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KCRW's Opening the Curtain

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English


Episodes

A soldier's past, missing drama in the present

2/12/2018
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Elliott, a nineteen year-old combat vet back home between tours of duty in Iraq, is finally going to confront his dad. Ever since he came home nursing a purple heart leg injury, he's been trying to get his dad to open up. Elliott needs to know if his dad's time in Vietnam was anything like the horror he just experienced in Iraq. But something is missing....

Duration:00:03:17

Hipster Pirates

2/5/2018
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Maybe it was all the beach balls flying through the air ... or the guy with the guitar and the sweet, terry cloth leisure suit - but as soon as I walked onto the stage at Pasadena Playhouse it was clear that this wasn't going to be a traditional "Pirates of Penzance."

Duration:00:03:26

Is great acting enough?

1/29/2018
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Is great acting enough? That's the question I'm left with after seeing Antaeus Theatre Company's latest production - Harold Pinter's "The Hothouse."

Duration:00:03:39

A not-so-silent retreat

1/22/2018
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The idea behind Bess Wohl's "Small Mouth Sounds" is pretty ingenious: it's a play about six people at a week long silent retreat.

Duration:00:03:32

The premature death of a dream

1/12/2018
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Poor Dog Group’s show “Group Therapy” is a quiet, incomplete window into what happens when an artistic dream confronts the difficulty of time.

Duration:00:03:28

Transitioning to new stories

1/9/2018
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Alice has almost gotten up the nerve, she's about to hit send...when her girlfriend stops her. She's got something she's hidden from the world. She thinks she might actually be a he.

Theater for a New Year: a busy January

1/2/2018
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Typically, right after I wish you happy New Year, I run through my top picks in LA theater for the whole spring. But this year, there's so much exciting work happening in this month alone... well, let's just say break out your calendars and block off at least a couple nights in January.

Duration:00:03:34

Best of 2017

12/26/2017
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2017 has been a tumultuous year and the best of LA theater has spoken either directly or implicitly to with our political challenges.. Here's my short list for the work on LA's stages that left a lasting impression.

Duration:00:04:15

Circus for the spinning multi-tasker

12/19/2017
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If you're looking for some theatrical spectacle for the whole family over the holidays, my pick is Cirque Du Soleil's latest Luzia.

Duration:00:03:54

If it's not tax-deductible, will theater donors still give?

12/12/2017
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Okay, the holidays are almost upon us. What better time to talk about nonprofit theaters and the tax code?

Duration:00:03:54

Meaningless entertainment, on the other hand, is actually really hard

11/28/2017
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Anne Washburn's Mr. Burns is a complicated allegory that weaves pop culture references into an alternately funny and chilling tale. It's one of those plays that allow viewers to read into it their own personal take.

Duration:00:03:57

A lowbrow holiday in the theater

11/21/2017
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Okay, it's unavoidable. The holidays are upon us. Amidst the turkeys, black Fridays and Holiday parties, how about a little theater? Anthony Byrnes offers a quick list of the holiday spectacles on our stages.

Duration:00:03:43

Wrestling with the 'ghosts of ideas'

11/14/2017
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10 Million is simultaneously a private story of a family torn apart and a political history about the very personal impacts of Cuba's revolution. The Cuban production is part of the Encuentro de las Américas theater festival, a celebration of Latin theater from the Americas.

Duration:00:03:32

A bearded man with a ukulele and a bird mask

11/7/2017
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At first it's just small details . . . There's something odd about Erin Courtney's play A Map of Virtue.

Duration:00:03:50

An extended poetic metaphor

10/24/2017
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At its simplest level, With Love and a Major Organ is about a girl who falls in love with a guy she only knows through their shared subway rides. She decides to confess her love onto those tapes and deliver them to him with her heart -- her actual beating heart.

Duration:00:03:17

Technology or theater?

10/17/2017
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What happens when the technological magic of a theater piece eclipses the theatrical magic?

Duration:00:03:28

A prison story

10/10/2017
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All great plays tell a story . . . but not all stories make a play.

Duration:00:03:36

Appropriated disaster

10/3/2017
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There's a great play in the aftermath of the tragedy that was Hurricane Katrina. Runaway Home isn’t it.

Duration:00:03:10

Arguing with God

9/26/2017
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The ancient Greeks thought theater was a way to speak directly to the gods. Tarrell Alvin McCraney and Phylicia Rashad do them one better by arguing with God.

Duration:00:03:19

The Chicago Greeks

9/12/2017
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Each fall the Getty opens its outdoor amphitheater in Malibu to a theater company to produce a classic Greek or Roman play for a modern audience. The gods are particularly demanding in Euripedes' final play, Iphigenia in Aulis, this year's offering, produced by Chicago's Court Theatre.

Duration:00:04:01

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