With the curtain about to go up on summer theater, there will be a number of productions worth catching across the LA metro area.
Rogue Machine Offers Zoom Premiere
Rogue Machine presents Minnesota, written and performed by Justin Tanner, about a writer who pores through his diary entries in an attempt to discover what went wrong in his marriage. The play was inspired by Edith’s Diary, a novel by Patricia Highsmith about a bored woman who starts to create a fictitious diary of the life she wishes she were living.
The premiere is at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 26, with a virtual reception with the artists to follow. It will be available on demand through August 1. A Zoom link will be sent with reservation confirmation. Tickets are $20. To make a reservation, click here.
Outdoor Shakespeare at Theatricum Botanicum
Two beloved Shakespeare plays will welcome audiences back to Will Geer’s Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga Canyon this summer. The 2021 summer repertory season opens with Julius Caesar on July 10 at 7:30 p.m. (through Oct. 30) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream on July 11 at 4:00 p.m. (through Nov. 7).
Tickets to each performance range from $10–38.50, with premium seating available for $60; children 4 and under are free. Friday night performances are Pay-What-You-Will. For more information and reservations, click here.
Hybrid Hollywood Fringe Festival
This year, the Hollywood Fringe Festival will offer programs both virtual and in-person. IRL venues will be limited to those in the vicinity of Santa Monica and Vine. Tickets go on sale July 16. For more information, visit the Fringe’s website.
Echo Theater: Virtual in July, Live in September
Echo Theater will throw a virtual 25th birthday celebration, featuring 25 monologues by 25 playwrights, on Thursday, July 1 at 7:30 pm. The event will kick off the theater company’s in-person 2021-22 season of new plays at the Atwater Village Theatre from Sept. 11, 2021 through August. 2022. Here are the rest of the year’s offerings:
Sept. 11- Oct. 18. Poor Clare by Chiara Atik. Clare is just a regular noblewoman living in medieval Italy, trying out hairstyles and waiting to get married… until a man named Francis starts ranting in the courtyard. Based on the real story of St Clare of Assisi.
Sept. 23-Oct. 28. Ascension by Darryl G. Watson, an Echo-commissioned world premiere. This llve theater/online hybrid is an interactive, sci-fi mystery-thriller that strikes at the heart of our assumptions about faith, memory and reality.
March 12, 2022- April 18. Hooded, or Being Black for Dummies by Tearrance Arvelle Chisholm. Marquis and Tru are both 14-year-old black boys, but they exist in two totally different worlds in Baltimore.
July 16, 2022- Aug. 22. Continuity by Bess Wohl, West Coast premiere. On a soundstage in a desert in New Mexico meant to look like a melting ice sheet in Greenland, things are running way behind schedule on a big-budget thriller about climate change and eco-terrorism
All performances take place at Atwater Village Theatre, located at 3269 Casitas Ave. in Los Angeles. For more information, see EchoTheaterCompany.com. To purchase tickets to the virtual birthday celebration on July 1, click here.
Theatre 40: Back In-Person Starting in July
Theatre 40, on the campus of Beverly Hills High School, has also announced a summer show and its 55th season:
July 8-Aug. 1. Taming the Lion, by Jack Rushen, a world premiere. Louis B. Mayer and Irving Thalberg attempt to force silent film star William Haines to marry a woman by bringing in Haines’ best female friend, Joan Crawford. But Haines is devoted to his male lover, Jimmie Shields.
Sept. 16-Oct. 17. As Good as Gold by Marilyn Anderson, a world premiere. Three female screenwriters, frustrated by the sexist obstacles they encounter in the film industry, hire a man to be their front. He soon becomes the toast of Hollywood.
Nov. 18-Dec. 19. Good People by David Lindsay-Abaire In Southie, a Boston neighborhood, Margie Walsh has just been let go from yet another job and thinks an old fling who has made it out of Southie might be her ticket to a fresh new start—assuming he’s secure enough to face his humble beginnings.
Jan. 13-Feb. 13, 2022. Hilda’s Yard by Norm Foster, a west coast premiere. On a September morning in 1956, empty nesters Sam and Hilda Fluck’s son Gary loses his job, and daughter Janey leaves her husband.
March 17-April 17, 2022. Silent Sky by Lauren Gunderson. At the Harvard Observatory in the early 1900s, Henrietta Leavitt joins a group of women computers, charting the stars for a renowned astronomer who has no time for the women’s probing theories.
May 12-June 12, 2022. The Play’s the Thing, an English language adaptation by P.G. Wodehouse of a play by Ferenc Molnar. A young playwright overhears an actress that he is in love with talking passionately to another man…but his friend tries to persuade him she is rehearsing a play.
For more information about all Theatre 40 productions, click here.