544 N. Fairfax Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Region: Melrose/ Beverly/ Fairfax
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If you're an I Love Lucy fan, this is your moment. The show, based on the TV series that still runs in syndication 60 years after its debut, takes audience members back to Desilu studio during the 1950s, where the audience sits in on a "live" television taping of two episodes, hosted by the affable Murray Jasper (Mark Christopher Tracy). Though there never will be talents quite like Ball, William Frawley, Vivian Vance and Desi Arnaz, director Rick Sparks' terrific cast channels them with charm, intelligence and energy in this fun-filled musical comedy. Sirena Irwin plays the redhead queen of comedy with precision. Bill Mendieta has got Ricky Ricardo down, including the thick Cuban accent, and Bill Chott and Lisa Joffrey do Fred and Ethel Mertz quite well. The two original episodes, "The Benefit" and "Lucy Has Her Eyes Examined" (written by Jess Oppenheimer, Madelyn Pugh and Bob Carroll Jr.), are a hoot, but so are the hilarious commercial breaks, the Lucy trivia contest and the surprising variety of musical and dance numbers. Pianist and musical director Wayne Moore does a stellar job leading the six-piece band. Aaron Henderson provides meticulously crafted sets, while Shon LeBlanc's period costumes are on the money. (Yes, there are more than a few red-and-white polka dot dresses.) Greenway Court Theatre, 544 N. Fairfax Ave.; Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 3 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m.; through Dec. 30 (added perfs Wed. & Thurs., 8 p.m., from Oct. 26). 800-595-4tix, ilovelucylive.com.
Wed., Dec. 21, 8 p.m.; Wednesdays-Fridays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 3 & 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7 p.m. Starts: Dec. 21. Continues through Feb. 26, 2011