Category Archives: Theatre

Congratulations Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Award Winners

Stage Raw . Last night was the First Annual Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Awards which took place downtown Los Angeles at the Los Angeles Theatre Center on Spring Street. Not only was the show a tremendous success in its first run, claiming an over 2 million reach on Twitter, trending regionally for hours well after the ceremony ended, and LIVE streaming into homes around the world, but it is also one of the most important that will take place this year. The @StageRaw #LAThtrAwards is the only show that specifically celebrates 99 Seat small intimate theatre in LA.  Don’t be fooled, however. It may be referred to as “small” but some, and I dare say most, of this city’s important , often unknown, up and coming actors and also several of its biggest celebrities frequent these stages offering an unsuspecting public some of the best, most original, edgiest theatre to be had in the country. Gia On The Move was proud and honored to be a part of it. Congratulations to all the winners and to all of nominees and to this entire thriving theatre community in Los Angeles!

For more press on the Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Awards check out the articles below.

Rebecca Metz, Marc Wheeler, Tracey Paleo (Gia On The Move) at the First Annual Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Awards

(L to R) Actress Rebecca Metz, Marc Wheeler, Tracey Paleo (Gia On The Move) at the First Annual Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Awards

Stage Raw Theater Awards - Stage Raw's own report on its own Awards ceremony. Are we objective? Naturally.  click the image to read the article http://bit.ly/1EIicDU

Stage Raw Theater Awards – Stage Raw’s own report on its own Awards ceremony. Are we objective? Naturally. click the image to read the article http://bit.ly/1EIicDU

Rockin’ Stage Raw Awards (Tweet, Tweet, Tweet) : LA Bitter Lemons - Click to read the article http://bit.ly/1CTs1c4

Rockin’ Stage Raw Awards (Tweet, Tweet, Tweet) : LA Bitter Lemons – Click to read the article http://bit.ly/1CTs1c4

Burglars of Hamm and Sacred Fools’ “Broadus” Sweeps Up in the First Annual Stage Raw Los Angeles Theater Awards (Winners List Within) : LA Bitter Lemons -click the image to read http://bit.ly/1HcucxC

Burglars of Hamm and Sacred Fools’ “Broadus” Sweeps Up in the First Annual Stage Raw Los Angeles Theater Awards (Winners List Within) : LA Bitter Lemons -click the image to read http://bit.ly/1HcucxC

Meet Me Thursday at the Sofitel for Le Cabaret Versatile

Cabaret Versatile

We’ve been waiting soooo long!  Our darling Feathers and Toast Tallulah Grace, will be making a spotlight appearance with LA’s newest and most delectable French dance troupe Cabaret Versatile in their show Premiere in Riviera 31, Sofitel Beverly Hills, this Thursday, April 9th 2015.

Cabaret Versatile

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refined and dreamy the experience will celebrate femininity and elegance with dancers and singers performing glamorous choreographies and songs which represent the “je ne sais quoi” that built the timeless legend of inspiring women throughout the ages.

Buy Tickets Heretickets

Cabaret Versatile

From the indomitable and impressive, to the child-like innocent, or crazy, unpredictable, this new show Femmes! is an ode to every kind of woman we cherish and is a beautiful tribute to the Parisian chic.

Mhairi MorrisonThe show features Mhairi Morrison of the comedy web series, Feathers and Toast. She will host the show as her character Tallulah Grace, a slightly delusional cooking show host obsessed with all things French who believes herself to be the next Julia Child, but who, in reality, struggles to pull off a decent sandwich.  www.feathersandtoast.com

juliaOpening the evening is Paris Chansons, LA’s premier French band known for their original renditions of French favorites from Aznavour to Zaz, plus an exciting international twist featuring music in Russian, Italian and other world flavors. www.parischansons.com

Cabaret Versatile based in Los Angeles, creates authentic French cabaret inviting them into a world of French Burlesque and Parisian Folies. It is a magical experience full of surprises, Cabaret Versatile filled with unforgettable moments of sexiness and elegance.

Cabaret Versitile

The Milk Meetings at Studio C Theatre Row Hollywood

by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move
2015-03-06-17-02-26

Not exactly Mommy Dearest and definitely a far cry from June Cleaver, one tough cookie New York mom goes head to head with the politically correct, yogagranola mommy set at St. Jude’s Parish Hall, in a battle for her right to rage.

Nobody wants to listen to a complaining pain in the ass who mixes conspiracy theory with basket weaving when the meeting agenda is Breast Feeding. But when Marissa (Ida Darvish) who started the group goes over the deep end in frustration from being all but silenced from real life dialog, she takes the whole band on a torrentially emotional and questionably moral roller coaster. 

It is a humorously twisted desperate cry for help by a woman locked in her own pain and who finds her way out of it despite all, but not without a lot of anguish and a visit from child services.

Lead actress Ida Darvish is one of the most high-strung, raw, guts & grit talents far too unknown appearing currently on the Los Angele Small Theatre scene. She can take any show to a level that most directors would be scared to unleash on an audience.  I’m glad director John Coppola had the sheer chutzpah to do it.

She is matched by the talents of a mouthwatering cast of women who really nail this script written by Blaire Baron Larsen including Torrie Bodga (Rebecca), Emily Button (Julia), Liberty Cordova (Ruthie), and Rochelle Leffler (Birdie).

Hands down one of the most volatile, untamed, exciting and honest productions to date produced at Studio C. This show needs an extension or a come back.  

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This is the last weekend.  They may be sold out but check online for tickets.

Approximate running time is 75 minutes.

The ticket price is $20.00 for general admission (within 24 hours of the performance), and reservations can be made by visiting:  milkmeetings.studiocartists.com.

 Studio C Artists is located at 6448 Santa Monica Blvd., on Theatre Row, in Hollywood, CA

Produced by Michael Sonntag
Stage Manager: Alex Nicholas
ASM/Propmaster: Kate Robertson
Set Design: Marie Coppola

The Stage Raw Los Angeles Theatre Awards Announce Hosts

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Because they weren’t content to leave our vibrant theater community without accolades for the first time in 36 years, STAGE RAW is pleased to announce the FIRST ANNUAL STAGE RAW LOS ANGELES THEATER AWARDS, Monday, April 13, 2015. 
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Show hosts CELEBRATION THEATER announce the super talented comedians ALEC MAPA and PARVESH CHEENA will be presenting.
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The STAGE RAW Los Angeles Theater Awards take at
Los Angeles Theatre Center, 514 S. Spring Street
*Doors Open at 6:30 for Cocktails; Awards Program begins at 7:30pm*
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TicketsTickets are $25

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Stage Raw champions the best work of 2014 in L.A.’s now embattled theaters of up to 99-seats.

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Find this year’s nominees here

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STAGE RAW is using the same jury that was assembled through 2014 for the now dearly departed LA WEEKLY Theater Awards.
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Join them at the Los Angeles Theatre Center for a 1940s-style cocktail party, with Jazz from special musical guests, Static Trio +, a pre-show hosted bar and fortifying tasty treats after the awards have been given. Join us for a night of elegance and irreverence for the 99-Seat Theater Plan!
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THE STAGE RAW THEATER AWARDS are dedicated to honoring the swath of innovative works of theater in Los Angeles County, in venues of up-to-99-seats. These are works that for any number of reasons, can’t or don’t typically get produced in larger theaters. When they do, it’s often because they’ve been incubated in the smaller theaters; that very incubation is the focus of Stage Raw and its theater awards.
STAGE RAW is an evolving digital experiment, a virtual laboratory for what new arts journalism can be. Its mission is to fuse interactive, innovative means to bring new life into the medium.
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Photo Credits:
Alex Mapa https://www.facebook.com/alec.mapa/photos;  
Parvesh Cheena http://bkheadshots.com/
StageRaw.com

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The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival Opens Today

MARCH 26-29, 2015

Los Angeles Women's Theatre FestivalLos Angeles Women's Theatre Festival

          The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival (LAWTF) marks 22 years of producing close to 500 extraordinary multicultural and multidisciplinary solo performers from around the globe.

The longest-running annual solo festival for women in Los Angeles, LAWTF will return March 26-29, 2015 to the Electric Lodge, 1416 Electric Avenue, Venice, CA 90291.

      Reservations: (818) 760-0408. Online reservations will be available at http://www.lawtf.org .

To join and follow LAWTF on Facebook and Twitter, click on their links at http://www.lawtf.org

          The Champagne Gala and Awards Ceremony on March 26, 2015 will be held in honor of exceptional women who have made laudable contributions in theatre. Following the reception at 7:00 p.m., the festivities continue at 8:00 p.m. with the presentation of the Integrity, Eternity, Rainbow, Maverick and Infinity Awards to distinguished women. (The Honorees will be announced in a separate release.)

The theme of the program on March 26 is “IN TRIBUTE TO PHENOMENAL WOMEN.”The evening will be hosted by Hattie Winston (Becker) and Ted Lange (The Love Boat). Entertainment for the evening of Thursday, March 26, 2015 will include:

Ingrid Graham: “Pearls.” An excerpted solo dance accompanied by live music. This piece explores themes of truth, vulnerability and strength in relationships. Original music performed by Melissa Sharee.

Jovelyn Richards: “Sweet Baby.” 1865. The end of the Civil War, in the aftermath of its devastation, and Maw Maw comes upon a door lying in a field that offers an answer to her question after a life of enslavement, “Free. What dat mean to me now?”

          Clarinda Ross: “From My Grandmother’s Grandmother Unto Me.”  This excerpted storytelling piece chronicles the joys and sorrows of five generations of Appalachian women.

 

Friday, March 27, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. Theme:

RISING ABOVE

          Megan Dolan: “SNACK!” A humorous and sobering look at being a child of divorce that results in emotional eating, and the challenges of parenting your kids and yourself—simultaneously.

          Cheryl Rae : “RIDE:A Life With Tobacco.”  This is a non-linear poetic storytelling about Tobacco- the relief, the happiness and the hold.

          Sharrell D. Luckett: “Young, Gifted and Fat.”  Once 100 pounds heavier, Sharrell serves up interesting insights about her emotional struggle to adjust to life after her major weight loss.

Saturday, March 28,  2015 at 2:00 p.m. Theme:

MOTHERS AND DAUGHTERS

          Karen A. Clark: “The Women.” In this encore excerpt, through music, poetry and storytelling, Karen A. reflects on the women in her family, particularly her mother, who provided a “wow” factor.

          Rachae Thomas: “Pieces of Cara.” Through music and spoken word, a young biracial woman takes an amusing look at her unorthodox single parent mother in this storytelling piece.

          Anu Yadav: “Meena’s Dream.” This one-woman play excerpt takes an empowering look at a young girl who wrestles with her deepest fears, while still dreaming of a world where everyone, including her mother, can have enough.

          Saturday, March 28, 2015 at 8:00 p.m. Theme:

GLOBALLY SPEAKING”

          Davina Cole: “All the Colours.”  One woman’s turbulent journey from Africa to the U.K. explores family, civil war and upheaval.

          Stacie Chaiken: “What She Left.”  A young Jewish woman in wartime Warsaw with a fierce will to survive did what she had to do.

          Ingrid Griffith: “Demerara Gold.”  From the voice of a seven-year-old in Guyana, this young girl is left in the clutches of her grandmothers when her parents suddenly get visas to America and leave their children behind.

          Juliette Jeffers: “Pan Gyul.”  A Trinidadian girl in the 1950s who loves to play the steel pan drums deals with the fact that playing the drums was only meant exclusively for men at that time.

Sunday, March 29, 2015 at 2:00 p.m. Theme:

MOVEMENTS, MATCHMAKERS AND MERMAIDS

          Aizzah Fatima: “Dirty Paki Lingerie.”  Sex, religion and politics collide when Pakistani-American Muslim women air their dirty laundry.

          Kyla Garcia: “The Mermaid Who Learned How to Fly..” Part personal story and part fairy tale, this storytelling piece is a deep exploration of what happens when we allow romantic love to be the ground we stand on, rather than exploring our dreams instead.

          Maria G. Martinez: “For My Cause Your Spirit Will Speak.” A middle-aged Latina/Chicana/Mexicana woman reflects on her journey through the Chicana Movement of the 60s that includes her commitment to the struggle, sexism, and the honorable activism of raising a child.

          Katie Wong (dancer), Raissa Simpson (choreographer): “Study on a Butterfly.”  A metaphoric solo dance piece questions how we relate to the internal struggles of living with pain and depression, when our outward appearance projects contradictory images of health and well-being.

         

Sunday, March 29, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. Theme:

DEFINING MOMENTS

          Deborah Dutilh: “Into the Panther’s Cage.” This story chronicles how one woman’s dream state envisions what comes to pass.

          Stephanie Ann Johnson: “Every 21 Days: Cancer, Yoga and Me.” At once funny and poignant, a woman’s victorious health bout ultimately changes her life through personal remembrance, spirituality and yoga.

          Marsha Etell: “Big Butt Girls and Other Fantasies/The Remix.” Through music, dance and a sense of humor as healing elements, this woman gets through the unexpected by not taking herself and life so seriously.

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The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival was founded by Executive Producer Adilah Barnes and Miriam Reed. The Festival is an annual event unique among American cultural institutions and should not be missed.

Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival is a non-profit organization. This year’s annual organizational supporters include the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, City National Bank, Department of Cultural Affairs City of Los Angeles, City of Culver City, and Adilah Barnes Productions.

Admission to the Gala is $50 or two tickets for $90 (includes light fare and Champagne). For the other programs, ticket prices this year include general admission single show tickets at $20 in advance, or $25 at the door. Students, seniors, and groups of ten or more, $18. Children 12 and under, $10.

Reservations: (818) 760-0408. Online reservations will be available at http://www.lawtf.org . To join and follow LAWTF on Facebook and Twitter, click on their links at http://www.lawtf.corg

Verdigris at Theatre West

by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move
Verdigris

Adam Conger, Jim Beaver, Cal Bartlett, Sheila Shaw, David Goldstein, Chloe Rosenthal Photo credit: Charlotte Mount

Verdigris is a green or greenish-blue coating that forms like rust on brass, bronze or copper, especially with age or neglect.  It can also cast an eerily beautiful glow.  The funny thing about verdigris…it doesn’t just happen to brass.

It’s been said that if Tennessee Williams had been writing about the West, he might have come up with Verdigris. I would have to agree. Verdigris is as close as a modern writer might come to the kind of poetic emotional mine field Williams so thoroughly waded and hurdled in his works.  Writer/actor Jim Beaver exquisitely squeezes the heart of it, for sure.

First produced in 1985 at Theatre West, Verdigris feels as new as it’s first day live on stage.  This play is no mere romantic reminiscence of the past, of days gone by or dreams once lived and lost.  It’s hard!  As hard and frustrated and lonely and so damned moving as the horribly manipulative, Margaret Fielding, who can’t see much, use her hands or walk but can “hear paint peel”, around which the drama centers.  It stares you in the face with a square jaw, blunt and uncompromising.  There is no middle ground.

But unlike the decrepit house with cracked walls, flaking wall paper and far too many relics slowly crumbling into dust, Margaret a once movie star dazzling, desirable young woman, now crippled with age and illness, is still full of life. No matter the odds she keeps reaching for it.  And that is the tragedy.

It’s 1972, in the small town of Edgar, Oklahoma.  A young acting student by the name of Richard shows up to take a “position’ in the house caring for Margaret.  As Richard narrates the past in present tense, layers of history, of anger, of failure and of love are revealed for a final moment of redemption.

Verdigris ain’t for sissies!  It is a snappy, real time exposition of life in the raw endowed with plenty of grit and some truly wonderful, heartbreaking surprises.  This cast is gorgeous! Every moment is played out perfectly – sometimes hilarious, often cruel, ultimately wrenching right at the heart center.

THEATRE WEST PRESENTS a Nawyecka Production a 30TH ANNIVERSARY PRODUCTION OF ITS HIT PLAY VERDIGRIS 

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Now playing until April 19, 2015

Written by Jim Beaver
Directed by Mark W. Travis
Produced by Charlie Mount, Jill Jones and Arden Teresa Lewis.

Featuring Jim Beaver: Sheila Shaw (who also appeared in the 1985 mounting), Katie Adler, Cal Bartlett, Adam Conger, David Goldstein, Ian Lerch, David Mingrino, Chloe Rosenthal, Corinne Shor and Dylan Vigus.

Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, in Los Angeles, CA 90068

This is near North Hollywood, Universal City and Studio City. There is free parking in a lot across the street.

Fri. & Sat. at 8:00, Sun. at 2:00

ADMISSION: $25. Online, $20. Seniors: $20, online $15. Groups (ten or more) $15. Students: $5.
RESERVATIONS: (323) 851-7977.
ONLINE TICKETING: www.theatrewest.org

The Carrie Hamilton at The Pasadena Playhouse Celebrates Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz in Properties of Silence

 by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move
Properties-of-Silence
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Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.   ~Buddha

For its commemorative 25th anniversary “Properties of Silence”, produced by About…Productions in residence at The Carrie Hamilton Theatre at The Pasadena Playhouse is currently being paired in revival with a Convergence of Women’s Voices Salon Series of poetry readings, special performances, panels and discussions. 

Written by Theresa Chavez, Rose Portillo and Alan Pulner and directed by Chavez, this short play melds two seemingly separate yet parallel stories together which ultimately discuss the struggle for self-expression.

It is a simply breathtaking piece! 

The third part of a trilogy that deals with the inner voice as a possible source of personal spiritual and political truth, the play takes place in a multi-layered dreamscape highlighting not just its gorgeous, inspired presentation, but the very real importance of Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a nun of  New Spain (Mexico) who in the 17th century was an acclaimed, self-taught playwright, poetess, scientist and philosopher. 

Sor Juana focused on highlighting and revering the beauty and necessity of earthly things, people, sciences and ideas as the real blessing of God rather than falling in line strictly behind Church dogma which was suffocating and unenlightening especially for women who were brutally repressed.  She became known in her lifetime as “The Tenth Muse” and the “Phoenix of the Americas”. During her life, she also acquired what is considered to be the largest collection of scientific and musical instruments in the Americas and possessed a substantial library.  Before being silenced by the Church, she was commissioned by the vice-regal court of New Spain, residing in Mexico City, to write verse and plays, a number of which were published in Europe.  

Sor Juana was silenced by the Church for being a woman but really, for being a woman of extraordinary intelligence and reason, attributes  that were forbidden by the Church itself for women to possess.  Sor Juana wrote during a time when the subjegation of women was absolute. Intelligence shown by any woman was considered and dealt with as a disobedience and even though she was completely devoted to her faith, much of Sor Juana’s writings are said to have been destroyed as part of her penance wherein she writes (or was told to write), I, the worst of all women...

Nevertheless, a few of her works managed to live on creating a legacy that could not be denied. Even the facts surrounding whether or not she actually signed the penance papers or that she completely conformed to her silence remain loosely in debate. She is considered the first feminist writer and a Latin American treasure.  Properties of Silence is inspired by her most significant poem, “Primero Sueño” (“First Dream”). 

Properties of Silence is as brilliant as Sor Juana’s works themselves.  It is hands down one of the most evocative, intelligent, accessible writings imbued with considerable simplicity and empathy for all women, for all, period, feminist or not. 

Set in Phoenix, Arizona and told all in poetic line and imaginary dream where the players cross time and space to meet, exchange ideas and confess their fears, the piece shifts lightly from past to present through metaphor and reality until both become one.  Barbara (Elizabeth Rainey) and Tom (Kevin Sifuentes) come to grips with their troubled marriage.  Sor Juana (portrayed by Rose Portillo) confronts her own imminent silence by the Catholic Church who is forcing her to silence her pen and her scientific inquiries.

Properties of Silence and the “Post-Silence” Salon Series runs Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m until March 29, with one weekday matinee on Wednesday, March 25 at 2 p.m. (dark Sunday, March 22). Four preview performances take place on Saturday, Feb. 21 at 8 p.m.; Sunday, Feb. 22 at 3 p.m.; Thursday, Feb. 26 at 8 p.m.; and Friday, Feb. 27 at 8 p.m. 

Post-Silence Salon Series remaining highlghts.

Red Hen Press will present poets Nicelle Davis, Laurel Ann Bogen and Amy Uyematsu on March 12 and Gail Wronsky and Alicia Portnoy on March 20.

Scholar Barbara Fuchs, PhD on March 14; and writer/performer/activist Karen Anzoategui on March 21.

Mujeres de Maiz will present poets Iris de Anda, Felicia Montes, Rebecca Gonzales and Xitlalic Gujosa Osuna on March 15, and poets/writers Las Lunas Locas on March 26.

Starring Elizabeth Rainey, Kevin Sifuentes and Rose Portillo

Written by Theresa Chavez, Rose Portillo and Alan Pulner

Directed by Theresa Chavez

Original compositions by Julie Adler

Projections by Janice Tanaka

Set design iby Akeime Mitterlehner

Costume design is by Marcy Froehlich

Lighting Design iby Pablo Santiago

Choreography by Sarah Leddy

Original prints created by artists from the first Maestra Atelier at Self Help Graphics & Art in tribute to Sor Juana will be displayed in The Carrie Hamilton Theatre lobby.

Now Playing through March 29

at The Carrie Hamilton Theatre at The Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena CA 91101

POS_graphic-medWednesday at 2 p.m.: March 25 ONLY

Thursdays at 8 p.m.: March 12, 19, 26

Fridays at 8 p.m.: March 13, 20, 27

Saturdays at 8 p.m.: March 14, 21, 28

Sundays at 3 p.m.: March 15, 29 (dark March 22)

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Reservations and Information:

(626) 396-0920 or www.aboutpd.org

ADMISSION:

General admission: $30

Students with valid ID: $15