Santa Monica Playhouse 3rd Annual Binge Free Festival Offers A Month of Free Shows

Located at 1211 Fourth Street Santa Monica, the Santa Monica Playhouse has been a cultural treasure in the seaside community for 59 years. Now, the Playhouse is giving love back with its Third Annual Binge Free Festival (BFF), a full month of free performances, workshops, readings, music and poetry in Santa Monica’s ONLY fringe festival. The BFF’s primary focus will be on Santa Monica and Los Angeles-based artists.

Events in the Binge Free Festival will take place in all four of the Playhouse’s performance spaces.

All events are FREE, but reservations are REQUIRED.

To reserve your FREE tickets for an event, call 310-974-9779 ext. 1, or e-mail

When making reservations, state the name of the show that you want to see, how many seats you wish to reserve, your full name, and your contact number.

Schedule of events :

Monday, October 15, 2018 at 7:30 p.m.
The Art of Creating the One-Person Show with Best National Solo Artist Winner Jessica Lynn Johnson
Wherever you are in your solo theatre journey, whatever level of experience, even if you are just curious about the idea of creating a solo show or how it’s done, Jessica will meet you where you are in your process and guide you through various writing exercises and solo theatre techniques to start your journey or take your solo show to the next level. Jessica Lynn Johnson is a published playwright, recipient of Best National Solo Artist Award, Board Member of the LA Women’s Theatre Festival, Director for Whitefire Theatre’s Solofest, and Founder & CEO of Soaring Solo LLC. Jessica works as a full-time Director & Developer of solo theatre having aided in the development of over 60 solo shows (and still going strong)! As a performer, Jessica has “edu-tained” international audiences touring her own 25-character one-person Ze and Oblivious to Everyone for over 13 years. Over the years, Jessica’s projects have taken home awards such as Top of Fringe, Hff Encore Producer’s Award, TVolution Best Solo Performance, Larry Cornwall Award for Musical Excellence and numerous other accolades. Jessica was most recently nominated Female Director of Distinction in Theatre by Girl Trip LLC at the 2018 Hollywood Fringe Festival. On The Main Stage.

Tuesday, October 16 at 8:00 p.m.
Chemo Barbie: My Lady Bits’ Journey Through Breast Cancer
In 2016, Heather Keller, a healthy young vegan runner, was diagnosed with breast cancer and her life changed forever. This is her heartbreaking, inspiring and ultimately uplifting story. Winner- 2017 Hollywood Fringe Encore Award. For audiences 13 to Adult. In The Other Space.

Wednesday, October 17 at 4:30 p.m.
Yoga for Artists (and Others)
Enhance your self-confidence and tap into your charismatic self with this 90-minute yoga session, taught by actor-writer-director-guide Obi Ndefo. Transform your semi-present body into a wildly free, dynamic and innovative presence and get a taste of what it’s like to become imaginative, fearless and free. Ages 16+ welcome. At The Artists’ Entrance.

Thursday, October 18 at 8:00 p.m.
War and Peace: The One-Man Show
A journey into the world of Tolstoy’s classic novel with a quick, witty sensibility and snippets of history that will hopefully whet your appetite to conquer the classic yourself, and all in under 60 minutes (we hope). Written & Performed by Brad Griffith. Based on the novel by Leo Tolstoy. On The Main Stage.

Thursday, October 18 and Friday, October 19 at 9:00 p.m.
A play loosely based on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire and historical events surrounding the Suffrage movement. Written by Terry Tocantins & Alex Zola, Directed by Scot Shamblin. In The Other Space.

Friday, October 19 at 6:00 p.m.
Cinderella- Topsy Turvy
A delightful re-imagining of the classic Cinderella tale brings you upside-down casting – half original practices, half Gilbert and Sullivan, half just plain fun.Meet a handsome Prince, silly stepsisters, a befuddled king, and an out-of-the-box Fairygodmother for a totally inclusive, fun-for-the-whole-family musical comedy.Added delights are the outrageously playful period costumes and the heart-warming romance that blooms with the assistance of a glass slipper, a feather duster, and a truly magical wand.A gentle prod at stereotypical gender roles, this light-hearted send-up is a hilarious twist on the classic tale. Featuring Rachel Galper, Tiffany Haile, Nima Ghassemian, Sarai Jimenez, Joseph Perez, Graham Silbert. Who plays what role? Guess (and you’ll probably be wrong.) In The Other Space.

Saturday, October 20 at 10:30 a.m.
Enchanted Fairytale Interactive Theatre
The perfect weekend outing for kids aged 4 to 10 and their grown-ups! It’s a totally interactive 90 minutes of story-telling, sing-a-longs, crafts, face-painting, theatre games and acting out a fairytale in this delightful interactive event, hosted by the gaily costumed Enchanted Fairytale Players. With complimentary refreshments and a special gift for each participant, it’s the perfect event for the whole family to enjoy together. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Saturday, October 20 at 1:00 p.m.
Shelley Fisher brings her hit comedy cooking show ForkPlay to the Binge! Designed as healthy, simple, sensual couples cooking, ForkPlay® creator Shelley Fisher & San Francisco Celebrity Chef Kurt Abney serve up live cooking demonstrations, music & more at this one time only event. Savor Shrimp Spanky ®, Shish-ka-Boobs® and everybody’s favorite Nookie Cookies®. On The Main Stage.

Saturday, October 20 at 4:30 p.m.
We Should Hang Out Sometime
Bestselling author, Paralympian and viral-sensation Josh Sundquist tracked down all the girls he’d ever tried to date to ask why they rejected him. He shares the results of his semiscientific investigation (and yes, it’s a true story) in this one-of-a-kind live performance that blends interactive storytelling with standup comedy. From a disastrous mini-golf date involving a backward prosthetic foot to a misguided “grand gesture” at a Miss America pageant, it’s a story about looking for love—or at least a girlfriend—in all the wrong places.

Sunday, October 21 at 11:30 a.m.
Freeing Your Emotional Core Workshop
A fun and effective workshop for anyone – actors and non-actors alike.Award-winning actress and coach, Susan Giosa, believes the ability to use your full emotional instrument on demand is essential for truthful and compelling acting and performing. Susan has created a unique emotional technique and warm-up that helps rid you of your ‘fear of judgment ‘and releases your ‘full creative potential’. Come try Susan’s challenging and provocative exercises for FREE which are helpful to actors, singers, dancers, writers, or any individual who wishes to be freer emotionally and physically. On The Main Stage.

Sunday, October 21 at 12:30 p.m.
Absolutely Halloween!
It’s the classic Playhouse Halloween musical for Kids 2 to 102, now in its eleventh sell-out year – the heartwarming Rudie-DeCarlo tale of the aptly named Candy, a sweet young girl who learns some surprising lessons about life, love, laughter, and sugar, from a delightful array of characters who take her on a magical All Hallow’s Eve adventure. In The Other Space.

Sunday, October 21 at 6:30 p.m.
Pain in My Asperger’s
Through story and song, actor/musician Jeremy Ebenstein takes audiences through his humorous, inspiring, yet often heartbreaking story of living a life with Asperger’s Syndrome. With eight original songs and compositions, Ebenstein addresses universal issues like childhood bullying, hopeful romance, and overcoming depression. He offers his unique take on the struggles of everyday life, from relationships, to being able to hold down the simplest of jobs, yet always striving towards his dreams of being accepted and living a successful life. Pain In My Asperger’s is a story of optimism and love, not only for those suffering from Asperger’s Syndrome who need to overcome the additional challenges that Asperger’s presents, but for all who hope and dream of making something of themselves. Accompanied by Luke Stanley. In The Other Space.

Sunday, October 21 at 7:00 p.m.
Marty Cohen Presents His Poems
Join Marty Cohen as he presents his poems. His poetry runs the gamut from funny to serious, quirky to political, introspective to rant. Marty has had over twenty poems published. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Sunday, October 21 at 7:30 p.m.
A Very British Lesbian
Despite countless exorcisms, a lifetime of Jungian analysis, a starring role as Satan with a wandering troupe of missionaries in South America and dating countless beautiful but unavailable women and one very available but sweaty man, Fiona Goodwin is and always will be A Very British Lesbian! This hilarious story is directed by Wendy Hammers. On The Main Stage.

Monday, October 22 at 7:30 p.m.
Love Letters for My Thighs (and Other Yummy Parts)
The latest work from Broadway Theatre Award winning actress/writer/comedian Wendy Hammers, an artist whose work has been featured countless times at the Playhouse. Presented as a performance piece with three actresses in a Vagina Monolgues inspired style, this hilarious, heart opening writing will inspire and invite all to celebrate your life while you can in the body you have right now. In The Other Space.

Tuesday, October 23 at 8:00 p.m.
A playfully entertaining one woman comedy about a voice-over actress discovering her own voice! Carla Delaney can mimic any voice; Betty White, Drew Barrymore, Bart Simpson…to name a few. But using her own voice, now that’s another story. In a very “Inside Out” kind of way, Carla goes Outside In, where she meets the surprising voices of her head, her heart, her snotty respiratory system, and over 20 more, making her ask the question, “is it noisy in here, or is it just me?” Written and performed by Carla Delaney; Directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson. Running time: 60 minutes. For audiences age 13 to Adult. In The Other Space.

Thursday, October 25 at 6:30 p.m.
Jack and the Great Bean Stock Crash of 2018
Sometimes, traversing the past leads you to transforming the present. The members of Actors’ Workshop at Santa Monica Playhouse found themselves embracing the traditional forms of myth and parable in order to explore the contemporary world. Jack and the Great Bean Stock Crash of 2018 takes its audience on a magical myth-tery tour, enfolding them in a complex and engaging piece of theatre whose deceptively simply framework supports a scathing attack on excessive consumption and consumerism, self-gratification, addiction, corporate greed, global control as they roller coaster up and down the beanstalk of life. On The Main Stage.

Saturday, October 27 at 10:00 a.m.
Zumba Zelebraion
It’s a fun, energetic one-time only FREE dance workshop for all ages, led by actress and certified Zumba instructor Emery Erin, audience favorite of the recent Santa Monica Playhouse Family Theatre production Finding Belle and the upcoming All About Santa. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Saturday, October 27 at 12:30 and 2:30 p.m.
Mustardseed’s Magical Mayhem
Presented by Playbox Theatre, the leading UK theatre company for youth. Mustardseed’s Magical Mayhem is inspired by the chaotic events from A Midsummer Night’s Dream and is a participatory show for children aged 3-7. This is a fully interactive theatre experience and always popular with young audiences and participants. Perfect “Parent & Me” experience! Children work and play with the fairy character of Mustardseed to prepare for the arrival of the Queen of the Fairies, Titania. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Saturday, October 27 at 1:00 p.m.
The Palligator Show
The perfect Pal from the marshes of the friendly planet of Palifornia, the Palligator comes to earth with his adorable female counterpart The Galligator to teach children how to get along in an entertaining and educational format.Shelley Swampjelly (aka creator Shelley Fisher, seasoned entertainer and credentialed educator) is excited to designate October 27 as PALLOWEEN , the day we get all treats and no tricks! Guys & ghouls age 5- 10 are invited to come in costume and enjoy the music and magic of The Palligator: Everybody’s Different & Everybody Fits! On The Main Stage.

Saturday, October 27 at 7:30 p.m.
Aleichem Sholom!
The Wit and Wisdom of Sholom Aleichem. This bold and bittersweet, raucous and romantic musical comedy celebrates the world’s most beloved Yiddish humorist – his loves, laughs and losses, his passionate involvement in the creation of a new homeland, and the intense optimism that kept him going, touching the hearts of millions along the way. Starring Santa Monica Playhouse Co-Artistic Directors Evelyn Rudie and Chris DeCarlo. This show is part of the Playhouse’s ongoing programming schedule. The October 27 performance will be your ONLY chance to see it for free. In The Other Space.

Sunday, October 28 at 6:30 p.m.
50 Shades of Perfection
If you think your butt’s too flat or your boobs are too small, your nose is too long or your legs are too thick, your waist is too round or your hair is too dull, this is the play for you. How do we compete with the perfection of Instagram Beauty? Join us for Linda’s 50th Birthday celebration, as Repertory Actors Workshop (RAW) Shortburst® Theatre presents a one-night-only production exploring the differences between perseverance and stubbornness, frustration and acceptance. Why is perfection so important? Is perfection desirable? And perfect to whom? When is good enough good enough? In The Other Space.

Sunday, October 28 at 7:00 p.m.
The Brick: A One-Man Musical
THE BRICK is one man’s adventure through baseball, cockfighting, Russian Soldiers, The Berlin Wall, alcoholism, drug addiction, stealing Steve Martin, attempted murder, actual murder, mint & chip ice cream, mother and son, heaven and hell, three nuns, two crows, one guitar and finally, redemption. Featuring 10 original songs. Written and performed by Bill Berry. Directed by Kelly DeSarla. For audiences age 14 to Adult. On The Main Stage.

Sunday, October 28 at 7:30 p.m.
Misfits of Magic
Starring magicians Ben Benjamins, Greg Van Holsbeck, and Christopher Alton, the Misfits of Magic mixes unconventional trickery with three eccentric personalities in ways that have never seen before. Audiences will be marveled by the smooth card trickery paired with witty dry humor from Greg Van Holsbeck. They will be baffled by mentalist Ben Benjamins as he takes zany mind-reading antics to new level. And before all is said and done, audiences will be left astonished by Chris Alton as his mischief defies the known reality. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Starting October 29, the BFF will present an array of Encore attractions:

Monday, October 29 at 8:00 p.m.
After a life-changing event shatters a young woman’s world, she must examine how her past experiences have shaped her views on sex, sexuality and relationships. Told through narration, flashbacks and the personification of human emotions such as Shame, Truth and Denial, Shattered takes a hilarious and unapologetic look at themes such as intimacy, family abuse cycles and the psychological fallout of sexual assault. It is one individual’s journey to pick up the broken pieces of herself and put them back together again. Written and performed by Diana Varco, directed by Jessica Lynn Johnson. In The Other Space.

Tuesday, October 30 at 7:00 p.m.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Presented by Playbox Theatre, the leading UK theatre company for youth.A story of love, confusion, magic and wonder, Shakespeare’s evergreen play has been presented across the ages in many styles and in many mediums. This production is ideal for the whole family, “Possibly the perfect Shakespeare play. Written for a wedding and celebrating love, harmony and the power of magic. With Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water currently impressing worldwide moviegoers, it is fascinating to see the power of the fable from Shakespeare’s time to our own. The play has its dark elements and is full of strange magic… just imagine if the spirits of Elizabethan otherworldings could enter our world through a portal on Midsummer Night… and for a time, two dimensions co-exist beside the Pacific Ocean in Santa Monica. That’s our notion!” In The Other Space.

Thursday, November 1 at 7:30 p.m.
How to Be Brave, Moving & Hilarious on Stage
A Class for Actors, Solo-Performers, Storytellers, Playwrights & Anyone Who Has Something to Say. The title speaks for itself – a fun and exciting workshop not just for actors but for anyone who would like to be brave, moving and hilarious! This class will guide you to developing an idea or story for the stage, so that the writing is performative – urgent, active and powerful, while mining the humor and absurdity. Learn how to get out of your head and not sound ‘writerly.’ You’ll get to write, improvise, do storytelling and experience what happens to your creative process when you’re seen and heard. So whether you want to develop a Solo-Show, write a Play, do Storytelling or Alt Comedy, here’s a nurturing, playful way to start performing your words in the spotlight. All levels welcome – no writing or performance experience necessary – just the willingness to have fun & take a little leap. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Thursday, November 1 at 8:00 p.m.
Polaris Family Christmas
Christmas comes early this year. Melvin Polaris has been Santa Claus for more years than he can remember. As he is ready to retire, he hopes to pass on the torch to one of his two sons. Neither one wants the job. Would you? Written & Directed by Chelsea Black, starring Leanna Barnes and Andre Jefferson. On The Main Stage.

Friday, November 2 at 7:00 p.m.
Monkey-Journey to the West
Presented by Playbox Theatre, the leading UK theatre company for youth.Playbox Theatre first staged the production in 2008 as a live-action animé Monkey – Journey To The West, based on the Chinese literary classic. Playbox Theatre’s production features a company of 26 young actors blending storytelling, dance, movement, acrobatics and strong visuals highlighting the popular, almost ‘animation’ based style. The epic journey of enlightenment is believed to be as important to the Chinese as Shakespeare or Dickens is to Britain. Suitable for family audiences. In The Other Space.

Saturday, November 3 at 2:00 p.m.
The Fitness of Eddie Kane
Eddie Kane’s retirement is complicated by early stage Alzheimer’s. The disease, his struggle to live a normal life and family relationships complicate what should be his “golden years.”Staged reading of new play from Robert Austin Rossi. In The Other Space.

Sunday, November 4 at 6:30 p.m.
Lahela is a singer-songwriter and musician from Hawai’i. Enjoy her original pop songs as she strums along with her 8-string ukulele. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Sunday, November 4 at 7:00 p.m.
Phat Trane:Found
What happened to young singer/songwriter LeRoy Johnson after his early days in New Orleans has always been a mystery. Until now. Now, freshly out of prison (after 20+ years), with no shortage of rumor and gossip, this mystical musician, who has impacted fans worldwide, is looking for his story to be told to a few final audiences before he heads home for good. In The Other Space.

Sunday, November 4 at 7:15 p.m.
An exciting new form of comedy which is a blend of Stand-Up and Improv as the Standup Comedian and Improv actors take you on a comedy ride interweaving two of the more popular styles of comedy. Featuring Jeff Mitroka, Mason Brown, Bob Mitchell and Jeff Lewis. Directed by Stan Wells. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Sunday, November 4 at 7:30 p.m.
Wild at Hart: A Tale of Trauma and Triumph
A sexual trauma survivor’s sojourn from suffering to sovereignty, this is a story of triumph over the ravages of childhood trauma, teen rape, depression, violence, and abusive relationships. Moving and miraculous, Kamakshi’s wide range of talent is showcased through her performance of over 20 characters and the songs that masterfully tell her personal tale of transformation. Written and performed by Kamakshi Hart. Directed by and developed with Jessica Lynn Johnson. On The Main Stage.

Monday, November 5 at 8:00 p.m.
tHis Is Very Important
Three different women. Three different stories. One common denominator… HIV positive. This one woman show sheds a light on the lives of these women, the people in their lives, public perception and what we think we know about HIV. HIV doesn’t discriminate, people do. Created, Written & Performed by: Rahvaunia Directed by: Jessica Lynn Johnson. In The Other Space.

Thursday, November 8 at 8:00 p.m.
Blinded by Love
Lashay craves her co-worker Lance Hillman when her marriage begins to decline. Will she implement her craving or will she work to save her marriage? New play by Rhonda West. On The Main Stage.

Sunday, November 11 at 6:30 p.m.
A new show developed especially for the BFF
Theatre R.A.W.- a community-member professional artist collaborative- will create an original production via the acclaimed ShortBurst® Theatre method, mentored and directed by Playhouse Co-Artistic Director Chris DeCarlo. Find out the storyline on that evening.

Sunday, Novemnber 11 at 7:00 p.m.
As Good As Gold
A staged reading of the hilarious comedy by Marilyn Anderson. It’s a Hollywood tale about three women writers who create the ultimate macho screenplay with explosions, violence, and kickass sex with a sizzling hot hero! When they put a male name as the screenwriter, it becomes the hottest script in town. What could go wrong? In a word – everything! On The Main Stage.

Monday, November 12 at 8:00 p.m.
My Healing Journey
Tabitha’s true story begins in the Caribbean and takes on a slight twist as it becomes a thriller when it reveals how a generational curse allows Spiritual forces of darkness to infiltrate her home as a little girl, combined with her Father’s violent temper, she is forced to become the defender of her home, her family, and her life.Written & Performed by Tabitha Christopher. At The Artists’ Entrance Upstairs.

Santa Monica Playhouse is located at 1211 Fourth Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401. This is just south of Wilshire. There is a municipal parking facility across the street.

The BFF is sponsored in part by grants from the City of Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Arts Commission, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors through the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, and Playhouse PALS.

%d bloggers like this: