Category Archives: December 2012

Review: ‘The Bald Soprano,’ at the City Garage Theatre thru Dec 23, 2012 (Worth the Risk)

David E. Frank in “The Bald Soprano” at City Garage (Paul M. Rubenstein).

By Charlotte Stoudt
​L.A. Times

It looks like “Mad Men,” but you’d never catch Don Draper at this shindig. The City Garage staging of Eugene Ionesco’s midcentury absurdist farce “The Bald Soprano: A Christmas Anti-Play” has all the ingredients for intoxication but goes down like one of Sally’s Shirley Temples – it’s a classic but lacks a certain kick. This is the world of low-profile sofas, smoking jackets and the screeching charm of the bourgeoisie. Somewhere in the Parisian suburbs READ MORE…

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Hot Tip: Geffen Playhouse Hosts World Premiere of ‘Coney Island Christmas’, Nov 28 – Dec 30

Arye Gross stars in Donald Margulies’ newest play.

By Kenneth Jones
Playbill.com

Coney Island Christmas, billed as a “Jewish Christmas show” for people of all ages and all faiths, by Pulitzer Prize winner Donald Margulies, will star Arye Gross and Isabella Acres, among others, in its world premiere at Geffen Playhouse. The Geffen commission by the READ MORE…

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Review: ‘In the Red and Brown Water,” Fountain Theatre, Thru Dec. 16, 2012 (Not To Be Missed)

From the production.

By Charles McNulty
Los Angeles Times

Beyond the fact that it is sensational, the Fountain Theatre’s production of “In the Red and Brown Water” by Tarell Alvin McCraney is important for two reasons: It introduces Los Angeles audiences to a dramatic poet in the process of discovering his singular voice and it shows how magnificently one of L.A.’s better small theaters can serve bold new talent. READ MORE…

Also read BackStage Review

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Preview: L.A. Chamber Orchestra, Dvořák, Copland, Adams, and Gershwin, Alex Theatre & Royce Hall, Dec 8-9, 2012 (Highly Recommended)

Aaron Copland.

by Yu Tang
L.A. Opening Nights

This looks to be a terrific program combining jazz and dance-inspired classics. Jeffrey Kahane conducts the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra from the piano in Gershwin’s iconic Rhapsody in Blue. Also on the diverse program are three further works: in contrast to the Rhapsody’s jazzy roots in the Roaring Twenties, Dvořák’s Serenade for Winds, Op. 44, draws on Czech folk music for inspiration; while Copland’s Appalachian Spring evokes the American frontier. John Adams’ Son of Chamber Symphony, which had its premiere in 2007, is musically, as well as nominally, similar to Read the rest of this entry

Preview: Lutoslawski and Beethoven, LA Philharmonic, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Disney Hall, Nov 30, Dec 1 & 2 (Worth the Risk)

Witold Lutoslawski

L.A.’s beloved former resident maestro, Esa-Pekka Salonen, will join the LA Philharmonic to commemorate Polish composer Witold Lutoslawski with this performance featuring his Fourth Sympony. The program also includes Beethoven’s Symphonies No. 1 and 2 (note change from previous Bruckner and Lindberg offerings).

Why It’s Worth the Risk: Lutoslawski composed fascinating music that you have probably not heard before. The Beethoven Symphonies are a less dramatic pairing than one would hope, but its a nice opportunity to hear them together. A brief sketch of Lutoslawski’s life and work suggests a man Read the rest of this entry

Preview: ‘Madame Butterfly’ at L.A. Opera, Nov. 17-Dec. 9, 2012 (Highly Recommended)

From the upcoming production.

Why It’s Highly Recommended: A few years ago, L.A. Opera put on a highly minimalist and avant-garde production of Madame Butterfly by Robert Wilson. This is NOT that production. For those who have been yearning for a traditional ‘Butterfly’ you will get your wish. The director, Ron Daniels, did the highly regarded Il Postino at L.A. Opera, so we expect good things.

From the PR: “A love that knows no boundaries goes horribly wrong in a fateful meeting of East and West. What begins as an idyllic liaison in an enchanting land of cherry blossoms turns into the heartbreaking tragedy of an abandoned bride forced to make an excruciating decision. A stunning production, never before seen in Los Angeles, melds sumptuous costumes with evocative period scenery.”

 

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