Los Angeles Theatre Podcast Reviews

(Photography by Craig Schwartz)

A travel writer who never travels. A Japanese architect who can’t figure out how to build a simple tea house. A gifted tattoo artist who resists the power of his talents. And a homeless girl who lives under a weeping willow tree in the Japanese Garden. Four lonely people, their stories written on paper, earth, and skin, find each other when one of them falls apart. Together they realize the heart is as strong as it is fragile, and that the safety of home might be found in the most fearsome explorations.  Taken from the website.

SEP 19-OCT 27,2019 

GOOD SHOW!
Review
8 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story7.5
Set & Design8.5
Entertainment7.5
Acting9
Costumes7.5
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(photo by Quainphoto aka Mike Quain Photography)

Seven strangers barricade themselves inside a Pennsylvania farmhouse, attempting to escape the bloodthirsty, flesh-eating ghouls ravaging the countryside.  Beset by the walking dead outside, and ever-rising interpersonal tensions within, the group begins their desperate attempt to survive the night … Taken from the website. 

October 4 – November 10,2019 

(Photo by Mickey Elliot)

Operation Ajax is the name of the 1953 CIA covert operation to overthrow the Prime Minister of Iran. The consequences of this coup are still with us today.  Taken from the website. 

October 3 – 27,2019

Average Show!
Review
7.4 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story7
Set & Design7
Entertainment7
Acting8
Costumes8
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(Photo by Doug Catiller, True Image Studio)


Two strangers are waiting for the bus on a cold road at night… next to a cemetery. The bus is late. The woman’s coat is too thin. And this fast-talking teenager waiting at the same bus stop won’t leave her alone. He works hard to get her to talk to him, using everything from philosophical riffs to brash seduction. Just around the corner is a liquor store, whose owner is waiting for a special delivery. All three people have no idea what this fateful night holds in store… and that it may provide the answers they’ve all been looking for.  Taken from the website.

Good Show!
Review
8.1 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story8
Set & Design7.5
Entertainment8
Acting8.5
Costumes8.5
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September 22 – October 22, 2019

Photo by Brandon Simmoneau

Candid, uninhibited and visceral. A Deaf couple’s relationship is revealed through their lovemaking in a startlingly intimate portrait of a marriage. Taken from the website. 

Transcript for Deaf Community :

Hello, I’m Patrick Chavis and you are listening to LA Theatre Bites Review of The Solid Life of Sugar Water Playing now at Inner City Arts in Downtown Los Angeles September 5th – October 13th, 2019.

The Solid Life of Sugar Water gives you a raw, tragic and honest portrayal of a relationship.  The ups, the downs and even bigger downs through the relationship of a deaf couple.  The strong acting and voice over from the cast keep you and pull you in with some incredibly powerful moments.  But it’s also attached to other moments and ideas that seem more interested in sounding poetic then actually doing anything interesting.

The Solid Life of Sugar Water is the story of a Deaf Couple. Alice played by Sandra Mae Frank and her partner Phil played by Tad Cooley.   We get to experience an intense amount of intimacy as we watch the couple share their intimate moments during sex. Their stories of how they met and also a very tragic situation in their relationship.

This is my first show at the Deaf West Theatre and also my first deaf show I’ve ever seen, and I loved how blocking wise the show was set up. I’m not deaf and I don’t read sign much of the language being communicated in the way doesn’t really communicate much to me besides the beauty of form you can admire without fully understanding something like not being able to read Japanese but being able to appreciate the art in creating the symbols.

Because nothing is spoken out loud by the actors but from somewhere else, you feel like you’re inside the actors heads the entire show. Even though these are deaf characters and they are communicating right in front of you with sign.

Watching this show is like asking someone you just met, how they met, and they told you that and way, way more then you ever wanted to know.  And in that way the show can feel a little heavy emotionally and feel monotonous. But it’s also very human because of this very reason.

The set of the play is dimly lit bedroom inverted so the bed is facing the audience as if we are looking down at the room from the ceiling.

This is an adult show as a good majority of the show is about sex and all those spicy details about this couple’s relationship.

Why does this show work because you can feel the intimacy between Frank and Cooley.

Sandra Mae Frank pulls off a heart wrenching and dramatic performance with phenomenal physical movement.

I give the Solid Life of Sugar Water. A 7.9 out of 10 – It’s Above Average!

Thank you for Listening!

September 12th – October 13th, 2019 

Above Average!
Review
7.9 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story7.5
Set & Design8.5
Entertainment7.5
Acting8
Costumes8
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(Photos by John Perrin Flynn)

A virginal Sunday school teacher has a sexual awakening, while across the world, a doctor tries to communicate with an elephant. Sex, faith, and violence intersect in Bekah Brunstetter’s Miss Lilly Gets Boned, which is an an exploration of how tenuous and permeable are the boundaries that separate our civilized sides from our more animal ones, and how we continue to destroy the earth that does not belong to us. Taken from the website. 

Exceptional Show! 
Review
9.2 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story9
Set & Design10
Entertainment9.5
Acting8.5
Costumes9
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September 21st – October 28th, 2019

Photo by Chris Whitaker

Hanging on by a thread after her ex-husband gets engaged to a much younger woman, Jodi (Tony Award winner Idina Menzel, RentWicked) retreats to her dad’s swanky Manhattan townhouse. But rather than the comforts of home, she instead finds her aging father’s new live-in boyfriend, Trey—who is 20. In his new comedy, Joshua Harmon (Bad JewsSignificant Other) brings neurotic family drama to the forefront as father and daughter contend with the age-old questions of how to age gracefully in a world obsessed with youth and where love fits into it all. Taken from the website. 

GOOD SHOW!
Review
8 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story8
Set & Design8.5
Entertainment7.5
Acting8.5
Costumes7.5
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September 12 – October 12, 2019 

Photo by Darrett Sanders

When a gay writer hires a man to work as a “shirtless cleaner,” homophobia, racism and issues of consent bubble to the surface. Erik Patterson’s (One of the Nice Ones) dark comedy explores the deepest sensitivities in our culture — with unexpected and hilarious consequences. Taken from the website.

It Needs Work!
Review
6.9 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story6.5
Set & Design7
Entertainment6
Acting8
Costumes7
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(Photo by Mickey Elliot)

Journey to the west of Ireland where McDonagh’s vision of small-town despair, restlessness, and plain old boredom inspire behavior of the homicidal sort. Two brothers squabble over the inheritance left by their recently deceased father. Also, there’s a rumor about town that one of them may have murdered the father over a haircut-related insult. The local parish priest and a young girl from the community, also their bootleg whiskey supplier, make futile attempts to keep the brothers from quarreling. Taken from the website. 

Above Average!
Review
7.8 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story7.5
Set & Design8.5
Entertainment7.5
Acting8.5
Costumes7
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Aug 22 – Sep 15, 2019

(photos by Ashly Covington)

Set in the beautiful but dangerous landscape of the desert in a future reality, this production of Macbeth offers an alternate perspective of ambition, specifically through the lens of youth. When promised the deepest desire of his soul, Macbeth is faced with the choice to become the man he has dreamed he could be. Influenced and supported by the powerful love of his “dearest partner of greatness”, he goes against his nature to seize his destiny, ultimately bringing on the destruction of his sanity and the future he sought to create. It is a cautionary coming of age story about the decisions we face in pursuit of our goals and the futileness of satisfaction. Taken from the website. 

Average Show!
Review
7.3 Overall
0 Users (0 votes)
Story7.5
Set & Design7
Entertainment7.5
Acting8
Costumes6.5
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