SoCal theater listings, June 16-23: ‘Anne, A New Play,’ ‘Death of a Salesman’ and more


Capsule reviews are by Charles McNulty (C.M.), Philip Brandes (P.B.), F. Kathleen Foley (F.K.F.), Margaret Gray (M.G.) and Daryl H. Miller (D.H.M.).


Anne, A New Play The story of Anne Frank, the young Jewish girl who hid with her family from the Nazis in an Amsterdam attic during WWII, is given a different outcome in the U.S. premiere of Jessica Durlacher and Leon de Winter’s drama. Museum of Tolerance, 9786 W Pico Blvd., L.A. Sun., 7 p.m.; Mon., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 and 7 p.m.; ends July 22. $20-$240. (310) 772-2505.

Bloomsday 2019 Annual celebration of novelist James Joyce includes dramatic readings from his classic tome “Ulysses,” plus live Irish music and more. Hammer Museum, 10899 Wilshire Blvd., Westwood. Sun., 7:30 p.m. Free; tickets required. (310) 443-7000.

Dad The trials and tribulations of fatherhood are explored in this Father’s Day-themed immersive-theater experience; for ages 18 and up. Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. Sun.-Mon., next Sun., 8, 8:30, 9, 9:45 and 10 p.m.; ends July 1. $15. (818) 202-4120.


Hollywood Fringe Festival 2019 Tenth annual open-access performing-arts showcase continues at dozens of Hollywood venues. Now though June 30. Various prices. (323) 455-4585.

Book of Days Staged reading of Lanford Wilson’s drama about a shocking death in a small Missouri town. Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre. Mon., 7 p.m. $5 suggested donation. (626) 355-4318.

15th Annual Spring Reading Series Circle X Theatre presents a reading of Lisa Sanaye Dring’s “The Wicked One.” Atwater Village Theatre, 3269 Casitas Ave., L.A. Mon., 8 p.m. Free.

It Takes Three “Hairspray Live!” costar Garrett Clayton shares the stage with Ashley Argota and Desi Dennis-Dylan in this cabaret show. Catalina Bar & Grill, 6725 W. Sunset Blvd., Hollywood. Tue., 8:30 p.m. $25-$50; food and drink minimums apply. (866) 466-2210.

Mysterious Circumstances The world’s foremost scholar on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s famed fictional detective Sherlock Holmes is found dead in his London apartment in the world premiere of Michael Mitnicks’ mystery drama; Alan Tudyk stars. Geffen Playhouse, Gil Cates Theater, 10886 Le Conte Ave., Westwood. Wed.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 3 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 and 7 p.m.; ends July 14. $30-$120. (310) 208-5454.

Gypsy, Celebrating the Music of Stevie Nicks & Fleetwood Mac Rikki Lee Wilson and band salute the rock vocalist. Laguna Playhouse, 606 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach. Thu.-Fri., 7:30 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 7:30 p.m.; next Sun., 1 p.m. $56-$71. (949) 497-2787.


Henry V Shakespeare by the Sea presents a locally touring production of the Bard’s historical drama about the heroic English king. Point Fermin Park, 807 Paseo del Mar, San Pedro; other SoCal venues. Thu.-Sat., 8 p.m.; through Aug. 16. Free; donations accepted.

The Q Story Stream Storytellers explore the LGBTQ experience. Art Share L.A., 801 E. 1st St., L.A. Thu., 8 p.m. $15.

Casa Valentina Heterosexual men who like to dress and act like women gather at a secret Catskills resort in the 1960s in Harvey Fierstein’s comedy-drama; contains mature themes; for ages 16 and up. Santa Paula Theater Center’s Main Stage, 125 S. 7th St., Santa Paula. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2:30 p.m.; ends July 28. $22, $24.

Cosmic Slap Vol. 2 Celebration of classic funk and rock with drag artist Kelly Mantle and others. The Cavern Club @ Casita Del Campo, 1920 Hyperion Ave., L.A. Fri.-Sat., 9 p.m. $25. (800) 838-3006.

Death of a Salesman Rob Morrow stars in Arthur Miller’s classic American drama about a family man struggling for success and respect. Ruskin Group Theatre, 3000 Airport Ave., Santa Monica. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 2 p.m.; ends Aug. 4. $25-$35. (310) 397-3244.

Long Beach Playhouse Radio Hour Annual variety show/fundraiser. Offices of Keesal, Young & Logan, 400 Oceangate, Long Beach. Fri., 6 p.m. $60 and up. (562) 494-1014.


Miss America’s Ugly Daughter: Bess Myerson & Me Writer-performer Barra Grant recalls her relationship with her famous mother. Edgemar Center for the Arts, 2437 Main St., Santa Monica. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; ends Aug 4. $20, $40. (323) 285-2078.

Point of Extinction Sight-impaired actors from Theatre by the Blind are joined by musicians on the autism spectrum from Rex and Friends for this post-apocalyptic musical fable featuring live stage illusions. The Blue Door, 9617 Venice Blvd., Culver City. Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 3 p.m.; ends July 7. $15, $20.

Respite, Reprieve and Healing: An Evening of Cleansing With Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors and visual artist Foremost. Highways Performance Space, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica. Fri.-Sat., 8:30 p.m. $15, $20.

Urban Death for Kidz! Family-friendly version of the long-running immersive horror-theater experience. Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd. North Hollywood. Fri., 8:30 p.m.; Sat., 1 p.m; ends July 13. $15. (818) 202-4120.

An Enemy of the People A new update of Ibsen’s classic drama about a doctor who speaks truth to power sets the action in a small South Carolina town in the 1980s. Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum, 1419 N. Topanga Canyon Blvd., Topanga. Sat., 8 p.m.; ends Sept. 2. $10-$42; 4 and under, free. (310) 455-3723.

As You Like It A young woman banished from court goes on the lam disguised as a man in Shakespeare’s romantic comedy. The Old Globe, San Diego, 1363 Old Globe Way, San Diego. Sat.-next Sun., 8 p.m.; ends July 21. $30 and up. (619) 234-5623.


In the House of Cohen: Songs of Leonard Cohen Former Cohen backing vocalist Perla Batalla shares songs and stories. The Sorting Room, Lovelace Studio Theater, Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills. Sat., 7 p.m. $25-$45. (310) 746-4000.

Secrets and Illusions Illusionist Ivan Amodei performs in this new stage show. The Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale. Sat., 7:30 p.m. $35-$85. (Also in Irvine, June 30)

Spirit: Story, Song & Spirit Benefiting Pico Union Project Celebration of religious and cultural inclusion features live music, spoken-word and more. Pico Union Project, 1153 Valencia St., L.A. Sat., 8 p.m. $50 and up.

Wait Until Dark A young blind woman is menaced by crooks in Frederick Knott’s classic thriller. Loft Ensemble, 11031 Camarillo St., North Hollywood. Sat., 8 p.m.; next Sun., 7 p.m.; ends July 28. $10, $20. (818) 452-3153.

L.A. Noir UnScripted Impro Theatre improvises a full-length play inspired by classic film noir. The Sorting Room, Lovelace Studio Theater, Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills. Next Sun., 7 p.m. $15-$35. (310) 746-4000.

Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival Four female writer-performers offer excerpts from larger pieces. Ivy Substation, 9070 Venice Blvd., Culver City. Next Sun., 7 p.m. $25, $30. (818) 760-0408.


Critics’ Choices

Boxing Lessons John Bunzel has always specialized in the outrageous, but this audaciously quirky play about a family that gathers to sort through a dead dad’s hoarder’s trove goes so over the top that it’s a watershed for the playwright. “Lessons” isn’t a perfect play by any means, but it is enormous fun, and the fine cast navigates the wild plot twists like kids on a carnival ride. Frequent collaborators since their Juilliard days, Bunzel and director Jack Stehlin are obviously enjoying themselves immensely. And so are we. (F.K.F.) The New American Theatre, 1312 N. Wilton Pl., Hollywood. Sun., next Sun., 3 p.m.; Sat., 8 p.m.; ends June 30. $15, $35. (310) 424-2980.

Daniel’s Husband This absorbing drama by Michael McKeever, which was a hit off-Broadway, explores the debate on same-sex marriage from a less obvious angle. Set in the “perfectly appointed” home of a gay couple, the play examines the conflict between Daniel and Mitchell, committed partners in their 40s who have polarized views on holy matrimony. As gleaming as a coffee table book, what begins as a contemporary gay comedy takes an unexpected turn that can’t be revealed, but it changes the stakes of the marriage debate and turns comedy into serious drama. Gaining strength from the intimacy of the Fountain Theatre and the general excellence of the production, “Daniel’s Husband” begins in laughter, culminates in tears and leaves off in contemplation of the dangers in putting off for another day what matters most. (C.M.) The Fountain Theatre, 5060 Fountain Ave., L.A. Sun., next Sun., 2 p.m.; Mon., Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 and 8 p.m.; ends July 28. $5-$50. (323) 663-1525.

The End of Beauty Notions of beauty propel a fateful dinner get-together in a new play by L.A. writer Cory Hinkle. Conversation among married professors and their guest, a former student who’s become a famous painter, might hinge on art, but the play’s actual subject is relationships. Hinkle’s evocative language and artful metaphor are a meal unto themselves. (D.H.M.) Playwrights’ Arena, Atwater Village Theatre, 3269 Casitas Ave., L.A. Ends Mon., 8 p.m. $30, $40; discounts available. (800) 838-3006.

Happy Days Dianne Wiest is riveting as a woman who chatters away while buried up to her waist in a dirt mound in Samuel Beckett’s 1961 classic of absurdist theater. The metaphors hint at mortality. Wiest delivers them with nuance and humor, the merest shift of her eyes or inflection of her voice revealing unexpected layers. (D.H.M.) Mark Taper Forum, 135 N. Grand Ave., L.A. Sun., 1 and 6:30 p.m.; Tue.-Fri., 8 p.m., Sat., 2:30 and 8 p.m.; next Sun., 6:30 p.m.; ends June 30. $32-$115. (213) 628-2772.

Julia Sweeney: Older and Wider After spending 10 years in Chicago raising her daughter, Julia Sweeney returns to the local scene with this intensely personal, riotously funny solo show. Unguarded, uncensored, never holding back on her opinions about politics and religion, Sweeney mines comic gold from the ordinary — once again proving she is one of the most talented monologists of her generation. (F.K.F) Largo at the Coronet, 366 N. La Cienega Blvd., L.A. Mon., 8 p.m. $40. (310) 855-0350.

Moby Dick — Rehearsed Director Ellen Geer and a cast of 19 imaginatively bring to life Orson Welles’ 1955 adaptation of Herman Melville’s philosophical whaling novel, constructing the Pequod of little more than a bit of rope and sending it into the rolling Atlantic. The ghostly title cetacean isn’t physically manifested, but we see it nevertheless in the wonder and terror in the actors’ eyes. (D.H.M.) Sat., 4 p.m.; ends Sept. 29. $10-$42; 4 and under, free. (310) 455-3723.