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Los Angeles’ Center Theatre Group (CTG) announced its block party casting and lineup recently – Block Party: Celebrating Los Angeles Theatre.  According to a write-up at Playbill.com, CTG will revisit: Coeurage Theatre Company’s production of Failure: A Love Story, Fountain Theatre’s production of Citizen: An American Lyric, and Echo Theater Company’s Dry Land. All will be staged at the Kirk Douglas Theatre from April 14–May 21.

From Playbill:

“As we celebrate Center Theatre Group’s 50 years of creating theatre in Los Angeles, we want to turn the spotlight on some of the remarkable work being done on other stages,”

said Center Theatre Group’s artistic director, Michael Ritchie.

“Coeurage Theatre, Echo Theater and Fountain Theatre, as well as others throughout L.A., regularly produce excellent, boundary-pushing work and we’re so glad they are sharing some of that work with us.”

Playbill’s article continued:

Coeurage Theatre Company’s Failure: A Love Story by Philip Dawkins opens the celebration April 14–23. The piece is set in Chicago of the 1920s and focuses on the three Fail sisters. It’s a chronicle of their lives together and the man who fell in love with all of them. The cast features Joe Calarco, June Carryl, Cristina Gerla, Kristina Johnson, Margaret Katch, Denver Milord, Gregory Nabours, Theodore Perkins, Kurt Quinn, Brandon Ruiter, Nicole Shalhoub, Gina Torrecilla, and Brittney S. Wheeler.

The Fountain Theatre’s production of Citizen: An American Lyric (April 28–May 7) was adapted for the stage by Co-Artistic Director Stephen Sachs. The production, based on Claudia Rankine’s poetry, merges multiple art forms to meditate on the struggle against racism in America. The cast features Bernard K. Addison, Leith Burke, Tony Maggio, Simone Missick, Monnae Michaell, and Lisa Pescia. Directed by Shirley Jo Finney.

Echo Theater Company’s Dry Land by Ruby Spiegel is the last in the series of remounted shows, running May 14–21. Set in the locker room of a central Florida high school, it’s a hauntingly truthful portrait of hope, fear, abortion, and the strong bond between teenage girls. The cast features Daniel Hagen, Ben Horwitz, Connor Kelly-Eiding, Teagan Rose, Jenny Soo, Jacqueline Besson, and Alexandra Freeman, as well as USC School of Dramatic Arts students Francesca O’Hern, Bukola Ogunmola, Sidne Phillips, and Tessa Hope Slovis. Alana Dietze directs.

There are “pay what you can” performances for Failure, April 14; Citizen, April 28; and Dry Land, May 12.

For more information, visit www.CenterTheatreGroup.org.



A birthday message from writer/producer/director Stephen Sachs on April 1:

Deborah Lawlor and I founded the Fountain Theatre 27 years ago today. Launched on April Fools Day, the journey has been anything but foolish. For more than two decades, hundreds of artists have expertly and passionately performed their craft here and hundreds of thousands of patrons have shared in the magic of live intimate theatre. All of this happening in this cozy building on Fountain Avenue. My respect, admiration and gratitude to all the actors, designers, and production teams over the years who have made, and continue to make, the Fountain Theatre the success it is today, to our loyal audiences who travel with us on this glorious ride, our donors who make it possible, and our extraordinary Board of Directors who guide our way. And my love to our staff, most of us together for so many years, who work so hard, give so much, and care so deeply: Simon Levy, Scott Tuomey, James Bennett, Barbara Goodhill, Licia Jaccard, Lucy Pollak, Jose Lomeli, Marisela Hughes, Baltazar D. Gaytan, Nora King. Happy Birthday to this miracle on Fountain Avenue. Onward!

More theatre and Forever Flamenco at www.FountainTheatre.com.



The Compton rapper (or is he an MC?) released a video, ‘Humble,’ and a single, ‘The Heart Part 4,’ presumably from his upcoming album, last week.  Peeking from behind his cryptic Instagram message earlier – a simple, single Roman numeral IV – many believe it to be the lead-in for his anticipated fourth studio album. NPR’s Andrew Flanagan writes:

The song, less exploration of contrition on the part of Lamar than an instruction to his peers, picks up a thread NPR Music first examined following that album teaser: how the “best rapper alive” might explore the theme of God, religion and personal growth. (In the previous non-album single, “The Heart Part 4,” Lamar stuck to a similar narrative: “Tell ’em that God is comin’.”)Lamar opens with ‘Wicked or weakness, you got to see this.”And what do you say to God?

More from NPR Music on Kendrick Lamar:




Arinze Stanley:

The Nigerian artist works with graphite and charcoal pencils on large sheets of cartridge paper, creating larger-than-life portraits. According to Colossal (www.ThisIsColossal.com) writer Christopher Jobson,

Stanley can devote up to 200 hours on a single illustration, painstakingly deliberating over minute details to capture reflections of light, droplets of sweat, or tangles of hair. Where some hyperrealistic artists lean towards idealized perfection, Stanley instead focuses on pure realism, infusing portraits with a raw sense of emotion and drama. The scale of each piece, always slightly larger than life, adds an uncanny three-dimensional aspect.

Stanley recently exhibited work at Omenka Gallery and you can see more of his works (and pieces in progress) on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Harinzeyart/). (via ARTNAU, juxtapoz)

Article at Colossal.com: http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2017/03/arinze-stanley-hyperrealistic-portraits/

Video of work as it progresses:


Written by: Kato Cooks, RM Entertainment Contributor



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