Our ‘Spider-Man’ Entanglements

Given Julie Taymor's appearances at the Theatre Communications Group conference, Engine28 is going bicoastal, with impressions from some of us who've spent time with Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, both 1.0 and 2.0. From JENNY LAWTON: Spidey … [Read more...]

‘What If…?’

Theatre Communications Group celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. TCG is encouraging members to discuss the future of theater by exploring "what the field has achieved, the challenges we face in this moment, and where we hope theatre will be … [Read more...]

‘Solitude’: Waxing Philosophical, Waning Into Tedium

A stiff but stylish drama inspired by the philosophical musings of Octavio Paz, the Latino Theater Company’s Solitude attempts to imagine a Mexican-American existentialism but achieves only everyday, generalized angst. The action, such as it is, … [Read more...]

Not Lost in Translation

Supertitles are introducing American audiences new worlds of theater but remain far from perfect. The future of American theater may be as much read as watched. Presenting organizations, following the lead of their counterparts in the dance world, … [Read more...]

Hall Passes: ‘I Never Sang for My Father’

The memories in the Robert Anderson’s 1968 memory play I Never Sang for My Father belong to Gene Garrison, a widower with both parents in declining health. Mother Margaret, survivor of cancer and a series of heart attacks, increasingly turns to him … [Read more...]

Rock ‘n’ Roll All Night: Three Music-Fueled Shows at the Fringe

Tight combos rocking hour-long sets late at night in small spaces, on a street where you can quickly dash from one venue to the next, with booze always near at hand. For years, that was my accustomed Friday night — but as a local band columnist, not … [Read more...]

Press Is No-Show at Julie Taymor Q&A

It’s 8 p.m. on Thursday, the opening night of the Theatre Communications Group (TCG) National Conference, and downtown Los Angeles’ Dorothy Chandler Pavilion is packed with stage professionals celebrating TCG’s 50th anniversary. But the conference’s … [Read more...]

‘Krunk Fu Battle Battle’: B-Boys, B-Girls, Be Charmed

It’s West Side Story meets The Karate Kid in the East West Players crowd-pleasing original musical, Krunk Fu Battle Battle. The Asian American theater company closes out its 45th season with this playfully derivative piece, its deft blend of rap, … [Read more...]

‘Hot Pepper’: Downsized Dance by Chelfitsch

Anyone who’s ever worked in a cubicle will recognize the fluorescent-cool pecking order of corporate culture in Chelfitsch's Hot Pepper, Air Conditioner, and The Fairwell Speech.  The Japanese company opened its dance theater piece which runs through … [Read more...]

‘Feeling Feeling’

A recent study found that women whose first relationship was marked by constant approval-seeking – asking, for example, "Do you love me?" again and again – are more likely to be depressed and have relationship problems for the rest of their lives. … [Read more...]

You Can’t Always Get What You Want: ‘Another Effing Family Drama’

June’s coming home for closure. She finds it, but not in the package she expects in Another Effing Family Drama, Catherine Pelonero’s Hollywood Fringe Festival production playing at ArtWorks Theatre. June, a pharmacologist, wants to confront her … [Read more...]

‘Amarillo’ Climbs the Wall in Search of the Disenfranchised

A man goes into the desert and dies … or dreams. Storywise, that's it. But this spare scenario allows for kinetic visual imagery and a series of bilingual monologues to anchor Teatro Linea de Sombra's Amarillo. The setup merely explains that people … [Read more...]

Los Angeles Art Lovers Blown Away: ‘A Suicide Bombing by Invitation Only’

In early 2010, Lars Jan, a Los Angeles-based playwright and director, was commissioned by the Whitney Museum in New York to create a performance in one of its galleries. What he delivered was as much prank as play, a theater happening in the … [Read more...]