Thursday, April 9, 2015

MUSICAL NEWS for Thursday, April 9, 2015

MUSICALS: glory|struck productions has announced casting for American Idiot, to be staged in a yet-to-be-disclosed warehouse venue in the downtown Los Angeles Arts District. This electrifying stage adaptation of the punk album features James Byous as Johnny, Lindsay Pearce as Whatsername, Briana Cuoco, Payson Lewis, Jonah Platt, Caitlin Ary, Alec Cyganowski, Bianca Gisselle, Matt Magnusson, Abraham Lim, Michelle Raitzin, Shelley Regner, Jordan Booker, Barrett Crake, Casey Hayden, Reesa Marie, Jenna Townsend, and Zach Zagoria. American Idiot is directed by Topher Rhys and Jen Oundjian, with musical direction by Elmo Zapp. Performances begin May 15. Tickets go on sale April 28, with pre-sale beginning April 14 for those supporting the Kickstarter campaign. The cast will also present a special night of music celebrating the production at The Viper Room April 18 at 10:30 pm (8852 West Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood 90069). Tickets are available at

The Group Rep presents the world premiere musical Love Again by Doug Haverty (book & lyrics) and Adryan Russ (music & lyric) directed by Kay Cole May 15 – June 28. The show consists of three engaging musical playlets, each with its own storyline, about making difficult choices in love with a brand new pop/Broadway score. Cast includes Michele Bernath, Paul Cady, Kathleen Chen, Amy Gillette, Renee Gorsey, Lloyd Pedersen, Lauren Peterson, Andrew Curtis Stark, Debi Tinsley, Elijah Tomlinson, and Janet Wood. You can also join the company for Talk-back Sundays after the show May 24th and June 7. Tickets: or (818) 763-5990.

Laguna Playhouse presents the Orange County premiere of Murder for Two by Joe Kinosian (book & music) and Kellen Blair (book & lyrics), choreography by Wendy Seyb, musical direction by David Caldwell and direction by Scott Schwartz. Show runs April 22 - May 17 (opening night 4/25) at the Laguna Playhouse, 606 Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach. Everyone is a suspect in Murder for Two, a hilarious musical murder mystery with a twist: one actor investigates the crime (Ian Lowe), the other plays all of the suspects (Kyle Branzel as Marcus) and they both play the piano! A zany blend of classic musical comedy and madcap mystery, this 90-minute whodunit is a highly theatrical duet loaded with killer laughs. Tickets:

The Old Globe in San Diego announces the cast for Cole Porter’s Kiss Me, Kate, its upcoming co-production with Hartford Stage. This spectacular revival will be choreographed by Peggy Hickey and directed by Hartford Stage Artistic Director and former Old Globe Shakespeare Festival Artistic Director Darko Tresnjak. Broadway stars Mike McGowan (Priscilla Queen of the Desert) and Anastasia Barzee (Urinetown) star as Fred/Petruchio and Lilli/Kate. The cast also includes Tyler Hanes (Bill/Lucentio), Megan Sikora (Lois/Bianca), Brendan Averett (Second Man), Joel Blum (First Man), Giovanni Bonaventura (Hortensio), Robert Hannon Davis (Ralph), Charity Angel Dawson (Hattie), James T. Lane (Paul), Barrett Martin (Gremio), Wayne W. Pretlow (Pops/Priest), Michael Starr (Phillip), Jeff Steitzer (Harry Trevor/Baptista Minola), Johnny Stellard (Nathaniel), and Nick Wyman (General Harrison Howell). Dancers include Robin Masella, Shina Ann Morris, and Jane Papageorge. Tickets:

EXTENSION: Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group’s Bedlam Explosivo XXO Variety Hour has been extended and will continue performances Fridays at 11:00 pm through May 8. ZJU Theatre Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601. Tickets: $15 (818) 202-4120 or

BENEFIT: The Ojai Playwrights Conference will honor Gordon Davidson and Judy Ovitz during its benefit gala Town & Country on Saturday, May 2, 3:00 pm. Festivities begin with Show-Stoppers, a 90-minute cabaret of musical numbers and dramatic scenes performed by Broadway and Los Angeles stars and OPC playwrights. The show, created and directed by OPC Artistic Director/Producer Robert Egan with Emmy award-winning composer and music director Lance Horne, will feature performances Davis Gaines, Dale Kristien, Anthony Fedorov, Jennifer Paz, Jennifer Leigh Warren, Steven Weber, Julie Garnyé, Billy Valentine, Luis Alfaro, Jon Robin Baitz, Charlayne Woodard and Noah Wyle. Tickets:

CABARET: Chris Isaacson Presents announces three performances of Erich Bergen--Live! Thursday, May 21 and Friday, May 22 (8:30 pm) at Catalina Bar & Grill in Hollywood, and Monday, May 18 at Martinis Above Fourth in San Diego. Bergen is best known for his performance as Bob Gaudio in the Clint Eastwood film of Jersey Boys (a role he played on stage for over three years) and his co-starring role on the CBS drama Madam Secretary. Musical director is Michael Orland (American Idol). Tickets: or (866) 468-3399.

DANCE/VARIETY: This Mother’s Day, the 17th annual Momentum Place, curated by Lexi Pearl, creates a fantastical world of aerial and circus performers, dancers and musicians in Theatricum Botanicum’s outdoor amphitheater. Bring your mother to honor the MOMentum in her life - always on the go for others. Now, she can sit back, relax and enjoy an uncommon afternoon of performance delights that are kid friendly and full of surprises. For an extra treat, enjoy a scrumptious brunch in Theatricum’s rustic gardens before the performance. May 10. Brunch: Noon - 1:30 pm, Performance: 2:00 pm. Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum, 1419 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd, Topanga CA 90290. Tickets: (310) 455-2322 or

DANCE: First Run Features is pleased to announce that on May 11 and 12, the new dance documentary, Miss Hill: Making Dance Matter, will be presented as part of Laemmle Theater’s Culture Vulture Series. The series features the best films from the world of ballet, opera, stage, and fine art. Screening s are Mondays at 7:30 pm at all Laemmle locations in Los Angeles, with a repeat of the program Tuesdays at 1:00 pm. Miss Hill: Making Dance Matter tells the inspiring and largely unknown story of Martha Hill, a visionary whose life was defined by her love for dance, and who successfully fought against great odds to establish modern dance as a legitimate art form in America. The 80-minute film is directed by Greg Vander Veer who conducts lively interviews with Hill’s friends and intimates such as Robert Battle (Artistic Director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater), Charles Reinhart (former Director of American Dance Festival), premiere ballerina Heather Watts, Ohad Naharin (Batsheva Dance Company), dance critic Deborah Jowitt and acclaimed choreographers Paul Taylor and Martha Clarke. For more information visit

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