A CINDERELLA CHRISTMAS

There’s only one place in town where you can see Disney Channel teen idols, a ‘70s/‘80s TV diva, ugly stepsisters in drag, a gender-bending fairy godmother, a pygmy horse, magic effects and transformations galore, and some terrifically danced production numbers; hear over a dozen Top-40 hits (and more one-liners than a Henny Youngman set); and perhaps most excitingly, get to cheer the heroes and boo the villains—and that’s at the Pasadena Playhouse, once again treating L.A. audiences to the British tradition known as “Panto” with this year’s A Cinderella Christmas, the fifth annual Panto At The Playhouse.
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THE MAIDS

Stunning performances and a striking production design make A Noise Within’s revival of Jean Genet’s The Maids a must for fans of mid-20th-century French experimental theater. Those less fond of avant-garde fare will find Genet’s talky tale of twisted sisters a considerably tougher go.
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THE IMAGINARY INVALID

Whether you’re a Mel Brooks/Monty Python fan who would never even consider setting foot in “California’s Home For The Classics” or a diehard Molière aficionado who can’t possibly imagine passing up a fresh new adaptation of the 343-year-old Le Malade Imaginaire, Constance Congdon’s 21st-century take on The Imaginary Invalid treats A Noise Within audiences to a laughfest so delectably funny (and playfully raunchy), it would do Mel or Monty proud.
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WICKED LIT 2016

It wouldn’t be October in L.A. without the annual return of the creepy, kooky, mysterious, and spooky theatrical event that turns Altadena’s Mountain View Mausoleum And Cemetery into the chills-and-chuckles-packed trilogy of terror and suspense better known as Wicked Lit.
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THE FANTASTICKS

The world’s longest-running musical (aka The Fantasticks) makes for a crowd-pleasing Pasadena Playhouse season opener thanks not only to its time-tested appeal but also to an excitingly contemporary director’s concept and cast choices that celebrate diversity in the most refreshing of ways.
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ARCADIA

Tom Stoppard’s Arcadia can prove quite a head-scratcher when not done right. Fortunately, despite brain-teasing elements that can challenge even the sharpest intellect, all-around superb acting and incisive direction make A Noise Within’s 25th-season opener as entertaining and accessible as Arcadias get.
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THE GOLDEN DRAGON

RECOMMENDED
Five exceptional performances, Michael Michetti’s highly imaginative direction, and a breathtaking Theatre @ Boston Court production design add up to reason enough to check out Roland Schimmelpfennig’s The Golden Dragon despite a script more pretentious than profound.
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SIX CHARACTERS IN SEARCH OF AN AUTHOR

A Noise Within revives Luigi Pirandello’s 1921 absurdist classic Six Characters In Search Of An Author with enough exciting theatricality to largely overcome the dated melodrama of the play-within-a-play that its sextet of author-seeking Characters are hoping to see performed.
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