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August 26, 2007 | Jenny Sundel
TIM ROBBINS took his antiwar message to the stage Aug. 18 with a reading of "The Trial of the Catonsville Nine," benefiting the Actors' Gang and Office of the Americas, a nonprofit group that promotes peace and international justice. Sharon Stone and Jeremy Piven slipped into their seats at the Kirk Douglas Theater for the sold-out show, where 1. Neil Patrick Harris showed off his theater chops alongside the big-name cast. After a standing ovation, 2.
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ENTERTAINMENT
August 17, 2013 | By Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
The love games of Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream" are as frolicsome as they are exquisitely patterned. Of all his romantic comedies, this one has the structural elegance of an elaborate dance. The play has flashes of magnificent poetry, but it's the way the action is choreographed that Shakespeare's genius most fully reveals itself. The Actors' Gang production of "Midsummer," directed by company chief Tim Robbins, strips the play down to its bare essentials. There are no sets to speak of, the lighting is often stark and the special effects tend to involve nothing more than plastic foliage and billowing sheets.
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ENTERTAINMENT
July 5, 2012 | By Susan King, Los Angeles Times
The night after the first preview of "Oy," a two-character play about the Holocaust that he directed for the Actors' Gang theater, French actor and director Georges Bigot arrived for an interview at the Culver City theater looking tired and bleary-eyed. He apologized - there had been a "celebration" after the performance. Bigot had only a few hours before he flew home to Paris. Cellphones in each of his pants pockets occasionally interrupted the proceedings as did the cacophony emanating from the stage where a summer camp for teenage actors was taking place.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 5, 2013 | By Rick Rojas, Los Angeles Times
They milled around the room aimlessly, their faces painted - some ghost white, others in different colors like a tribal mask - and they followed the instructions: They glided when they were told to walk as if they were filled with air, then slowed to a deliberate shuffle when told to act like they'd been shackled. "How does that feel?" said their instructor, Sabra Williams, of the Actors' Gang. "What emotions does that trigger?" The group of about a dozen were grown men, prisoners at the California Rehabilitation Center in Norco, a place where they don't typically let themselves be seen acting foolishly or displaying the kind of emotion that could make them seem vulnerable.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 29, 2008 | Charlotte Stoudt, Special to The Times
Every American war, Gen. Henry Shelton once observed, must pass the "Dover test": the public's ability to tolerate the sight of slain servicemen and women arriving at Dover Air Force Base in flag-draped caskets. Since 1991, however, the Pentagon has banned press photography at the base, essentially rendering the human cost of the Iraq war -- at least the American side of the tab -- invisible. War casualties as an image problem are the conundrum in "Bury the Dead," Irwin Shaw's righteous, funny and painfully relevant 1936 one-act now playing at the Actors’ Gang.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 3, 2008 | Charlotte Stoudt, Special to The Times
The voice comes out of the dark to find you. "Doomed. Doomed. Doooomed." Dr. Rev. Cotton Slocum has seen The End, and you shall burn in everlasting fire unless you heed his word. Lights up, and he's here among us: frozen wave of a pompadour, powder blue suit, vowels thick as Texas ribs, offering toll-free salvation and an unforgettable act of theater, courtesy of V.J. Foster, now starring in "Carnage, A Comedy," at the Actors’ Gang. "You look out at the audience," he says. "What's the feeling in the house?
ENTERTAINMENT
October 12, 2009 | Reed Johnson
Tim Robbins jokes that he could've given the title "While Rome Burns" to his new festival at the Actors' Gang. Times are tough, people are angry, "and they have every right to be," says the Oscar-winning actor and artistic director of the Culver City-based theater company. "There've been really bad decisions made that we're paying the bill for now." Like most cultural entities, the Gang, one of L.A.'s most accomplished theatrical institutions, has been scorched financially by the economic crisis.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 21, 2001
While it is true that the opinion piece or commentary may be traditions for newspapers of all sizes, I found it very odd to open my newspaper last Sunday and find Tim Robbins' personal commentary on the Actors' Gang virtually unmarked as such (First Person, "A Long-Overdue Risk," Oct. 14). I also found it extremely odd that the Los Angeles Times would choose to utilize its quite premium space in Sunday Calendar for a highly subjective "point" with no "counterpoint." The very contentious and difficult situation that has occurred and continues to occur at the Actors' Gang since January is extraordinarily complicated.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 5, 2010 | By Oliver Gettell, Los Angeles Times
Punk rock. Families sprawling on blankets. Shakespeare. It's just another day in the park for the Actors' Gang. The Culver City-based theater troupe is performing "Katie the Curst," a family-friendly adaptation of Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew," through August at Media Park . Director Lisa Wolpe's lively interpretation gives Shakespeare's Padua a 1970s-inspired rock 'n' roll makeover and keeps the excitement high with energetic...
ENTERTAINMENT
July 11, 2004 | Don Shirley
"The Actors' Gang storms London," declared Keythe Farley, one of the co-writers of "Bat Boy," an Actors' Gang-developed musical about a half- human mutant that will open in the West End on Sept. 8. Also in September, the Hollywood-based Gang hopes to mount a London production of "Embedded," Tim Robbins' barbed look at the Iraq war and its media coverage. "Bat Boy" began with a 1997 production in the Gang's smaller Hollywood space, where the budget was about $12,000 and the seats numbered 41.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 17, 2012 | By Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
Let's congratulate the Actors' Gang for at least bringing some novelty to our classical repertory. When American theater companies feel an itch to revive a work by Richard Brinsley Sheridan, they inevitably reach for "The School for Scandal," which has come to epitomize that post-Restoration genre known as 18th century comedy. "The Rivals," Sheridan's first play, is a more unwieldy affair, but there are hearty laughs to be had from this scattershot spray of silliness from 1775. To enjoy them, however, one most be willing to plod through dizzying stretches of ludicrous plot.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 5, 2012 | By Susan King, Los Angeles Times
The night after the first preview of "Oy," a two-character play about the Holocaust that he directed for the Actors' Gang theater, French actor and director Georges Bigot arrived for an interview at the Culver City theater looking tired and bleary-eyed. He apologized - there had been a "celebration" after the performance. Bigot had only a few hours before he flew home to Paris. Cellphones in each of his pants pockets occasionally interrupted the proceedings as did the cacophony emanating from the stage where a summer camp for teenage actors was taking place.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 2, 2012 | By Charlotte Stoudt
All the best stories are told in the kitchen - even the darkest ones. Think of Hélène Cixous' “Oy!,” now at the Actors' Gang, as the rise and fall of the Third Reich as told by your eccentric aunts, who happen to be whipping up liver pâté and a little gossip. Octogenarian sisters Selma (Mary Eileen O'Donnell) and Jenny (Jeanette Horn) have just returned from their hometown in Germany, where they were asked to speak about the Nazi era. Cooking up some nosh, they admit to each other that they didn't exactly tell the whole truth in public.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 10, 2010 | By Susan Josephs, Special to the Los Angeles Times
On a recent Saturday night, Lili VonSchtupp (yes, that's her legal name, changed in homage to the Madeline Kahn character in "Blazing Saddles," with altered spelling) attended three different burlesque shows. As producer of the weekly revue "Monday Night Tease," VonSchtupp can also recall the not-so-distant era of several years ago, when "there was maybe one or two burlesque shows per month besides my show. " "Today, you've got four weekly shows, seven monthly shows and a tremendous amount of one-offs," she says.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 18, 2010 | By Chris Lee, Los Angeles Times
— Inside a dingy community room at the California Rehabilitation Center , the prisoners were segregated into two distinct populations. Members from one group awaited their cue behind a "curtain" — an old bed sheet strung from the ceiling. The other group sat in folding chairs waiting to take the "stage. " All wore garish greasepaint to variously resemble mimes or clowns, Kabuki performers or horror movie antiheroes. And all had been kitted out with funny hats, prop glasses and fake mustaches to whimsical effect.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 17, 2010 | By Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
To begin with, there was a reading assignment. Tim Robbins, actor and founder of the Actors' Gang, had long admired "A People's History of the United States," the 1980 revisionist history book by the late Howard Zinn that tells America's story from the perspective of have-nots rather than big shots. Robbins asked all 60 or so Actors' Gang members to read its sections on Christopher Columbus, Jamestown and pre-revolutionary Boston; then they began to explore the dramatic possibilities in a series of workshops last summer that he hoped would point toward a play.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 17, 2010 | By Mike Boehm, Los Angeles Times
To begin with, there was a reading assignment. Tim Robbins, actor and founder of the Actors' Gang, had long admired "A People's History of the United States," the 1980 revisionist history book by the late Howard Zinn that tells America's story from the perspective of have-nots rather than big shots. Robbins asked all 60 or so Actors' Gang members to read its sections on Christopher Columbus, Jamestown and pre-revolutionary Boston; then they began to explore the dramatic possibilities in a series of workshops last summer that he hoped would point toward a play.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 24, 2000
Shadow Klan, the Actors' Gang theater company's resident youth ensemble, will present its latest original work, "Tabula Rasa," Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Evidence Room, 2220 Beverly Blvd. in Los Angeles. The seriocomic work, about two directors trying to pitch a script, is a collaboration with students from local high schools and undergraduates from UC Riverside and USC. It is directed by Actors' Gang member Brian Brophy.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 5, 2010 | By Oliver Gettell, Los Angeles Times
Punk rock. Families sprawling on blankets. Shakespeare. It's just another day in the park for the Actors' Gang. The Culver City-based theater troupe is performing "Katie the Curst," a family-friendly adaptation of Shakespeare's "The Taming of the Shrew," through August at Media Park . Director Lisa Wolpe's lively interpretation gives Shakespeare's Padua a 1970s-inspired rock 'n' roll makeover and keeps the excitement high with energetic...
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 30, 2010 | Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Times
Corey Allen, an actor-turned Emmy Award-winning director who earned a slice of film immortality in the 1950s playing the doomed high school gang leader who challenges James Dean to a "chicken run" in "Rebel Without a Cause," has died. He was 75. Allen died at his home in Hollywood on Sunday, two days before his 76 t h birthday, said family spokesman Mickey Cottrell. The specific cause was not given. Allen had Parkinson's disease for the last two decades, Cottrell said, but he remained active directing plays until a few years ago. Allen's death came a month after that of another "Rebel" alumnus, Dennis Hopper, who played one of the high school gang members.
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