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NEWS
June 30, 2011
The Bard is coming to Newport Beach for two nights in July to showcase both the tragedy and comedy of William Shakespeare's work. The Arts Commission is hosting the 10th annual Shakespeare by the Sea with performances of "King Lear" and "Much Ado About Nothing" July 9 and 10, respectively, at the Bonita Canyon Sports Park. Both performances begin at 7 p.m. with pre-show activities starting at 6:45 p.m. Attendees should bring blankets, beach chairs and a picnic dinner.
NEWS
February 4, 2005
Tom Titus You may think you know where playwright Sarah Ruhl is taking you with "The Clean House," now in its West Coast premiere at South Coast Repertory, but don't bet on it. Ruhl's circuitous comedy invites the audience to sit down, hang on and keep their head and arms inside the seat, as a group of imaginative performers under the tutelage of director Kate Whoriskey conducts the guided tour through some heretofore...
NEWS
April 1, 2005
TOM TITUS Reviving a comedy written more than 70 years ago could be fraught with peril, since times and tastes have changed any number of times since the Depression years of the early 1930s. Some plays simply don't stand the test of time. "Holiday," written by Philip Barry several years before he grabbed the brass ring with "The Philadelphia Story," is such a vehicle. Its plot, somewhat daring for its time, is a bit archaic today, which means a theater group requires a superlative company to bring such a chestnut into the here and now. Fortunately, the Newport Theater Arts Center has such a company.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 5, 2007
South Coast Repertory will premiere Tony-award winning playwright Richard Greenberg’s new comedy, “The Injured Party,” on the Julianne Argyros Stage during the 11th Annual Pacific Playwrights Festival in May. The comedy centers on “The Gates,” a famous art exhibit installed in New York Central Park in 2005. “ A season that includes a new Greenberg play is always exciting for us here at SCR — and for the American theater,” said artistic director David Emmes.
NEWS
May 4, 2002
June Casagrande Pay no attention to that man behind the desk -- that dignified, intelligent-looking guy signing autographs at Borders Books, Music & Cafe. That's just Dan Castellaneta. And, make no mistake about it, Dan Castellaneta is not Homer Simpson. Hence the title of his new comedy CD, "I Am Not Homer!" The recording of comedy sketches performed with wife Deb Lucasta is titled as a tongue-in-cheek ode to Leonard Nimoy's book, "I Am Not Spock."
NEWS
May 31, 2001
A pair of Pulitzer Prize winners will highlight the 2001-02 lineup at the Newport Theatre Arts Center, while a mixture of old and new offerings dot the schedule for Orange Coast College's upcoming season. The Pulitzer awards belong to Alfred Uhry's "Driving Miss Daisy," scheduled to open Jan. 25, and Horton Foote's "The Young Man From Atlanta," set to debut March 22. The latter will be a local premiere, while "Miss Daisy" was glimpsed recently at the Costa Mesa Civic Playhouse.
ENTERTAINMENT
By John Depko | February 4, 2010
Few movie categories can go as wrong as romantic comedy done badly. And “When in Rome” starts with a ridiculous premise that quickly gives way to mind-numbing stupidity. To be sure, Josh Duhamel is handsome and almost real as the primary male in the lame story. And Kristen Bell is lovely as the female star looking for love when she picks up five coins from a magic fountain in Rome. But then the five men who threw the coins in the water instantly become pathetic drooling dogs hopelessly in love with her. They all follow her back to New York and make stalking a woman for laughs a new element in the peculiar plot.
ENTERTAINMENT
By JOHN DEPKO | August 30, 2007
Rowan Atkinson has made a nice living for himself as the stumbling, bumbling Mr. Bean, a modern English version of Charlie Chaplin. He parades across the screen with minimal dialogue and loads of slapstick physical comedy. In “Mr. Bean’s Holiday” there’s no shortage of pratfalls and assorted silliness that manages to produce many chuckles and laughs. In a classic mix of comedy themes, Mr. Bean is a fish-out-of-water, innocent abroad on a vacation-gone-bad who is also falsely accused of a heinous crime.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tom Titus | July 19, 2012
A pair of classics and a pair of world premieres highlight the upcoming 2012-13 theater season at Vanguard University. Currently, the Costa Mesa college is winding up its first of two summer professional shows under the American Coast Theater Co., "The Taming of the Shrew," which closes this weekend. The second ACTC production, the West Coast premiere of the romantic comedy "Enlightenment.com," opens July 27 and will play through Aug. 12. After less than a month's respite, Vanguard's students get back into the act with the world premiere of "Love Makes the World Go Round," described as "a musical revue about the joys, tensions and rhapsodies of love.
NEWS
April 4, 2002
Over the last four decades, Neil Simon has firmly established himself as the king of America's comedy playwrights, but not until the late 1980s did he give vent to pure, unadulterated farce. Before that, his closest approach to this genre was the third act of "Plaza Suite" more than 30 years ago. With "Rumors," however, Simon's patented one-liners link up with uproarious sight gags in a convoluted plot that requires repeated viewings to truly sort out. It's also a rarity in the Simon canon -- a true ensemble comedy, with the good stuff spread quite democratically among its eight principal characters, and containing nearly as much dialogue in the key of F as your typical David Mamet opus, something Simon has shied away from in the past.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By John Depko and Susanne Perez | August 27, 2013
Put several members of a wealthy family in the big house on dad's isolated estate. Place mysterious killers in animal masks in the dark woods outside. Add several machetes, axes, crossbows and knives. Sprinkle in a little sick humor as the bloody carnage begins and you have the familiar recipe for "You're Next. " There have been many gory/funny parodies of slasher movies over the years. This one is long on violence and short on laughs. Director Adam Wingard presents a gruesome variation of the "Ten Little Indians" formula as members of the household are knocked off one by one. Blood splatter flies everywhere as each killing gets more brutal than the previous one. Eventually, a plausible murder mystery develops within the confines of the predictable home invasion plot.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Miller | May 30, 2013
South Coast Repertory, which will celebrate its 50th season beginning in August, announced its lineup for 2013-14 late Thursday afternoon. The schedule, which features regular plays on the Segerstrom and Julianne Argyros stages as well as youth theater offerings, begins with Arthur Miller's 1949 classic "Death of a Salesman" on Aug. 30. Among the final plays is "Tartuffe" by the 17th-century French playwright Moliere — the first production South...
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Miller | May 4, 2013
Those who attend Marc Warzecha's workshop at UC Irvine this week had better come prepared for serious work. They're about to learn how to be funny. Warzecha, a veteran TV actor and writer-director with the Second City, is among the professional comedians who will lead seminars in the Claire Trevor School of the Arts' first-ever Coup de Comedy Festival. Over four days on campus, live comedy performances will alternate with workshops on "The Art of Clowning," "The Tao of Stand-up" and other topics that sound, well, kind of humorous in that academic phrasing.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rhea Mahbubani | May 3, 2013
Evan Beamer, co-director of "In Security," had a brush with danger Friday. The Los Angeles resident almost backed into a Camaro after receiving a text telling him that his first feature film had been honored as an Outstanding Achievement in Filmmaking at the Newport Beach Film Festival. "This is such a cool thing for our first tiny little movie that no one had ever seen before," said Beamer, who directed the film with his brother, Adam. "We are so grateful to the Newport Beach Film Festival.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Miller | April 26, 2013
Talk about underdogs. This year's Newport Beach Film Festival features a slew of marquee names, from rocker Billie Joe Armstrong to "Office" star Steve Carell to Oscar-nominated director Lasse Hallstrom. But when tickets went on sale April 1, the film that sold out first belonged to a group of stars with decidedly lower stature. Those would be the canine leads of "Wiener Dog Nationals," a family comedy by first-time feature director Kevan Peterson that will have its world premiere Saturday at the Island Cinema 7. The filmmaker expects a crowd of dachshund owners to bring their pets to the screening - the theater, for this showing only, will lift its no-dog policy - and they'll have more than just the premiere to celebrate.
NEWS
April 5, 2013
T minus 50 days. Netflix has announced that the 15-episode fourth season of "Arrested Development" will premiere at 12:01 a.m. PST May 26. The show, which centers on the formerly wealthy, dysfunctional Bluth family and their frozen banana stand, is predominantly set in and around Newport Beach. The banana stand is based in part on the famous frozen bananas sold on Balboa Island to this day. The imminent season of "Arrested Development," which earned an Emmy for outstanding comedy series when it first aired, will feature an additional episode splaying Jason Bateman, Will Arnett, Jeffrey Tambor, Michael Cera, David Cross and others across screens worldwide.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tom Titus | April 3, 2013
A few years ago, the Newport Theatre Arts Center produced Donald Margulies' "Sight Unseen," a play about a famous artist returning to his roots that had premiered at South Coast Repertory. Currently, NTAC is offering Margulies' "Brooklyn Boy," concerning a suddenly famous novelist returning to his roots, a play also born at SCR. And, oh yes, the same actor was/is featured in both Newport shows. Margulies works both sides of the street in "Brooklyn Boy," ably directed by Gigi Fusco-Meese.
NEWS
By Jill Cowan | March 15, 2013
What do giraffes dream of when they take a little giraffe snooze? Tough to say, but it probably has little to do with meeting the Campus Drive 73 Freeway overpass face-first. About five months after shooting for "The Hangover Part 3" closed down a 3-milestretch of the 73 from the 405 Freeway to Jamboree Road, area residents can see part of the final product in the movie's trailer, which features a pretty sizeable Newport Beach cameo. VIDEO: Watch the trailer Actor Zach Galifianakis is shown driving a silver Mercedes-Benz convertible southbound on the 73, past a backdrop of fluffy white clouds, palm trees and verdant hills.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tom Titus | February 13, 2013
They've explored the world of history ("Ragtime") and fantasy ("Seussical"), but the creative team of Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty earlier elected to tackle two other genres - mystery and farce - in their offbeat musical comedy "Lucky Stiff," based on the novel "The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo. " The resultant project, now on view at the Costa Mesa Playhouse under the direction of David A. Blair, continues that theater's close kinship with the outlandish in a wild and wacky production designed to draw continuous chuckles, if not frequent belly laughs.
ENTERTAINMENT
By John Depko | August 3, 2012
Rude, lewd and vulgar, the dialogue in"The Watch"washes over the audience like an overflowing sewer line. There's lots of filthy talk offered in place of any real humor. What might be a good five-minute skit is stretched into a mind-numbing hour and 40 minutes of endless, nasty comments. Ben Stiller, Vince Vaughan and Jonah Hill are no strangers to this brand of juvenile comedy. But they, along with Richard Ayoade, take an innovative idea and waste it on the lowest-common denominator in the audience.
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