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Los Angeles Fringe Festival : Stage, Music And Dance Reviews : 12 Vignettes With A 'View From Park'

September 21, 1987|RAY \f7 LOYND \f7

Downtown Los Angeles' Park View Stage in the venerable Park Plaza Hotel is presenting 12 vignettes (10 of them solo performances) created, written and enacted by members of the company's ensemble.

Unfortunately, most of the material overdoses on that affliction common to people who talk to themselves in the park: self-absorption. Produced by Brenda Carlin under the umbrella title, "A View From the Park," the pieces project some individual talent and generally resourceful staging by director John Batis.

But these characters, articulate-to-quirky down-and-outers, tend to blur into one another because too many of them, despite stylistic differences, suggest the same alienated personality.

Best of the dozen is "Callings," in which Sally Shore, who also wrote the vignette, plays a dancer who encounters more than her match in a surprisingly graceful turn by a dancing nun sublimely played by Sharon Mann.

Etched delineations are also delivered by Bob McFarland's remorseful purse snatcher ("It Shouldn't Happen to Dorothy"), Dennis Surles' free-wheeling roller skater ("For Whom the Bull Toils"), Michael Berry's cat lover ("Suzi") and Gentle Culpepper's king of the road ("Bartholemew," written by director Batis).

Performances are at 607 S. Park View St., Mondays through Wednesdays, 8 p.m., until Oct. 7. Tickets: $8 (Seniors: $5); (213) 389-0284.

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