Theatre 68 Opens with an Impressive “A Time To Kill”

by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move
gia on the move theater reviews theatre 68

Ian Robert Peterson & Bechir Sylvain in Theatre 68’s, “A Time To Kill” Photograph by Steven Jones

Theatre 68 premiered its 2016-17 season on October 14 at its new North Hollywood home with, A Time To Kill, the cutting edge legal suspense thriller adapted for stage by Rupert Holmes based on the 1989 novel written by John Grisham.

Audiences may also recognize this story through the film genre. A Time to Kill was made into a movie in 1996 starring actor Samuel L. Jackson as defendant Carl Lee Hailey along with Matthew McConaughey as young lawyer Jake Brigance, Sandra Bullock as law student Ellen Roark and Ashley Judd as Carla Brigance (Jake’s wife whose character does not actually make it into the play) and a supporting celebrity cast that brought the production critical commercial acclaim.

Set here entirely as a courtroom drama, A Time To Kill is likely hotter than when it was first published. Given the content and when put into context with today’s #BlackLivesMatter movement, the story offers genuine relevance and perspective. None of the imaginable violence nor general racism of the time is missing. Nor is the potency of the relationship between Hailey and Brigance overlooked. It does forgo development of other peripheral alliances however, to solely focus on the present moment drama, a decision that allows a breath-pausing intensity to hover at all times inside the production.

Carl Lee Hailey, a black man, has shot and killed two white men accused of brutally raping and beating his 10-year-old daughter, in the very courtroom where he now stands trial. Jake Brigance sees Hailey’s act as a desperate bid for justice and is willing to risk everything to defend his client’s life. The question asked is, “When is it right to take justice into your own hands?”

A Time To Kill in itself is a gripping story that automatically supports the actors/players revolving around inside the drama. Lead actor Bechir Sylvain’s (Carl Lee Hailey) appeal definitely lends sway to his courtroom likeability as a man in crisis. As does lead actor Ian Robert Peterson (Jake Brigance) whose charm rests in both his passion for justice and naïveté and trust in people. Gregory Thirloway nails the love-to-hate-him/hate-to-love-him District Attorney on the rise, Rufus R. Buckly. And the entire cast definitely steps up this production in every way when possible, including Mercedes Manning (Roark) whose character is written slightly one-dimensional and Gisla Stringer (Gwen Hailey) who really rounds out her husband’s personality much more than her own. John William Young as Judge Omar Noose brings occasional levity that resets the severity.

Only a single moment takes audiences out of this production and that is Jake Brigance’s final summation before the jury. A choice has been made to emotionally ‘lead’ the audience with melodramatic music, which detracts from the tension rather than trusting Peterson to carry the seriousness of the moment on his own. He can and he does. But we lose his 360 surprise.

Otherwise, Director Ronnie Marmo has beautifully set the visuals and the tone, keeping the pace crisp.  The production is also endowed with an outstanding, creatively designed, moving set built by Danny Cistone, that brilliantly becomes multiple locations inside and outside of the courtroom.

A Time To Kill is an acute tragedy-to-triumph drama as produced and for audiences who especially are not yet familiar with the company’s work, an impressive introduction to Theatre 68.

A Time To Kill
Now Playing until November 19th, 2016

by John Grisham
Adapted for Stage by Rupert Holmes
Directed/Produced by Ronnie Marmo
Co-Producers: Liz Izzo & Katy Jacoby
Set Design by Danny Cistone
Lighting Design by Mathew Richter

With: Ian Peterson. Bechir Sylvein, John William Young, Hansford Prince, Greg Thirloway, Mercedes Manning, Peter Ostereli, Paul Thomas Arnold, Gisla Stringer, Heidi Rhodes, Jalil Houssain, Steven Jones, Robert Dominick Jones, Joe Capucini, Jenny Nwene, Christopher Kelly, Caroline Simone O’Brian, Jarrod Robbins, and Steven Wu.

5112 Lankershim Blvd
North Hollywood, CA 91601

Zombie Love? There’s a Tommy Bahama Cocktail For That

gia on the move zombiesIt doesn’t look very spooky. Nevertheless, Tommy Bahama Restaurant & Bar of New York City is calling up the Halloween spirits with a frighteningly sweet, brain-numbing Zombie cocktail recipe. Yes! Try this at home!


¾ part Flor de Caña 4-year rum
1 part Mount Gay Eclipse Rum
½ part Trader Vic’s Dark Rum
¾ part Cointreau
1 part pineapple juice
1 part lime juice
1 part grapefruit syrup
1 dash of Angostura Bitters
¼ part Mount Gay Overproof Rum

Instructions: Add all ingredients in a shaker except Mount Gay Overproof Rum and top with ice. Shake well until chilled, strain over fresh ice and top off with Mount Gay Overproof Rum.

Glassware: Collins, Belgian Beer or Hurricane

Ice: Crushed or cubes

Garnish: Mint sprig and pineapple wedge

Halloween ‘Live On Lincoln’ Miami Beach

Gia on the move theater circusFrom Miami Book Fair to Miami Art Week, The Magic City’s bustling season has officially arrived. Miami’s resident circus cabaret and production company, CIRC X, is a force in the local theatre community presenting uncensored, dazzling work. Catch their extravagantly edgy costumes and interactive performances all over Miami this season!

This year, on Monday, October 31,2016, Lincoln Road takes Halloween to the next level through technology and art by introducing a series of cultural activations to enhance the atmosphere. One of Miami’s most exciting events, Lincoln Road will curate ten DJs across five stages and live performances from Miami’s very own CIRC X. Enhance your Halloween outfit courtesy of free make-up artists and enjoy multiple outdoor bars scattered across the pedestrianized neighborhood. FREE.


Gia on the move theater circus

Meet Jasmin. She’s a piece of work. She’s interactive.

gia on the move art

The Meeting JASMIN mobile app, powered by Live Portrait, utilizes augmented reality to “bring to life” unique, curated art films directly from the static artwork creating an immersive experience for the viewer. (PRNewsFoto/JASMIN)

Meeting JASMIN, a fine art traveling exhibition, has announced the launch of its mobile app which incorporates Live Portrait, a technology service that blends Augmented Reality (AR) with Image Recognition.

Following its inaugural exhibition in Los Angeles, the exhibit will debut in San Francisco

 Thursday, October 20th
in Gallery 308
located at the
Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture, 2 Marina Blvd, Gallery 308, San Francisco CA, 94123

Featuring 33 unique works by renowned digital artists, Raphael Vicenzi, Alberto Seveso, and Hugo Valentine, Meeting JASMIN captures the many emotions and complex, personal connections that take place throughout the self-discovery process of meeting someone new. With the help of the app,  JASMIN models will bring to life the mind, body, and soul journey an individual takes when discovering a new lover or muse.

Viewers can experience the technology first hand by simply scanning select pieces of artwork to watch films that launch directly from the static artwork. The immediate, immersive, interactive experience allows seamless connection with the artwork.

In addition, special guest contributors will “come to life” to help further articulate the message of art, love and the human connection.

The Meeting JASMIN mobile app will be available for download beginning Thursday, October 20th on both iTunes for iOS users and Google Play for the Android platform.

The Tragedy of JFK is a Triumph for Daniel Henning

by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Move
gia on the move theatre reviews

Chad Brannon (at coffin) and the cast of The Blank Theatre’s world premiere production of THE TRAGEDY OF JFK (AS TOLD BY WM. SHAKESPEARE) at The Skylight Theatre

Et tu, Lyndon?

“Are you ready for this?” is the question audiences should ask themselves before stepping into the conspiracy-theory world of writer/director Daniel Henning (Blank Theatre) and…William Shakespeare.

The Tragedy of JFK (as told by Wm. Shakespeare) conceived, adapted and directed by Henning, is not ordinary. It is not the Camelot story the public has fantasized about, decade after decade. It is a penetrating, amalgamation of hard-core Julius Caesar and recognizably other Shakespeare plays freshly whipped with clearly defined, present-moment, modern dialog.

So powerful is the orchestration of the language within the script and articulated by the cast, that its resonance defies current propaganda and theory of Shakespearean renovation. For here is an exactitude of writing, meaning and enunciation of the spoken word far beyond pablum. It is simply impossible NOT to hear or understand a single phrase of the text or a single moment of this production!

LBJ. What means this shouting? I do fear the people
Choose Kennedy for their King.
Hoov.                                        Ay, do you fear it?
Then must I think you would not have it so.
LBJ. I would not. Edgar; yet I love him well.

The Tragedy of JFK (as told by Wm. Shakespeare) is the what-might-have-happened tale of the conspiracy to assassinate the 35th President of the United States, one of the most shocking events in American history.

gia on the move theatre reviews

(R to L) Tony Abatemarco, Bruce Nehlson and Time Winters in The Blank Theatre’s world premiere production of THE TRAGEDY OF JFK (AS TOLD BY WM. SHAKESPEARE) at The Skylight Theatre

As an insider conversation, it is full of closed-door colloquy & subversion, and public bravado, keenly speculating into the hearts and minds of 17 familiar historical participants who played a role in the trifecta assassinations of John Fitzgerald Kennedy, Martin Luther King and Robert Francis Kennedy.

A stellar cast, almost uncanny in physical appearance and behavior symphonize the intrigue of conversations, planning and warning, starting with crack character actors Tony Abatemarco (J. Edgar Hoover), Ford Austin (John F. Kennedy), Chad Brannon (Robert F. Kennedy), Brett Collier (Martin Luther King Jr.) and Time Winters (Lyndon B. Johnson).  Every actor bears a notable, transporting familiarity. And all the cast performances are so fine in this production it begs pause to collect ones breath.

The rest of the cast includes: Chris D’Annunzio (Clyde Todson/Clint Murchison), Casey MicKinnon (Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy), Susan Denaker (Lady Bird Johnson), Kelie McIver (Evelyn Lincoln), Bruce Nehlsen (Allen Dulles), Jacob Sidney (McGeorge Bundy), Jerry Della Salla (Carlos Marcello/Jack Valenti), Jonny Walker (Gov. John Connally), Brian Brennan (Lee Harvey Oswald), Roslyn Cohn (Aide/Pollster), John Knight (Aide/Pollster). ***And alternate cast may appear without notice. Check the online program for names.

Daniel Henning has produced a powerful and 100% immersive script that is worthy of its talent.

The Tragedy of JFK (as told by Wm. Shakespeare)
Now Playing Until November 6, 2016.
Check the listing for tickets and info.

gia on the move theatre reviews

Brett Collier (L) and the cast of The Blank Theatre’s world premiere production of THE TRAGEDY OF JFK (AS TOLD BY WM. SHAKESPEARE) at The Skylight Theatre

Immigration S/Election Controversy at LAMAG


Contemporary artists ignite conversations about citizenship and democracy in America, from October 16 – January 8th, 2017.

The City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery (LAMAG) (4800 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles, CA) presents a politically poignant exhibition, which utilizes art as a vehicle to engage important conversation amidst a highly charged presidential election.

Artworks of some of LA’s most prominent contemporary artists including Charles Gaines, Ramiro Gomez, Taisha Paggett, Gelare Khoshgozaran, Ruben Ortiz Torres, and Linda Pollack address issues around citizenship that have been increasingly prominent leading up to the 45th presidential election, providing an alternative platform for artists and the public to participate in civic discourse.

Highlights of S/Election include a newly-commissioned performance by artist and choreographer Taisha Paggett; the reuniting of Ruben Ortiz Torres’s two “matching” paintings; an interactive installation by artist, Linda Pollack, who founded My Daily Constitution (a roaming civic consortium) and debut of Gelare Khoshgozaran’s performance piece, UNdocumentary, a public reading of her declaration for seeking asylum in the U.S.

3rd Annual Good Food Org Guide Names 46 California Groups

gia on the move food organicThe James Beard Foundation and Food Tank, along with a prestigious advisory group of more than 70 food system experts, has published the third annual Good Food Org Guide

The guide identifies and celebrates 1,000 U.S.-based groups who are cultivating a better food system in the areas of food and agriculture, nutrition and health, hunger and obesity, and food justice. At least 10 organizations were chosen from each of the 50 states so that wherever people live they can find nearby organizations working to cultivate a better food system.

The vision and objective of this annual publication is to focus attention on the hundreds of organizations who work every day in fields, kitchens, classrooms, laboratories, businesses, town halls, and Congress to create a better food system. Selected organizations and initiatives that spotlight efforts active in community building and engagement, advocacy, and service.

Distinguished experts, including past recipients of the James Beard Foundation Leadership Award and food and agriculture leaders, collaborated to generate the list.

Included in the Guide are these 46 groups from California:

  • Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch
  • HOPE Collaborative
  • California FarmLink
  • Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties
  • Ceres of Community Project
  • San Diego Food System Alliance
  • California Institute for Rural Studies
  • Nourish Wellness
  • San Francisco – Marin Food Bank
  • Orange County Food Access Coalition
  • La Cocina
  • L.A. Kitchen
  • Imperfect Produce
  • Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA)
  • Food Forward
  • ExtraFood
  • California Certified Organic Farmers Foundation (CCOF
  • Food Craft Institute
  • Community Food & Justice Coalition
  • TomKat Ranch
  • Alemany Farm
  • Sierra Harvest
  • California Alliance of Farmers’ Markets
  • Acta Non Verba: Youth Urban Farm Project
  • California Food Literacy Center
  • California Women for Agriculture
  • Californians for Pesticide Reform
  • California Climate and Agriculture Network
  • California Endowment
  • City Slicker Farms
  • Community Alliance with Family Farmers
  • The Cooking Project
  • Dig Deep Farms & Produce
  • Center for Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems
  • The Center for Land-Based Learning
  • The Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture
  • Food Empowerment Project
  • Ecology Center
  • Farm to Fork
  • People’s Grocery
  • Roots of Change
  • Ubuntu Green
  • Life Lab
  • Long Beach Fresh
  • Los Angeles Food Policy Council
  • Hidden Villa