By Catherine Wagley
By Channing Sargent
By L.A. Weekly critics
By Amanda Lewis
By Catherine Wagley
By Carol Cheh
By Keegan Hamilton
By Bill Raden
THE GINGERBREAD LADY Neil Simon’s dramatic comedy about a post-rehab cabaret singer. SIERRA MADRE PLAYHOUSE, 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre; perfs Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 p.m.; thru Sept. 22. (626) 256-3809.
Inside OutDillon Street presents one-acts by Mark Harvey Levine and Ivan Borodin. WHITMORE-LINDLEY THEATRE CENTER, 11006 Magnolia Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m.; thru Sept. 16. (323) 882-1268 or www.plays411.com/insideout.
KING OF THE CITY: An Evening With Al Capone Robert Gallo’s one-man show. LONNY CHAPMAN GROUP REPERTORY THEATRE, 10900 Burbank Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Sat., 2 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m.; thru Sept. 22. (818) 700-4878 or www.lcgrt.com.
GO LUCY & THE WOLF See New Reviews.
MURDER AT THE HOLLOW Agatha Christie’s thriller about a movie star living in a country village. NOHO LONDON MUSIC HALL, 10620 Magnolia Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru Sept. 2. (818) 762-7883.
NEW TRADITIONS Collaborative work about heritage and ancestry by the hereandnow theater company. ARMORY NORTHWEST, 965 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena; Sat., 8 p.m.; thru Sept. 1. (626) 792-5101.
GO PARADISE LOST: Shadows and WingsEric Whitacre and David Noroña’s musical creates a postapocalyptic world in which attractive young angels who sing, dance and practice martial arts live in a kind of Mad Max Thunderdome, where they await the return of the warrior parents who left them there years ago. Ably directed by Michael Michetti, this fantasy incorporates anime, Eastern theater techniques and big-ass Broadway numbers — and electronica! Despite an archly formulaic plot, the show somehow soars above its own romantic bombast. THEATER @ BOSTON COURT, 70 N. Mentor Ave., Pasadena; Wed.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru Sept. 2. (626) 683-6883. (SM)
THE TENDER TRAP Max Shulman and Robert Paul Smith’s revival of a classic Broadway show. STAGE DOOR THEATRE, 28311 Agoura Rd., Agoura Hills; perfs Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun. 2 p.m.; thru Sept. 15. (818) 889-5209.
GO TITUS ANDRONICUS If you thought today’s slasher movies were gruesome, check out this rarely performed early Shakespeare classic, generally regarded as historically fascinating literary crap. Natasha Vargas-Cooper’s sturdy direction comes with requisite dark humor applied to this loud, long gore fest relocated from ancient Rome to 1930s Italy under the fascists. While the spray-on gray in 20-something Charles Pasternak’s hair does not convince one of Titus’ maturity, the stentorian tone of his line deliveries does. Porters of Hell’s Gate at the WHITMORE-LINDLEY THEATER CENTER, 11006 Magnolia Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 4 p.m.; thru Sept. 9. (310) 497-2884. (MH)
WAIT UNTIL DARK Frederick Knott’s thriller about the search for a heroin-laced doll. RAVEN PLAYHOUSE, 5233 Lankershim Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m.; thru Sept. 2. (818) 960-5770 or www.ravenplayhouse.com.
ALL ABOARD: The U.S.S. Friendship An interactive murder mystery set on the high seas, written by Evelyn Rudie and directed by Serena Dolinsky. SANTA MONICA PLAYHOUSE, 1211 Fourth St., Santa Monica; Fri.-Sat., Aug. 31-Sept. 1, 7:30 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., Sept. 1-2, 2 p.m. (310) 394-9779 or www.santamonicaplayhouse.com.
GO GULLIVER’S TRAVELS Joshua Zeller’s bawdy, scatological adaptation of Jonathan Swift’s political satire rockets by, yet loses none of its Augustan bite. Lemuel Gulliver (the likable Keythe Farley) is the ship surgeon who voyages to four “remote nations of the world,” finding, along the way, increasingly unflattering reflections of contemporary human behavior. Zeller’s telling of the classic only rarely strains to draw direct parallels with the 21st century, but by evening’s end, we don’t feel some sense of a larger story. P. Adam Walsh directs the enthusiastic ensemble. Actors’ Gang at the IVY SUBSTATION THEATER, 9070 Venice Blvd., Culver City; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Sept. 8. (310) 838-4264. (SM)
GO THE HASTY HEART See Theater Pick.
GO HOW THE OTHER HALF LOVES In Alan Ayckbourn’s 1969 romantic comedy, the action takes place in two separate homes. Characters move around the different-but-same locations in a collision of two dinner parties occurring in parallel dimensions. Ayckbourn’s comedy is as mannered as a play by Oscar Wilde, with the humor arising from the horny, uptight characters straining to avoid embarrassment or argument. Although director Barry Phillips’ production elegantly conveys the low farce and heartbreak of Ayckbourn’s bittersweet comic style, the play would benefit from more vigorous pacing. ODYSSEY THEATRE ENSEMBLE, 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., W.L.A.; Wed.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru Sept. 2. (310) 477-2055. (PB)
KILLER JOE Acclaimed playwright Tracy Letts touches audiences ... inappropriately, with a voyeuristic journey that pushes the limits of decency and comedy. GARAGE THEATRE, 251 E. Seventh St., Long Beach; perfs Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; thru Sept. 8. (866) 811-4111 or www.garagetheatre.org.
LIFE . . . DEATH . . . AND ENTERTAINMENT Susan Damante’s solo show about overcoming adversity. SANTA MONICA PLAYHOUSE, 1211 Fourth St., Santa Monica; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; thru Sept. 1. (310) 394-9779.
GO MODERN ORTHODOX hangs on Michael Goldstrom’s blisteringly funny portrayal of an Orthodox Jewish Tartuffe, Hershel Klein, in Daniel Goldfarb’s schematic comedy. Diamond merchant Hershel bursts into Ben (Ross Benjamin) and girlfriend Hannah’s (Robyn Cohen) life, so that the unobservant couple suddenly find themselves in the middle of The Dybbuk. The comedy’s glee and cultural satire make up for its lapses in credulity, and Howard Teichman directs the action with the perfect interplay of farce and pathos. Theatre 40, on the campus of BEVERLY HILLS HIGH SCHOOL, 241 Moreno Drive (enter on Olympic due to road construction); in repertory, call for schedule; thru Sept. 9. (310) 364-0535. (SLM)