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 GAY MAFIA: NU-QUEER WINTER See New Reviews.
GO HAIR Director-choreographer Bo Crowell could have presented Gerome Ragni, James Rado and Galt MacDermot’s Summer of Love rock & roll gem as a period piece. Instead, he cannily opts for a spiritual take that gives the material an unexpected timelessness. In this 40th-anniversary production, this is Hair by way of Burning Man. Christian Nesmith’s musical direction is perfect — and Crowell’s free-spirited choreography contains an intricate grace. The ensemble’s heartfelt renditions of “Aquarius” and “Let the Sun Shine In” induce the show’s bona fide chills. MET THEATRE, 1089 Oxford Ave., Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Dec. 30. (323) 960-4442. (PB)
HARM’S WAY Shem Bitterman’s play is a thoughtful, stateside view of America’s actions in Iraq, centered on an Army atrocity that is investigated by a military father (Jack Stehlin) whose daughter (Katie Lowes) falls in love with the case’s chief suspect (Ben Bowen). While it doesn’t completely fulfill its dramatic potential, the two-hour show, directed by Steve Zuckerman, mostly avoids editorializing, preferring instead to question how good people do terrible things. CIRCUS THEATRICALS STUDIO THEATER at the Hayworth, 643 Carondelet St., L.A.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m. (no perfs Dec. 28-29 & Jan. 4-5); thru Feb. 9. (323) 960-1054. (SM)
GO THE IDIOTS Somewhere between the insanity of Monty Python, the cynicism of Penn and Teller, and the stupidity of the Three Stooges exists this bizarre comedy by writer-performers Craig Anton and Ron Lynch. The conceit framing their wild physical and verbal antics is the reunion of two rivals — respectively the sons of Watson and Crick, who discovered DNA. With the appearance of a guest comic, the hour show flies by with humor and even some human insight and pathos beneath the Idiots’ smug stupidity. STEVE ALLEN THEATER at the Center for Inquiry–West, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Los Feliz; last Thurs. of the month, 8 p.m.; indef. (800) 595-4TIX. (TP)
LESSONS Wendy Graf’s drama shows a series of life-changing meetings between a young, derailed female rabbi (Larissa Laskin) and a retired shoe manufacturer (Hal Lindon). One finds oneself screaming for some of these characters’ back stories to arrive between the lines rather than in them. Yet the play grapples with profound ideas about faith and optimism, so it’s clear why Gordon Davidson chose to make this his first directing assignment since leaving CTG. West Coast Jewish Theatre and The Group at Strasberg, LEE STRASBERG CREATIVE CENTER, 7936 Santa Monica Blvd., W. Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 p.m.; thru Jan. 6 (no perfs Dec. 27-30). (323) 650-7777. (SLM)
LOVE LOVES A PORNOGRAPHER Jillian Armenante directs a perfectly calibrated send-up of English gothic lit in Jeff Goode’s new play. The lord and lady of the manor (William Salyers and Gillian Doyle) invite neighbors Miles and Millicent Monger (Jim Anzide and Johanna McKay) for a friendly game of blackmail. Loveworthy is a novelist; Monger, a cleric and viperous literary critic for “The Times.” Jokes abound about venomous literary critics when most newspaper’s book sections are now being eviscerated; the gender superiority of stupid men, and the moral hypocrisy of the English upper class. Are these tired themes worth all these resources? That said, the acting and set are terrific. Circle X Theatre Company at [INSIDE] THE FORD, 2580 Cahuenga Blvd. East, Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 & 7 p.m.; thru Jan. 20. (323) 461-3673. (SLM)
GO POINT BREAK LIVE! Jaime Keeling’s merciless skewering of the 1991 hyper-action flick starring Keanu Reeves and Gary Busey is loaded with laughs as well as surprises, like picking an audience member to play Reeve’s role of Special Agent Johnny Utah. The city’s banks are being hit by a gang of robbers known as the Ex Presidents, surfers who always wear the masks of former chief executives while making their withdrawals. Utah gets his man, but not before a Grand Guignol scene of blood and guts that’s so hideously over the top you can’t stop laughing. Charlie O’s in the ALEXANDRIA HOTEL, 501 S. Spring St., dwntwn.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; indef. (866) 811-4111. (LE3)
GO SCHOOLHOUSE ROCK LIVE! The 19 ditties belted out by Chad Borden, Tameka Dawn, Antoine Reynaldo Diel, Eduardo Enrikez, Elaine Loh and Susan Rudick are one-third of the entire output of the beloved ’70s and ’80s kids program and, as such, they cover a lot of educational ground. While the lyrics are often so mumbled that the exact definition of a pronoun is indecipherable, the tots in the surprisingly hipster-free matinee audience were downright giddy about multiplying by fives. Director Mark Savage and choreographer Brian Paul Mendoza keep the mood peppy without parody. GREENWAY COURT THEATER, 544 N. Fairfax Ave., L.A.; Sat., 4 p.m.; Sun., 4 & 7 p.m.; thru Feb. 24. (323) 655-7679. (AN)
SERIAL KILLERS “Five stories. Five cliffhangers. Only three can continue.” SACRED FOOLS THEATRE, 660 N. Heliotrope Dr., Hlywd.; Sat., 11 p.m.; indef. (310) 281-8337 or www.sacredfools.org.
THE TOMORROW SHOW Late-night variety show created by Craig Anton, Ron Lynch and Brendon Small. STEVE ALLEN THEATER at the Center for Inquiry–West, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Hlywd.; Sat., mid.; indef. (323) 960-7785.