SoCal theater listings, Feb. 3-10: The MLK drama ‘Mountaintop,’ Davis Gaines in ‘Oliver!’ and more

Gilbert Glenn Brown portrays Martin Luther King Jr. in the drama “Mountaintop.” With Carolyn Ratteray.
(Lorenzo Hodges)

Capsule reviews are by Philip Brandes (P.B.) and Daryl H. Miller (D.H.M.).


All About Valentina The L.A. native, drag artist and “RuPaul’s Drag Race” regular sings, lip-syncs, dances and takes audience questions. Luckman Fine Arts Complex, Cal State L.A., 5151 State University Drive, L.A. Sun., 7 p.m. $29-$49. (323) 343-6600.

Boogie Sundays All-new sketches and improv. Groundlings Theatre, 7307 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood. Sun., next Sun., 7:30 p.m.; ends April 27. $16. (323) 934-4747.

A Broadway Romance David Burnham (“Light in the Piazza”) and Tami Tappan Damiano (“Miss Saigon”) share the stage in this entry in Musical Theatre West’s “Broadway in Concert” series. Beverly O’Neill Theatre, Long Beach Convention Center, 300 E. Ocean Blvd., Long Beach. Sun., 7 p.m. $35-$75. (562) 856-1999.


A Lovely Lineage Kristin Towers-Rowles celebrates her showbiz family; part of “Portraits of Humanity 2, a Solo Series.” Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, L.A. Sun., 7 p.m. $25. (323) 851-7977.

Catch-22 Staged reading of Joseph Heller’s stage adaptation of his novel about a WWII bomber pilot. Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. Sierra Madre, Blvd., Sierra Madre. Mon., 7 p.m. Free; donations appreciated. (626) 355-4318.

The Living Room Series Staged reading of Mimi Kim’s “After the Fall.” The Blank’s 2nd Stage Theatre, 6500 Santa Monica Blvd., Hollywood. Mon., 8 p.m. $15 suggested donation. (323) 661-9827.

Alumni Show Groundlings alums including Phil LaMarr, Jon Lovitz and Mindy Sterling perform in this benefit show. Groundlings Theatre, 7307 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood. Tue., 8 p.m. $20. (323) 934-4747.


Come From Away An airport in a small town in Canada plays host to travelers from around the world who were diverted from their various destinations by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in this Tony-winning musical. Segerstrom Hall, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. Tue.-Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 7:30 p.m.; next Sun., 1 and 6:30 p.m.; ends Feb. 17. $29 and up. (714) 556-2787.

Julia Sweeney: Older and Wider The “Saturday Night Live” alum shares her thoughts on parenting, religion, feminism, cancer and more in this solo show. Geffen Playhouse, Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood. Tue.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 p.m. $30-$60. (310) 208-5454.

Witness: Uganda A gay American volunteer struggles against injustice while helping to build a school in the African nation in this fact-based musical. Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Lovelace Studio Theater, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills. Tue.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2:30 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2:30 and 7:30 p.m.; ends Feb. 24. $50. (310) 746-4000.

Mouthpiece Quote Unquote Collective offers this musical fable about a woman trying to find her own voice following a personal loss; presented by CAP UCLA. Royce Hall Rehearsal Room, UCLA, 10745 Dickson Court, Westwood. Wed.-Sat., 8 p.m. $49. (310) 825-2101.


Man of God Four members of a Korean Christian girls’ youth group make a shocking discovery in their Bangkok hotel room while on a religious mission in Thailand in the world premiere of Anna Moench’s darkly-comic thriller. East West Players, David Henry Hwang Theater, 120 Judge John Aiso St., L.A. Thu.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 p.m.; ends Feb 24. $25-$50. (213) 625-7000.

Vincent, La Vraie Histoire de Van Gogh (Vincent, The Real Story of Van Gogh) Leonard Nimoy’s bio-drama based on the Dutch artist’s correspondence with his brother Theo; in French with English subtitles. Théâtre Raymond Kabbaz, Le Lycée Français de Los Angeles, 10361 W. Pico Blvd., L.A. Thu., 7:30 p.m. $15, $30. (310) 286-0553.

Anna Karenina Helen Edmundson’s adaptation of Tolstoy’s tragic tale of love, marriage and infidelity; for ages 13 and up. Actors Co-op, Crossley Theatre, 1760 N. Gower St., Hollywood. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2:30 p.m.; ends March 17. $25-$35. (323) 462-8460.

Church Basement Ladies Musical comedy about growing up Lutheran in the Midwest in the 1960s. Glendale Centre Theatre, 324 N. Orange St., Glendale. Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 7:30 p.m.; next Sun., 2 p.m.; ends March 9. $20-$34. (818) 244-8481.


Groundlings & Groundlings, Attorneys at Law All-new sketch show. Groundlings Theatre, 7307 Melrose Ave., West Hollywood. Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 8 and 10 p.m.; ends April 20. $20; opening night only, $50. (323) 934-4747.

Miss America’s Ugly Daughter: Bess Myerson & Me Writer-performer Barra Grant recalls her relationship with her famous mother in this two-character drama. Greenway Court Theatre, 544 N. Fairfax Ave., L.A. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 6 p.m.; ends March 24. $20-$40; mother-daughter Mondays: buy one, get one free, $25. (323) 285-2078.

The Mountaintop Katori Hall’s drama imagines the final night in the life of slain civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Garry Marshall Theatre, 4252 W. Riverside Drive, Burbank. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 p.m.; ends March 10. $25-$65. (818) 955-8101.

My Connie Valentine 2 Drag artist John Cantwell, a.k.a. Love, Connie, and company celebrate pop culture with special guest, Kids in the Hall member Scott Thompson as Buddy Cole. The Cavern Club @ Casita Del Campo, 1920 Hyperion Ave., L.A. Fri.-Sat., 9 p.m.; next Sun., 7 p.m.; ends Feb. 17. $25. (800) 838-3006.


1776 The Musical John Adams tries to persuade the other Founding Fathers to sign the Declaration of Independence in Sherman Edwards’ Tony-winning tale. Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts, 18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge. Fri., 8 p.m.; Say., 2 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 p.m. $44 and up. (818) 677-3000.

Airport Encounters: Brace for Impact! Neo Ensemble Theatre presents a collection of vignettes set in an airport. The Lounge Theatre, 6201 Santa Monica Blvd., L.A. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 p.m.; ends Feb. 24. $15, $20.

A Bowie Celebration — The David Bowie Alumni Tour Tribute show salutes the late rock-music icon. Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts, 18000 Park Plaza Drive, Cerritos. Sat., 8 p.m. $80-$90. (562) 916-8500.

Death of a Salesman Ensemble Theatre Company stages Arthur Miller’s classic American drama. The New Vic, 33 W. Victoria St., Santa Barbara. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 and 7 p.m.; ends Feb. 24. $60-$75. (805) 965-5400.


Frida: Stroke of Passion Odalys Nanin wrote and stars in this drama about the last days of the beloved Mexican painter Frida Kahlo; presented by Macha Theatre. Casa 0101 Theater, 2102 E. 1st St., Boyle Heights. Sat., 8 p.m.; ends Feb. 23. $20. (323) 263-7684.

Lizzie, The Musical Regional premiere of this 1970s-styled punk-rock opera about the alleged 19th-century axe-murderess; contains mature themes, adult language. Chance Theater, 5522 E. La Palma Ave., Anaheim. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 p.m.; ends March 3. $35-$49; discounts available. (888) 455-4212.

Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Rock Experience Mo Willems’ kid-friendly musical about a rodent who’d rather wear clothes. South Coast Repertory, Julianne Argyros Stage, 655 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa. Sat., 11 a.m., 2 and 4:30 p.m.; next Sun., 2 and 4:30 p.m.; ends Feb. 17. $34, $40. (714) 708-5555

Oliver! Broadway’s Davis Gaines stars as Fagin in Musical Theatre West’s staging of Lionel Bart’s Tony-winning musical based on Dickens’ Victorian-era novel “Oliver Twist.” Carpenter Performing Arts Center, 6200 Atherton St., Long Beach. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 1 p.m.; ends Feb. 24. $20 and up. (562) 856-1999.


Rabbit Hole 2Cents Theatre Group presents a site-specific staging of David Lindsay-Abaire’s Pulitzer Prize-winning drama about a couple grieving a tragic loss. Lake Street Community Center, 1227 N. Lake St., Silver Lake. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 7 p.m.; ends March 10. $20. (800) 838-3006.

The Servant of Two Masters Parson’s Nose Theater artistic director Lance Davis updates Carlo Goldoni’s 18th-century Italian farce. The Parson’s Theater, 95 N. Marengo Ave., Pasadena. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 p.m.; ends March 10. $20-$35. (626) 403-7667.

Sleepless: The Music Center After Hours — Quinceañera Reimagined Immersive event celebrating the Latinx coming-of-age tradition features live music, DJ sets, dance, art installations and more. Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, 135 N. Grand Ave., L.A. Sat., 11:30 p.m. to 3 a.m. $20, $30. (213) 972-0711.

Antony & Cleopatra Harry Hamlin and Joely Fisher star in a staged reading of Shakespeare’s historical romance. The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles, 1238 W. 1st St., L.A. Next Sun., 3 p.m. $30, $49. (213) 481-2273.


Doktor Kaboom and the Wheel of Science Science-themed stage show for ages 8-12. Irvine Barclay Theatre, 4242 Campus Drive, Irvine. Next Sun., 2 p.m. $20, $25. (949) 854-4646.

Minnie’s Boys Musical Theatre Guild presents a concert-staged reading of this musical about comedy legends the Marx Brothers. The Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale. Next Sun., 7 p.m. $45. (818) 243-2539.

Ragtime: The Musical Stage adaptation of E.L. Doctorow’s novel about life in early 20th-century America, with book by Terrence McNally and music by Stephen Flaherty. The Pasadena Playhouse, 39 S. El Molino Ave., Pasadena. Next Sun., 5 p.m.; ends March 3. $25 and up. 626-356-7529.

Red Hen Press: The Fool in the World Performance piece combines poetry, music and art. The Edye at the Broad Stage, 1310 11th St., Santa Monica. Next Sun., 2 p.m. $35 and up. (310) 434-3200.


Story Pirates Musical sketch comedy show geared especially for toddlers; for ages 5 and up. Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Promenade Terrace, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills. Next Sun., 11 a.m. Free. (310) 746-4000.

Critics’ Choices

Hir Taylor Mac’s family drama doubles as a depiction of America in the midst of reassessing itself. Director Bart DeLorenzo and his four actors fearlessly propel this humorous/horrific tale of a young soldier who returns home to find it changed: His domineering, abusive father is debilitated; his mother is in charge; and his sibling is transitioning genders. Patriarchy is in decline, but Mac isn’t delivering liberal claptrap, instead pushing back against beliefs of all kinds in this age of antagonism. (D.H.M.) Odyssey Theatre, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West L.A. Sun., next Sun., 2 p.m.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; ends March 17. $32-$37. (310) 477-2055.

Smart Love Fine performances and a strikingly original premise elevate a witty but at times convoluted comedy about romantic possibilities afforded by the brave new world of ever-accelerating technology. (P.B) Pacific Resident Theatre, 703 Venice Blvd., Venice. Sun., next Sun., 3 p.m.; Thu.-Sat., 8 p.m.; ends Feb. 24. $25-$34; discounts available. (310) 822-8392.