Dog Mouth is a hobo, a Vietnam veteran, a drug addict and a criminal in search of the ultimate fighting dog. Jan. 10-Feb. 17, 2002, he will travel from London to Los Angeles in the American premiere of John Steppling's Dog Mouth, playing at the Evidence Room in a production by Padua Playwrights Productions (Mrs. Feuerstein). Steppling also directs.
Stephen Davies stars Dog Mouth, as he did in London, with Nia Gwynne, another London vet, as his girlfriend, Nyah. Also in the cast are Jim Storm (Broadway's War and Peace, You Can't Take It With You) as Becker and Drama-Logue and L.A. Weekly Award winner Hugh Dane (Willie & Ester, The Visit) as Weeks.
Steppling's works include An American Book of the Dead,Teenage Wedding, The Thrill, Sea of Cortez, Understanding the Dead and Science Fiction, winning several L.A. Weekly and Drama-Logue Awards. In a statement, he explained the inspiration of Dog Mouth: "I read an article about a group of hobos who formed a mafia-like alliance of sorts and it fascinated me. This once romantic subculture had become a criminal organization. And all the guys had been in Vietnam, so it just reverberated with symbols. There was also a picture of this very pretty young girl who was pregnant with [their leader] Dog Man Tony's baby. I started thinking about that relationship and what it was all about. These were people who were not on anyone's demographic. They had no importance, officially, until there was a crime committed."
Designing Dog Mouth are Jason Adams (sets), Rand Ryan (lighting), Brigette Philips (costumes) and Carl Lundeberg (sound).
Tickets are $20. The Evidence Room is located at 2220 Beverly Boulevard. For reservations, call (213) 381-7118. — By Christine Ehren