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bom-og-twitterBOOK OF MORMON — Hollywood, San Jose, and San Diego:  The boys are back in town – those fresh faced, angelically singing, and tap dancing boys who are the missionaries of Book of Mormon.   Written by Robert Lopez (Avenue Q), Trey Parker and Matt Stone (South Park), this musical breaks every rule of decency in ways that go way beyond profanity, though there is indeed plenty of that.  The show follows two Mormon missionaries as they attempt to share their scriptures with the inhabitants of a remote Ugandan village. The earnest young men are challenged by the lack of interest of the locals, who are preoccupied with more pressing troubles such as AIDS, famine, and oppression from the local warlord.  Since its debut in 2011, the show continues to play to full houses on Broadway and with a separate company on tour.  And despite situations that would make a jaded whore blush; the script is actually not derogatory to Mormons.  In fact, the church often buys ad space in the program and says, “You’ve seen the musical; now read the book.”  If you’ve somehow missed it so far, now is the time to catch it, though perhaps not with your mother on your arm.  Hollywood Pantages through 7/9 (HollywoodPantages.com); San Jose Center for the Performing Arts 7/11 – 23 (SanJoseTheatres.org); and San Diego Civic 7/25 – 30 (SanDiegoTheatres.org).


300-man-manchaMAN OF LA MANCHA – La Mirada:  Last month, a friend urged me to join him for West Side Story in La Mirada.  I dragged my feet a little bit, with only the vaguest idea where La Mirada even is, but ended up being absolutely blown away.  I believe it was the finest performance of that classic that I have ever seen staged.  So when I heard that the same producers were presenting Man of La Mancha this month, my ears perked up.  The production will be led by Davis Gaines as Don Quixote.  Gaines played over 2,000 performances as The Phantom of the Opera, including the extended runs in Los Angeles and San Francisco, and it’s likely that his rendition of “The Impossible Dream” will create an indelible memory.  Celebrating life not as it is but as it should be is at the heart of this inspiring musical, which jumps from whimsy to romance to a brutal and graphic rape.  And of course, Quixote has to battle it out with those damned windmills!  The show is a delight, the Spanish-inspired music haunting, and the company has proven itself worthy.  Should be a wonderful night out.  La Mirada Center for the Performing Arts through 6/25 (LaMiradaTheatre.com).


young-caesarYOUNG CAESAR – Los Angeles:   This one-night presentation promises to be very exciting.  A chamber opera by Lou Harrison, celebrating what would have been his 100th birthday, is the story of Julius Caesar’s love for a young man before his rise to power and dalliances with that Egyptian hussy.  The music has a strong oriental flavor, with added Western lushness.  The production will be conducted by Marc Lowenstein, narrated by Bruce Vilanch, and features Adam Fisher as Caesar, David Adam Moore as Nicomedes, six male dancers, and the Men of the Los Angeles Master Chorale.  Truly a unique experience.  Walt Disney Concert Hall 6/13 (LAPhil.org/tickets).


300-shaping-soundSHAPING SOUND – Los Angeles:  Okay, so I was one of a million queens who developed a crush on Travis Wall when he competed on So You Think You Can Dance.  I was then delighted to see him return as one of the smartest and most sensual choreographers on that show, earning several Emmys along the way.  He has also choreographed shows for Justin Bieber and Demi Lovato.  Now, he has his own dance company – a dozen gorgeous men and women — which he calls Shaping Sound.  They are currently on their second world tour, following a four-year tour of their first show.  The new production, After the Curtain, tells the story of a man fighting to find his artistic voice after the death of his one true love.  Travis Wall will be dancing in the production.  Two nights only.  Book today!  Royce Hall UCLA 6/26 – 27 (TicketMaster.com).

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