Happy New Year, folks! You haven’t heard too much from me lately, because theatrical “openings” are scarce during the holidays

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Now, a new year has dawned, and my schedule is filling up to catch some new productions to tell you about. Let me give you a sneak peek at three upcoming local plays for your consideration.

Barrymore – Opening Jan. 9.

Gordon Goodman as “Barrymore.”

Gordon Goodman as “Barrymore.”

Written by William Luce, directed by Janet Miller, and brilliantly starring Gordon Goodman … this is a must see for all theater enthusiasts! Having enjoyed his critically acclaimed “heart-stoppingly magical” performance as Barrymore at The Greenway Court in Hollywood in November, I am thrilled to tell you it will re-open for only 8 performances at our own El Portal Theatre in NoHo, in the intimate Monroe Forum. A witty, bawdy, and achingly touching view of John Barrymore’s life, told in his declining years … we learn much about his life. His fears, boozing, dysfunctional marriages, his infamous family, and more … Caustic, charming, funny, informative, and reflective … Gordon Goodman gives a powerfully entertaining performance … not soon to be forgotten! Don’t miss this one! (I’m going again myself.) Running from Jan. 9 thru’ 19th only. Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 2. For tickets call (818) 508-4200.

On the Money – Opening Jan. 24 at The Victory Theatre in Burbank.

Written by Kos Kostmayer, directed by Tom Ormeny, and boasting a large cast of ten actors. Tom and his wife Maria co-founded and built the Victory Theatre in 1979 and have earned a highly regarded reputation for their theatrical instincts. In fact, they ran this play here for a critically acclaimed nine month run thirty years ago. At the time, an L.A. Times theater critic wrote: “An exceptionally powerful naturalistic play about the evils of money – or lack of money … Theater of the head and heart.” Ormeny states in part: “This dynamically fast and moving play is about financial pressure and the dangerous lengths to which good people will go, to get their hands on money.” Said to be humorous and tragic in turns … it studies the financial issues that still plague millions of ordinary Americans today. For early booking call (818) 841-5422 or go to thevictorytheatrecenter.org.

Don’t Leave It All to Your Children – Opening Jan. 19 at The Whitefire Theatre in Sherman Oaks.

Written and directed by the 6 time Emmy nominated Saul Ilson, this hit show ran off-Broadway for 8 months, and now opens in L.A. An entertaining look at four seasoned people in their “older years” with plenty of pizzazz left in their hearts … 2 guys and 2 gals entertain us with witty songs, plenty of laughs, sassy sketches, and “food for thought.” Sounds like fun and offers a fine cast. Running Sunday matinees only. For early booking call (800) 838-3006.

It’s a brand spankin’ new year, folks! A time for new beginnings, fresh experiences, and personal resolutions. As always, I encourage you to include L.A.’s plethora of theatrical productions to your social agenda! Many are mind-expanding, others are musical or hilarious (and a few are clunkers), but all add something to your life experiences!

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