As you know, our City of Pasadena has an abundance of events to enjoy. Here, however, I want to tell you about two theater events – one a play, the other a musical – which I attended a week ago and found absolutely worth recommending.
First I’ll tell you about ALL MY SONS at A Noise Within (ANW), which will perform only two more times – on Sunday, Nov. 15, and again on Saturday, Nov. 21.
The play was written by Arthur Miller, set in the late 1940’s, when America’s future seemed grand after the war. At ANW, the stage is gorgeous – it is the backyard of the Keller home, full of autumn colors. The Keller’s are experiencing financial gain thanks to their plane part manufacturing company that did well during the war, but they are also suffering the absence of a son that went missing in action. There is also a secret in this family related to some defective parts built by their company that ended causing the deaths of several airmen. When the secret comes out it affects every one of the characters, and it will make you, as part of the audience, gasp. I literally did. This is a play that speaks about social responsibility. Are we to care about our family only? At what point are we responsible for society at large? Are the soldiers out there someone else’s children only? Or are they all our sons? Seriously deep, folks. This play is directed by Geoff Elliott and the entire cast is great, but Deborah Strang, as the mom in the family, is amazing. Tickets and times are at http://www.anoisewithin.org
Now let me tell you about BREAKING THROUGH at the Pasadena Playhouse, performing Tuesday through Sunday until Nov. 22.
This musical is directed by Sheldon Epps, with book by Kirsten Guenther and music and lyrics by Cliff Downs and Katie Kahanovitz. BREAKING THROUGH is told through the eyes of a young talented new singer/songwriter who wants to make it into the music business. However, that’s easier said than done, because, while she is good at her craft, the music business requires that she also look the part, date the “right” people, be talked about on the news, and so on. Her art becomes compromised by her desire to “make it.” The music in BREAKING THROUGH is great. Some of its catchy songs have the potential of becoming quite popular. The musical has a cast of 17 singers/actors, led by Alison Luff as Charlie Jane. Kacee Clanton, who you will recognize if you attended A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN at the Playhouse last summer, is Karina. Also a favorite of the audience, Nita Whitaker, who has performed duets with the likes of Josh Groban and Andrea Bocelli, is Amanda. The very nice looking Matt Magnusson must be mentioned also in the role of Scorpio. Definitely a good one to see, you can check for times and ticket prices at http://www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org
If it’s Turkey Day, you’ll be too late. The time to go to the theater is now!