Sunday, October 21, 2012

SceneAroundTown.... Carla Laemmle Turns 103... Silent Movie Theater...

Carla Laemmle & Lou Wegner

Janet Klein & Carla Laemmle

Carla Laemmle & Nic Novicki

Dear Readers....  I've been really enjoying my hiatus....  more coVerage later.....  HH(:    1/20/13

Sunday, October 14, 2012

SceneAroundTown.... ICT's Sassy & Sultry "Ain't Misbehavin'" Strikes The Right Chords... Yolanda Romersa's Beautiful Musical Short Film "Paloma" Screens at the LaFemme Film Festival.... IAMLA's The Taste of Italy...

ICT Presents "Ain't Misbehavin'"

ICT Presents "Ain't Misbehavin'"

International City Theatre presents a very entertaining, sassy, sultry & winning "Ain't Misbehavin'" which opened Friday night and runs through November 4th at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center.  The popular high energy Fats Waller show set in the 1920's was first performed at the Manhattan Theatre Club in 1978 before it debuted on Broadway shortly after. The show was conceived by Richard Maltby, Jr and Murray Horwitz.  This version of the musical comes to life in the very capable hands of director Saundra McCain beautifully recreating the Harlem Renaissance's Cotton Club with top notch music direction by Rahn Coleman & sizzling choreography by Stephen Semien.  The Tony award winning musical stars 5 very talented and outstanding performers (in alphabetical order) Phillip Brandon, Niketa Calame, Amber Mercomes, Lacy Darryl Phillips & Jennifer Shelton.  The revue features over 30 songs including Ain't Misbehavin', 'T Ain't Nobody's Biz-ness if I Do, Honeysuckle Rose, Squeeze Me, The Joint is Jumpin', Lounging at the Waldorf, The Reefer Song, Mean to Me, Your Feet's Too Big, Find Out What They Like and It's a Sin to Tell a Lie.  "Ain't Misbehavin'" is based on the life and music of Thomas "Fats" Waller the legendary jazz pianist, composer and singer of the early 1900's.  This version includes an additional added touch - it starts off in 2012 when one of the performers, cell phone in hand stumbles into the night club to get out of the rain & then is transported back in time to the sultry 1920's Cotton Club & Harlem Renaissance era.  Excellent night club scenic design by John Iacovelli, dazzling lighting by Ben Pilat, beautiful period costumes by Kim DeShazo & great hair & wig design by Anthony Gagliardi.  For more information  visit or call 562-436-4610.  I highly recommend "Ain't Misbehavin'"... Don't miss it! If you don't drive the train stops a few minutes away from the theatre.

ICT Presents "Ain't Misbehavin'"

ICT Presents "Ain't Misbehavin'"

Kudos to actress/singer Yolanda Romersa on her passion project "Paloma" a very good provocative 28 minute musical short featuring beautiful songs & performances & a roller coaster often gritty story. Romersa directs & stars in the project with Steven Bauer, Natasha Perez & Patrick Reese.  "Paloma" is the very moving story of a  gregarious free spirited & party loving Mexican American singer who deserts her husband and 2 children for a self destructive life of sex, drugs & hard partying.  Her husband has demanded she change her ways but being an addict she can't.  Nine years later,  now clean & sober she suddenly shows up at her family's home to beg their forgiveness & reestablish her roots with her husband & children.  Yolanda Romersa is a fiery & talented singer & actress. She co-wrote the songs with Lina Gallegos & their use of a troubadour to tell the story through music is very effective & adds nice touches of humor.  Steven Bauer, always a winner with his dramatic performances makes a very good onscreen singing debut performing "Fusie Tu".    

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy's Marianna Gatto & special guest Richard Grieco

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy.... Costumed characters add to the fun

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy....  Guests enjoy delicious Italian cuisine... Photo by Gianfilippo De Rossi 

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy... Photo by Gianfilippo De Rossi

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy..."Welcome"...Photo by Gianfilippo  De Rossi

IAMLA's The Taste of Italy...  Photo by Gianfilippo De Rossi

Saturday, October 6, 2012

SceneAroundTown.... Storybook Theatre Presents "Hansel And Gretel"... Theatre West

Excellent Family Entertainment... Hansel And Gretel's Caitlin Gallogly, Anthony Gruppuso, Joey Jennings & Barbara Mallory... Photo Credit: Bonnie G. Kalisher 
A good time is in store for kids and their families going to see Storybook Theatre's nifty production of "Hansel And Gretel" at Theatre West.  Based on the the beloved Grimm's fairy tale, this really fun musical version is very audience interactive and the kids attending the play got very involved and had a terrific time.  The play features a talented cast consisting of Theatre West members - Kathy Garrick as the Witch, Anthony Gruppuso as Father, Caitlin Gallogly as Gretel, Joey Jennings as Hansel and Barbara Mallory as Birdy and is well directed and choreographed by Elliot Kevin Schwartz.  Hope and Laurence Juber wrote the fun music and lyrics with book by Lloyd J. Schwartz who also serves as artistic director. Storybook Theatre has been producing family friendly shows for over 25 years.  "Hansel And Gretel" is excellent wholesome family entertainment and runs Saturdays at 1pm until March 2nd.  Cast members do a meet & greet following each show with happy audience members.  For more information visit