STAGE REVIEWS : Morgan Brittany Conquers 'Alamo'

You'd think that the power battle at the heart of Paul Zindel's "Ladies at the Alamo," at the Hidden Hills Theatre, was over a massive Texas estate or a huge Texas oil field. Instead, Zindel's "ladies" nearly tear their hair out over a modest Texas theater. Zindel of all people should know that theaters aren't where the power is.

The only real kick here is watching Morgan Brittany of "Dallas" fame pull out all the stops with a rip-snorting comic performance as the irreverent ally of Dede (an ever-solid Holgie Forrester), the theater's matron being attacked from all sides. Alas, director J.D. Reichelderfer's robotic staging and Claire Benedek's stolid take on Dede's greedy enemy prevent this show from being a guilty pleasure.

* "Ladies at the Alamo," Hidden Hills Theatre, 24549 Long Valley Road, Hidden Hills, Fridays-Saturdays, 8 p.m. Ends April 18. $10; (818) 992-7791. Running time: 2 hours.

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