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Grounded Come From Away Flies High on First National Tour

By Patrick Hurley

In today’s volatile and divisive political climate, where lines are being drawn separating ideology from humanity, it’s heartening to see a work of art that not only demonstrates how small the divide actually is between all of us, but also shows how kindness and benevolence, charity and goodwill are indeed still a thing to which we can all aspire.  Come From Away, on its first National Tour, playing now at the Ahmanson Theatre, is a high spirited, evocative and fascinating true story about the capacity of human kindness and the indelible spirit that we all long for in times of crisis. (more…)

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Beckett Demonstrates Longevity In Double Bill With Weaker O’Neill

By Patrick Hurley Hughie and Krapp’s Last Tape, playing now at the Geffen Playhouse, prove to be a contrasting but thematically compatible pair starring two time Tony Award Winning actor Brian Dennehy in a double bill that showcases not only his gravitas as an actor, but the disappointments and disillusionments of life as perceived by … Continue reading

Game is Highly Charged and Relevant

By Patrick Hurley

Agitprop theatre is a highly politicized liberal leaning style that came out of Europe in the 1920s. The plays of Bertolt Brecht are still the most notable examples of this particular movement.  With his sudden shifts and lack of theatricality, Brecht wanted the audience to be witness to how theatre was made, to the artificiality of it so they could ignore everything but the message of the play. The Bitter Game, written and performed by Keith A. Wallace, playing for a limited engagement on the terrace of the Wallis Annenberg in Beverly Hills is an exciting reminder that highly charged political pieces of art have the ability to stir and surprise while inciting you to some kind of political action. (more…)

Dear Evan Hansen Flashes its Way into History

By Patrick Hurley Stories of teenage turmoil have been being told for centuries. The misunderstood youth trope nearly always serves a narrative wherein a moral dilemma serves as edification to an ignorant, older audience. Shakespeare killed his young star-crossed lovers. The adults in their lives had driven them to suicide because of their inability to … Continue reading

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern is Dead on!

By Patrick Hurley Free will and the sheer randomness of the universe as two men wander a theatrical wilderness in desperate search for understanding makes Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, playing now at A Noise Within, a thought-provoking modern masterpiece that is as deeply profound as it is hilarious.

Nikki Corona Proves Not Only Untranslatable, But Un-Developed and Nearly Un-Watchable.

By Patrick Hurley There doesn’t seem to be a good place to start to discuss the inscrutable and confounding play that is Jose Rivera’s The Untranslatable Secrets of Nikki Corona, playing now at the Geffen playhouse.  

‘Sweat’ Still The Standard

By Patrick Hurley The lingering racial tensions of an ever shifting America takes center stage in Sweat, the 2017 Pulitzer-Prize winning play by Lynn Nottage, playing now at the Mark Taper Forum. 

School Girls Will be Mean Girls

By Patrick Hurley Borrowing tropes and devices from teen clique films such as Mean Girls and Heathers, School Girls or, The African Mean Girls Play, playing now at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, is a story of assimilation as much as it is a comedy about the universal struggle of fitting in.

Shakespeare’s Measure Proves All Too Timely

By Patrick Hurley Method and Madness theatre Co. is presenting Measure for Measure, at the Mid-City Arts Center. The staging of this lesser produced Shakespeare Comedy as directed by Margaret Starbuck is in a cabaret-style.  The seating is meant to immerse the audience into the action as it happens around us. And while the staging … Continue reading

More of the Same: An Examination of Relevance in Contemporary Theatre.

By Patrick Hurley I set out to write a review of The Geffen Playhouse’s world premiere production of Our Very Own Carlin McCullough, written by Amanda Peet, who is probably known to most from her film and television work as an actress. I grappled with the same questions that accompany most of my theatre experiences … Continue reading

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