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Tag: Playwright

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  • New play, “Therapy,” explores the the lives and fears of therapist

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    February 27, 2013 | 7:44 am

    Jeff Bernhardt is an author, playwright, psychotherapist and Jewish educator who directs social-action programs at Temple Aliyah in Woodland Hills; he is also the lead tutor for the b’nai mitzvah program at Temple Israel of Hollywood. But his new play, “Therapy” — opening March 2...

  • The Winding Road to ‘Other Desert Cities’

    By Tom Teicholz

    November 21, 2012 | 1:01 pm

    In Hollywood, the logline for this story would be: A playwright who has outwitted his demons to find balance in his life, has, after a devastating TV experience, returned to the stage with a play whose plot twist is as transformative to its actors, and to the audience’s assumptions...

  • ‘Oy’ bring the past to the present at Culver City’s Actors’ Gang

    July 5, 2012 | 10:30 am

    For Academy Award-winning actor Tim Robbins, who founded Actors’ Gang and serves as its artistic director, presenting plays that are relevant to our time is paramount for the company. To that end, the Culver City-based theater’s current offering is the U.S. premiere of “Oy,”...

  • “Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’s” Steven Berkoff:  ‘in yer face’

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    December 18, 2011 | 10:25 pm

    Steven Berkoff, the actor, director and playwright who has achieved notoriety as the bad boy of Britain’s “in yer face” theater, was uncharacteristically apologetic as he arrived on the set of David Fincher’s American movie adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s international best...

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  • Theater: Tolins draws on his own mentorship ‘Secrets’

    By Nick Street

    April 3, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    "Everything I write is a question of identity," Jonathan Tolins says over tea after a yoga class in Sherman Oaks. "What choices do you have? What roles do you take on?"

    Those concerns are readily apparent in a body of stage- and screenwriting that has touched on the Jewish family and...

  • Kushmet

    By Rob Eshman

    November 8, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    Last Monday night, I was sitting on stage at American Jewish University interviewing Tony Kushner, talking Life and Judaism and Big Ideas to a man who is arguably America's greatest living playwright, when, suddenly, the words of what is arguably the world's cheesiest bubble-gum song...
  • UJ’s Levy crafts confab to celebrate authors

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    November 1, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Considering that he's an educator, whose job description is heading up a university adult-ed program, you might not expect Gady Levy to be so ... well-connected. Yet here he is in his office at American Jewish University (formerly the University of Judaism), looking more the...
  • ‘Big Death’ evokes the muse of playwrights past

    By Robert David Jaffee

    May 31, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Mickey Birnbaum recently spent a year as an Inge Fellow in Independence, Kan., boyhood home of the late playwright William Inge, best known for his 1950s plays, "Picnic" and "Bus Stop." Birnbaum's "Big Death & Little Death," now being staged at the Road Theater Company in North...
  • Composer’s hit musical spells success ‘B-E-E’

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    May 24, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    William Finn, composer, lyricist and creator of the hit musical, "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee," says his own surname is the result of a misspelling. "When my great-uncle came from Russia, he kept saying he was looking for someone named Fein, so the genius at Ellis...
  • Hasfari’s ‘House’ Moves to Laguna

    By Avner Hofstein

    April 5, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    As Laguna Playhouse Executive Director Richard Stein walked down Dizengoff Street in Tel Aviv during a trip to Israel last December, he was struck by a Bauhaus-style building famously used in the city decades ago.

    "It was a historic landmark, something to do with the Haganna, and I...

  • Sex and The 30-Something Professional

    By Robert David Jaffee

    April 5, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Before David Rouda became a stage director and writer, he was an internationally ranked rower who placed 17th in the 1999 World Rowing Championships. Rouda, who started training as a sculler at 13, won six Gold Medals at the Maccabee Games and just missed qualifying for the 2000...
  • Neil LaBute bears a heavy load

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    March 15, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    During one of many cringe-worthy moments in Neil LaBute's play, "Fat Pig," a cad chastises a co-worker for dating a plus-sized woman named Helen.

    "I don't understand you taking God's good gifts and pissing on 'em," the cad, Carter, warns his colleague, Tom.

    Tom is handsome and...

  • Playwright’s 2nd look at 1st draft brings ‘Atonement’

    By Eric Marchese

    March 8, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    If it's axiomatic that art often imitates life and that writers write what they know, then what does "Atonement" say about playwright Richard Martin Hirsch?

    The 2006 play's protagonist, Elijah Stone, is a Montreal-born secular Jew who has moved to New York City and become a famed...

  • Theater: Troy vs. ‘Tsuris’

    By Robert David Jaffee

    December 14, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    "How should I prepare?" asks playwright Mark Troy after agreeing to an interview the following morning about his new play, "Tsuris," opening Friday, Dec. 22, at the Sidewalk Studio Theater in Toluca Lake. "Should I wear a blue tuxedo?" Although he is not a standup comedian and says...
  • Sherwood Schwartz—creator of hit TV shows ‘Gilligans Island’ and ‘The Brady Bunch’—trades sitc

    By Nick Street

    November 9, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    Sherwood Schwartz is not one to complain. Which isn't to say he has nothing to complain about.

    "Right now I have a torn rotator cuff," he said during an interview at his home in Beverly Hills. "So I guess I could complain about my arm all day. But what the hell?" The three old...

  • David Mamet has one question—for the wicked son

    By Tom Teicholz

    November 9, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    David Mamet has written a book, "The Wicked Son: Anti-Semitism, Self-Hatred and the Jews" (Shocken/Nextbook), that is by turns bold, courageous, and outrageous -- it is a book that calls Diaspora Jews to the table and asks: "In or Out?" "The underlying premise of the book," Mamet...
  • Play Reading’s the Thing for Director

    By Susan Josephs

    May 18, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    Sitting in her living room and poring through an enormous photo album, Alexandra More acts like the proud parent of successful offspring.

    "Will you just look at them?" she gushes, pointing at one photograph after another of famous actors participating in her play readings. "Such...

  • Sobol’s ‘iWitness’: Principled or Treasonous?

    By Tom Tugend

    March 16, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    At the height of the intifada, in 2002, more than 600 Israeli pilots and soldiers, many in elite units, refused to serve in what they considered the occupied Palestinian territories.

    These were not pacifists or conscientious objectors to war in any form. Many had fought in Israel's...

  • Wasserstein Chronicled Modern Women

    By Avigail Schwartz

    February 2, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    Playwright Wendy Wasserstein, known for wry portrayals of strong, conflicted, contemporary women in prizewinning works such as "The Heidi Chronicles," died this week in New York.

    While not always overtly Jewish, her characters still bore the mark of the playwright's traditional...

  • Navel Gazing With Eve Ensler

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    December 8, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    Some years ago, playwright-performer Eve Ensler became mortified by her not-so-flat, post-40s belly. She starved herself, hired a trainer and watched late-night Ab-Roller infomercials. She compulsively worked the treadmill and even fantasized about contracting a parasite.

    No matter...

  • Stages of Faith: Light, Dark, Absurd

    By Robert David Jaffee

    December 1, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    "Jerusalem"

    The intelligent design vs. Darwinism debate presumes that one or the other theory provides the answer to life and all its mysteries. Playwright Seth Greenland explores the falsity of this dichotomy in "Jerusalem," his play opening Friday at the NoHo Arts Center....

  • Perils of the ‘Perfect’ Student

    By Robert David Jaffee

    December 1, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    In New York, parents tell horror stories about the pressure to get their 5-year-old kids into the right kindergartens, the kind attended by Woody Allen's kids. In Los Angeles, the social cachet may be even more skewed.

    "So and so from the Lakers' kid goes to some school," says...

  • Pinter’s Plays Give Voice to the Victims

    By Lucy Komisar

    October 20, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    Provocative, ambiguous, biting, subtle, Harold Pinter, who has just been awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, is one of the major playwrights of the English language and the author of 29 plays and two dozen film scripts. He is also one of the most political of writers, with an...

  • 7 Days in The Arts

    By Keren Engelberg

    October 6, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    Saturday, October 8

    In playwright Hindy Brooks' new play, "Turn a Blind Eye," researching Holocaust survivors' stories leads a young woman to discover things about her own family she might rather have never known. Questions are raised about heroism, and about the awful things...

  • ‘Call Waiting’ Rings Emotional Bell

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    September 29, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    There's pain and then there's the big pain.

    Pain is what happens in a regular life -- the predictable illnesses, disappointments and aggravations. The big pain is something like the Holocaust and the aftermath of surviving it.

    The larger pain makes the regular mode of suffering seem...

  • Write of Passage

    By Colette Freedman

    June 2, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    My first crush was the Pikesville library in Baltimore, Md. Every Saturday after synagogue, my parents would usher me into the small, ancient red brick building quietly ensconced along one of the less-developed business roads in Pikesville. I would spend what seemed like hours...

  • Still’s ‘Waters’ Run Deep

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    May 26, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    In James Still's "A Long Bridge Over Deep Waters," a Catholic Cambodian asks an elderly Jew, "Why don't you believe in Jesus?"

    The senior citizen replies that she regards Jesus as "a revolutionary Jew," not the savior -- and that she would rather argue with God than feel awe for...

  • The Way It Was

    By Tom Teicholz

    March 10, 2005 | 7:00 pm

     

    Last week, playwright Donald Margulies, The Manhattan Theater Club and The Forward weekly newspaper announced the winners of a contest they sponsored on the topic of "What It's Like Growing Up Jewish in New York."

    You can read the winning entries at www.forward.com. I regret to...

  • 7 Days in the Arts

    By Keren Engelberg

    December 9, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Saturday, December 11

    Today and tomorrow only, the award-winning "Underneath the Lintel" returns to the Sacred Fools Theater Company. Playwright Glen Berger's story about a Dutch librarian who feels compelled to hunt down a man whose library book is 123 years overdue is really...

  • Partying With the Many Faces of ‘Alma’

    By Tom Tugend

    September 23, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    Alma Mahler-Gropius-Werfel, who married and bedded a string of the 20th century's most creative geniuses, is celebrating her 125th birthday -- and what a party it's going to be.

    For the occasion, guests, after running a paparazzi gantlet and imbibing a welcoming drink, will meet not...

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