Battlefield

“Battlefield,” prodigious director Peter Brook’s unusual new offering, presents a small portion of the “Mahabharata," the ancient Sanskrit epic poem about the disastrous war between two branches of a large ruling family. In 1987, Brook famously presented his nine-hour version of the “Mahabharata” to the acclaim  ...

Travels With My Aunt

A retired English banker, who wants nothing more then to tend his dahlia bulbs, has his quiet country life commandeered by an estranged aunt, long past her salad days but not too old to juggle lovers, dodge gangsters and attract the attention of the CIA in "Travels  ...

Cinderella

Christopher Wheeldon’s co-production with Dutch National Ballet of “Cinderella” is dance theater, conceived of in that genre’s finest tradition, but by no means limited by it. A marvelous scenic design team headed by costume and set designer Julian Crouch, yields projections by Daniel Brodie, dancing tree and carriage sequences  ...

Tosca, LAOpera

“Tosca” … it is Puccini … what’s not to like? True, and it is probably his best opera. But LAOpera’s current production is a “Tosca” to love, not simply like. With glorious voices that are every bit a match for the soaring orchestra under James Conlon’s baton, the two hour  ...

Risa Jaroslow & Dancers with Lisa Mezzacappa

Dancers often collaborate with musicians as composers, accompanists and performers. We have seen many dances accompanied by pianists onstage, and sometimes small chamber groups. But Jaroslow/Mezzacappa’s “Touch Bass” brings three bass instruments together with three dancers. All six, musicians as well as dancers participate in  ...

Not About Nightingales

"Not About Nightingales,” an early Tennessee Williams script, is a Depression-era tragedy with many elements that foretell Williams’ genius as a playwright. Its setting—a large prison where the prisoners revolt against their horrific treatment—is unusual for Williams, but the dialogue occasionally reflects his poetic and symbolic language. Raven Theatre’s  ...

Roz Chast: Cartoon Memoirs

Don't feel embarrassed if you suddenly burst out laughing while viewing the Contemporary Jewish Museum's exhaustive--but not exhausting--show of Roz Chast's work. There will be plenty of other viewers doing the same thing. Chast, for the unitiated, is one of the New Yorker's star cartoonist, with  ...

Matilda: The Musical (on tour)

You can associate any one of many ferocious animals with the formidable, fiendish, she-devil of a school headmistress, Agatha Trunchbull, in renown author Roald Dahl’s beloved tale “Matilda.” But it’s safe to say we all become mother bears whenever we watch adults – particularly of the immature, bratty,  ...

SXSW 2017: The Rest of the Fest

Previously on Culture Vulture, I shared the Top Five Films I saw at Austin's 2017South-by-Southwest Festival. And now, my picks for additional SXSW hits and misses, coming soon to a theater, festival, streaming service, or VR headset near you! THE GOOD:  ...

Temple

“Temple,” a U.S. premiere production at the Aurora Theatre, is a powerful exposition on how the religious officials of London’s St. Paul Cathedral reacted to the Occupy movement’s 2011 encampment outside Sir Christopher Wren’s renowned church. Artfully directed by Aurora Theatre’s Artistic Director Tom Ross, playwright Steve Waters’ fact-based one-act  ...