Notes and Notices

On art, architecture and design


Splurge: Contemporary Theater

Posted by Carren Jao Pineda |

My ears perked up when I heard about Radar L.A. Having done an immersion in New York City, I had heard of its mother festival, "Under the Radar" hosted by Public Theater. I had even caught one of the new pieces, which I enjoyed immensely.

Radar L.A. brings theater groups from around the world alongside L.A. thespians in venues all around Los Angeles. I'm sure many of us haven't heard of these new plays, but I suppose the thrill of figuring out if they're worth your time is part of the mystique. Here's what caught my eye:

This was what I caught in New York City. Having said that, I can confidently tell you that this two-man show is exquisite choreography of words tackling the issue of race and strife. Here's a short clip of their wordplay:

LA is still (though perhaps not forever) a place defined by its roads and highways. The Car Plays is a series of ten-minute plays where audiences of two move from one vehicle to another, immersed in the works of different playwrights. Be ushered into a rear seat and watch the play unfold.

The last two picks were from Los Angeles, so I don't want you to think I'm biased. This Irish/Chilean company presents a four-man show on a backdrop of cardboard boxes that become their series of theatrical settings.

Originally meant to be an adaptation of James Joyce's Ulysses, the play scales it down to a more manageable size with a day-long odyssey of four when nothing seemingly extraordinary happens but "lives are profoundly changed."

The plot seems intriguing enough, but I must admit, part of the charm for me is really the use of the cardboard boxes.

What shows strikes your fancy?
June 14, 2011 - June 19, 2011
Various locations, Downtown Los Angeles
Ticket prices: $20, $10 each play with a Flex Pass


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