Tag Archives: Odyssey Theatre


The plays of Nicky Silver expose the hypocrisies of heteronormative society—i.e., family life—through the lens of queer disruptor: the attractive young son, brother-in-law, or next door neighbor transgressing acceptable boundaries in contemporary takes that have been frequently and favorably compared to the works of Joe Orton.

TOO MUCH SUN—in its local premiere, directed by Bart DeLorenzo—revolves around one of Silver’s signature monsters-of-ego: a stage actress, Audrey Langham (Diane Cary), who, in her opening scene, hilariously upbraids her director during rehearsal and walks out the theater. (The play was written for Linda Lavin, who played Audrey in the 2014 New York production at the Vineyard.)

Rather than go on with the show, Audrey repairs to the Cape Cod cottage of her estranged daughter Kitty (Autumn Reeser) for a little rest and recreational husband-hunting. (She’s hoping to land number six.) Audrey’s fall from grace seems to trigger similar acts and revelations from her immediate cohort: her son-in law Dennis (Bryan Langlitz), and father and son neighbors Winston (Clint Jordan) and Lucas—the wild card (Bailey Edwards).

Silver is a rare farceur whose work is always welcome. This time around, Silver’s characters are under a titular spell, addled by the heat and showing little ability to sustainably overcome a pervasive sense of apathy and exhaustion. TOO MUCH SUN is a transitional work for its author, his last “New York play” before moving to London last year.


Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 8 pm.

Sunday at 2 pm.

Through April 28.

Odyssey Theatre

2055 South Sepulveda Boulevard, West Los Angeles.

From top: Diane Cary in her Too Much Sun opening monologue, Odyssey Theatre, 2019; Bailey Edwards (left), Cary, Bryan Langlitz, and Autumn Reeser; Cary and Clint Jordan; Reeser; Langlitz and Edwards; Cary and Reeser. Photographs by Jeff Lorch.


Investigating themes of detachment, pleasure, withdrawal, and aging, Kevin Williamson presents three performances of GNARLED, his collaborative duets with movement artists Barry Brannum, Mallory Fabian, Jasmine Jawato, Carol McDowell and Sebastian Hernandez—whose Hypanthium recently brought down the house at Redcat.

GNARLED is the closing work of this season’s Dance at the Odyssey Theatre.


Friday and Saturday, February 8 and 9, at 8 pm.

Sunday, February 10, at 2 pm.

Odyssey Theatre Ensemble

2055 South Sepulveda Boulevard, West Los Angeles.

From top: GnarledKevin Williamson, images courtesy Kevin Williamson and Odyssey Theatre Ensemble; Fruit, 2009, Williamson’s first evening-length work, photograph by Ryan Patterson, courtesy the photographer.


“Working catharsis is my art form, and one of the ways I do that is by the time-honored tradition of making something ridiculous…

“My job as a theater artist is to remind people of things they’ve forgotten about, or they’ve dismissed or buried, or other people have buried for them.” — Taylor Mac, PARIS LA*

Mac—an incandescent magpie of modern culture—is a champion of what he calls “authentic failure,” a process where the performer goes out on a limb and stays there:

“There’s something about getting up there, risking, falling flat on your ass, and then picking yourself up, that—when you’re watching it on a stage—is profound.”*

Mac the performer, in his transformative 24-Decade History of Popular Music shows, risks everything for six, twelve, twenty-four hours at a time. Mac the playwright concentrates his gender-queer socialism into two-hour projects and sends his actors out to walk the plank, where they thrive.

HIR—Mac’s 2014 play in its Los Angeles premiere at the Odyssey—is a wonderfully disturbing satire that imagines a long-abused family reaching its greatest potential by taking revenge on the abusive patriarch (Ron Bottitta), who was—according to his wife—another “mediocre straight white man who’s barely lifting a finger but thinks he’s lifting the world.”

Mom (Cynthia Kania)—who spends enriching weekends at the local museum with her daughter-turned-son Max (Puppett)—no longer cooks or cleans, so when soldier son Isaac (Zack Gearing) returns home from the Middle East, he walks into an exploded kitchen-sink drama of familial detritus.

“Hir”—pronounced “here”—is a pronoun that floats between “her” and “his.” HIR, the play, will be on the boards for only six more weeks. so get your tickets now.


Through March 17.

Odyssey Theatre Ensemble

2055 South Sepulveda Boulevard, West Los Angeles.

*See “A Time to Be Born: Taylor Mac in conversation with Barlo Perry, PARIS LA 15 (Spring 2017): 78–85.

From top: Cynthia Kania (left), Ron Bottitta, and Puppett in Hir; Kania, Puppett, and Zack Gearing; Kania; Gearing, Kania, and Puppett; Gearing, Bottitta, and Kania. Photographs by Enci Box.


Micaela Taylor + The TL Collective kick off this year’s iteration of Dance at the Odyssey. With their signature fusion of contemporary dance and theatrical hip hop, Taylor and company—Sam McReynolds, Julienne Mackey, Jessie Thorne—will dance the premiere of Taylor’s ROSEWOOD.


MICAELA TAYLOR + THE TL COLLECTIVE—ROSEWOOD, Saturday, January 20, at 8 pm. Sunday, January 21, at 2 pm.
ODYSSEY THEATRE, 2055 South Sepulveda Boulevard, West Los Angeles.
Micaela Taylor. Image credit: Odyssey Theatre Ensemble and Micaela Taylor.
Image result for micaela taylor


Zachary Grant and Raven Scott in Simon Stephens' Punk Rock Photograph by Enci Box

Zachary Grant and Raven Scott in Simon Stephens’ Punk Rock
Photograph by Enci Box

A short, sharp shock, Simon Stephens’ play PUNK ROCK mobilizes its six British teens—students at a private school in greater Manchester—in acts against one another as a subliminal form of training for future acts against the state. It’s about cruel arrogance and narcissism and hormones. About the alienating expense of capitalism—how it stamps out the soul and grinds out a copy. It’s about losing the thread, and how even the most earnest nihilist can succumb to the lure of celebrity.

A difficult play requires a diamond-hard cast, and the players here are, to the last, exceptional—in particular Zachary Grant, who brilliantly inhabits every step of his character’s unwinding.


PUNK ROCK, through May 14.

Friday and Saturday at 8 pm; Sunday at 2 pm.

Additional performances: Wednesday, April 12 and May 3 at 8 pm; Thursday, April 27 at 8 pm.

ODYSSEY THEATRE ENSEMBLE, 2055 South Sepulveda, Westwood-Sawtelle, Los Angeles.