Theater Reviews by Morna

Morna Martell

MOTHER SISTERS – Atwater Village


When author Makaela Vogel was growing up, she learned that her mother was one of nine girls – which meant she had 8 aunties! Recently, she was inspired to write a documentary play based on interviews she conducted with her now-mature aunts. In this show, looking back over their varied and fascinating lives, these women affirm the strength and transformative power of their bond as sisters. Come and meet these female travelers of the late 20th century and hear of their journeys.

Starring alphabetically: Cambell, Sharae Foxie, Eliza Frakes, Lorena Gonzalez, Hollye Hudson, Gloria Ines, Dylan Jones, Natalya Nielsen, Hilary Oglesby, Marti Skoler, Mckenna Slone, Chelsea Spirito, Makaela Vogel, Zoe Walpole, and Marie Zolezzi. Directed by Sky Paley and produced by Winnie Chen. Presented by Echo Theater Company’s artistic director Chris Fields. At Atwater Village Theatre, 3269 Casitas Ave, LA. Free Parking.

Tkts: Call (310)-307-3753 or



BASEMENT FOLLY – Beverly Hills


Playwright David Datz asks, “What would you do if you suddenly discovered someone living in your basement?” In his comedy, a couple actually realize that an unknown person is living in their basement. A normal couple would take swift action, right, but not these people. They have to discuss it: Shall we call the police? Kick the person out, with so many people homeless? Is it an old family friend who appears, homeless and needing shelter? What about our adult daughter, who wants a temporary place? What if it’s your mentally unstable sister? What’s moral? What’s safe? And who’s down there, anyway? Seems this family’s greatest talent is bickering!

The cast includes (alphabetically) Kat Kemmet, Matt Landig, Tammy Mora, Michael Robb, and Caroline Westheimer. Carol M. Becker directs. Produced by David Hunt Stafford. At Theatre 40, 241 South Moreno Drive, Beverly Hills. Free parking. Tkts: (310) 364-3606 or:





In this powerful one-man drama, Tony-winning star John Rubinstein portrays General Dwight D. Eisenhower. In fact, Rubinstein had the honor of meeting “Ike” at the White House when he was a boy. Now, as a lifelong Ike aficionado, he has a deep commitment to the material and promises to bring strength, humanity and humor to the role. Believing that “Truth and Justice are two sides of the same coin” – Dwight D. Eisenhower

Author Richard Hellesen has stated that although this play is a fiction, a piece of history, it is adapted from a range of General Eisenhower’s memoirs, speeches, and letters. As author he is grateful to David Eisenhower and the Eisenhower family for permission to quote as needed.

Directed by Peter Ellenstein. At Theatre West, 3333 Cahuenga Blvd. West, LA. Tkts at Box Office (323) 851-7977 or online at:





Kristoffer Diaz’s Pulitzer Prize-nominated play follows the life of imagined wrestler Macedonio Guerra who has pursued wrestling only to become a “jobber,” one who is paid to lose to big-name stars in the ring. Then he meets Vigneshwar Paduar, and together they find a way to finally get a shot at champion Chad Deity himself?

Director Jeremy Aluma, calls it “entertaining, thought-provoking and relevant.” He praises playwright Diaz for raising crucial questions: “How does one pursue the American Dream in a country that isn’t yet ready to open the door to everyone? And when we betray our code of ethics for a piece of the American Dream, can we still live with ourselves?”

At Chance Theater @ Bette Aitken Theater Arts Center, 5522 E. La Palma Ave., Anaheim, CA 92807. Tkts: call (888) 455-4212 or online

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