6500 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
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Traditional productions of Peter Pan have relied on huge casts, acres of elaborate scenery and complicated flying apparatus, but director Michael Matthews proves that's all unnecessary in this production of Michael Lluberes' revisionist adaptation. For starters, there's a male actor, Daniel Shawn Miller, playing Peter, and a female Captain Hook (Trisha LaFache, who also doubles as Mrs. Darling); a versatile cast of seven plays all the roles. In a conventional production, all of the actors might seem miscast: They're all too big, tall, mature or muscular for their roles. But here imagination, ingenuity, exuberance and the spirit of make-believe transcend literal reality, and the result is sweet, touching and magical. Lluberes' script simplifies the play but preserves most of its values and ideas. The same actors play both the Lost Boys and the Pirates who hunt them. And the flying is handled with endearing simplicity: The flyers are lifted and carried by the ensemble. The adult actors play children with unsentimental zest. Miller's Peter is athletic, swashbuckling, egotistical and cocky, and Liza Burns' Wendy is both motherly and keenly aware of the sexual underpinnings of her interest in Peter. Blank Theatre at 2nd Stage, 6500 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; through June 2. (323) 661-9827, TheBlank.com.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: April 27. Continues through June 2, 2013