When I first heard that When Wrong Is Right, now playing at the Eclectic Company Theatre in Valley Village, CA, involved a dance marathon, my thoughts immediately went to the movie, They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? Indeed, this play and that film have a lot in common. They’re both set during the Great Depression, and both stories have an air of hopelessness and despair. When Wrong Is Right, however, uses those elements to weave a very different kind of story.
In its latest Main Stage performance, LA-based theatre company Theatre Unleashed (TU) presents a beautifully crafted production of John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men, illustrating humanity's continued struggle for connection, empathy, and compassion as we maneuver through life's experiences. Calling upon Steinbeck's classic tale of loneliness, hardship, and social stigma, Theatre Unleashed delivers a production that is poignant in its timeliness and necessary to our society's ongoing conversation of inclusion, understanding, and equality. Through Of Mice and Men, audiences will no doubt be in awe of the company's endless talent and creative energy while walking away with a renewed desire for embracing goodwill and sensitivity.
"What do you know about this mendacity thing? Hell! I could write a book on it! I could write a book on it and still not cover the subject. Think of all the lies I got to put up with!–Pretenses! Ain’t that mendacity? Having to pretend stuff you don’t think or feel or have any idea of?" This line from Tennessee Williams' Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, artfully encapsulates the quagmire with which we find ourselves in relationships, as a society, and - horrifyingly - within the political climate of our country: forced to survive within an unending battle of truth and lies, all for varying purposes, leaving us struggling to clarify fact from illusion - either finding our place within the world or succumbing to the madness it provokes. It is this exhausting battle for honesty that influences the characters of The Antaeus Theatre Company's production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, which recently inaugurated the company's new home at the Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center in Glendale, CA. In a powerful production that expertly examines the depths to which humans will augment, reshape, and blatantly disregard the truth to maintain their place in the world, avoid their fate, or willfully remain ignorant of its costs, Antaeus' Cat on a Hot Tin Roof deftly tackles one of Williams' most incredible masterpieces at a significant time in our history, when mendacity knows no bounds and threatens to be our undoing.
Each year, the winter holidays bring with them countless traditions and customs that help to make the season more memorable and festive. Likewise, the formation of new traditions can make the holidays that much brighter for generations to come. One such tradition that should find its way into your holiday activities is to attend the annual performances of Theatre Unleashed’s A Very Die Hard Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life: The Radio Play. The North Hollywood-based theatre company’s dynamic productions offer a wide range of raucous, good cheer and sincere warmheartedness, ensuring that there will surely be something for everyone to enjoy.