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CITY ARTS : Revisiting the Flames

April 25, 1993|MARY HELEN BERG

As actors float in and out of a spotlight, the voices of anger, confusion and shock that followed last year's civil unrest are captured in "Angels of Fire," which will be staged this weekend at the Los Angeles Theatre Center.

The 10-person cast of the troupe Platform performs monologues and vignettes based on interviews, news articles and members' own experiences from last spring. The show includes responses from all races, including those of children, police officers and gang members, said director Shishir Kurup.

Though the content is serious, the show is edged with dark humor.

"The further we got from last spring, the more humor we could inject into it," Kurup said. "At first, it was very hard to be funny."

The calm that has followed last weekend's verdicts in the federal trial of the four police officers accused of beating Rodney G. King hardly makes the work obsolete, Kurup said: "In a way, the show is a time capsule, but a lot of what we're talking about in the piece are deep-rooted problems that are still going on now."

Kurup hopes the show will leave audiences with a lasting message. "Nothing is irreversible, but we have to look at the issues and not be afraid."

*

"Angels on Fire," Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. at the Los Angeles Theatre Center, Theater 4, 514 Spring St.; $10. Reservations and information: (213) 660-TKTS.

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