January 2, 2012
"Carnage" production designer Dean Tavoularis also helped create the look of some of the classics of 1970s cinema. 'Carnage' He designed a comfortable but lived-in Brooklyn apartment for Roman Polanski's version of the dark stage comedy. 'The Godfather Part II' Tavoularis won an Oscar for his production design of Francis Ford Coppola's 1974 classic, creating Sicily and New York in the early 1900s and Cuba and Lake Tahoe in the late 1950s. 'Apocalypse Now' For Coppola's 1979 Vietnam War epic, Tavoularis designed sets that included a French plantation and Col. Kurtz's jungle command post.
May 14, 2012 |
"La Boheme" is back. So too is Los Angeles Opera's enduring 1993 Herb Ross production. Of course, Puccini's endearing Bohemians are never ones to worry about wearing out their universal welcome. And Ross' warmly cinematic staging, which gets trotted out every few years, has long proved impervious to passing opera-production fashion, at least as an audience attraction. No, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion wasn't full when the curtain went up Saturday night on Act 1. But the hall was full by the time the curtain went up on Act 2. Blame an accident on the Santa Monica Freeway that added an hour to the drive from the Westside.
October 22, 2001 |
A writer in love with the evanescence of truth, Harold Pinter can succeed or fail on stage for reasons no larger than a flea. And it's not always complete success or utter failure. The difference between a solid Pinter production and a production with something extra, with a blackjack behind its back, cannot be detected by the naked eye. You only realize the difference if, on the way back to your car, in an exhilaratingly strange way, your head hurts.
November 8, 2002 |
Conflicts far beyond those supplied by the text complicate "The Chase," the final presentation of Woodland Hills Community Theatre's 2002 season at the West Valley Playhouse in Canoga Park. Horton Foote's 1952 account of a disillusioned Texas sheriff and the escaped convict bent on destroying him here finds the author's burgeoning early voice inadvertently clashing with a wildly misguided approach.
March 19, 2011 |
Entering the Downtown Independent near Little Tokyo on Thursday for the National Theatre Live's broadcast of director Danny Boyle's stage production of "Frankenstein," I found it impossible to leave behind the unfolding series of catastrophes in Japan that has the world collectively holding its breath. The current crisis follows us everywhere. With the hard-to-fathom images of flattened towns, the protracted suspense over radiation levels and the frustration of not being able to do more than donate to relief organizations, it's no wonder there's a growing hunger for deeper reflection on this multipronged calamity, in which natural disasters have set off an unnatural one. Journalism bombards us with passing information; artists call our attention to enduring truths.
June 6, 2012 |
Mark Ravenhill, the English playwright best known for his play with the unprintable title (let's just call it "Shopping and Copulating"), isn't one for bromides and gooey sentiments. In "pool (no water)," now receiving its L.A. premiere at the Complex's Flight Theatre in a highly visceral Monkey Wrench Collective production, he exposes the darker side of the artistic underground. Suffice it to say, this isn't about the nobility of the creative calling. The premise of this work, first performed in 2006, is attention-grabbing: A visual artist (serenely played by Jessica Lamprinos)
May 19, 2008 |
Adapt a classic novel for the stage and you're bound to come up with a few memorable moments of drama. It's like buying an artistic insurance policy -- no matter how badly your adaptation fails, the original novel is there to save you from total disaster. "My Antonia," currently at the Rubicon Theatre in Ventura, contains a handful of truly moving scenes about failed love, growing old and learning to live with regret. For that, we can thank Willa Cather, who wrote the novel of the same name in 1918.
August 2, 2012
Colombia 's cocaine production fell by nearly 25% in 2011 from the previous year, and was down by more than 70% since 2001, according to the White House. A report released this week by the Office of National Drug Control Policy suggests that the Andean country once known as the largest producer of cocaine has scored a remarkable victory. That's great news, if indeed the latest estimates are accurate. But the report is at odds with a United Nations survey released last week that concluded that Colombia's cocaine production remains virtually unchanged, dropping by a mere 1% since 2010.
March 10, 1992 |
Shop Television Network Inc. in Burbank, once a distant third in the hotly competitive U.S. home shopping market, has filed for bankruptcy protection after one of its largest creditors won a court order to repossess most of the network's video production equipment. The filing under Chapter 11 of U.S. bankruptcy laws puts the court order and other litigation on hold while Shop Television works out a plan with its creditors to repay its debts. The company listed $10 million in assets and $4.
March 10, 2013 |
The composer Richard Wagner, born 200 years ago this spring, believed (with justification) that he represented the music of the future. Los Angeles likes to think (with justification?) that it represents the city of the future. The two should be made for each other, and in the short history of Los Angeles Opera, they have been. No company in America can match so interesting and original a string of Wagner productions over the past quarter-century as those at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, beginning with David Hockney's gorgeous designs for "Tristan und Isolde" in 1987.