World Premiere of J-Powers “Pentagon Papers” Explores Challenging History


Amanda Martindale and Serena Dolinsky in “Pentagon Papers.”

Pentagon Papers dramatizes the actual secret history of America’s involvement in Vietnam. J-Powers is the writer/director and has his young cast deliver a number of monologs sometimes spiced with a flavor of a period or character they are interpreting.

The production aims to inspire a new generation of Americans to demand honesty and transparency from leaders, while baby boomers and beyond can reflect on the days they lived through.

The monologs are spiced with ‘60s music, simple changes in props, wardrobe, and blocking with periods of time, or an event projected on a back screen. This makes for creative variety since the dialog is delivered in narrative style.

The cast features: Jeffrey Ashkin, Serena Dolinsky, Mark Jacobson, Stephen Juhl, Dave Kirkpatrick, Amanda Martindale, and Brian Sounalath.

J-Powers does a remarkable amount of research and meets the challenge of placing this information in an interesting format that serves to remind that “we don’t go to war; we live in a constant state of being ‘at war.’” J-Powers (aka John Powers) is well known for his works adapting and dramatizing historical events. It is interesting to note that in history we know what we are told in the press, but that is not necessarily the whole story or the truth, and Powers dedicates himself to the truth.

Pentagon Papers plays Sundays at 3:30 p.m. through March 23 at the Open Space at Santa Monica Playhouse located at 1211 4th St. in Santa Monica. Convenient parking is across the street; regular admission is $19.50. Students, teachers, seniors, and members of the military are $17. Group rates are available. Buy tickets online at or call the box office (310) 394-9779 ext. 1.

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