Cynicism is so last decade. It’s all earnestness and positivity going forward. Cages, an ambitious, the genre-defying multimedia musical from Woolf and the Wondershow, performed in a refurbished Arts District warehouse, exemplifies this new wave. Covering timeless topics like isolation, forbidden love and self-acceptance, its protagonist navigates the emotionless dystopia of Anhedonia. Creators CJ Baran and Benjamin Romans perform this “baroque pop” opera almost entirely unaccompanied, and the influence of modern music trends and artists like Kanye West and Daft Punk drips from each new song. The tech, however, is the true star of the show. Behind the trippy strobes and pounding bass, stylized animated videos play, not unlike those looming over DJs during festival sets. Interacting with pre-recorded Holopac-esque, 2.5-D castmates, the live performance elements are stripped to the bare essentials, making for an immersive show that wears its heart on its sleeve so shamelessly, even the most irony-poisoned minds are likely to succumb to its charms. 1926 E. 7th Place, downtown; Thu.-Sat., 7:00 p.m.; through Feb. 29; $55-57. cagesdtla.com.
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