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'night, Mother  
The Lost Studio 'night, Mother
 
Marsha Norman’s gripping two-hander, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, is an intense, edge-of-your-seat drama that will keep audiences guessing the outcome until the very end. A supposedly normal evening in the mother-daughter Cates household is shattered when 40-something Jessie announces to Mama that she plans to kill herself before the night is over. Over the course of 90 minutes, in real time, Thelma desperately works to convince her daughter that life is worth living. Eloquent and darkly humorous, ’night, Mother has been hailed as an American classic and one of the most powerful contemporary dramas ever written.
   
1969  
Towne Street Theatre at Stella Adler Theater 1969
 
In 1969, playwright Morgan has created a snapshot of turbulent times. We travel back to the late 1960's, where passions are fueled by a potentially deadly confrontation between a black revolutionary, a successful black businessman, and his socialite wife. A drama ripped from the headlines of the past, with glaring similarities to the headlines of today.
   
2 Across  
Santa Monica Playhouse 2 Across
 
Set entirely on a San Francisco BART train, 2 Across follows the hilarious, poignant, literal and emotional journey of two strangers who meet while doing the New York Times crossword puzzle. She's a sensible psychologist; he's a free-spirited, unemployed ad exec. She's a crossword pro; he always quits. When he tosses his puzzle away, she snaps, "Crosswords are a metaphor for life: Those who finish, succeed; those who don't, fail." The 80 minutes of sparkling dialogue that ensue transition from light banter to moving emotional catharsis as these two unlikely conversationalists roll down the tracks toward a destination neither one of them saw coming. Playwright Jerry Mayer is no stranger to writing snappy dialogue. His talents as a television writer on shows like M*A*S*H, The Mary Tyler Moore Show and The Facts of Life translate perfectly to the live stage in this witty look at the ups and downs male/female relationships.
   
2 Pianos 4 Hands  
Rubicon Theatre 2 Pianos 4 Hands
 
Winner of the coveted Dora Award (the Canadian equivalent of the Tony), this musical comedy has debuted on five continents and in more than 200 cities! Two actors, two pianos and many, many characters grace the stage as fifteen years of piano playing unfolds in all its awful and hilarious glory—crazy instructors, obsessed parents, torturous recitals, and other high points of musical training. From classical to pop to jazz, this funny play provides the chance for two performers to give their “all” in a virtuoso performance. Along the journey, the actors/pianists portray a remarkable range of characters and display piano wizardry featuring the music of Bach, Beethoven, Elton John and Jerry Lee Lewis, among others.
   
The 39 Steps  
Malibu Stage Company The 39 Steps
 
This ingenious comic stage adaptation of Alfred Hitchcock's thriller The 39 Steps turns a cast of four into more than 130 zany characters (in 100 minutes) with a mix of Hitchcockian panache, spy novel thrills and a touch of Monty Python absurdity. The winner of two Tony and Drama Desk Awards, The 39 Steps is a fast-paced and funny whodunit that's brimming with action and romance. Accused of a murder he didn't commit, Richard Hannay flees from the authorities and encounters a string of hair-raising adventures -- as well as an unlikely love connection. Gasp and guffaw as four talented actors re-enact the entire film (including every train chase, plane crash and murder), gleefully portraying the many spies, villains and other intriguing characters that inhabit this action-packed world.
   
4000 Miles  
Sierra Madre Playhouse 4000 Miles
 
The 4000 miles of the title refers to the distance between Seattle and New York Leo, in his early twenties, has traveled that distance on his bicycle and intends to make a very brief stop at the West Village apartment of his grandmother, a nonagenarian widow and a leftist who has retained her sharp wits despite her years. He winds up staying one week, then another, then another…. Leo is still reeling from the sudden death of his traveling companion and best friend. Not grounded (his bicycle travels could be interpreted as a metaphor for his rootlessness), he seeks and finds a connection in his grandmother Vera that he cannot make with his family in St. Paul. Leo is beginning his life’s journey as an adult; Vera is nearing the end of hers. There is much she can contribute to him before he faces the long ride back home.
   
Agua a Cucharadas (Water By The Spoonful)  
The Los Angeles Theatre Center Agua a Cucharadas (Water By The Spoonful)
 
This Spanish-language play (with English supertitles) by Quiara Alegría Hudes takes a painfully honest and often humorous look at the unconventional communities we create when we seek redemption from our personal failings. Through a series of character portraits, the show dances artfully among a family and the members of an online recovery community as they struggle with the consequences of addiction. Covering the expansive distance from Puerto Rico to Japan, Philadelphia to San Diego, and the virtual world to the physical, Water by the Spoonful ties together the lives of a host of unforgettable characters in a play of genuine warmth about forgiveness and redemption. Tantai Teatro provides an amazing visual experience thanks to the use of innovative video mapping technology.
   
Banshee  
Theatre of NOTE Banshee
 
BANSHEE cuts to the heart of what ails a New York family headed by an impossible matriarch, Irish immigrant Kit Sullivan. Kit is disappointed with son Junior and makes no secret of it. Junior, turning 40 and having recently suffered a nervous breakdown after years of caring for his widowed mother, wants life to return to normal. He is helped by his well-meaning cop brother, Neil, and his new girlfriend, Cara. Soon the girlfriend meets the mother, Kit, and Mother has some supernatural suspicions about this young Irish woman. All might be well if Junior weren’t having terrifying visions of his own. Be it the psychological trauma or the Irish legend plaguing their home, both beg the question, which is this family’s true tormentor?
   
Beauty And The Beast  
Santa Monica Playhouse Beauty And The Beast
 
The first Holiday show of the season, with a grand festive opening on Halloween Eve, the 20th anniversary production of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST is an excitingly heart-warming musical adaptation of the original French tale. This classic with a twist, set in a fantasy Medieval milieu "long, long ago," introduces audiences to a lively, lovely and spirited Beauty and a most endearing Beast, offering a rose garden of a thousand and one delights, replete with dizzily ditzy sisters, a sweetly sensitive sire, a spell-binding sorceress and a flamboyantly foppish suitor, who all inadvertently or intentionally strew more than a few thorns along Beauty and her Beast's arduous, and ardorous, path. But the determination and spirit of true love win out, allowing them to find the magic that will ultimately unite them for a happily-ever-after ending that leaves all who are young at heart breathless.
   
Beirut  
Studio Stage Beirut
 
Would you die for love? If your lover or soul mate was infected with a contagious disease would you abandon them or stay beside them and possibly be infected yourself? These are the questions that Studio Theater West’s production of “Beirut” unequivocally asks. Directed by Mark Freeman and performed by a stellar cast, Alan Bowne's “Beirut” is as timely and resonant today as it was when it was produced in the mid-1980’s. A man infected with an unnamed disease is quarantined in the East Village, and his girlfriend breaks through security to be with him. They fight, rage, argue, and love. In order to protect her from the deadly virus, he asks her to leave. In order to love and care for him, she must stay. In this push/pull of love and survival, “Beirut” vibrates with intensity, dark humor, love, sensuality and heart break. Once recognized as an allegory for the AIDS epidemic, “Beirut” is as relevant today as the recent outbreak of the Ebola virus attests. It is a star-crossed love story as timeless as Romeo and Juliet or West Side Story: Love prohibited; love in chains; a real-life “kiss of death”.
   
Better  
Atwater Village Theatre Better
 
The world premiere of a gentle, funny examination of family and mortality — a Jewish, Midwestern Chekhov for the 21st century. Annie returns to her childhood home in the Midwest to escape marital discord and visit her father, who is dying of cancer. As dramatic changes outside of her control take place around her, she reconnects with family and childhood friends. Secrets are revealed, wine is drunk, songs are sung and relationships rekindled.
   
Big Fish  
Carpenter Performing Arts Center Big Fish
 
Adapted from both Tim Burton's celebrated film and the Daniel Wallace novel of the same name, Musical Theatre West reels in the West Coast premiere of the musical Big Fish, the dreamy, touching story of a tall-tale-teller and his son, who wants to know who his father really is. Following a lifetime of spinning made-up yarns of epic adventures, Edward Bloom has entered his final chapter, compelling his son Will to embark on an adventure of his own -- to unravel his real dad from the myths he has created. With music and lyrics by Tony nominee Andrew Lippa (The Addams Family) and a book by acclaimed screenwriter John August (Go, Charlie's Angels), this rollicking fantasy set in the American South is a tribute to the power of dreaming big. With this exclusive pre-sale offer, get access to prime seats before they go on sale to the general public.
   
Bronies  
Third Street Theatre Bronies
 
BRONIES: THE MUSICAL tells the story of three outsiders who find purpose, meaning, love – and each other – all thanks to those fantastical cartoon ponies so many may love as the ultimate super-fans! BRONIES: THE MUSICAL explores the phenomenon of fandom through the lens of pony fans – including all the passion, the awkwardness, the creativity, and the community it can inspire. BRONIES; THE MUSICAL won Best Musical at Hollywood Fringe Festival 2014, as well as the THIRTY90NE Golden Elephant for best director/producers, and a Producers’ Encore Award.
   
Broomstick  
Fountain Theatre Broomstick
 
Trick or Treat. Set in Appalachia and written entirely in verse, the West Coast premiere of John Biguenet’s charming and mesmerizing solo play stars Jenny O'Hara as a wacky, bizarre old woman living in an odd little shack deep in the woods… who just may happen to be a witch. A funny, poignant and “spell” binding tale of the magic of the human heart.
   
Buffalo Soldier  
El Portal Theatre Buffalo Soldier
 
Set during the brutal Indian Wars of the late 1800s, Buffalo Soldier follows three soldiers of the "Negro Cavalry" and their white commander who set off on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. While seeking to establish an outpost in the heart of Comanche territory the soldiers capture the notorious Chief Quanah Parker, one the government's most wanted. Chain of command is disrupted, racial tensions flair and life or death decisions are made as the night wears on the men. Mitch Hale's stirring historical drama dissects a collision of conflicts on the open range.
   
Cannibal!  
Lyric Hyperion Theatre Cannibal!
 
Uncouth, absurd, and wickedly tongue-in-cheek, Coeurage Theatre Company presents the Los Angeles premiere of Tony Award-winner Trey Parker’s Cannibal! The Musical. From the creators of South Park and The Book of Mormon comes this western spoof telling the tale of a pack of miners en route to the promised land of Colorado, led by the state's only convicted cannibal, Alfred Packer. Replete with puppets, blood, song, dance, and Parker’s signature crassness, Cannibal! The Musical is guaranteed to delight and offend. Halloween night, Friday, October 31 with performances at 8pm and midnight. There will be a Halloween party between the performances and members of both audiences are invited to join the fun.
   
Cock  
Theatre/Theater Cock
 
Cited for its toe-curling frankness and comedic twists, that have nothing to do with battling poultry, this Olivier Award winning play makes its Los Angeles debut at Rogue Machine. The worst of men's (and women's) behaviors explode in a lustfulicious triangle. John desperately needs some straightening out...no intermission, no retreat, and no surrender.
   

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