LI’L ABNER

They don’t write shows like Li’l Abner anymore, and not just because the 1956 musical adaptation of the Al Capp comic strip pretty much defines political incorrectness. With its Original Broadway Cast of fifty-four, only schools and community playhouses could possibly hope to produce this musical behemoth in 2016—which makes it a perfect choice for the theatrical genre known as the Concert Staged Reading, proof positive of which was evidenced at Musical Theatre West’s Daisy Maezing one-night-only Reiner Reading Series latest.
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DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS

Few 21st-century musicals have put the Comedy back into Musical Comedy like Best Musical Tony nominee Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, at long last getting the big-stage professional production SoCal musical theater lovers have been waiting for since its National Tour stopped at the Pantages a full decade ago, and what a production it is thanks to the Musical Comedy Pros at Musical Theatre West.
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VANYA AND SONIA AND MASHA AND SPIKE

Christopher Durang’s Vanya And Sonia And Masha And Spike has arrived at International City Theatre, the delectable 2013 Best Play Tony winner proving one of early summer’s yummiest treats.
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ON THE TWENTIETH CENTURY

The dynamite performances delivered by Chris Warren Gilbert and Jill Van Velzer in Musical Theatre West’s Reiner Reading Series concert staged reading of the 1978 Tony winner On The Twentieth Century are just two of the many reasons for someone, anyone, to give the Cy Coleman, Betty Comden, and Adolph Green gem the fully-staged SoCal revival it so richly deserves.
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A WALK IN THE WOODS

The Cold War arms race provides a provocative backdrop for the Pulitzer Prize finalist A Walk In The Woods, Lee Blessing’s dramedic look at the odd-couple friendship that develops in the late 1980s between a veteran Soviet arms negotiator and his younger American counterpart, now getting a crowd-pleasing revival at Long Beach’s International City Theatre.
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SISTER ACT

The convent is alive with the sound of disco as on-the-lam nightclub chantoozie Deloris Van Cartier teaches the nuns of The Holy Order of the Little Sisters of Our Mother of Perpetual Faith a lesson in Booty-Shaking For The Lord in Sister Act, the most all-around entertaining Musical Theatre West premiere in years.
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WEST SIDE STORY

The musical many consider the greatest in Broadway history gets a magnificent big-stage production, the kind most West Side Story lovers can only dream of, as Musical Theatre West debuts their 59th-anniversary revival of the Arthur Laurents-Leonard Bernstein-Stephen Sondheim-Jerome Robbins classic.
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CLOSER THAN EVER

Over two dozen simply gorgeous songs by Maltby and Shire, four sensational triple-threat performances, and inspired direction by Todd Nielsen add up to yet another triumph for Long Beach’s International City Theatre in their fabulous season-opening revival of the off-Broadway classic Closer Than Ever.
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