The L.A. Theatre Digest: January 19-25

News   The L.A. Theatre Digest: January 19-25
Al Pacino and Judith Light take on Tennessee Williams, and The Actors’ Gang announces new board members, plus openings and closings on the West Coast.

Courtroom drama challenges scientific status quo.
Playwright, actor, and teacher Matt Chait has appeared in over 100 plays on and Off-Broadway, and he is the recipient of a Charlie Award for contributions to the Hollywood Arts Community. His Disinherit the Wind will return to Hollywood this spring. With his passions for science (especially biology and physics) and spirituality, Disinherit the Wind takes on the ongoing battle around evolution.

How can we understand and contextualize new information challenging what we take for granted as scientific fact? The play of ideas by Chait, which asks us to view the wonders of science through a different lens, opens March 3 at The Complex on Hollywood’s Theater Row for a run through April 9. For tickets, click here.

Judith Light Monica Simoes

Tony winners take on Tennessee Williams.
God Looked Away, Pasadena Playhouse’s world-premiere production that is being developed for Broadway, is billed as “an eye-opening glimpse into a turbulent period in the life and career of one of America’s most mysterious, iconic artists: playwright-screenwriter-novelist Tennessee Williams.” Tony Award winners Al Pacino (Merchant Of Venice, China Doll) and Judith Light (Other Desert Cities, The Assembled Parties) star in Dotson Rader’s stage adaptation of his 1985 Williams biography. Robert Allan Ackerman directs this PlayWorks development production, which will run February 8–March 19. For more information and tickets, visit

Actors’ Gang gets new board members.
The Actors’ Gang announced the addition of two new members to their board of directors, Billie C. Greer and Malissa Feruzzi Shriver. Greer served as president of the Southern California Leadership Council, a non-profit, non-partisan organization founded by four former California governors and Southern California business and community leaders, between 2011-2015. Shriver is the executive director of Turnaround Arts California. The two join current Actors’ Gang board members Colette Brooks (chair), Rick Marcus (treasurer), Gina Belafonte, Claudette Lussier, Bill Morgan, Scott Carter, and Tim Robbins.

Bucket List Theatre announces their season.
L.A.-based theatre group Bucket List Theatre will kick off their 2017 season with Matthew Wilkas and Mark Setlock’s Pageant Play, about the terrifying and surreal world of child beauty pageants. Featuring Amanda Conlon, Rebecca Holopter, Jason Ryan Lovett, and Patrick Pizzolorusso, performances will run April 20-28. The world premiere of Amanda Conlon’s Missmatch, a multimedia musical parody about the world of online dating, will follow in June 2017 as part of the Hollywood Fringe. Wonder Of The World by Tony Award nominee David Lindsay-Abaire, about a woman who leaves her husband to hop a bus to Niagara Falls, will close the season; performances will run September 21-30.

Coming soon to the Los Angeles area:

Witness for the Prosecution
Written by Agatha Christie
Directed by Salome Jens and starring Jules Aaron
January 27–March 12
The Group Rep at the Lonney Chapman Theatre
10900 Burbank Blvd. in North Hollywood

In Witness for the Prosecution, a celebrated attorney is enlisted to defend a man accused of murder whose alibi rests solely on the testimony of his wife—who is called upon to be the titular participant in the trial.

White Guy on the Bus
By Bruce Graham
Directed by Stewart J. Zully and featuring Kevin McCorkle, Amy E. Stoch, Kacie Rogers, Crash Buist, and Teagan Rose.
January 27–March 18
The Road Theatre Company
NoHo Senior Arts Colony
10747 Magnolia Blvd. in North Hollywood

Here’s how it’s billed: “Ray, a white financial manager from an affluent neighborhood, has a loving wife and liberal family. Shatique is a black nursing student and single mom from the rough side of town. As they ride the same bus to the same gritty prison every week, they seem to be getting to know each otheruntil Ray reveals his shocking true purpose for taking these weekly rides.”

By Alex Lyras and Robert McCaskill
Directed by McCaskill and starring Lyras
January 27–March 13
Hudson Guild Theatre
6539 Santa Monica Blvd. in Los Angeles

Here’s how it’s described: “In this multimedia production, a comatose man recreates his identity by delving deeply into his memories, while a circle of family members and loved ones form scheming camps over grave neurological decisions.”

Zoot Suit
Written and directed by Luis Valdez
January 31–March 18
Center Theatre Group
The Mark Taper Forum
135 N. Grand Avenue in Los Angeles

Valdez is bringing Zoot Suit back to the Mark Taper Forum, where it premiered in 1978, to celebrate Center Theatre Group’s 50th Anniversary. The piece portrays the events surrounding the infamous 1942 Sleepy Lagoon murder.

Alfred Molina
Alfred Molina Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Long Day’s Journey Into Night
Written by Eugene O’Neill
Directed by Jeanie Hackett and featuring Angela Goethals, Stephen Louis Grush, Jane Kaczmarek, Alfred Molina, and Colin Woodell
January 31–March 18
The Geffen Playhouse
10886 Le Conte Avenue in Los Angeles

In O’Neill’s semi-autobiographical work, resentments and bourbon-fueled tirades cause the Tyrone family to expose their darkest natures. A day that begins as any other becomes a night they will never recover.

Closing soon in the Los Angeles area:

13 Things About Ed Carpolotti
Book, music, and lyrics by Barry Kleinbort
Based on the play by Jeffrey Hatcher
Directed by Barry Kleinbort and featuring Penny Fuller
Through January 29
The Broad Stage
1310 11th Street in Santa Monica

Here’s how it’s billed: “Virginia Carpolotti is a devoted widow with loving memories of her recently deceased husband. Though her love endures, her confidence in him flounders as one shady character after another comes calling for the debt that Ed put in her name, and things really heat up when a mysterious $1 million ransom note appears.”

Adler & Gibb
By Tim Crouch
Directed by Crouch, Andy Smith, and Karl James
Featuring Crouch, Gina Moxley, Jillian Pullara, and Cath Whitefield
Through January 29
Center Theatre Group
Kirk Douglas Theatre
9820 Washington Blvd. in Culver City

According to CTG, “In preparation for a film role an actress seizes the opportunity to dig up the truth in search of authenticity. Her subject is Janet Adler, a celebrated artist who rejected the art world in favor of making work solely for her lover Margaret Gibb. Adler & Gibb tells the story of a raid—on a house, a life, an identity, a reality and a legacy.”

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