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The Powerhouse Theater

April 8, 2004 | Steve Harvey
The item here about goofs by legal secretaries took Lane Quigley back three decades to when he was a new lawyer at an insurance company. "Our dictation went to a steno pool (remember those?), and most of the typists were unfamiliar with legal terms," he said. Quigley had filed a declaration with the court and, at the conclusion, "I included the language required by the Code of Civil Procedure: 'I declare under penalty of perjury that the foregoing is true and correct.'
Eric Overmyer is over the top sometimes. A master wordsmith, he taps into the zeitgeist with plays that are so packed with language and ideas that you can barely absorb it all in one sitting. His shrewdly funny "In Perpetuity Throughout the Universe," currently in a smart production at the Powerhouse, is a case in point. Paranoia strikes deep in Manhattan as "In Perpetuity Throughout the Universe" tracks the nocturnal comings, goings and neuroses of several conspiracy-theory book ghostwriters.
April 26, 2002 | F. Kathleen Foley; David C. Nichols
Anyone who has ever doubted that a Chekhov play can be a categorical hoot should rush to see "Uncle Vanya" at the Met. Originally workshopped by the Classical Theatre Lab, this "Vanya," which played a limited engagement at the Actors' Gang earlier this year, is simple, streamlined, stripped of all but the most essential technical rudiments. (Necessarily so, since the production shares the stage space with Circle X's current offering, "An American Book of the Dead."
September 15, 1989 | T.H. McCULLOH
David and Doe have gathered the scattered remains of a far-flung flock to their home near Madison, Wis. It's a stormy weekend in 1979 and the low rumble of thunder echoes through Kathleen Tolan's "A Weekend Near Madison" at the Powerhouse Theater. "Madison" is bound by nostalgia to its roots in the late '60s. Its characters are testimony to failed dreams and compromise, and ache with being thirtysomething. Poor kids.
October 2, 1987 | RAY LOYND
The Digby Group is a self-styled, largely unknown Los Angeles troupe making an ambitious foray with three challenging one-acts at the Flight Theater. Among them is an early Sam Shepard play produced locally for the first time. The sharpest achievement in "An Evening With the Digby Group" is far removed from Shepard, though. That distinction belongs to playwright Horton Foote's Depression-era "Blind Date," which is richly calibrated by director Clay Crosby.
May 13, 1988 | JAN HERMAN, Times Staff Writer
Most people would take offense at being called a slime bag. When it happens to Joe Spano, he considers it a high compliment. It means he is doing his job. "Dangerous, ugly, horrible things within us need expression," said the actor, who is starring in Richard Brinsley Sheridan's "The School for Scandal" on the Mainstage at South Coast Repertory.
June 19, 1987 | RAY LOYND
William Faulkner's complex novel "The Sound and the Fury" would appear to defy adaptation. But co-adapters D. Paul Yeuell and Anthony Grumbach, Faulkner freaks since their days at Stanford, are adventurers in audacity. "June Second" at the Landmark Theater has one big audience problem: If you are unfamiliar with "The Sound and the Fury" (1929) and Faulkner's overlapping folds of time and stream of consciousness, the play's emotional edge would appear to be considerably dulled.
May 29, 1987 | RAY LOYND
In a vast, almost empty basement a man sits hunched in a cage. It's not quite big enough for him to stretch out. He's been there 40 years and has found an interior freedom that no one else can understand. But today he's going to be set free by new government leaders. How will he cope? It's not Samuel Beckett or an adaptation of a story by Franz Kafka.
April 10, 1987 | RAY LOYND
"Under the Freeway Sign," a new play about random murder, features a mesmerizing performance by actor Paul Linke as a serial killer and a chilling image of a victim's last moments in the hands of casual maniacs. Staged at the Powerhouse Theater in Santa Monica, the drama is not exploitative but a dark study of sociopaths and a survivor's ability to redeem grief through confrontation with the killers in prison. Jack Bender, a film director, wrote and directed in an expressionistic manner.
July 20, 1990 | RAY LOYND
Let's face it. The real fun of "Tamara" is sipping champagne and racing around an old house. The show's into its 7th year and costs $85 to see on a Saturday night. How does one explain its success? One answer is that the experience is like following actors around a sprawling movie set.
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