TOP GIRLS


English playwright Caryl Churchill examines what it takes to be a “top girl” in the dog-eat-dog world we call business in her challenging, thought-provoking 1982 drama Top Girls, the terrific latest from The Antaeus Company and a tailor-made showcase for a baker’s dozen of L.A.’s finest working actresses.
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A NICE INDIAN BOY


Playwright Madhuri Shekar puts a fresh, multicultural, same-sex spin on the classic romantic comedy in her World Premiere dramedy A Nice Indian Boy, one of the best original plays I’ve seen at East West Players, a romcom that had me at “Hello,” or in the case of Naveen and Keshav, at “Om.”
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PASSION PLAY


Sarah Ruhl examines how a centuries-old theatrical tradition and the folks who take part in the spectacle year after year are affected by the epoch in which they create this annual event in Passion Play, and before you jump to the conclusion that such heavy subject matter might prove too weighty to be entertaining, remember that it’s Tony-nominated Ruhl we’re talking about.
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NIGHT WATCH


What’s an insomnia-plagued Manhattan matron to do when she catches sight of a dead body inside the abandoned building across the street from her elegant apartment but scream, scream, and scream some more … and then call the cops? And what’s a concerned husband to do when the police investigation turns up no corpse, no fingerprints, no sign of anyone’s having entered the neighboring flat but suggest that his apparently delusional wife seek psychiatric help? And what’s an audience to do while watching Lucille Fletcher’s Night Watch but sit back and enjoy this takeoff on Gaslight, one whose surprise twist ending I’m absolutely itching to reveal here … but won’t.
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THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO THOMAS JEFFERSON, CHARLES DICKENS AND COUNT LEO TOLSTOY: DISCORD

NOT RECOMMENDED

Three superb performances, a snazzy design package, a delightful opening sequence, and then a whole lot of speechifying add up to a less than compelling ninety minutes as the NoHo Arts Center presents the World Premiere engagement of Scott Carter’s The Gospel According To Thomas Jefferson, Charles Dickens And Count Leo Tolstoy: Discord.
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AN IDEAL HUSBAND


Classical theater fans impatient for the start of A Noise Within’s Spring 2014 season need head a mere five minutes east of ANW’s Pasadena digs to catch Sierra Madre Playhouse’s 2014 opener, an impeccably staged and acted revival of Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband.
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DAY TRADER


Expect the unexpected, and then some, in Eric Rudnick’s edgy, twist-filled Day Trader, thrillingly staged and terrifically acted in its World Premiere production at the Bootleg Theatre.
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TRUDY AND MAX IN LOVE


A pair of writers meet cute in a “writers’ room” only to fall impossibly in love in Zoe Kazan’s heartbreakingly funny Trudy And Max In Love, now getting its World Premiere at South Coast Repertory.
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