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Joel Asher

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ENTERTAINMENT
August 1, 1988 | ROBERT KOEHLER
Outside a classroom window, a breeze swept past trees across a lawn and over the adjacent road to a distant cornfield. Between the lawn and the cornstalks, however, was a high fence, surveyed by patrol towers and topped by ominous, thickly wound barbed wire. At the California Institution for Women, Frontera in San Bernardino County, everything past the barbed wire is called "the outside world."
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ENTERTAINMENT
December 1, 1996 | Michael P. Lucas, Michael P. Lucas is a Times staff writer
Ned Netterville was a trouper with the community theater of Tulsa, Okla., who came to town dreaming of stardom. But after scores of auditions, he had few offers of work. Then one day last April, he found something in the West Los Angeles branch of the public library that he didn't even know existed: a videotape on how to act. He took it home and realized he'd been doing something wrong.
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ENTERTAINMENT
December 1, 1996 | Michael P. Lucas, Michael P. Lucas is a Times staff writer
Ned Netterville was a trouper with the community theater of Tulsa, Okla., who came to town dreaming of stardom. But after scores of auditions, he had few offers of work. Then one day last April, he found something in the West Los Angeles branch of the public library that he didn't even know existed: a videotape on how to act. He took it home and realized he'd been doing something wrong.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 1, 1988 | ROBERT KOEHLER
Outside a classroom window, a breeze swept past trees across a lawn and over the adjacent road to a distant cornfield. Between the lawn and the cornstalks, however, was a high fence, surveyed by patrol towers and topped by ominous, thickly wound barbed wire. At the California Institution for Women, Frontera in San Bernardino County, everything past the barbed wire is called "the outside world."
ENTERTAINMENT
October 3, 1988 | DAN SULLIVAN, Times Theater Critic
"Getting Out" has moved from the Burbage Theatre to the downtown Los Angeles Theatre Center's experimental space, Theatre 4. It is both a capable revival of Marsha Norman's play and an example of why the Equity-Waiver scene had to change. Norman's play concerns a young woman leaving a prison cell for the putative freedom of a one-room apartment. We see Arlene as she is now (Pamela Harris) and Arlie as she was behind bars (Laurie Lathem). But there is no "then" in "Getting Out."
ENTERTAINMENT
November 13, 1988 | JANICE ARKATOV
"Don't confuse this with Chekhov," says director Joel Asher of Turgenev's "A Month in the Country," which opens tonight at Theatre 40. "Turgenev was 50 years before Chekhov--and his style of writing was what Chekhov was trying to get away from: that very theatrical, presentational, traditional way of performing. So Turgenev wasn't the revolutionary Chekhov was," he said. "But this does have that wonderful sense of pathos and comic self-involvement that runs through Russian literature."
ENTERTAINMENT
September 26, 1996 | ROBERT KOEHLER, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
When he was premiering one of his plays at the Mark Taper Forum, Lanford Wilson told this reviewer that the inspiration for the work had come from something he had seen at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre, which impressed him as being "kick-ass." Wilson wanted to write something equally kick-ass, and came up with "Burn This," which starred Steppenwolf founders Joan Allen and John Malkovich.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 9, 1988 | SYLVIE DRAKE, Times Theater Writer
Much of the publicity surrounding "Getting Out," which opened over the weekend at the Burbage Theatre, has concentrated on the fact that singer-songwriter Carole King is in it. She is, and she plays Ruby, an ex-convict who befriends Arline, our protagonist, only just released from prison.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 25, 1988 | DON SHIRLEY
"For Black Boys Who Have Considered Homicide When the Streets Were Too Much" is Keith Antar Mason's response to Ntozake Shange's choreopoem, "For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf." Six young black men (compared with Shange's seven young black women) prowl the stage of the Rose Theater, speaking Mason's poetry, most of it about what it's like to be young, scorned and black.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 12, 1996 | T.H. McCULLOH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Lanford Wilson is not a playwright Hollywood is chomping at the bit over. His plays are theater pieces first and foremost, relying on the live experience for his strengths to breathe deeply and grab the imagination. From "Balm in Gilead" to the "Tally Trilogy," he treats life honestly with the sympathetic heart that marks strong drama. One of his most interesting later plays is "Burn This," which in its original production was somewhat overpowered by the performance of John Malkovich as Pale.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 1, 1990 | T. H. McCULLOH
Don't be put off by the title of the igLoo group's first production in its Hollywood space. The pretentious sounding "A Fire Was Burning Over the Dumpling House One Chinese New Year" doesn't even hint at the chords struck by the writing of Paul Peditto and the lead performances in this production of his Steppling-esque exploration of a small-time hustler and his alcoholic, drug-ridden girlfriend.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 18, 1988 | DAN SULLIVAN
Sometimes it all seems to be falling apart; sometimes it all seems to be falling into place. Even the bad news on the theater front these days has a grain of comfort in it. And the good news has been been very good indeed. For example: The California Theatre at 8th and Main is going to come down. This is not good news to people who care anything about theater architecture.
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