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REVIEW: "Cast Doesn't Fail" in La Mirada Production of RENT E-mail
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Entertainment & Arts
Saturday, 31 October 2015 23:00

The Company performs "Seasons of Love" in the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts & McCoy Rigby Entertainment production of the Tony Award-winning "RENT" - directed by Richard Israel and now playing at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts through November 15th.

One of La Mirada's greatest places to visit is the Theatre for the Performing Arts.

How lucky are we residents to have Broadway shows and stars grace the stage of our community theatre? The number of shows and variety more so has offered my husband and me a great reason to find time for a date night sans children. Not to say that our children's theatre shows aren't great--- they are!

However, when I want to rock out to some classic rock, take in a musical, or simply have a good cry, there is always a show I can take in at the La Mirada Theatre for Performing Arts and this time around, it just so happens that we were lucky to take in RENT.

I went in to seeing RENT knowing that it would knock my socks off. Then again, the opinion I received about how fabulous the show would be was from a good friend who has seen it ten times. You read that correctly, ten times. Both her and her husband had their reviews about the different performers who have taken on the role of Mark, Roger, Mimi, Tom, Angel, Maureen, and Joanne.

Of course, I didn't know who any of these characters were until the curtain dropped at the end of the evening. To say that I was pleasantly pleased is an understatement.

RENT is a musical, so expect plenty of singing and songs, oh the songs!  It wouldn't be considered PC for me to sing "Out Tonight" amongst my kiddos at home, but I've heard "Seasons of Love" sung by friends as well as the original cast years ago on an afternoon talk show appearance.

This cast doesn't fail you at all. Mark Whitten, Devin Archer, Lawrence Cummings, and John Devereaux' voices are gorgeous but Cummings definitely steals the spotlight in his performance as Angel and "Today 4 U".  And watch for the vocals of both Emily Goglia and Amber Mercomes, yes honey, on the same stage, singing the same song.  Wow.  Did I say wow?

I encourage you to take a date night for yourself and your main squeeze. Go see RENT. Don't deprive yourself of this opportunity to see what all the hype and history of this musical is about. And don't forget, No Day But Today!

 
RENT Opens for First Time at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts E-mail
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Entertainment & Arts
Friday, 23 October 2015 16:53

La Mirada~La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts& McCoy Rigby Entertainment (2014 Ovation Award Nominee for Best Season!), announce the second show of their 2015-2016 season, RENT, book, music & lyrics by Jonathan Larson, musical direction by John Glaudini, choreography by Dana Solimando and directed by Richard Israel (Floyd Collins).

RENT will preview on Friday, October 23, 2015 (with a press opening on Saturday, October 24) and run through Sunday, November 15, 2015 at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts, 14900 La Mirada Blvd in La Mirada.

An all-new production of Jonathan Larson's story of talented friends struggling in New York City in 1995 with drug addiction, AIDS, and poverty is one that transcends to current times.   Mark, Roger, and Tom are friends living in the East Village of New York City.  While Mark deals with the break up to his girlfriend Maureen to Joanne, Roger meets Mimi and Tom meets Angel.  Together, they all strive for a life not full of riches but of love and the right to express such uniquely. Dashed with humor, this intensely emotional masterpiece by the late Larson is passionate and rocks with musical numbers and vocals.

RENT stars Mark Whitten, Devin Archer, John Devereaux, Lawrence Cummings, and Cassie Simone, Emily Goglia, and Amber Mercomes.  Ensemble includes, Cooper Howell, Chassey Bennett, Daniel Dawson, Alyssa M. Simmons, Luke Monday, John Pinto Jr., Craig Michael Lucas, Aaron Gordon, and Chanel Edwards-Frederick.

RENT is directed by Richard Israel, choreographed by Dana Solimando, with musical direction by John Glaudini.  Casting Director: Julia Flores. Scenic Designer: Stephen Gifford. Costume Designer: Thomas G. Marquez. Lighting Designer: Steven Young. Sound Desinger: Josh Bessome.  Video Projection Design: Jonathan Infante.

Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, RENT has become a pop cultural phenomenon with songs that rock and a story that resonates with audiences of all ages. This is theatre at its best -- exuberant, passionate, and joyous.

Performances will be 7:30pm on Wednesdays & Thursdays; 8pm on Fridays; 2pm and 8pm on Saturdays; and 2pm on Sundays. There will be no matinee performance on Saturday, October 24.  Talkbacks with the cast and creative team will be on Wednesday, October 28 and Wednesday, November 11.

Tickets range from $20 - $70 and can be purchased at La Mirada Theatre’s website, www.lamiradatheatre.com or by calling the La Mirada Theatre Box Office at (562) 944-9801 or (714) 994-6310. Student, Senior and group discounts are available.

La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts is located at 14900 La Mirada Boulevard in La Mirada, near the intersection of Rosecrans Avenue where the 91 and 5 freeways meet. Parking is free.


 
Phantom Projects Theatre Group Announces PAY WHAT YOU WILL Day for All Shows at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts E-mail
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Entertainment & Arts
Wednesday, 14 October 2015 10:25

La Mirada~No longer will price have to be a factor for any teen, family, or student who wants to be part of a live theatre experience. Phantom Projects Theatre Group has made every show in its 2015/16 Season at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts available at any price. No patron will be turned away.

"The idea that anyone might not be able to be in the audience because of financial limitations pains me greatly. We are a non-profit, yes, and ticket sales are crucial, but at the end of the day, the educational element of what we do is far more important. We want to remove any excuse as to why someone can’t be a theatregoer,” commented Producing Artistic Director Steve Cisneros, who created the company at the age of 17 when pricing often limited his theatre-going abilities.

Pay What You Will tickets will be made available on Saturday October 17th, in-person only, at the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts Box Office. Tickets may be purchased from Noon to 4:00 pm. Tickets, available via cash only, will be available on a first come, first served basis.

The 4-Show season, any of which are available on this day, include: Number the Stars, based on the book by Lois Lowry (November 19, 2015), To Kill a Mockingbird based on the novel by Harper Lee (February 18, 2016), Bruce Gevirtzman’s The Center of the Universe (April 21, 2016), and the 10th Annual Young Artist Project (August 6, 2016).

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La Mirada Blog Announced as Official Media Sponsor of Phantom Projects Theatre Group’s 2015/16 Season at La Mirada Theatre E-mail
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Entertainment & Arts


La Mirada~Phantom Projects Theatre Group, which has deep roots in the City of La Mirada, is pleased to announce an exciting new partnership with another La Mirada favorite, the La Mirada Blog.

The Blog will become the official Media Sponsor of Phantom Projects’ 2015/16 Season, which includes the Los Angeles Premiere of Lois Lowry’s Number the Stars, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Center of the Universe, The Young Artist Project, and The Phantom Cabaret.

"The La Mirada Community has been so supportive of us over our nearly 20 years in existence. From City Council, the residents, the theatre, and of course Tony Aiello and the La Mirada Blog,” commented Producing Artistic Director Steve Cisneros, a La Mirada High School Graduate, who created the company at the age of 17. “We have been featured in FORBES, LA Times, OC Register, KCAL, FOX, CBS, NBC, ABC, you name it. But to have support from a media outlet in our own backyard means the most.”

“The Arts have always been such an important part of the fabric of the La Mirada community,” commented Blog founder Aiello, “We are extremely excited to take our valued relationship with Phantom to a new level. We have always been strong believers in the profound positive effect the group has on our young adults and their involment in the community.”

The partnership will include numerous giveaways throughout the year which include season tickets, individual tickets, signed posters, inside looks at the behind the scenes process of building a live show, and more to be announced.

Plus, loyal La Mirada Blog readers will enjoy a special 10% discount, announced throughout the year.

For more information call (714) 690-2900.


 
REVIEW: "First Date" at La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts E-mail
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Entertainment & Arts

The company performs in the La Mirada Theatre for the Performing Arts/McCoy Rigby Entertainment Southern California Premiere Production of the Broadway Musical "FIRST DATE" - directed by Nick DeGruccio and now playing at LA MIRADA THEATRE FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS.

Welcoming in the new 2015-16 McCoy Rigby Season is First Date, a musical comedy fresh from Broadway making its Southern California debut!

This charming and hilarious performance is set in real time as first time blind-dater, Aaron, and “dateaholic,” Casey, enjoy a few drinks and get to know one another.  Nothing says awkward like, well, a First Date.

Casey (Erica Lustig) is energetic and artistic yet when it comes to meeting the right guy, her track record proves otherwise.  Aaron (Marc Ginsburg), is an investment banker recovering from a previous relationship and is everything Casey isn't.

 So how does their First Date go?  Exactly as one would suspect; fellow restaurant patrons transform into best friends, family members, and those oh-so-bad boyfriends.

Talent is not limited though, as we see the intentions of a wickedly creative waiter also at hand.

Throughout the night, Casey directs Aaron over what questions he should ask (and not ask) and Aaron overshares his previous dating history or lack thereof.

What makes First Date truly unique is the quick wit of the other couples in the restaurant portrayed by supporting cast members Kelley Dorney (ex-fiancé/ Miss Google-thang herself), Scott Drier (a most musically and creatively inclined waiter), Stacey Oristano (Casey's perfect sister /Jewish grandmother), Justin Michael Wilcox (Aaron's best friend/"voice of reason"), and Leigh Wakeford (Casey's BFF/ Previous Rocker Boyfriend).

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