Theater Reviews by Morna

Morna Martell

THIS JOINT IS JUMPIN’ – Los Angeles

Maybin Hewes’ illustrious show business career spans eight decades and now, at a young 91, she’s ready to do her “last big show.” So, before putting her tap shoes away, she has created this new revue. Together with a group of talents from a mixed generation of performers, Maybin promises lots of dancing, lots of singing (where lyrics make sense and melodies are tuneful), and comedy sketches (with no four-letter expletives) that will keep things fast paced and fun.

Joining her on stage are Anna Gagliardo, Nicole Gianuca, Arlene Parness, Mitchell Roché, Lauren Sullivan, Sydney Swearengin, and Nick Waaland. Judy Rose stages and directs, with musical direction by Ron Rose. A co-production of 44th Street Productions and Theatre West. Opens January 22 for a limited engagement. At Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd West, LA. Tickets: (323) 851-7977 or http://theatrewest.org

 

SINGING REVOLUTION: THE MUSICAL – Hollywood

Here is a musical with a Europop score inspired by actual events that led to Estonian independence from the Soviet Union in 1987. It’s a story of the leader of a resistance movement, who falls in love with the daughter of his enemy, and inspired by the real history of Estonia, peacefully leads his fellow countrymen to freedom through the power of song.

Featuring 20 performers and a live, five-piece band. Director Tony Spinosa says that James Bearhart and he wrote songs to illuminate the power of peaceful resistance, the importance of standing up for social justice, and as a reminder that standing up for what you believe in can help heal a nation. At Broadwater Theatre, Main Stage, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood. Tickets: www.singingrevolutionthemusical.com

Note: Current Covid Policy: Patrons must show ID, proof of full vaccination, and must wear a mask while inside all theaters.

 

MILLION DOLLAR QUARTET – La Mirada

This smash-hit musical was inspired by the true story of the famed December 4, 1956, recording session that brought together rock ‘n’ roll icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Carl Perkins for the first and only time. These four gathered at Sun Records in Memphis for what would be one of the greatest rock ‘n’ roll jam sessions ever! This show brings that musical event to life, featuring over 20 timeless hits including “Blue Suede Shoes,” “Fever,” “That’s All Right,” “Sixteen Tons,” “I Walk the Line,” “Great Balls of Fire,” “Folsom Prison Blues,” “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” and “Hound Dog.”

Directed by Tim Seib, it features Jacob Barton (Elvis Presley), Steven Lasiter (Johnny Cash), Trevor Dorner (Jerry Lee Lewis), Nathan Burke (Carl Perkins).

At La Mirada Theatre for The Performing Arts, 14900 La Mirada Blvd. Rated PG. Free Parking. Tickets at (562) 944-9801 or (714) 994-6310 or online at www.lamiradatheatre.com

 

Tick, Tick…BOOM! – Los Angeles

Playwright Jonathan Larson died on January 25, 1996, the day of the first performance of his eventual super-hit show “Rent,” from a rare inherited disorder. Its sadly ironic that six years before he had created and performed in an autobiographical rock musical about the sacrifices made to achieve his big break in theatre. Ultimately, this show was revised and revamped by playwright David Auburn under this new title and is now being seen on stage and film.

The live show, now playing in Hollywood, has fourteen songs, ten characters, three actors and a live band, and takes you on the playwright/composer’s journey that led to a Broadway blockbuster. Cast features Isaac Robinson-Smith, Mandie Hittleman, and Christopher Fishburne. Produced and directed by Clint Foley. The Atlas Space at Thymele Arts, 5481 Santa Monica Blvd, (& Western) L.A. Tickets at www.Upnextprods.com

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