloom each summer.

This guided walking tour of Feral Food Truck Food (food that has escaped off of food trucks) is a kid-friendly event.  Participants on the tour "Feral Food Truck Food of Los Angeles" will feel the wall of "theatricality" collapse around them as they become fully engrossed participants in the event.

Full event information is available on the FERAL FOOD TRUCK FOOD OF LOS ANGELES website.

Unfortunately, this is not a wheelchair accessible event.  The walk takes the participants up roughly three flights of stairs.  The producers have created an interactive map with detailed explanations of the distance of the walk, the locations where the action takes place, and recommended locations for public parking:
INTERACTIVE MAP OF WALKING TOUR
If you feel you or one of your companions (ahem, young children) may not be "in shape" for an easy walk around Echo Park, the producers strongly recommended that you check the map to ensure you can handle the terrain.

Joining The French Naturalist as musical guests are AK and her Kalashnikovs*, assembled by Musical Director Alissa Kueker.

FERAL FOOD TRUCK FOOD OF LOS ANGELES
Sunday, April 18th, 1:15pm $10 Adults $5 Children
Meet at Echo Park Lake, where the Lotus flowers die
Interactive Map of the guided walking tour
Pre-show ticketing and full information is available on the
FERAL FOOD TRUCK FOOD OF LOS ANGELES website
*AK and her Kalashnikovs are made up of members of (yet unaffiliated with) Killsonic