Orange County Theatre Reviews

Review, Santa Ana, Theater, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on WTC View @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review |

WTC View @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

Over in Santa Ana, Theatre Out is putting on a show that focuses on what is probably the most horrifying date in living America’s collective memory –September 11th.  Written by Brian Sloan and directed by David C. Carnevale, WTC View ventures into the United States’ mental and emotional response to the pain of that day.  The reflective nature found here is both sorrowful and deeply cerebral. Continue Reading

Read more

Review, Santa Ana, Theater, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on Slow Burning Masterpiece : Torch Song Trilogy @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review |

Slow Burning Masterpiece : Torch Song Trilogy @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review

Written by Patrick Chavis 

(Warning – this show  is not for children and includes dark material).

Aptly titled Torch Song Trilogy, this stripped down rendition of the Tony Award winning show is a slow burning epic about a drag queen. Directed by Tito Ortiz, the story is truly touching, and it’s a shame it isn’t performed more often. If or when you miss this show, you will be missing a truly great production in Orange County Theatre history.   Continue Reading

Read more

Review, Santa Ana, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on Rent @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review |

Rent @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review

Written by Daniella Litvak 

Full disclosure: I love Rent.  I’ve seen this updated modern version of La Bohéme  about seven friends (or eight depending on how you feel about Benny) who struggle with AIDS, poverty, and love in NYC’s Alphabet City, more times then I can even remember.  I’ve listened to the original cast recording countless times and I’m still very angry about the movie version’s needless adaptational changes.

After watching this show so many times, I now have particular versions of how characters should sound or how certain numbers should be performed stuck in my head.  It took a little while to get acclimated to Theatre Out’s version of it.  Yet soon, I found myself liking this cast’s delivery on certain lines and their various reactions to the craziness happening onstage.

Rent03

Flynn Hayward, Joey Nestra photo courtesy of Stephen Rack

The song “Over The Moon” couldn’t get any hammier, Erin Ortegon (Maureen) proved me wrong.  Ortegon’s performance was glorious in a wonderful way. I have to say, though not all the musical numbers were great, the choreography did salvaged some of them.  My favorites were the songs featuring the entire cast singing: “Will I,” “La Vie Boheme,” and “Finale.” Continue Reading

Read more

Review, Santa Ana, Theater, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on Theatre Out’s Kiss of the Spider Woman @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review |

Theatre Out’s Kiss of the Spider Woman @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review

 Guest Writer
Written by Erin Tobin

 

Escapism has always been one of the joys of theater. In The Kiss of the Spider Woman, it is a central theme as the main character, Luis Molina, chooses to evade the terrors of the Southern American jail he is imprisoned in by fantasizing about the cinematic success of his favorite actress Aurora. Enthralled with her since childhood, he avoids the torture and turmoil around him by happily reliving all of her famous works except one role that haunts him; when she played a venomous Angel of Death known as the Spider Woman.

Continue Reading

Read more

Laguna beach, Laguna Playhouse, podcast, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on AMB Theatre Podcast #11 presented by OCR – Murder for Two @ The Laguna Playhouse 04/2015 |

Review, Theater, Theatre Out, Uncategorized Comments Off on Short But Sweet – Wolves @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review |

Short But Sweet – Wolves @ Theatre Out in Santa Ana – Review

Written by Alina Mae Wilson 

People love re-imagining fairy tales.  The popularity of well-known stories such as Into the Woods, Wicked, and every single re-created plot point on ABC’s Once Upon a Time proves  audiences everywhere are still willing to sit through the same basic storylines -so long as the tale is presented in a different, somewhat more “clever” way.  In Theatre Out’s production of Wolves, we get our “redone fairy tale” fix in the form of one man’s delusional worldview, which resembles a horror film version of Little Red Riding Hood.  Wolves is brief, amusing, and thoroughly, throughly weird.

11131792_10153122778819627_7185883548478343311_o

photo courtesy : David C. Carnevale

Via edification by an omnipotent narrator who possesses the ability to stop time, we learn Ben is a young man from a small town currently living in a big city where he does not fit in.  We also learn he is living with his infinitely more confident roommate, Jack, who just happens to be his former boyfriend.  Despite their breakup, Ben still has feelings for his roomie and doesn’t  cope well when Jack decides to go out for a night on the town.  

I don’t want to give too much away, but I do think it’s important to note this is not your typical fairy tale re-telling. This is not a re-imagined version of the original “Little Red Riding Hood.” This is a modern version of the story. Ben provides us with the main perspective rather than the Narrator.  The Narrator is there to clarify facts about Ben more than anything else.  The most important perspective in the story is undoubtedly Ben’s because he is the reactor to everything that happens.  

11103079_10153127916269627_1160110630230174291_o

photo courtesy : David C. Carnevale

In the best possible way, Jeffrey Fargo is disgusting as Ben.   He is a miserable, terrified, quivering like a mass of jell-o every moment he is onstage.  From the beginning to the end there is absolutely no difficulty believing the wretchedness of this sad and pathetic person.  But it is possible to be too miserable, and I do believe that line is crossed with Ben.  The Narrator gives us a condensed version of Jack and Ben’s history together, but it is too brief.   Ben and Jack do not really make sense either as roommates or lovers simply because Jack is so down to earth, and Ben is so…not.  Yes, opposites have been known to attract, but we as an audience never get to see anything appealing about Ben.   It might have made more sense for the two men to be brothers if only because the bond of familial love might make Jack’s willingness to humor Ben more understandable.  Otherwise we are simply left with our own bewildered thoughts of “Why on earth is Jack still here?” With a running time of just under sixty minutes, we still have plenty of time to get into the richer details of their relationship, so it’s somewhat surprising they choose to focus on overly-long dialogues between Jack and his friend Wolf.

The Narrator is well-written and has some of the best lines in the show.  Her consultations with the audience coupled with her eerie intentions towards Ben pretty much makes the show. Played by Lori Kelley, the Narrator had the audience laughing almost every time she spoke.  Kevin Carranza is perfectly believable as Wolf in every stage of his development.  Dylan Wallace seems to really come to life during the second half of the show when he gets to go through a bit of a personality development.  During the first half, his average joe persona seems to be reciting his lines rather too much by rote. 

 The show is under an hour long and could stand a bit more character development, but what is shown is shown pretty well.   Don’t go in expecting a lot of depth, just go in for some fun. 

7.8/10

April 3 – April 25

Podcast Interviews with the cast by Ashton Marcus:

Read more