Thursday, December 17, 2020


To quote Bertrand Russell “War does not determine who is right- only who is left”.  

Imagine wandering around the world telling the same story, singing the same song for three thousand years? Now imagine how tiring it must be after pouring your heart out telling this story, this tale of woe, only to see history repeating itself as though no one is paying attention? Finally, imagine that story/song is Homer’s “The Iliad” and The Trojan Wars that go on and on between two great warriors-Achilles and Hector? Or closer to home, imagine it the Revolutionary War, The Civil War or WWI, WWII, Viet Nam, or Iraq, Iran or Afghanistan?

Richard Baird

Like the ongoing wars, this one person tour-de-force performance isn’t the first out of the chute, not this particular rendition, anyway. This adaptation by Lisa Peterson and Denis O’Hare has been produced here three times. Yours truly has seen one other several years ago.  Peterson and O’Hare won the 2012 Obie and Lucille Lortel awards for this epic piece.  It is their adaptation as translated by Robert Fagles, of the ancient war of the Trojans told in a contemporary tongue and tone and performed by Baird the lone storyteller. 

A recent interview in the U.T. noted that director David Ellenstein had also seen the same production. It was about eight years ago that the idea of casting Richard Baird, actor extraordinaire, in the role of The Poet, wanderer, and every other character mentioned in Homer’s “The Iliad”.

It paid of in spades. 

Amanda Schaar with Richard Baird

Sometimes when the timing is just right, and all the stars are aligned, patience becomes a virtue. And so was the case with North Coast Artistic director David Ellenstein and Richard Baird in this beautifully and hauntingly choreographed dance between the Poet, his Muse (Amanda on cello playing original music for the piece) all the warriors; Hector, Priam, Achilles, the husbands, the gods, children of the warriors, wives and every other character. 

Baird enters a pretty bare theatre space (Marty Burnett, with props by Phillip Korth) fittingly, not far from the ocean. He takes off his hat, sets down his suitcase and begins his narrative. 

“What drove them to fight with such a fury?” the narrator asks as he begins the tale. “Oh ... the gods, of course .... Um ... pride, honor, jealousy ... Aphrodite ... some game or other, an apple, Helen being more beautiful than somebody — it doesn’t matter. The point is, Helen’s been stolen, and the Greeks have to get her back.” “

According to our narrator they had to fight…the gods, of course were angered. The leader, Agamemnon took the spoils of war-this gorgeous15-year-old Helen, Apollo’s daughter and the Greeks had to get her back. But getting her back wasn’t as easy as it looked and so battles rage and men die and leaders hold on to their pride their honor and war prevails. After all, one doesn’t quit in the middle.

The dance begins with a nod from the muses. For ninety minutes he tells us of how it was from a first handed look.  He has to because someone must bear witness, not to just to these wars but to all wars that carried men from all points of the world, Nebraska, South Dakota, twangy boys of Memphis, San Diego, Palo Alto; “nine years like a game of tug of war, fighting and nothing to show for it… they’ve forgotten why they’re fighting”. 

Richard Baird

With Baird’s inimitable acting prowess, we travel the highs and lows of war ravaged worlds. His is a delicate balance of rage, sorrow, disgust, passion, a sense of urgency, irony, questioning Homer’s world with the modern world of endless wars. The narrative seems to come easy even as he shouts out a few lines of Greek trying to remember when he first told the story and asking the muses to help him with his memory.  

If war is the major topic of the night, Baird, who at the center, makes a compelling case against it. By taking one of the oldest wars in history and connecting the dots (kind of) to every other war in history has to give one pause, one would hope, that countries be a little more cautious, less blasé about solving every conflict with swords and guns, cannons and bombs, IUD’S and missiles.

If compelling theatre is in the stars for you, I give it two thumbs up. 

And yes, “Imagine all the people living in peace”.  

See you, virtually, at the theater, 

Cinematographer/ Editor and Photographer: Aaron Rumley

“An Iliad” will be Streaming December 9, 2020– January 24, 2021.


Tuesday, November 17, 2020

      Jessica John makes her coming out solo debut in Roustabouts “No Way Back”.

Therapist turned writer, Mahshid Fashandi Hager wrote the play “No Way Back”, Roustabouts Theatre Company is giving it a riveting world premiere filmed production and Fran Gercke is directing. But it is Jessica John who breathes life into Mahshid’s plight as the ten year old, who with her family is forced to flee their home in Tehran, Iran during the Islamic Revolution in 1979.

This true story is seen and told through the eyes of a child (John, Mahshid’s alter ego). She doesn’t miss a beat taking on each member of her family and their relationships with one another, their responsibilities, respect for and about one another and their devotion to family, the beauty of her country, the struggles, trauma’s and obstacles they encountered, the dangers they faced and finally, survival and ‘triumph’. 

And that’s the point of John’s coming out solo debut. John ‘swore she would never be able to star in a one-woman show’, but somehow the ‘script resonated with her deeply because it depicts a very similar escape her family took to flee the Middle East many years ago when her Assyrian grandmother was a young girl”. “She escaped, but her mother, brother and 21 of her relatives died in their efforts to reach the United States”. 

To put it mildly, John nailed it with razor sharp intensity and focus.  Her accent, her mannerisms and her facilal expressions never faltered. There wasn’t a time in the 100 minute or so show that I doubted she was young Mahshid. 

Jessica John (photo Daren Scott)

From the time she heard the gunshots outside her bedroom windows, to the heavy footsteps in her house, to the anxious waiting for her “dad” to come home, to her “mom” calling her for dinner (and not to get her clothes dirty), to their leaving their beloved home with only one bag of belongings, to their being confronted by Iranian guards, Kurdish soldiers, bandits and Turkish henchmen,( as well as a small amount of sympathizers,) to their trek over mountains in the snow to reach Germany by way of Turkey and finally to The United States, her performance felt as natural as if she was Mahshid. 

John can never go back to not performing in a solo show. Her fate is sealed. If it took her personal interest in the story, deft direction by Gercke, and a theatre (Roustabouts) with Phil Johnson willing to stream new plays like “No Way Back” and “Roosevelt: Charge the Bear” (Just recently seen) then so be it. She deserves a standing ovation and this is my way of doing it. 


John hopes this play offers viewers a way to understand the sacrifices immigrants make to come here especially in these tremulous days of using immigrants and refugee’s as pawns of a phobic and detestable administration blocking immigrants from entering our shores to separating children from their mothers. We are and always will be a nation of immigrants like John’s family, my family and Ms. Hager’s family and thousands of others that make up the fabric of our nation. 

Here are the family Roustabout-er”s that give it the finished and final look. 

Design/Props: Tony Cucuzzella

Costume Design: Jessica John 

Assistant Costume Design: Ross Stewart 

Lighting Design: Joel Britt 

Sound Design: Matt Lescault-Wood 

Director of Photography/Editor: Michael Brueggemeyer 

Film Consultant: Jonah Gercke 

Video Operator: Mark Maisonneuve

Photo: Daren Scott

Where: On line at

Runs through December 13

Prices: $25.00 to $100.00

Please contact Box Office 619.568.5800 for discount offers. 

See you on line at the theatre.

Sunday, November 1, 2020


I wish I paid more attention to my American history. Living in Boston in my growing up years where so much history was made, I knew that John Adams second president of the United States was from Boston; Braintree, Mass. to be exact. But when you’re that famous, Boston will do. His son, John Quincy Adams, was the sixth president. There was also a John Adams II. No accident, he was born in Quincy, Mass. Technically parts of Braintree broke away to form Quincy, Mass. Been there, done that. But that’s another history lesson. So, the Adams’ family (not to be confused with the Addams Family) is certainly well known in them thare parts. We even have an Adams Ave right here in San Diego.

Now to the subject at hand, “JQA”. Or to put it in other words, John Quincy Adams. Who knew? Another president, another time. 


“JQA” is a relatively new play by playwright Adam Posner (“Stupid Fu**ing Bird”). It streaming on line through the 29 th. of Nov., from the folks at The San Diego Rep. under the deft direction of Artistic Director Sam Woodhouse. 

Between the musicals “Blood, Bloody Andrew Jackson” (2006) “Hamilton the Musical, “1776”, and more and with plays like “Necessary Sacrifices” and “Roosevelt: Charge the Bear”, and provided we all come out of this pandemic and the last four years of one of the most gawdauful and depressing times (read DJT) in our history, we should all have fun with these historical American figures.

Playwright Aaron Posner’s latest, I hope hit “JQA” has so much to talk and think about that one hardly knows where to begin. But if we must start at the beginning let’s first begin by announcing that JQA is “NOT historically accurate, but it is largely historically feasible.” It’s a what if, who, how and when. You can almost forget how Posner sucks you in to believe or want to believe that all he says is accurate. Imagine if you had a chance to talk with any one person from history, dead or alive, who would it be?  My twelve year old grandson chose John F. Kennedy. Smart boy.

 In Posner’s JQA”, John Quincy Adams, oldest son of John Adams; statesman, congressman, president, husband and father, (and not a very good one by his own admission: “they bore me to hell”) has an opportunity to interact with George Washington, Henry Clay, Andrew Jackson, James Monroe, Abraham Lincoln, and Fredrick Douglass. (Remember him in “Necessary Sacrifices” in conversations with Abraham Lincoln?)  

All of those characters and more are played by four actors; two male, two females who all turn in brilliant work in the flash of the moment or next scene. There are ten starting in 1776. We begin with some historical background and then:  John Adams is teaching his son John Quincy at age 10: asking, “Do you know what government is?”

Posner’s conversations (again imagined) between Adams and other historical figures cover topics from an exchange with George Washington (played with panache by Rosina Reynolds (she also plays an older Abigail Adams and James Monroe.) The young Adams is played by Crystal Lucas Perry They are in Boston (shown drinking from paper coffee cups). Adams was 27, Washington is 62. Washington appoints Adams to be his Minister to the Netherlands. When Adams hesitates: G.W. “I’m The President, the father of your damn country, and you probably don’t want to piss me off.” And so, it goes.

L. to R. Crystal Lucas Perry, Larry Bates, Rosina Reynolds , Jesse Perez.

The multi-talented cast includes Larry Bates, (Andrew Jackson and Frederick Douglass), Rosina Reynolds, Chrystal Lucas-Perry and Jesse Perez. Perez takes a turn (they all play multiple characters) as Secretary of State Henry Clay who warns that if “You can’t learn to compromise you’re going to be playing more golf than governing.” Sound familiar? Perez plays the senior Adams and Henry Clay as well. He's also not without his bias toward immigrants, Jews, Blacks and the list goes on. ("You can take away their liberties...and as often as not they'll thank you for it.") How true.  

Crystal Lucas Perry as  Adams' wife Louisa has one of the more constant roles of adversary, mother and wife.  When Adams is indifferent to her feelings, or when he’s off on the trip or disregards her ill feelings about his parents, Abigail and John Adams, she lets it all hang out. She is especially vocal towards his mother who treated her ‘brutally in her words, and that she must’ve been broken inside because she had so many miscarriages’ she has no trouble letting him know. 

    Larry Bates as Frederick Douglass and Rosina Reynolds as JQA                                      

If truth be told and that may be the truth, she is pretty faithful to him and may be the only person who really tells him how things are. Later on, in the play she shows up as young Abraham Lincoln facing the elder statesman JQA now played by Perez and that turns into a very revealing conversation especially when Adams cautions Lincoln ‘to do right.’ 

It seems the slavery issue isn’t going to be solved overnight. If you remember “Necessary Sacrifices” and the then conversations between Lincoln and Douglass in 1863? In “JQA” that conversation happens again 1843. No need to repeat that history. It's already being repeated.

With the tumult in the country now, history is repeating itself as we speak. And talk about history, the conversations between Adams the President and his Secretary of State Henry Clay played zealously by Jesse Perez and sounding the alarm as if the words came straight from the lips of DJT. (Scare the fuck out of them. Give ‘em something to fear. Something dark... and dangerous... and disturbingly different from them. “) It's astounding!

     Crystal Lucas Perry as young JQA and Rosina Reynolds as GW.

And so it goes with each and every historical personality with whom Adams comes into contact, and Posner's JQA matching these men and women of history and bringing their voices to the fore of the 21st century is brilliant, entertaining, humorous, and eye opening. 

Lest we think DJT is the worst of bunch, there were others, not in our lifetimes though, who could have done as much damage as this one, but men and women of honor who stood for creating a strong, free independent nation and fulfilling the dreams of the signers of the Declaration of Independence let their voices be heard. They were not afraid. 

Hats off to The San Diego Repertory Theatre.

The production team is rounded out by: Justin Humphres (Set Design); Anastasia Pautova (Costume Design); Chris Rynne (Lighting Design); Matt Lescault-Wood (Sound Design); Joel Castellaw (Dramaturgy); Film Directing by Tim Powell, Rebecca Myers (Assistant Director); and Kim Heil (Casting Director & Associate Producer), Photos by Daren Scott.

Tickets are $35. 00 + fees for on line tickets.

It will be streaming through November, 29, 2020

For more information visit:

 Just as an afterthought, you might be interested in  reading :Obama needs to follow John Quincy Adams' lead back to Congress

Hayes Brown 


Wednesday, October 28, 2020


It’s been years since I’ve been to a drive in of any kind, and I’ve been around long enough to remember drive in restaurants where the servers were in roller skates. If that’s hard to imagine, imagine a drive in opera. It’s not so farfetched in the year of Covid 19 but it, in a way, farfetched as well. With theatres dark and with the exception of those creative enough to figure out ways to film and stream one or two person plays, the prospects of seeing live performances is almost unheard of …until now.

Enter the bold and courageous San Diego Opera. For all intents and purposes and because of the restrictions and health standards, the opera would not begin to have a season. The Met. is shuttered as are most opera houses around the world. At the beginning of the pandemic, yours truly was watching operas from the past that were recorded for history. This held my interest for several months until they started repeating them. 

No more! Believe it or not, we here in San Diego are able to see Puccini’s gorgeous “La bohème” in the comfort of our cars in the parking lot of the one-time Sports Arena parking lot now Pechanga Arena. It was made possible by generous donors and the inspired mind of General Director David Bennett. 

Together with Conductor Rafael Payare, and the reduced (23 musicians) SD Symphony Orchestra, Director Keturah Stickann, costume designer Opera dé Montreal, Lighting Designer Chris Rynne, Sound Designer, Ross Goldman and Stage Manager Michael Janney it was an opera lover’s paradise.


                                    Tenor Joshua Guerrero

Reimaged as a memory play instead of in the moment, Rodolfo finds himself ‘reflecting on a bittersweet moment’ ten years earlier of his first meeting with Mimi and the story of the beginning of their love affair and its tragic ending. 

Making her company debut as Mimi, is the lovely Ana María Martínez who replaced Angel Joy Blue (health reasons) and did it in a way that won the hearts and minds of those who love a beautiful love story. The vulnerable and sickly Mimi (Martìnez) never disappointed living up to her vocal challenges especially when in duets with Guerrero. Her “Si. Mi chiamano Mimi”  telling Rodolfo about herself sets the tone for some stunning singing. 

Her poet lover Rodolfo, tenor Joshua Guerrero, is excellent, and that was immediately apparent in his tender aria “Che gelida manina” in Act I when they first meet. The two are a perfect match vocally.


      Robert Mellon in background, with Ana Maria Martinez as Mimi

 There are lighter times however when Soprano Andrea Carrol’s Musetta comes to the outdoor celebrations in the Latin Quarter with her rich sponsor, Alcindoro, bass baritone Scott Sikon. Left holding the dinner check and looking completely baffled, she taunts her ex-lover painter Marcello (Baritone Alexander Birch Elliot) in her centerpiece aria, “Quando m’en vo" about her popularity. Bass Collin Ramsey, and baritone Robert Mellon’s Schaunard along with Rodolfo round out the roommate trio. Both Mellon and Ramsey have more to do in a full length rendition, but the entire cast was more than up to the task the night I attended.  

Andrea Carrol's Musetta

The entire production lasts about ninety minutes without intermission. Rynne’s crisp sound design was heard  by tuning into the car's FM radio. There are sufficient screens placed strategically around the parking lot allowing  anyone and then some, not close enough to the stage, to be able to watch mostly everything on a super large TV screen with Supertitles.

The one drawback was that, while we could see and hear each of the performers singing one or two at a time, we were not able to see the entire cast on stage; a small price to pay to see live performances at this time when everything else we see is filmed and streamed. 

The changes in the format of Puccini’s  "La bohéme” under Director Keturah Stickann was a necessity especially in the time of Covid, safety protocols, and social distancing on stage. The lack of chorus and keeping a distance of 15 feet of each other with each singer having four feet on either side worked just fine. In a way, while the distancing could have thrown an emotional wrench into the passionate feelings, it never felt less than passionate. In fact, so strong were the voices and so avid the feelings, honking (instead of clapping) to the cacophony of car horns was quite novel. 

Cast of La Boheme

But in the times of a major pandemic, we have to give a shout out to the San Diego Opera Company for this big boost to the arts our and
our well being.

There is nothing like a good cry at the end in the privacy and darkness of your own car and your own bubble. Sigh.

It will be shown again on October 30th and November 1st. Do enjoy!

San Diego Opera

233 A Street, Suite 500

San Diego, CA 92101

T. (619) 232-7636


 Photo: Karli Cadel

Friday, October 23, 2020


“The Times They Are A Changin.” Over the course of twenty five years, people change; love grows deeper; people fall out of love, grow older and values change. In Bernard Slade’s bitter sweet love story, his 1975 “Same Time, Next Year”, starring the real husband and wife team of Bruce Turk as George and Katie MacNichol as Doris, and directed by NCR’s artistic director David Ellentsein the couples’ once every year clandestine rendezvous brings with it a new revelation with each passing year.

The play unfolds every five years starting in 1951 in a comfortable Spanish style (Marty Burnett) motel room in Northen Ca. They met over a steak dinner. No, they were not dining together, he sent a steak over to her table as a gesture. I guess people fall in love over less expensive food choices, but that’s the story we’re stuck with. It doesn’t end there, however. It moves into an overnight tryst and then to a weekend long date, one laced with guilt laden explanation as to why and how it’s going to work out. 

The two are so uptight that first morning when they awake, and after a night of lovemaking Doris wraps herself up in the bed sheets crawls out of bed and gets dressed in the bathroom. That doesn’t stop them, however from meeting at the same time and same place each year.


No big surprise. The next scene, five years later (we know because there is a hint hanging on the piano: ‘5 year anniversary’ in bold red letters) the clothes and wigs have been updated from 1956’s to ‘70’s (Elsa Benzoni and Peter Herman) with 50’s dresses with garter belts and crinoline slips to hipster beads and suede vests to slacks and tops for Doris with an assortment of wigs noting the hair styles and slight noticeable changes in the styles of George’s clothes, the lapel widths, shirt designs and a slight graying at the temples.

They talk, they sleep they exchange little stories about their lives, their mates and they make love. In fact, in that time George and Doris made love together one hundred and thirteen times. Now most married couples, at least the ones I know don’t keep track of their lovemaking, but here’s the scoop: Doris and George are married but not to each other, they are carrying on a ‘secret’ love affair behind their spouse’s backs and George is a wiz at numbers. 

Slade is clever enough to toss in just the right amount of pathos, family illness, the Vietnam War, the drug culture, death of a child, near death of a spouse. He balances the serious with the light and frivolous, and to the actor’s credit, they manage it with ease making the most of the situations and giving it and them a measure of credibility. 

Over the course of the years she grows more self-assured, finishes college, opens a thriving business and learns to be content with her husband, George. On the other hand, he grows more serious as his business grows and he sees Doris changing, but not at all to his liking. 

Both manage to rein in their differences as they become more in tune with each other, older, comfortable and the shifting attitudes of the times. Their personal triumphs and disappointments are met with understanding and love as they share stories, empathize and commiserate; he even helps with the birth of her fourth child in one of the funniest scenes in the play.

Slade’s play ran on Broadway from 1975 to 1978 with over 1,453 performances and was later (some might remember) made into a movie starring Alan Alda and Ellen Burstyn. It earned her a Best Actress Award. Slade also created “The Partridge Family,” “The Flying Nun “and “Bewitched”. Now that would be fun to see. But more than morals changing and with everything going viral, in retrospect its difficult not to wince at the dialogue, gender roles, reference to race and religion (“You must be Jewish… because they’re always feeling guilty.) and corny jokes. As I said it's vintage, but not necessarily good.

To that end, with Covid in the picture and theatres having to reinvent themselves “Same Time Next Year” with husband and wife playing against each other, the choice of this two person play makes sense at least as a filler. 

 I can't help comparing the excellent and intense past production of  "Necessary Sacrifices” and "Same Time". It is a bit like comparing apples and oranges, you can’t. That’s not to take anything away from the fine acting of Turk and MacNichol, and perhaps a little levity is what folks at home want to see. 

I may be an old fuddy- duddy, but give me something fresh and new and gutsy and I’m a happy camper. 

“Same Time Next Year” will be streaming on line through Nov. 15th.

North Coast Rep. 987 Lomas Santa Fe Drive  #D, Solana Beach, Ca.  

Photos: Aaron Rumley

Props: Philip Roth

Phone: 858-481-1055

Saturday, October 17, 2020


The dynamic duo of Freedman and Johnson are at it again. If you recall the two tackled the Hollywood Blacklist fiasco of the 50’s in a one man show, “A Jewish Joke” starring Johnson as Bernie Lutz, funnyman, writer, comic and actor.  

In this ‘bitter comedy’ Lutz came under the evil eye of Joe McCarthy’s House Committee on Un American activities whose one purpose was to ‘out’ anyone in the entertainment industry (read Blacklist) that had any connections, past or present, to the Communist Party, causing them to lose their jobs and taint their reputations putting them out of their work. Most of the targets were Jewish entertainers including directors, actors, writers and performers.

The duo is at it again with another solo show starring Johnson in “Roosevelt-Charge the Bear”. It’s another look into American  politics but this time it’s about founder of the ‘Bull Moose’ Party, Teddy-Theodore Roosevelt whose rise to the presidency came as much of  a surprise as well as chagrin to him as it did the Republican Party after the assassination of President McKinley.

              Photos by Daren Scott

Curiously, after watching all of Ken Burn’s five or six part series on the Roosevelt’s I came away with little memory of his accomplishments as the 26th.  President of the United States.  With the exception of (and no easy fete) his being a conservationist, historian, naturalist and explorer, he will be remembered by his 1898 organization of the Rough Riders, the first volunteer cavalry in the Spanish American War. They were best remembered for their charge up San Juan Hill in 1898 years before he became president.  His likeness is also carved on Mount Rushmore along with Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. 

At the ripe old age of 43 he was then the youngest President in the nation’s history. He brought with him a more progressive agenda than the traditional Republican mantra claiming that the President is the “steward of the people” and should take whatever action necessary for the public good. Nothing could have prepared him for the fight the established Republican party would give him as he struggled to settle the eastern Pennsylvania coal miner’s strike of 1902. He tried bringing together mine owners, money men like Carnegie, and Rockefeller to the United Mine Workers of America and the miners to negotiate for better housing, higher wages and safer working conditions

He hones in on a letter he received from a young boy (13 years old) whose brother who is nine and working in the mines and already is sick from the fumes he inhaled He carries the letter around to remind himself of what’s happening in the real world outside of politics as he travels the country by train from Bangor, Maine to Burlington, Vermont to Providence, Rhode Island and beyond reaching out and meeting those waiting to see him. 

In this exciting world premiere, Marni Freedman and Phil Johnson along with actor/ director Rosina Reynolds have given us a clear picture of the 26th President’s, early into his presidency one of the biggest challenges of his career: solving or putting an end to the coal miner’s strike. When he learns that one hundred and forty thousand men are on strike including the firemen, engineers and pump men it’s difficult for him to fathom that there will be no heat, and American’s would “die in the streets, to literally freeze to death in their own homes.” ‘And the party and money men wanted me to sit down and shut my mouth."

The play pivots back and forth in and around other locations but for most of part Johnson’s Roosevelt is either sitting behind his desk in the oval office (Tony Cucuzzella) or walking around it, or sitting at its edge, getting a shave and/or talking to reporters or talking about taking a hike with reporters.  He valued the opinions of the reporters to keep him on track and tell the truth. 

The conversations give background into his inner thinking about the job he was thrown into, the few ally’s he thought he had inside the Republican party (Senator Mark Hanna, “Now that damn cowboy is president.” ) but really never had, to the deaths of both his mother and first wife coming hours apart, to his enthusiasm about building the Panama Canal; about his sisters disability from a spinal condition and how he encouraged  science and medicine to work together to help all those with physical disabilities by making less cumbersome braces (not to mock them as our current leader does). 

In a reflective moment he reminisces about the time he invited his friend Booker T. Washington to dine at the White House. Later in response to the invitation from the senator of South Carolina, senator Tillman “we shall have to kill a thousand of them to get them back in their places”. I can hear Lindsay Graham referring to Jim Crow laws as the ‘Good Old Days’. Not much has changed in the Republican party or South Carolina.

Johnson, who acts  as Artistic Director and a pro at heart, does throw his heart and soul into giving the audiences a clear picture of another man of history whose heart and soul were definitely for the American people. From his early days as his time as a conservationist to the story of his stalking ‘The Bear’ to’ hunting the bear’ to admitting that he was ready to ‘charge ‘the bear (intervene in the strike), his is a performance well worth remembering. It carries with it the utmost sincerity, confidence and genuine belief in his character. Presidential is a good word. For ninety minutes his presidential posture never falters as he transforms himself to become Roosevelt. 

As the other dynamic duo of director Reynolds and actor Johnson this show is flawless, inviting and engaging and definitely worth watching, perhaps more than once as the character of Roosevelt the man is in such stark contrast to the one sitting in the White House now its mind boggling. The comparison is a lesson in humanity/humility for all who cherish our democracy and  miss right now!

The making of a production (i.e. filmed staging)  during the time of a pandemic involves the work of many behind the scenes technicians from stage manager Jassmyn Foster, to costume designer Jordyn  Smyley (period clothes perfect) to assistant Costume Designer Ross Stewart, to Lghting Designer Joel Britt to Sound  Designer Matt Lescault-Wood to Director of Photography/Editor Michael Brueggmyer and last but not least Daren Scott’s wonderful photos of Roosevelt the man looking very presidential.  

The show runs through Nov. 2nd 

Tickets: $25to $100.00

Phone: 619-568-5800

Theatre: Roustabouts

Two thumbs up!

Tuesday, October 13, 2020



If you like the music and songs of Johnny and June Cash, Joni Mitchell, Judy Collins, Woody Guthrie, Paul McCartney to name a few, you will love Lamb’s now on line show, "Lamb's Cabaret". It was filmed live, directed by Robert Smyth, and is now being streamed on any number of your home devices  through Nov. 1st. Running time is 50 minutes. 

Staring husband and wife team Caitie Grady and Charles Evans, Jr. 
with Cris O'Brryon on piano, it's a fun, upbeat and entertaining show. The couple show off their many talents together and oft in solo as Evans repeats some of the Johnny Cash songs from Lamb's mega hit "Million Dollar Quartet" just this past year. 

Both artists are among the companies resident artists at the theatre. Their recent performance "Babette's Feast had the audience holding their breaths while the couple showed us their talents in gorgeous arias from Mozarts "Don Giovanni". 

The two also performed together in "Once" and "Chaps.  Always up beat and comfortable with each other, this 'Cabaret' will keep you humming long after its over. 

Photos: Lamb's Players Theatre. 

Friday, September 25, 2020



 Not this Picasso! 

This Picasso!  

“A Weekend with Picasso” was the work of a lifetime for Herbert Siguenza; one that the actor/ artist had been preparing for a lifetime. He is simply wonderful, playful and completely at ease as Picasso’s alter ego in this wonderful tour de force.
“A Weekend with Pablo Picasso” was workshopped at the San Diego Rep. in 2010 as work in progress. Siguenza, a founding member of the performance group Culture Clash, wrote the piece, which includes quotes from Picasso’s writings. 

The piece was mounted once again three years ago at New Village Arts Theatre and now The San Diego Rep. is presenting the film adaptation of the play for your viewing through Oct.14th. 

I found it interesting…well alarming how my memory failed me after watching the streamed film version recently as I struggled to remember some of the scenes. Yes, some of the newer clips of film were taken outside his residence in the South of France 1957 but the rest was filmed on the stage of the San Diego Rep. The outside scenes were actually lovely and gave an openness to the production.

Herbert Siguenza takes on the role of Picasso with relish. He will tell you in chapter and verse about the man himself as he channels Picasso’s every move, mannerism, mood, philosophy, chuckle and thought. He dances, clowns, speaks several languages and gets dead serious about politics, past and present. It all starts as he is lathering himself in his bathtub. Speaking directly to the audience,  he agrees to let us in on his work habits only of we promise to leave at the end of the weekend.  

An accomplished arti/painter in his own right, Siguenza will paint a few portraits on stage; some still life and embellish some already finished products. He will tell you about the women in his life, (“When I kiss a woman, I leave my eyes open. I want to see everything”) his politics (with passion) and what a great person he is. Well? “I do not wish my celebrity on anyone…not even my worst enemies” …” The whole world demands from me”. 

He’s seventy-six at the time action takes place. “Time is a bandit. When it’s gone, it’s gone. Like a taxi meter. No argument. The older I get, the stronger the wind gets-and it’s always in my face. I’m afraid I have less and less time yet more and more to say”.
At the time of the play, the icon Picasso is to work on a commission for six painting and three vases for a wealthy patron. The play takes place over a three-day weekend in his studio in the South of France where he is working feverishly to complete his commission. Speaking directly to the audience, as the performance opens, he agrees to let us in on his work habits only of we promise to leave at the end of the weekend.  

Visuals of a painter at work are everywhere; a pencil drawing of a young Picasso, a photo of Picasso with his wife Dora Maar, cubist paintings, African art, a photo of Picasso working on Guernica, (Giulio Perrone scenic/with recreated styles and clothing that Picasso actually wore in famous photographs by Douglas Duncan 1957/59 that some might call casual elegance.). His studio is visual wonder packed with wooden packing crates, books, photos, food, clothing, easels, engravings with hand scrawled messages and reminders about. 

For this reviewer it was a pleasant trip down memory lane when things were simpler and going to the theatre was a treat and a time to gather with old friends. 

Yes, Picasso is alive and well and as long as we cherish the memories of Siguenza’s Picasso we can focus on that.

The production is directed by Tim Powell and Todd Salovey, with Sam Woodhouse as Producer. The production team is rounded out by: Chelsea Smith (1st Assistant Director); Catharina Cojulun (1st Assistant Camera); Ashley McFall (Gaffer); Evan Rayder (Grip & Electrician); Matt Lescault-Wood (Sound Mixer & Recordist); Anastasia Pautova (Art Director & Costumes/Props); Sammy Moore (Set Design & Art Department Lead); Kate Reynolds (Location Scout); and Kim Heil (Associate Producer).

The cost of a ticket is $35.00 and can be purchased on line at:


Monday, September 21, 2020

 "The Niceties": Celebrating Sixteen Years of Plays By Women in Celebration of Women.

Congrats to Moxie Theatre on the opening of its sweet sixteenth season. No easy fete this, in the middle of a pandemic where theatres are closed to audience participation and involvement. 

Now the actors must rehearse through zoom and other creative measures. After final rehearsals the actors and necessary staff come together shortly before shooting the film version of the staged play.  Before this show begins, there is a short documentary as to how its all done.

This seems to be the norm so far as theatres getting their audiences as close to being there as not. By using this device, director Delicia Turner Sonnenberg managed to present to audiences a thoughtful, dramatic, informative and sometimes tense  production of "The Niceties" by Eleanor Burgess. 

Deja Fields and Mouchette val Helsdingen

"The Niceties" is a relative new play. It was developed at the Contemporary American Theatre Festival in Shepherdstown, West Virginia in 2017 and made its world premiere during the 2018-19 season in a co-production with the Huntington Theatre Company. 

Burgess studied History at Yale College. “The events in “The Niceties” are based on her own experiences and the clashes over diversity on the Yale campus. 

The play is as contemporary as BLM and racial discrimination in Ivy League Schools, though it has a history lesson that dates back further than 1619/The 1619 Project, perhaps in the 1500’s when the first slaves, about 350, were brought to American shores in Virginia by Portuguese and Spanish slave ships. 

When we first meet our two protagonists Janine, (Mouchette val Helsdingen) and Zoe (Deja Fields) in Janine’s office at an ‘elite university' in the Northeast, Zoe is waiting for American History professor Janine to read over and correct her grammar and historical content of the first draft of her history thesis. Zoe is fine with the grammatical corrections but not so much the corrections about her historical findings. (“I’m afraid you’re in for a substantial rewrite”)  Her paper , “A Successful American revolution was only possible because of slavery”.  Janine off handedly remarks it’s “one of the more imaginative ideas I’ve seen”.

If you weren’t already suspicious of this two hander, Zoe is an African American undergraduate student most likely from privilege and Janine is, well, white and tenured and from a generation ago where Blacks were told to be patient and not make waves.  We learn that she worked her way up the ranks with many publications.  She comes from a modest background, a child of working class parents, is gay, married with a grown, university student, and a son with whom she is estranged. 

It’s a setup that's able to segue deep into discussions of racism, sexism, diversity, privilege, power and the toxicity that permeates this country today. It was even more so when the play was written three years ago. It’s amazing what a change in administration can bring. 

As you might imagine the women duke it on just about every level of political discourse, from when the first slaves were brought to our shores to Googling history, to actually reading about it in hard covered books, to George Washington, the American Revolution, to the abolishment of slavery and what version of history you choose to see in the history books. 

When the volume of disagreements rises, and the combatents are ready for for the kill, all bets are off; all the niceties are left at the back door. And…unbeknownst to Janine, Zoe taped their conversations and posted them on line.  They went viral. In so doing it not only exposed Janine causing the end of her tenure, but put Zoe on notice that she too has ruined her chances of getting her dream job. 

In director Turner-Sonnenberg's deft hands and with some pretty compelling acting, each would earn high grades from this retired kindergarten teacher turned theatre reviewer. Watching the exchange of ideas was like watching a tennis match with the energy toggling from one woman to the other with whip-lash accuracy. At times I found myself rooting for one over the other and then vice versa. 

Both women are up to the task. Deja Fields’ Zoe is sure of herself, rather smug and is as confident in herself as the day is long. Mouchette van Helsdingen’s Janine shows a condescending side at the outset but soon realizes she might have met her  match. They take each other on like the dueling divas, but in the end, there are no winners no losers just differences of opinions. You might find yourselves like yours truly, yearning for discussion, which there was after the performance. 

It takes a village to make a production like “The Niceties” work.  The whole was carefully orchestrated and filmed by Canis Lupus Productions.

The all-female and non-binary Design and Production Team includes: Set Design, Julie Lorenz; Costume Design; Faith James; Lighting Design, Cynthia Bloodgood; Sound Design, Mason Pilvesky; Properties, Angela Ynfante; Stage Management, Beonica Bullard; Photos curtesy Moxie Theartre; Assistant Director, Vanessa Duran. 

“The Niceties,” the filmed version from Moxie Theatre, can be viewed through Oct. 4

Showtimes are 7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday; added 2 p.m. performances Sept. 21-24. .
Tickets ($35 per household, with discounts available) . Phone 858-598-7620 or

Running time: 2 hrs., 45 min.

Of her work, Burgess says, “I write to understand things, I write about things that confuse me, I write about things that trouble me, topics where I really thought I knew what I believed and then someone said something that shook me down to my core and all of sudden I realize that maybe I don’t know what I believe.” 

See you on Zoom at the theatre.


Sunday, September 13, 2020


 ‘Emancipation is not abolition’. Slavery must be eliminated from every foot of American soil! Finish what you started. What you started. (Frederick Douglass)

Until I watched the excellent production of North Coast Repertory Theatre’s west coast premiere “Necessary Sacrifices” by Richard Hellesen directed by Peter Ellenstein, the two ideas didn’t seem that far apart. 

When President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, he declared “that all persons held as slaves” in the Confederate State (if the states did not return to the Union by January 1st 1863 and if the Union won the war) “are, and henceforward shall be free, most assumed free meant ‘free’. What was left unspoken between the lines is what we have today. 

“A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free.
I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided.
It will become all one thing or all the other.” (Abraham Lincoln)

In case you have been hiding under a rock these last four years, The Civil War, to this day, is still being fought and we are indeed, contrary to Lincoln’s speech deeply entrenched in a divided house.

In an absorbing, close to flawless production we, the home audience (more on that later) are treated to conversations, according to history, that Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln’ had in two meetings banter on the idea of the Negro soldier in the Civil War that could/ might have changed the course of history. 

To some degree it did, but in the long run, the idea of emancipation rather than abolition and all the ramifications that come with, are being played out in neighborhoods across this country, from north to south, east to west. In an age old debate that still ravages this country, African American are still not completely free. 

Hellesen’s play commissioned by Ford Theatre made its world premiere in 2017, takes us back to the summer of 1863/1864 in Abraham Lincoln’s office where the debate for equality for the ‘Negro soldier’ is on Douglass’s mind if he is to help Lincoln recruit ‘Negro’s to fight in his war. 

In a give and take that’s as real today as it was in 1863/4 both actors flex their acting skills as the back and forth takes them to places no one expected. Lincoln and Douglass offer differing takes on the same subject of slavery, the right to vote the war and politics and Lincoln’s reelection each one coming from a different point of view yet expect the same results. You know what that is a definition of?

The two skilled actors, tall, lanky and relaxed, personable and down to earth Ray Chambers as Abraham Lincoln gives the impression that he has all the time in the world to hear Douglass and his ideas out. Coaxing even prompting him to justify himself. There are also bittersweet and intimate conversations about their children and wives.  

Hawthorne James’ Douglass, solid looking, formal and eager to get a commitment from Lincoln is no holds barred with his wants from the president. Both hold fast offering their reasons; Lincoln sticking to the makeup and Constitution the idea of states rights and wanting to end and win the war and Douglass returning to reality of the necessary sacrifices of his men if things remain the same. Even pushing the envelope he expects the government (Lincoln) to grant the Negro the same rights as the white (man) and that included voting rights. 

Hawthorne is said to have done this show in concert style a few years ago. Both actors looked and gave the impression that they were more than comfortable in their respective roles. 

Voting for the Negro doesn’t happen until Feb. 26, 1869 when the 15 amendment granted African American men the right to vote. Women didn’t get the right to vote until Aug. 18 1920 (technically) when the 19th amendment passed, but it was some time before all states signed on. 

In an age of what some are calling this the new normal, everything is new and nothing is normal. Since the shuttering of theatres around the world, (as most indoor venues) theatre junkies (OK I’ll just speak for myself) have gone M.I.A. It’s almost like losing your best friend; no one to hang out most nights and especially on weekends. 

Streaming and Zoom chat rooms are popping up all over the place and watching interviews (North Coast Rep) with Artistic director David Ellenstein with actors you are used to seeing on stage are now becoming your best friends.

That being said, this particular production of “Necessary Sacrifices” comes as close to being in the intimate space of the theatre he as one can get without actually having you tush in a theatre seat. According to the theatre the actors rehearsed separately and when sets, costumes lighting were ready and the actors were in final rehearsal Aaron Rumley  filmed and edited following all the SAG guidelines. What we see is the filmed version that will be available for your viewing through Oct. 11th. 
Cost of tickets run between $24.00 and $40.00 at

The play together with accurate period costumes by Elsa Benzoni, Peter Herman’s wigs, Marty Burnett’s take of Lincoln’s casual White House office, Michael Silversher’s music and last but by no means least, Aaron Rumley’s editing and choreography. 

Coming up next “Same Time Next Year” by Bernard Slade. It will be running Oct. 21 to Nov. 15, 2020.


Monday, March 9, 2020

“Glass Menagerie” Resurfaces At Broadway Vista Theatre.

Tennessee Williams memory play “The Glass Menagerie” still resonates after all these years. It opened in Chicago in 1944 and subsequently moved to The Playhouse Theatre in New York in 1945. It went on to win the New York Drama Critics Awards. It is currently in a sobering, yet oft times superficially funny production in Broadway Vista Theatre (‘The biggest Little Theatre’) through March 22nd.
Set design by Randall Hickman 
The play is set in the St. Louis apartment of Amanda Wingfield (Terri Park) and her two adult children, Laura (Marisa Taylor Scott) and Tom (Tim Baran). The time is 1937 and the country was in the middle of the depression. Tom works in a shoe factory (Williams sold shoes for a time) and Amanda sells magazine subscriptions from her home, much beneath her status as a genteel Southern belle when a young girl. 

Money is tight but hope springs eternal for Amanda, the faded yet once popular belle, as she glides around their apartment recalling her glory days as a teen growing up in the south. Her repeating and reliving her past encounters with her own ‘gentlemen callers’(seventeen in one day) fascinates Laura, who longs for a gentleman caller of her own, but it annoys the hell out of Tom.
Terri Park and Tim Baran as Tom
Amanda doesn’t comprehend why none come to call on Laura, her emotionally fragile daughter whose noticeable limp has her cut off from reality and plunges her into a make believable world of a glass animal collection, her favorite being the unicorn, a solitary and mysterious creature, much like Laura was to her mother. 

Baran’s Tom is narrator (Williams alter ego) speaking directly to the audience while also assuming the role of Tom: “The stage magician gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion."

As narrator breaking the fourth wall, he tells us that he would rather be any place than at his mother’s house. He longs for adventure, action and escape. He’s annoyed at her nagging, her interfering, her stories of past glories and her pettiness. Everything he does; drinking, writing and spending most of his off hours at the movies, a tale Amanda refuses to believe, pushes him closer to leaving.  The one thing he can’t ignore is his affection for his sister.

Nathan Wetter as Jim and Marisa Taylor Scott is Laura
Nathan Wetter’s Jim O'Connor Laura’s one gentleman caller is a breath of fresh air. His mere presence in the Wingfield’ s home casts an unusually broad shadow bringing with it a sense of hope and optimism even though his own dreams have been shattered. A popular athlete in high school and someone Laura once had a crush on and now a shipping clerk at the same shoe factory as Tom, his invitation to dine with the Wingfield’s brings a ray of hope for Amanda.

His repartee with Laura is sincere, convincing and winning and one that many hoped would have turned out differently for Laura. Wetter fills the bill perfectly as Jim. Unfortunately for Amanda who had high hopes for Jim, it began and ended in one evening. This is a tragedy of Greek proportions after all.

And so the last words that Tom speaks, “Blow out your candles, Laura, - and so goodbye.” breaks your heart as Tom, the one ally Laura has leaves the house to the two emotionally fragile women who are left to their own devices to survive; one’s imagination wanders to the next step.   

 ‘Menagerie’ was Williams’ first successful professional play and his most autobiographical. Laura or Rose, his sister, (as was her given name), who was thought to be mentally ill because of her instability, underwent a frontal lobotomy that just about sent her brother over the edge. Some even suggesting that it was the cause of his heavy drinking
Tim Baran, Terri Park and Marisa Taylor Scott
Williams would later expand on this literary form as he showed us in his ‘Menagerie’ with matriarch Amanda and her mood swings, (look at Blanche in “Streetcar”) her almost hysterical yearnings for her lost youth, her daughter’s inability to cope and her son’s threat of leaving them. Tom was, after all, the primary breadwinner in the family.  He was so much like his absent father, the one character never seen but for a photograph on the wall, that his leaving was but a matter of time.   

Doug Davis and Randall Hickman producers, set designers, lighting designers, costume designers, you name it are a two person dynamic duo responsible for the whole ball of wax including the choice of plays selections. According to Davis, ‘he and Randall love Williams and wanted to include one of his plays in this year’s lineup.’ On the lighter side, “Beau Jest” and “Brighton Beach Memoirs” (Neil Simon’s first of his ‘B’ trilogy) follow.
Nathan Wetter and Marisa Taylor Scott
Hickman directs as well as digging in on other projects to make this production user friendly. His set design is especially attractive, somewhat easily navigable in such a small space, slightly off center as are the characters, and on spot time period with props by both men adding touches into a glimpse of the times.

Under his direction the ensemble worked well together but individually, the overall the production was uneven on opening night. Terri Parks putting in a very strong Amanda, with every detail of her as the domineering mother and head of household was on target.  Its no wonder Marisa Taylor Scott’s Laura cowered under strong personality and Tom recoiled from her. She just didn’t get it.
Terri Park and Maisa Taylor Scott
Some grievances that distracted include the fact that Baran’s projection and enunciation wasn’t clear enough to meet my listening standards and Ms. Scott’s almost senile behavior (while it might have been in the script, she was painfully shy, delicate and compassionate and to my recollection an ‘emotional cripple’, but not senile) was disturbing.

And stepping off my soapbox, if there is one theatre or ten mounting a Tennessee Williams play, make every effort to see it (them). Not enough theatres are producing the classics. Here is your chance. 

Kudos to the men behind the curtains for their brave undertaking.

See you at the theatre.

Dates: Through March 22nd
Organization: Vista Broadway Theatre
Phone: 760-806-7905
Production Type: Drama
Where: 340 East Broadway Suite B, Vista, CA 92084
Ticket Prices: $25.00
Photo: Randall Hickman

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

North Coast’s “The Outsider” Tickles, Taunts And Jabs In Political Satire.

Paul Slade Smith’s “The Outsider” currently making a West Coast premiere on North Coast Repertory Theatre’s stage in Solana Beach through March 22nd knocks a triple whammy (as in ‘sock it to me’); hit me over the head, in your face farce.

 It’s also a comedy and a tragedy and satire. You name it. As directed by artistic director David Ellenstein and with some of the best comedic actors San Diego has, along with very little subtlety, and warned by the ushers upon entering the house, “a visit to the loo before the show would be advised because non-stop laughing might lead to peeing your pants, it’s touted as being that funny”.
John Seibert as Ned Newley
Laugh we did, pee our pants, not so much, cry in our boots, almost and nod in agreement that what’s political satire today, could in fact lead to political tragedy tomorrow if the message weren’t so outrageously on target.

Smith wrote the play in 2015 when things weren’t as critical as they are now. The more we enter into the twilight zone of politics 2020 Smith’s political musings become the reality most would like to forget.

(L. To R)
Shana Wride, Christopher M. Williams, Louis Lotorto, John Seibert and Jacque Wilke
Ellenstein’s more than competent cast with the inimitable Jacque Wilke as Louise, who is hired as a temp to answer the phones  (“Just to let you know, phones are not my strongest area.”) is a breath of fresh air as the ever smiling optimistic receptionist who manages to eat all the waiting room candy and then ask it it’s OK? 

Bright lights like Wilke are a must in every production when ‘looking at the bright side’ is a necessity.

The brunt of the political ‘outsider’ in Smith’s play of the same name is the guy not quite ready to step into the shoes of the ‘insider’, a smooth talking governor, who was thrown out of office because of a sex scandal…don’t compare, it takes the fun out of it. No, he’s the polar opposite of the last guy to fall.
John Seibert as Ned and Loius Lorotto as Arthur Vance
Ned Newley (a quirky John Seibert) is/was lieutenant Gov. of his small New England State (Sounds like Vermont by way of references) but is suddenly propelled into the job of now being the head of the state.  He must make an appearance on TV announcing his new job. He is paralyzed at the thought of it and bumbles his way through a three-minute interview and swearing in ceremony that wouldn’t impress the least savvy of voter.  

When the reviews or polls come in by pollster extraordinaire, Paige, (a sharp and comically nimble Shana Wride) on his approval ratings as to his first ever TV appearance, he fails mumbling, stammering and trembling. But good news is in the way in the person of Arthur Vance (Louis Lotorto) a big shot  ‘on CNN every election night.’ He wants to be Ned’s political consultant/ advisor. Lotorto, last seen as Emperor Joseph II in the Rep's "Amadeus", pust in a convincing performance the man in the know of politics.

Dave Riley (an appealing and savvy comic in his own right Christopher M. Williams) who was the sole person on Ned’s staff as Lt. Governor, soon to be Governor, that is until there is a special election making it official, has his doubts about Vance and reluctantly goes with the flow. He invites TV reporter Rachel (an appealing Natalie Storrs) to question Ned but that too goes badly. 
John Seibert, Jacque Wilke, Natalie Storrs and Max Macke (in background) 
Timing, the say, is everything and on that score two things are evident: the timing of the show being produced at this particular junction just as the primaries for 2020 are in the news and are alignment with the sun, moon and stars, so too is the excellent timing of the actors especially when they get into some of the most outrageously hysterical situations. This is where PMP comes in.
John Seibert, Jacque Wilke, Natalie Storrs and Max Macke
Vance tries to persuade the public and Ned’s staff of two that being the ‘outsider’ might just be the way to go to win elections. He dumb’s Ned down to look like a country bumpkin clothes and all, (Elisa Benzoni) and promotes him as a man of and for the people. All this happens on Marty Burnett’s ‘official’ looking and handsome government office looking single set.

Truth will have it, as Ned’s fall and rise in the numbers game, the big surprise is that he’s smarter and sharper than anyone in the room on a one on one as with the TV soundman A.C. Petersen (a tongue tied one note spot on Max Macke) the ‘everyman’ Ned’s consultant’s are counting on.
Christopher M. Williams as Dave and John Seibert is Ned
Smith’s “Outsider” is a romp into the world of political extremes as seen through different lenses as the population shifts from one end of the spectrum to the other. Fortunately Director Ellenstein keeps the pace at elevated speed as we watch the transition of Ned from someone behind the scenes to just what the state needed in the person as, yes, everyman.

With a cast equal to the task everyone on board has their moments but no one will forget Ms. Wilke, whose performance is consistently at a at the top of her game.


See you at the theatre.

Dates: Through March 22nd
Organization: North Coast Repertory Theatre
Phone: 858-481-1055
Production Type: Comedy/Satire
Where: 987 Lomas Santa Santa Fe Dr., Suite D, Solana beach, CA
Ticket Prices: Start at $46.00
Photo Credit: Aaron Rumley