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Stage Directions

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ENTERTAINMENT
January 30, 2004 | David C. Nichols, Special to The Times
More than one preconception is upended in "Stage Directions," the second production of the "Hot Properties" series at Inside the Ford. L. Trey Wilson's absorbing dramedy addresses the heart of stereotyping with real wit and resolute craft. "Stage Directions" operates from a double-sided premise, recalling Jean Anouilh. It begins in John H. Binkley's stylized park setting, where two homies banter and spar against an odd undercurrent. Their ambiguous confab halts at its most intimate moment.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 11, 2013 | By Charles McNulty, Los Angeles Times Theater Critic
"The Brothers Size," now at the Old Globe, is part of Tarell Alvin McCraney's "The Brother/Sister Plays," a trilogy that includes "In the Red and Brown Water," which is concluding its acclaimed run this month at the Fountain Theatre. These lyrical works, infused with New World versions of West African Yoruba mythology, Gulf Coast humidity and classic R&B, grow in stature when experienced in proximity. Directed with sensitive clarity by Tea Alagic, who was a close collaborator of McCraney's in their student days at the Yale School of Drama, this Old Globe production of "The Brothers Size" has a simplicity that quietly ripples outward into an emotional grandness.
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 19, 2012 | By Katherine Tulich, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Director Jason Reitman is promising some colorful stage directions when he and a group of actors perform a live, onstage reading of "Shampoo," the 1975 film that starred Warren Beatty as a promiscuous Beverly Hills hairdresser, on Thursday. "That will be the funny part. I will be reading all the sex scenes," Reitman laughs. "So I will be announcing every thrust. " Reitman's "Live Read" program has had instant sellouts since the series began last October as part of the new Film Independent program of classic and contemporary film at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Once a month, Reitman presents a cinema favorite with a different cast of actors cold-reading the famous scripts.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 25, 2012 | By Charlotte Stoudt, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Sex, drugs and a cheap motel for $15 an hour: Who says L.A. doesn't know anything about culture? The Smith & Martin Company and needtheater have taken the stage directions of "Tape" seriously and staged Stephen Belber's cult three-hander in a room at the Western Plaza Motel on Wilton Place in Los Angeles, just below Santa Monica Boulevard. Enter Room 28 with a handful of other intrepid audience members and park yourself anywhere: On the beer-can-strewn rug or a lovely bedspread whose color spectrum resembles the curried vegetable dal at a Whole Foods hot buffet.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 14, 1988 | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
Score one for the author in Paris, where playwright Samuel Beckett has won a battle against a French director who wanted to stage his play "Endgame" with pink walls and music--something completely at odds with Beckett's stage directions. The 1957 play is due to open at the venerable Comedie Francaise on Saturday, but the production will feature a stage bathed in gray light and virtually empty, with only two small windows looking out on a gray sea, as Beckett's instructions call for.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 13, 1990 | T.H. McCULLOH
The improbable task of blending the stories of five sets of recent immigrants to the United States defeats the creators of "Journeys: The Immigrants Tale" at Lankershim Art Center. The human thrust that each of the stories might have is minimized in Kimberly Heinrichs' script, buried under a barrage of background data that would better remain in the stage directions.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 27, 1988
Robert Koehler quotes Christine Lahti as having said, without a trace of regret, apropos of her characterization of Alma in Tennessee Williams' "Summer and Smoke," "I've ignored all his stage directions" ("Lahti Charts Her Own Course Through 'Summer and Smoke,' " Feb. 17). Then in Dan Sullivan's review ("Lahti Plays With Fire in 'Smoke,' " Feb. 20), Sullivan observed, "Still, there's some truth to the notion that once a play leaves the typewriter it becomes the property of the actors."
ENTERTAINMENT
June 25, 2012 | By Charlotte Stoudt, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Sex, drugs and a cheap motel for $15 an hour: Who says L.A. doesn't know anything about culture? The Smith & Martin Company and needtheater have taken the stage directions of "Tape" seriously and staged Stephen Belber's cult three-hander in a room at the Western Plaza Motel on Wilton Place in Los Angeles, just below Santa Monica Boulevard. Enter Room 28 with a handful of other intrepid audience members and park yourself anywhere: On the beer-can-strewn rug or a lovely bedspread whose color spectrum resembles the curried vegetable dal at a Whole Foods hot buffet.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 27, 2002 | MARJORIE HERNANDEZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Jonathan Lopez never thought he would have the courage to dance on stage. The aspiring death metal vocalist didn't have his band mask to hide behind while performing in front of his peers. But after two weeks of intense training in theatrical arts, the 17-year-old from Anaheim fit right in with the dozen or so other boys swiveling hips in grass skirts and wigs Friday on stage at the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa. "I'm really shy," Lopez explained before his performance.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 28, 1996 | JAN HERMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Samuel Beckett was very particular about the staging of his plays. When JoAnne Akalaitis directed a revival of "Endgame" at Harvard a dozen years ago and set the play in a New York subway car, Beckett threatened legal action to close it down. "Any production which ignores my stage directions," he asserted, "is completely unacceptable to me." What, then, would he have thought of Joel T. Cotter's "Endgame," which has opened at the Alternative Repertory Theatre?
ENTERTAINMENT
January 19, 2012 | By Katherine Tulich, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Director Jason Reitman is promising some colorful stage directions when he and a group of actors perform a live, onstage reading of "Shampoo," the 1975 film that starred Warren Beatty as a promiscuous Beverly Hills hairdresser, on Thursday. "That will be the funny part. I will be reading all the sex scenes," Reitman laughs. "So I will be announcing every thrust. " Reitman's "Live Read" program has had instant sellouts since the series began last October as part of the new Film Independent program of classic and contemporary film at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Once a month, Reitman presents a cinema favorite with a different cast of actors cold-reading the famous scripts.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 22, 2009 | Christopher Smith
An English newspaper once described a soccer star as having "developed splendidly and then aged as well as could be hoped for." That might sum up another U.K. icon, Monty Python. Because while it's been 25 years since the seminal six-man English comedy troupe has produced any new material, its thoughtful silliness still resonates. Now the group is again among us, cheerfully exploiting its upcoming 40th anniversary with a Python-palooza of events on tap: a new play in Los Angeles based on its classic TV sketches, a six-part documentary on the IFC channel, a book describing its live performances and a rare coming together of the group's five living members for a Q&A session in New York.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 15, 2007 | Frank Rizzo, Hartford Courant
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- Mention the name Kathleen Turner and you may think of her vivid film performances in "Body Heat" (her movie debut, in 1981), "Romancing the Stone" and "Prizzi's Honor." But the actress with the same sultry pipes she had as the come-hither Jessica Rabbit in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" has also had high-profile roles on stage ("The Graduate," "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"
ENTERTAINMENT
September 3, 2005 | Don Shirley, Times Staff Writer
Soon after graduating from high school in Glendale, Ariz., Stephen Spinella took flying lessons at the Phoenix airport. He wanted to travel, and he figured that's what airline pilots did. He got his license, but he never piloted another airplane. "I hated every second of it," he says. "Pulling a Cessna 150 out of a stall was not my idea of a good time."
ENTERTAINMENT
January 30, 2004 | David C. Nichols, Special to The Times
More than one preconception is upended in "Stage Directions," the second production of the "Hot Properties" series at Inside the Ford. L. Trey Wilson's absorbing dramedy addresses the heart of stereotyping with real wit and resolute craft. "Stage Directions" operates from a double-sided premise, recalling Jean Anouilh. It begins in John H. Binkley's stylized park setting, where two homies banter and spar against an odd undercurrent. Their ambiguous confab halts at its most intimate moment.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 27, 2002 | MARJORIE HERNANDEZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Jonathan Lopez never thought he would have the courage to dance on stage. The aspiring death metal vocalist didn't have his band mask to hide behind while performing in front of his peers. But after two weeks of intense training in theatrical arts, the 17-year-old from Anaheim fit right in with the dozen or so other boys swiveling hips in grass skirts and wigs Friday on stage at the Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa. "I'm really shy," Lopez explained before his performance.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 23, 1989 | DAN SULLIVAN, TIMES THEATER CRITIC
Down, Kingfish. Don't kill the critics. There's a good boy. We are discussing Marlane Meyer's "Kingfish," a comedy of perception. First seen at the Los Angeles Theatre Center two seasons ago, it arrived Thursday night at Joseph Papp's Public Group Theater, to negative reviews. "Self-conscious absurdism," said the New York Times. "An old dog trying to learn new tricks," said Newsday. Nonsense. "Kingfish" is a wonderful play.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 4, 1987 | NANCY CHURNIN DEMAC
Among the many things for which Pablo Picasso is noted--genius aside--is the astounding variety and volume of his work. He produced more than 20,000 paintings, drawings, engravings, collages, sculptures and pieces of pottery. He also wrote two one-act plays, a fact you won't see in many reference books. It took a theater student from Cleveland to find that out and, after seven years of trying, to arrange for them to be shown here.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 6, 2001 | MICHAEL PHILLIPS, TIMES THEATER CRITIC
Charitably, you could approximate the "Romeo and Juliet" at the Ahmanson to what Lord Capulet calls that lovesick kid, Romeo: "virtuous and well-governed." Sir Peter Hall's production is stolid, dogged, 2 1/2-star Shakespeare. Even with a deeply variable cast, the end result carries a kind of bland serenity, all that lovely sonneteering gliding by without much in the way of theatrical excitement. It is not overwhelming and it is not underwhelming. You leave the production feeling merely whelmed.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 14, 1999 | JAN BRESLAUER, Jan Breslauer is a regular contributor to Calendar
The worlds of theater and television may cohabit in Los Angeles, but they've long eyed each other with suspicion. Theater people often view TV with disdain, and not a little financial envy. And TV people often feel theater folks don't appreciate the amount of artistry that goes into making a good sitcom. What's more, the animosity is fueled by the brain drain, as theater artists are lured away by lucrative prospects elsewhere.
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