Stage Raw: Chinese Coffee
Photo by Ed Krieger
Playwright Ira Lewis' 1992 drama, making its West Coast debut, hails
from an era of manly Manhattan-centric plays in which a pair of
gentlemen brawl like scalded cats over matters of honor and art. As a
work of theater, the play's talkiness, which borders on self-indulgence,
clearly indicates why the piece is rarely performed. However, as a tour
de force for the two actors, it compellingly showcases a wide range of
emotions. One icy night, scruffy, starving New York writer Harry (Guy
Camilleri) barges into the tiny Greenwich Village apartment belonging to
his old pal Jake (Matt Chait). Jake supposedly has been reading Harry's
manuscript, but has been curiously quiet about what he thinks. When
Harry forces his pal to declare his true feelings about the novel, the
unexpected reaction tests the pair's relationship. Lewis' drama is a
philosophical debate -- the conflict between a true artist, who might
well wind up penniless, and the artistic wannabe who lacks talent and
drive. But it's also about the peculiarly fragile nature of friendship,
particularly the tepidly lukewarm bond between friends who share
adversity and little else. Director Jack Heller's staging crackles with
ferocious energy, elevating the potentially clunky dialogue, but the
slight plot does not effectively justify why the pair agree to continue
talking and remain in the same room after it's clear they hate each
other. Still, the acting is robust and movingly organic. Chait's turn as
the embittered, ironic artistic failure is compelling: Is he sad or
angry that his friend has created a work of art when he himself cannot?
Camilleri portrays his rumpled oaf of a starving writer with a neurotic
mildness that at first suggests shyness; as the play's events unfold,
however, it's clear his anxiousness belies an artistic confidence and
iron will that his friend can't possibly ever reach. Flight Theatre at
the Complex, 6472 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun.,
7 p.m., through Feb. 13. (323) 960-7792. (Paul Birchall)
NEW THEATER REVIEWS scheduled for publication January 16, 2011
(Scroll down for Openings in theater, dance and comedy)
NEW REVIEW BLINK & YOU MIGHT MISS ME
Photo by Ed Krieger
Playwright Ira Lewis' 1992 drama, making its West Coast debut, hails from an era of manly Manhattan-centric plays in which a pair of gentlemen brawl like scalded cats over matters of honor and art. As a work of theater, the play's talkiness, which borders on self-indulgence, clearly indicates why the piece is rarely performed. However, as a tour de force for the two actors, it compellingly showcases a wide range of emotions. One icy night, scruffy, starving New York writer Harry (Guy Camilleri) barges into the tiny Greenwich Village apartment belonging to his old pal Jake (Matt Chait). Jake supposedly has been reading Harry's manuscript, but has been curiously quiet about what he thinks. When Harry forces his pal to declare his true feelings about the novel, the unexpected reaction tests the pair's relationship. Lewis' drama is a philosophical debate -- the conflict between a true artist, who might well wind up penniless, and the artistic wannabe who lacks talent and drive. But it's also about the peculiarly fragile nature of friendship, particularly the tepidly lukewarm bond between friends who share adversity and little else. Director Jack Heller's staging crackles with ferocious energy, elevating the potentially clunky dialogue, but the slight plot does not effectively justify why the pair agree to continue talking and remain in the same room after it's clear they hate each other. Still, the acting is robust and movingly organic. Chait's turn as the embittered, ironic artistic failure is compelling: Is he sad or angry that his friend has created a work of art when he himself cannot? Camilleri portrays his rumpled oaf of a starving writer with a neurotic mildness that at first suggests shyness; as the play's events unfold, however, it's clear his anxiousness belies an artistic confidence and iron will that his friend can't possibly ever reach. Flight Theatre at the Complex, 6472 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun., 7 p.m., through Feb. 13. (323) 960-7792. (Paul Birchall)
Photo by Ed Krieger
Dan Via's Off-Broadway hit, receiving its L.A. premiere, is set in the context of the impassioned debate over gay marriage. Handsome gay newspaper columnist Colin (Gerald McCullouch) and buttoned-down lawyer Stewart (playwright Via) have been best friends for 20 years. Despite a bit of hanky-panky in their college days, their friendship has never become a love affair, though they're closer in many respects than some lovers. When Colin begins an affair with Tee (Ian Verdun), an eager young man half his age, it's a seismic shock to the long-standing relationship. Stewart is resentful of the boy's incursion in their lives, and suspects there's more to Tee than meets the eye. But when he tries to tell Colin about his doubts and suspicions, Colin dismisses them as mere jealousy. Though Via's play gets off to a slow start, things that initially seem cryptic or merely casual prove to be of crucial importance as it progresses, and the piece builds to a startling finale. Director Rick Sparks elicits finely nuanced performances from his three principals, and Adam Flemming provides the handsome and flexible unit set. Hudson Mainstage, 6539 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun., 7 p.m., through Feb. 13. (323) 960-7738, plays411.com/daddy. (Neal Weaver)
NEW REVIEW FATIGUED
Photo by Danny Munoz
How does a playwright honor the personal sacrifices of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans without seeming to endorse the corrupted policies that sent them into battle? Although it is not the explicit subject of this pair of original one-acts, this dramatic conundrum hovers over the Company of Angels' uncertain attempt to tabulate the psychic costs paid by warriors and their families. In Jerome A. Parker's melodramatic "Ballad of Sad Young Men" (directed by Kila Kitu), Joe (a terrific Joshua R. Lamont) and Greg (Charles Maceo) spend a brief stateside break between combat tours trying to anesthetize their emotional war wounds by swilling rum in their old neighborhood haunts. While the apparently stable Greg conceals a diabolical outlet for his unresolved rage, the openly brittle Joe manages to find the hope of redemption in the nurturing arms of a former one-night stand (Juanita Chase). Gabriel Rivas Gomez's "Scar Tissue" adopts a more nuanced literary tack in its story of an emotionally remote cardiac surgeon (the fine Monica Sanchez) who is forced to finally deal with the loss of her army-medic daughter (Carolyn Zeller) by the death of an invalid soldier (Chris Hampton) ironically impatient to have his own heart defect repaired so he can be returned to action. Director Nathan Singh's smart staging receives able support in Ivan Noel Acosta's nicely expressive set and lights. But the evening's otherwise worthy intentions are fatally undermined by the plays' nagging reluctance to directly take a point of view on the war itself -- a flaw that ultimately implicates the production in the cause of its characters' tragedies. Alexandria Hotel, 501 S. Spring St., dwntwn.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun., 7 p.m., through Jan. 23. (866) 811-4111, companyofangels.com. (Bill Raden)
NEW REVIEW GREEDY
Photo courtesy of Long Beach Playhouse
For some, a computer is a word-processing machine and a gateway to the Internet. As long as they are able to type documents, send e-mails and surf the Web, they feel they're making full use of this machine. Others, however, use the very same machine to its full technological capacity: making complex calculations, designing eye-catching graphics or composing the next great symphony. In interpreting the work of an accomplished playwright like Martin McDonagh, directors and actors have the same options: Tell the story straightforwardly and competently, or delve deeply into the words and the spaces between them to bring out the richness of their meaning. Like the vast majority of us, director Patrick Williams chooses the former option in staging McDonagh's satire on Irish terrorism. In it, a cat belonging to Padraic (Patrick Rieger), a soldier in the Irish National Liberation Army, is found dead by Davey (Devon Armstrong) and brought to Padraic's father, Donny (John Gilbert), who's supposed to be taking care of it. When Padraic hears that his favorite feline isn't fit, he returns to Inishmore and runs into not only Mairead (Jannese Davidson), Davey's gun-toting sister who's keen to join both Padraic and the cause, but also a crew of INLA members angling to take over his turf. Violence and mayhem ensue, and liters of blood are shed, all of which is a lot funnier than you'd expect. Unfortunately, neither the acting nor directing brings the laughter to full throat. The characters are played too earnestly instead of hyperbolically, a move that injects subtlety into a piece that revels in extremes and caricature. Long Beach Playhouse, 5021 E. Anaheim St., Long Beach; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun., 2 p.m., through Feb. 12. (562) 494-1014, lbplayhouse.org. (Mayank Keshaviah)
NEW REVIEW LOVE, SEX AND THE IRS The IRS thinks Jon and Leslie are married. Problem is, Jon (Nathanial Dobies) has lied on his returns and his male roommate, a ticked-off Leslie (Bret Colombo), must wear a dress and wig to fool the tax man (George Cummings) who wants to meet the "missus." Furthermore, the emergency drag wardrobe comes from Jon's fiancée, Kate (Tamara Lynn Davis), who's already been sneaking Leslie into her panties. Gay marriage is so foreign to William Van Zandt and Jane Millmore's 1979 sex farce that when Jon's estranged mom (Sally Richter) barges into the charade, she weeps that Jon and Leslie have inspired God to destroy Manhattan -- for being a straight couple living in sin. (The one woman who realizes there's a man under those tights, the very funny Carole Catanzaro as Leslie's girlfriend, thinks being gay is cause to be committed to a mental hospital.) Director Christopher Chase tries to place us squarely in the '70s, littering the set with fondue pots, cans of Tab and posters of Farrah Fawcett. Even so, the comedy's last source of tension, a landlord (Barry Agin) snooping for co-ed cohabitation, feels like a confounding homage to Three's Company. At least taxes are more certain than social mores. But before bringing life to the near alien past, Chase's priority is to macho-up Dobies and Colombo, both too fluttery to play a violent schemer and a ladies' man thrust into playing the oddest of odd couples. Dorie Theater at the Complex, 6476 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Fri.-Sun., 8 p.m., through Jan. 30. (661) 547-1173. (Amy Nicholson)
NEW REVIEW NEW EYES
Photo by Adam Neubauer
For all the talk of our sociocultural evolution, look no further than the sixth installment of the gory-glorifying serial-killer movie series Saw, or the rapt attention given to an especially gasp-inducing murder trial, as a gauge of Americans' fascination with the instinct to kill. Not just kill, either -- the stronger the scent of blood, the hungrier the public's appetite. You could finger Lizzie Borden's 1892 trial as the trigger for this obsession. Writer-director Steven Sabel's world premiere is adapted from the transcripts of the double hatchet murders of Abby and Andrew Borden, for which their daughter Lizzie was arrested and ultimately acquitted. Sabel wisely keeps the stage bare, focusing instead on recollections that twist so sharply you almost need a crib sheet to keep up. Jeremy Mascia's lead prosecutor, Hosea Knowlton, relies on overbearing theatrics as his primary cross-examination tactic, but it's in line with the typical portrayal of the courtroom in film; Annie Freeman is as wide- and wild-eyed as famous photos of the accused. The play feels lacking, but perhaps that's more a reflection of our CSI culture than of the material. Tom Newman's icy original music, particularly the hollow whispering of the children's jump-rope rhyme "Lizzie Borden took an ax," is literally hair-raising. Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., N. Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8:30 p.m., through Feb. 5. (818) 202-4120. (Rebecca Haithcoat)
OPENING THIS WEEK:
BETONTANC AND UMKA.LV: SHOW YOUR FACE! "Virtuosic puppetry, physical theater, dance, and music combine to tell the tale of a modern-day Everyman." REDCAT, 631 W. Second St., L.A.; Jan. 19-22, 8:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 23, 7 p.m. (213) 237-2800.
BIOGRAPHIES IN A BAG Lynn Ferguson performs Arthur Schopenhauer, Rachel Ogilvy performs Doris Day. Stella Adler Theatre, 6773 Hollywood Blvd., L.A.; Jan. 17-19, 8 p.m. onehourtheater.com. (323) 465-4446.
BROTHER GRIMM'S SHUDDER Zombie Joe's Underground's adaptation of the Grimm fairy tale "The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth to Learn What Fear Was." ZJU Theater Group, 4850 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood; opens Jan. 14; Fri., 11 p.m.; Fri., 11 p.m.; thru Feb. 25. (818) 202-4120.
CAVALIA Under the Big Top/Downtown Burbank, 777 N. Front St., Burbank; opens Jan. 19; Wed.-Sun..; thru Feb. 6. (866) 999-8111.
CIRCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION Annie Baker's comedy about five aspiring actors in a Vermont community center's drama class. South Coast Repertory, 655 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa; opens Jan. 14; Tues.-Fri., 7:45 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 2 & 7:30 p.m.; thru Jan. 30. (714) 708-5555.
CIRCUS INCOGNITAS Jamie Adkins' one-man circus comedy for kids of all ages. Kirk Douglas Theatre, 9820 Washington Blvd., Culver City; opens Jan. 15; Sat., 11 a.m. & 3 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Jan. 23. (213) 628-2772.
COLOGNE, OR THE WAY EVIL ENTERS THE WORLD Tony Abetemarco's solo show about sexual identity. Skylight Theater, 1816 1/2 N. Vermont Ave., L.A.; opens Jan. 15; Fri.-Sat., 8:30 p.m.; thru Feb. 19. katselastheatre.com. (702) 582-8587.
THE FARNDALE AVENUE HOUSING ESTATE Townswomen's Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery Kentwood Players present by David McGillivray and Walter Zerlin Jr.'s detective-thriller spoof. Westchester Playhouse, 8301 Hindry Ave., L.A.; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru Feb. 19. (310) 645-5156.
A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO FORCLOSURE It's Melissa Vardey versus the bank in her "underwater" musical-comedy. Theatre Asylum, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd., L.A.; Sun., Jan. 16, 4 p.m. (323) 962-1632.
MACHO LIKE ME Helie Lee's true story of her gender role-playing experiment: living six months as a man. Coast Playhouse, 8325 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood; opens Jan. 15; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Feb. 13. macholikeme.com. (800) 595-4849.
ME, AS A PENGUIN American premiere of British playwright Tom Wells's comedy about a small-town boy's bizarre adventures in the big city. Lost Studio, 130 S. La Brea Ave., L.A.; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 4 p.m.; thru March 6. plays411.com/me. (323) 960-7721.
NORTH COAST REP Semi-autobiographical musical journey from Bach to Billy Joel by Ted Dykstra and Richard Greenblatt, performed by Mark Anders and Carl Danielsen. North Coast Repertory Theatre, 987 Lomas Santa Fe Dr., Solana Beach; opens Jan. 15; Sat., Jan. 15, 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 & 7 p.m.; Wed., 7 p.m.; Thurs.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 2 & 8 p.m.; thru Feb. 6. (858) 481-2155.
PICK OF THE VINE Nine plays, selected from more than 450 submissions from around the world, including Scripted by Mark Harvey Levine and Trace Evidence by Jeff Stewart. Little Fish Theatre, 777 Centre St., San Pedro; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., Feb. 6, 7 p.m.; Thurs., Feb. 17, 8 p.m.; thru Feb. 19. (310) 512-6030.
THE SCREWTAPE LETTERS Stage adaptation of the C.S. Lewis novel, wherein an apprentice demon trains in the art of seducing humans to the dark side. Alex Theatre, 216 N. Brand Blvd., Glendale; Sat., Jan. 15, 4 & 8 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 16, 3 p.m. screwtapeonstage.com. (818) 243-2539.
SECOND ANNUAL NEW YEAR-NEW WORKS FESTIVAL Free readings of new plays developed in Theatre West's Writers Workshop. Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, L.A.; Tues., Jan. 18, 8 p.m.; Thurs., Jan. 20, 8 p.m.; Fri., Jan. 21, 5 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 22, 8 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 23, 3 & 7 p.m.. (323) 851-7977.
16TH ANNUAL HOLLYWOOD PERFORMANCE MARATHON More than 50 performers, including comedy, pancake juggling, poetry, chin puppets, fire-eating, hula dancing, music, magic, monologues and more, all night until dawn. Theatre of NOTE, 1517 N. Cahuenga Blvd., L.A.; Sat., Jan. 15, 3 p.m. (323) 856-8611.
SMUDGE Rachel Axler's black comedy about parenthood. GTC Burbank, 1111-B W. Olive Ave., Burbank; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; Thurs., Feb. 3, 8 p.m.; thru Feb. 19. (800) 838-3006.
SYLVIA A.R. Gurney's empty-nester comedy. Sierra Madre Playhouse, 87 W. Sierra Madre Blvd., Sierra Madre; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2:30 p.m.; thru Feb. 19. (626) 256-3809.
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD The Harper Lee classic, adapted by Christopher Sergel. Lex Theatre, 6760 Lexington Ave., L.A.; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Feb. 20. (800) 838-3006.
TWELFTH NIGHT Shakespeare's comedy of mistaken identity. Knightsbridge Theater, 1944 Riverside Dr., L.A.; opens Jan. 14; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 6 p.m.; thru Feb. 13. (323) 667-0955.
WORDTHEATRE LIT BY LULU FATHERS AND SONS Ian Hart performs "Distant Ships" by Simon Van Booy; Samantha Mathis performs "Between Here and Here" by Amy Bloom; Bruce Vilanch performs "Ladybirds for Lunch" by Hanif Kureishi. M Bar, 1253 Vine St., L.A.; Fri., Jan. 14, 7:30 p.m. (323) 856-0036.
GO The A.W.A.R.D. (Artists With Audiences Responding to Dance) Show! In New York City, the Joyce Theater is a premiere venue for contemporary dance and its Joyce Theater Foundation has found a fun way to fund new choreography through its popular The A.W.A.R.D. (Artists With Audiences Responding to Dance) Show! which debuts an L.A. edition this week. Over three nights, a dozen high profile local choreographers will show a dancework followed by a facilitated conversation with the audience and selection of one from the evening's quartet to move to the finals. On Sunday, the three finalists encore their work with one winning choreographer nabbing a $10,000 prize. The contenders are Rachael Lincoln & Leslie Seiters, Arianne MacBean, Barak Marshall, and Christine Suarez (Thurs.), Maria Gillespie, Pam Gonzales, Holly Johnston, and Bradley Michaud (Fri.) and Rande Dorn, Victoria Marks, Meg Wolfe and Karen Schaffman with Liam Clancy, Eric Geiger & Lesie Seiters (Sat.). REDCAT, 631 W. Second St., L.A.; Through Jan. 15, 8:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 16, 7 p.m. $18. (213) 237-2800.
GO Ballroom with a Twist Louis van Amstel from t.v.'s Dancing with the Stars conceived and choreographed Ballroom with a Twist which features finalists from DWTS and So You Think You Can Dance with rotating hosts Gilles Marini and Jane Seymour. Check www.elportaltheatre.com for the schedule of dancers and hosts. EL PORTAL THEATRE, 5269 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood; Starting Jan. 20; Wed.-Fri., 8 p.m.; Sat., 3 & 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Feb. 13. $25-$100. (818) 508-0281.
GO Reflections--Bolshoi Ballet Partnership See GoLA. ORANGE COUNTY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa; Jan. 20-22, 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 23, 2 p.m. $15-$126. (714) 556-2787.
Fireside Motion - Dance Beside the Flames Take the chill off as choreographers Suchi Branfman and Michelle Garcia lead this performance, part of the informal Fireside series that allows the audience to enjoy organic coffee or tea along with the dancing. MILES MEMORIAL PLAYHOUSE, 1130 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica; Sat., Jan. 15, 8 p.m. $10, $5 students & seniors. (310) 458-8634.
GO Sam Kim & Nancy Sandercock Choreographer Sam Kim offers Cult in which Nancy Sandercock dances and then offers her response in creed. HIGHWAYS PERFORMANCE SPACE, 1651 18th St., Santa Monica; Fri., Jan. 14, 8:30 p.m. $20, $15 students & seniors. (310) 315-1459.
Seán Curran Company Trained in traditional Irish stepdance (think Riverdance), Seán Curran won awards as a contemporary dancer with New York's Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. Those forces are combined in one local performance of his own Seán Curran Company. The program includes Aria/Apology, which blends recorded apologies with Opera arias by George Frideric Handel and comes with a "recommended for mature audiences only" warning for strong language and adult themes. CERRITOS CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS, 12700 Center Court Dr., Cerritos; Fri., Jan. 14, 8 p.m. $27-$57. (562) 467-8818.
GO Tango Buenos Aires It's stiletto heels and slinky dresses with slits as Tango Buenos Aires arrives with Fire and Passion of Tango -- An Insider's Look at the Evolution of Tango. Early birds can join in free tango lessons at 6 p.m. on the plaza before the shows on Fri. & Sat. ORANGE COUNTY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa; Fri., Jan. 14, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Jan. 15, 2 & 7:30 p.m.; Sun., Jan. 16, 2 p.m. $16-$80. (714) 556-2787.
Akbar 4356 Sunset Blvd., L.A. (323) 665-6810.
Tues: Drunk On Stage, Bruce Daniels and Erin Foley host some damn funny comics. 9:30 p.m. $5.
BANG 457 N. Fairfax Ave., L.A. (323) 653-6886.
Fri: The Big Show, L.A.'s longest running student show features house groups Huzzah! and Some Assembly Required, plus Alumni Jam. 8 p.m. $5.
Sat: The Periodicals, 8 p.m.
Sat: Stacy's Not Here, 9:30 p.m.
Thurs: Stand Up with Lisa and Friends, 8 p.m.
Thurs: Schwag, Bang's weekly improv extravaganza, featuring Bang house group iProv (Ezra Weisz, Gretchen Enders, Mitchell Roché). Audience provides song titles and iProv takes it from there. 9:30 p.m. Free.
Bar Lubitsch 7702 Santa Monica Blvd., L.A. (323) 654-1234.
Thurs: The Josh and Josh Show!!, Joshes Haness and Weinstein are NYC transplants with some stellar comic pals. Regulars include Brody Stevens, Eddie Pepitone, Jason Nash, Nick Kroll, Thomas Lennon, John Viener, Josh Fadem, Demetri Martin, Matt Braunger and even the occasional woman. 8:30 p.m. free.
Capitol City Sports Bar & Lounge 1615 N. Cahuenga Blvd., L.A. Sun-Wed, 11:30-midnight; Thurs-Fri, 11:30am-2am; Sat, 9am-2am; Sun 9am-midnight. (323) 465-1750.
Thurs: The Meatballs of Comedy, If you like your comedy "Italian style," this is the show for you. 8 p.m. free.
Club 705 705 Pier Ave., Hermosa Beach. (310) 372-9705.
Sun: Mr. J's Comedy Night
Comedy & Magic Club 1018 Hermosa Ave., Hermosa Beach. (310) 372-1193.
Fri-Sat: 10 Comics for $10!, 8 p.m. Sat. Jan. 8, 8 p.m. Fri. Jan. 14, 8 p.m. and Sat. Jan. 15, 8 p.m.
Sun: Jay Leno, Yes, it's really him. 7 p.m. $30.
Wed-Thurs: Chris Bliss, 8 p.m. and Thu. Jan. 20, 8 p.m.
COMEDY STORE 8433 Sunset Blvd., West Hollywood. (323) 656-6225.
Fri: Cathy Lewis, Vargus Mason (Main Room), 8:30 p.m. 16 Comics (Original Room), many of them funny, 9 p.m.-2 a.m. $20. Jerome Cleary hosts Thank Gays It's Friday (Main Room), mid. $10.
Fri: Funny Fridays at the Comedy Store, With Jerome Cleary , Noel Elgrably, Rus Gutin, The Walsh Brothers, Brandon Christy, Melissa Villasenor, more. 9 p.m.
Sat: 14 Comics (Main Room), 9 p.m.-1 a.m. $20. Vargus Mason, Cathy Lewis (Belly Room), 8 p.m. 13 Comics (Original Room), 10:30 p.m.-2 a.m. $20.
Sun: Pot Luck Open Mike (Original Room), 7-9 p.m. Free. Pop-Ins, 9 p.m.-2 a.m. $10. ,
Tues: Trippin' on Tuesday hosted by Joe Clair (Main Room), 8:30 p.m. $15. Burger Comedy Show (Belly Room), 8 p.m. 16 Comics (Original Room), 9 p.m.-2 a.m. $15.
Wed: Deez Nutz (Belly Room), 8 p.m. 16 Comics (Original Room), 9 p.m.-2 a.m. $15.
Thurs: 16 Comics (Main Room), 9 p.m.-2 a.m. $20. Crack 'em Up Thursdays (Belly Room), 9 p.m.
Thurs: Crack 'Em Up Thursdays, Jay Phillips and Tony Baker host. 9:30 p.m.
ComedySportz 733 Seward St., L.A. (323) 871-1193.
Sat: ComedySportz, Clean comedy for all ages. 10:30 p.m.
Sun: ComedySportz Sunday Team, 7 p.m. $15, $13 in advance.
Days Inn 450 Pioneer Dr., Glendale. (818) 956-0202.
Fri: Open Mic Comedy, Just because it's an open mic at a Days Inn in Glendale doesn't mean it can't be sorta good. 8 p.m. free.
D'Cache 10717 Riverside Dr., North Hollywood. (818) 506-9600.
Sat: Laugh Pack, Top-notch standup, Valley style, hosted by Bruce Fine. $10.
Downtown Comedy Club 114 W. Fifth St., L.A. (213) 841-3940.
Fri: Doc Willis, 8 p.m.
Marty Laquidara, 9 p.m. and Sat. Jan. 15, 9 p.m.
Sat: Jen Murphy, 8 p.m.
Eclectic Company Theatre 5312 Laurel Canyon Blvd., Valley Village. (818) 508-3003.
Thurs: Weird on Top, Improvisational comedy by Danielle Cintron, Tiffany Cole, Mason Hallberg, Kerr Seth Lordygan, Sarah McCann and Alex Sanborn. 8 p.m. Thu. April 22, 8 p.m. Thu. May 13, 8 p.m. Thu. June 10, 8 p.m. Thu. July 15, 8 p.m. Thu. Sept. 23, 8 p.m. Thu. Oct. 21, 8 p.m. Thu. Nov. 11, 8 p.m. Thu. Dec. 9, 8 p.m. Thu. Jan. 20, 8 p.m. Thu. Feb. 17, 8 p.m. Tue. March 1, 8 p.m. Thu. April 21, 8 p.m. Thu. May 12, 8 p.m. Thu. June 9, 8 p.m. Sun. July 17, 8 p.m. and Thu. Aug. 18, 8 p.m.
Eleven 8811 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood. Glossy gay hot spot in the former Larrabee Sound Studios. (310) 855-0800.
Tues: Punchline, Jason Farone hosts this variety show and demands you "laugh, drink, sing, dance!", 9:30 p.m.
EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY 1333 Montana Ave., Santa Monica. Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-4 p.m. (310) 451-2700.
Sat: Tasty Words: Kiss and Tell: An Evening of Words About Smooching, This installment of Wendy Hammers' storytelling series may cause herpes, with David Kessler, Jon Pearson, Debbie Zeitman, Laura Lentz, Carlos Kotkin, others. 8 p.m. $25, $20 in advance.
Fairfax Senior Citizens Center 7929 Melrose Ave., L.A. (323) 653-1824 .
Fri: Melrose Comedy Reality Show, Acoustic jam/improv comedy show, hosted by Will Thilly. 8:30 p.m.
Fake Gallery 4319 Melrose Ave., L.A. (323) 644-4946.
Fri: Twelve Shiny Nickels Standup Comedy Show, Twelve comics in 60 minutes -- you do the laugh, I mean, math. 11 p.m. $10.
Flappers Comedy Club Burbank 102 E. Magnolia Blvd., Burbank. (818) 845-9721.
Fri-Sat: Comedy Shows, Vague but true. 10 p.m. and , 8 & 10 p.m.
Sat: Two Milk Minimum, Comedy for kids. 12:30 p.m.
Sun: Burbank Comedy, 7 p.m.
Fruit Cocktail, 9 p.m.
Wed: All Mixed UP, Their words: "mixed race comedians.", 9:30 p.m.
Wed: FU College Comedy Night, 10 p.m.
Fred Kavli Theater 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. (Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza), Thousand Oaks. (805) 449-2787.
Fri: Popovitch's Comedy Pet Theatre, Contains performing cats. 7 p.m.
Gaylord Apartments 3355 Wilshire Blvd., L.A. (213) 389-4161.
Sun: Pajama Party, Carl Kozlowski and Adam Gropman host a top-shelf night with Sam Tripoli, Nick Youssef, Iliza Schlesinger, Matt Harris, plus music from Gary Eaton of Kingsize Maybe. Also: pie. 8 p.m. free. (310) 775-7143
Genghis Cohen 740 N. Fairfax Ave., L.A. This Fairfax District restaurant serves Southwestern Chinese cuisine, with a full bar. Since 1990, the cozy adjoining music room, which is decorated with red lanterns and seats 60 about people, has featured singer-songwriters. All ages. (323) 653-0640.
Tues: Sweet & Sour Comedy, 9 p.m.
Groundling Theater 7307 Melrose Ave., L.A. (323) 934-9700.
Fri: After School Groundling, All-new sketch and improv, directed by Heather Morgan. 8 p.m. and , 8 & 10 p.m. Continues through Jan. 28
Wed: The Crazy Uncle Joe Show, 8 p.m. $14.
Thurs: Cookin' With Gas, 8 p.m. $18.
Ha Ha Cafe Comedy Club 5010 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood. (818) 508-4995.
Sat: Ha Ha All-Star Comedy, Somehow I doubt that. 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. and , 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. $20, $15 w/resv.
Mon-Wed: Standup Comedy, 9 p.m. $10, $5 before showtime.
Hollywood Studio Bar & Grill 6122 W. Sunset Blvd., L.A. (323) 466-9917.
Mon: What's Up, Tiger Lily?, Maria Bamford and Melinda Hill bring excellent standups every week -- really, like Blaine Capatch, Patton Oswalt, Matt Besser -- you get the idea. 8 p.m. Free.
ICE HOUSE 24 N. Mentor Ave., Pasadena. Since 1960 nearly 3 million served. That's a few cocktails. Full bar; two-drink min. Over 18. (626) 577-1894.
Fri-Sat: The Lovemaster Craig Shoemaker, 8:30 & 10:30 p.m. and Sat. Jan. 15, 7 & 9 p.m.
Sun-Tues: Dana Carvey, 7 p.m. and Tue. Jan. 18, 8 p.m.
Bobbie Oliver Show, 9 p.m.
Wed: Latino Comedy Showcase hosted by Rudy Moreno, 8 p.m. Thu. Dec. 23, 8 p.m. Wed. Dec. 29, 8 p.m. Thu. Dec. 30, 8 p.m. and Wed. Jan. 5, 8 p.m. $12.50.
Thurs: Comedy Juice, 10 p.m. $10.
THE IMPROV 8162 Melrose Ave., L.A. The hallowed brick wall. Full bar; two-drink min. Over 18. Resv. suggested. (323) 651-2583.
Fri: Tom Rhodes, 8 p.m.
Fri: Richard Villa's Refried Fridays, 10 p.m.
Sat: Jay Mohr, 7:30 & 9:30 p.m.
Sun: Hollywood Underground, 7:30 p.m.
Dip Dip Dive, 9:30 p.m.
Mon: Mo Betta' Monday, 8 p.m. $15.
Tues: Open Mic at the Improv, Dare ya. Sign up 4:30-4:40 p.m. 5 p.m. free (it better be).
Tues: Mavrick Showcase, With Chris Gehrt, Rebecca Corry, The Greg Wilson, Jimmy Shubert. 8 p.m.
At the Lab: Biscuits and Gravy, 8:30 p.m.
Liquid Courage, 10 p.m.
Wed: E Comic Branding Presents, Presents what, we have no idea. 8 p.m.
At the Lab: Willy Thilly Jamboree, 9 p.m.
Wed: ComedyJuice, The quality of comedy being juiced is high, but you won't know who's on till you get there. 10 p.m.
Thurs: Fresh Faces Showcase, Lesley Wolff knows how to pick 'em. 7:30 p.m.
Thurs: Beth Lapides: 100% Happy 88% of the Time, The former host of UnCabaret, that unparalleled comedy monologue series that ran for years at LunaPark and then M Bar, is back with a new one-woman show called 100% Happy 88% of the Time, which "leads us boldly into the 'now age' with standup, original songs and multimedia.", 8 p.m. Thu. Jan. 20, 8 p.m. and Thu. Jan. 27, 8 p.m.
Richmond's House of Comedy, 10 p.m.
I.O. West 6366 Hollywood Blvd., L.A. Headquarters for long-form improv known as "The Harold.". (323) 962-7560.
Fri: Spirit Fingers!, 8 p.m. $10.
Fri: Opening Night: The Improvised Musical!, A talented cast of improvisers makes up a Broadway-style musical on the spot. 9 p.m. $10.
The Friday 40, 10 p.m. and Fri. Jan. 14, 10 p.m. $10.
Operocka: An Improvised Rock Opera/Grandma's Cactipus/Tarotdactyl, 11 p.m. $5.
Sat: The Armando Show, A celeb shares a funny monologue; then the improvisers get to work. 9 p.m. $10.
Sat: The Kind Strangers Present/Middleditch +1, 10 p.m. $10.
God Squad, 10:30 p.m. $10.
Sun: The Best Comedy Show Ever, Hey, you never know. 8 p.m. $5.
Sun: Top Story! Weekly, "SNL meets The Daily Show in this constantly changing news-driven sketch romp through a week's worth of headlines.", 9 p.m. $5.
Sun: Mainstage Sketch Show, 10 p.m. $5.
Majic Radio Theater, 11 p.m.
Mon: Serious V-Neck, 8 p.m. $10.
Mon: Weaseliscious, 8 p.m. and Mon. Jan. 17, 8 p.m. $10.
Buffet of Champions, 9 p.m. Continues through Jan. 31, $10.
Mon: Buffet of Champions, 9 p.m. $10.
Cherry Crush Hosted by Cherry, 10:30 p.m. $5.
Hill Jones, 10 p.m. $5.
Mon: Cagematch: Omega, The battle of the best improvisers in the land. 11:30 p.m. free.
Tues-Thurs: Harold Night, That's improv of a high order.
Thurs: Cage Match, 11:30 p.m. free.
The J. Spot Comedy Club 5581 W. Manchester Ave., L.A. Standup comedy every Wed.-Sun. The only club in town that serves fried mac 'n' cheese. (310) 337-9057.
Wed-Fri: Standup comedy, 8:30 p.m.
Janet & Ray Scherr Forum Theatre 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd. (Civic Arts Plaza), Thousand Oaks. (805) 449-2700.
Thurs: Third Annual Standup for Cancer Survivors, A mysterious lineup of no-doubt talented standups donate their time at this benefit for the Wellness Community. 7:20 p.m. $34 & $24.
The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club 1000 Universal Studios Blvd., No. 222, Universal City. (818) 824-6545.
Fri: Hollywood Babble On- Special Event www.babbleonkev.com Ralph Garman, Director Kevin Smith and radio guy Ralph Garman make fun of stuff. 8 p.m. Sat. Jan. 15, 10 p.m. Fri. Jan. 28, 8 p.m. Fri. Feb. 4, 8 p.m. Fri. Feb. 11, 8 p.m. Fri. Feb. 18, 8 p.m. and Fri. Feb. 25, 8 p.m.
Sat: Up-N-Comers: The Greg Wilson, 6 p.m.
Dennis Miller, 8 p.m.
Sun: Caliente Comedy, DJ Cooch hosts. E-mail for free tickets: email@example.com. 8 p.m. $10.
Wed: Jon Lovitz Hawaiian Beach Party, Most Wednesdays, anyway. Maybe call first. 8 p.m. $20.
Wed: Jeff Garcia, 8 p.m.
Thurs: Paparazzi Comedy, 8 p.m.
L.A. Connection 13442 Ventura Blvd., Sherman Oaks. (818) 784-1868.
Fri: Rookies Improv, 7 p.m. $10. 8 Ball, 8 p.m. $10. Stranger Than Fiction/Veterans That Rock!, 9 p.m. $10. In Rare Form, 10:30 p.m. $10. 7 p.m. $10.
Sat: SkovProv Players Dramatic and Comedy Improv, 7 p.m. $10. Temporary Insanity, 8 p.m. $10. 2001: An Improv Odyssey, 9 p.m. $12. The Wheel of Comedy, 10:30 p.m. $10.
THE LAUGH FACTORY 8001 Sunset Blvd., L.A. Full bar; two-drink min. Over 18. Resv. required. (323) 656-1336.
Sat-Sun: All-Star Comedy, 10 p.m. & midnight, $20-$25.
Sun: Chocolate Sundaes, Hosted by Tony Rock and Esau McGraw. 10 p.m. $20.
Mon: Latino Night, Hosted by Paul Rodriguez and Joey Medina. 8 p.m. $20.
Tues: The Kevin Nealon Show, 8 p.m. $20 & $30.
Wed: Laughing with the Stars, Hosted by Tom Arnold. 8 p.m.
Wed: Fresh Faces, 10 p.m. $20.
Thurs: All Star Comedy with Tim Allen, 8 p.m.
Thurs: College Night, 10 p.m.
The Laugh Factory Long Beach 151 S. Pine Ave., Long Beach. (562) 495-2844, Ext. 1.
Fri: All-Star Comedy, 7:45 & 9:45 p.m. and , 7:45 p.m.
The Loft 743 N. La Brea Ave., L.A. (323) 568-1616.
Thurs: Comedy Speakeasy, Josh Filipowski hosts this multi-media comedy night with stand-up, interviews, video clips, round table discussions, Skype guests, live guests, tweets and more. It's also broadcast online. Pink's adjacent. 8 p.m. $10, BYOB.
M Bar 1253 Vine St., L.A. (323) 856-0036.
Wed: Comedy Show, 8 p.m. Free.
M.I.'s Westside Comedy Theater 1323-A Third Street Promenade (in the alley betw. Third & Fourth sts. at Arizona Ave.), Santa Monica. (310) 451-0850.
Fri: Mission IMPROVable, Top improv by talented performers. 8 p.m. $10.
Fri: Waterbrains, 9 p.m.
The Grind, Long-form improv. 10 p.m.
Tues: Who's Available, Standup and variety show, often with top names (yep -- Rob Schneider, Andy Dick) hosted by Fred Young. 10 p.m. $5.
Wed: The Punk House, standup show hosted by Ed Galvez. 9 p.m.
Thurs: The Westside Eclectic Improv Jam, 10:30 p.m.
Thurs: The Jam, 11 p.m.
Melgard Public House 7505 Melrose Ave., L.A. (818) 288-4158.
Mon: MELGARD Mondays, Elliot Steingart hosts. 9 p.m. free.
Meltdown Comics 7522 Sunset Blvd., L.A. Mon.-Tues. & Thurs.-Sun., 11 a.m.-10 p.m.; Wed., 10 a.m.-10 p.m. (323) 851-7223.
Fri: Friday Comedy, If it's Friday, someone will try to make you laugh. 8 p.m.
The Palms Bar 8572 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood. (310) 652-6188.
Tues: The Killing Room Comedy, With host Amy Dresner (hilarious). 9:30 p.m.
Pepperdine University, Smothers Theatre 24255 Pacific Coast Hwy., Malibu. (310) 506-4522.
Sun: The Flying Karamazov Brothers, Extreme-juggling act with an emphasis on cleverness. 7 p.m. $40, $20 youth.
Room 5 Lounge 143 N. La Brea Ave., Second Floor, L.A. (323) 938-2504.
Thurs: Afterparty!, Host Sheldon Anderson presents comics that are alternatively "hilarious" or "the funniest.", 9:30 p.m. $10.
Roxbury Cafe 459 N. Roxbury Dr., Beverly Hills. (310) 271.0027.
Thurs: Comedy 90210, Sharon Houston hosts the only standup show in Beverly Hills. Resv. encouraged. 8 p.m. $5.
Sal's Comedy Hole 7356 Melrose Ave., L.A. (323) 325-2784.
Wed: Wrong Hole!, Josh Filipowski and Matt Rittberg promise "a cool vibe reminiscent of many East Village alt-comedy rooms.", 8 p.m. $5.
Second City Studio Theater 6560 Hollywood Blvd., Second Floor, L.A. (323) 464-8542.
Fri: All Skate! -- and Friends, An instant Broadway musical. 8 p.m. $10.
Square Bizness/Off the Wall, 9 p.m. $10.
Thunderdome, 10:30 p.m.
Sat: The Really Awesome Improv Show, Improv for all ages. 10 a.m. $10.
Sat: Saturday Night's Main Event, Hosted by Bro Squad 5. 9 p.m.
Sun: Areyoumakinfunofme?, 7 p.m.
America: Chin Up, Fly Down!, 8 p.m.
Wed: SC Invitational with Two Beer Queers, 9 p.m. $10.
Ditka, 10 p.m. $10.
Thurs: Home/Delicious Moments Scripted, 8 p.m. $10.
___inski/Crisis Averted, Steve Kaminski will perform with nearly anyone. 9 p.m. $10.
Felt Does Hollywood, They're from Chicago. 10 p.m. $10.
1739 Public House 1739 N. Vermont Ave., L.A. (323) 663-1739.
Mon: Keep it Clean Comedy, Hosted by JC Coccoli. 10:30 p.m. Free.
Sidewalk Studio Theatre 4150 Riverside Dr., Burbank. (818) 558-5702.
Sat: Saturday! Saturday!, Sketch, standup and improv by regulars from Upright Citizens Brigade, IO West . . . you get the idea. Free beer & wine. Tickets at www.saturdaysaturdayshow.com. 10:30 p.m. $5.
Smashbox Studios 8549 Higuera St., Culver City. (310) 558-7660.
Thurs: The Super Serious Show, The Sklar Brothers, Andrea Savage, Hampton Yount, The New York Smiths, plus videos by Danny Jelinek. superseriousshow.com, Thu. Jan. 20, $15. (310) 425-8619
The Space 665 N. Heliotrope Dr., L.A..
Tues: The Space Heater Comedy Show, Purple Trousers Entertainment offers two shows each Tues: stnadup at 8 p.m; sketch and improv at 10 p.m. 10 p.m. $7.
The Spot Cafe and Lounge 4455 Overland Ave., Culver City. (310) 559-8868.
Thurs: The Magic Meathands, PG-rated "improvised hilarity based entirely on audience suggestions and participation." Jumpstart! opens with family-friendly improv games. 8 p.m. $7, $3 kids under 13.
The Spotlight Comedy Club 12215 Ventura Blvd., Ste. 209, Studio City. 818-255-6014.
Fri: Friday Night Comedy, 7:30 p.m. $10.
Thurs: Thursday Night Comedy, 7:30 p.m. $10.
Steve Allen Theater at the Center for Inquiry-West, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., L.A. (323) 666-4268.
Fri: Jamie Kilstein, The comic Janeane Garofalo calls "a combination of George Carlin and Bill Hicks.", 8 p.m.
Sat: Roy Zimmerman: Live from the Starving Ear, An homage to the famed San Francisco folk nightclub hungry i. 8 p.m. $20.
Sun: Tomorrow!, Late-night variety show hosted by Ron Lynch. midnight, (323) 960-7785
Wed: Smile It's Only Life, An all new show featuring Laura Silverman that's probably pretty good. 8 p.m. $10.
Taix 1911 W. Sunset Blvd., L.A (213) 484-1265.
Sun: French Toast, Hosted by Margie Kment and Zach "MC Mr. Napkins" Sherwin. 8:30 p.m.
Upright Citizens Brigade Theater 5919 Franklin Ave., L.A. (323) 908-8702.
Fri: Dasariski, Dasariski is Robert Dassie, Craig Cackowski and Rich Talarico (The goofy sounding title is a combination of their last names). Don't expect Whose Line is it Anyway style of comedy. It's all about long-form improv. These guys create grounded, truthful, character-driven scenes on the spot that are far more inventive than the pandering, slapstick, jokey type of improv offered by less talented groups. (Steve La). 8 p.m. $10.
Fri: Soundtrack, The show that asks, "Is your iPod hilarious?" Crack improvisers do their thing to your tunes. 9:30 p.m. $8.
Fri: Death by Roo Roo: Your F'ed Up Family/Soundtrack, 9:30 p.m. $8.
Let's Do This!, 11 p.m. $5.
Sat: Not Too Shabby, midnight, free.
Sat: A Bicycle Built For Two: A live screenplay reading from Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington, See GoLA. 1:30 p.m. $5.
The Back Room, With Andy Richter, Matt Besser, Dragon Boy Suede, others. 10 p.m. $10.
Sun: Sketch Cram, midnight, $5.
Sun: Jeff Garlin's Combo Platter, Let Garlin and his friends entertain you with stories about bologna. 6 p.m.
Sun: ASSSSCAT, 7:30 p.m. free.
Broad Outlook, "Erin Gibson, Lindy Gomez and guests explore the real things that ladies love. Expect a lot of frank discussions about: pot, Law and Order, The Bunny Ranch, whole grain cereal, makeup, The Cavs, lamps and much more!", 9:30 p.m. $5.
Sun: Shitty Jobs, I think we all know about those. 11 p.m. $5.
Mon: Harold Night, 8 & 9:30 p.m. $5.
Mon: Huebel and Scheer: Crash Test, 11 p.m. $5.
Tues: Doug Loves Movies, 7:30 p.m. Free.
Tues: Comedy Death-Ray, 8:30 p.m. $5.
Tues: The Hypothetical World of Key and Peele, Improv by MadTV alumni Keegan Michael Key and Jordan Peele. 11 p.m. $5.
Wed: Spank: Skippy Greene's Big Show!/Farley Elliott, 6:30 p.m. $5.
Maude Night" Oh, Brother!/The Get Go, 8 p.m. $5.
Wed: Facebook, The weekly show formerly known as MySpace. 9:30 p.m. $5.
Wed: Cagematch, 11 p.m.
Thurs: Citizen Rothstein/Angrid, 8 p.m. $5.
The Writers' Room with J
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