The Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, which the Huffington Post calls “the gold standard of the avant garde in LA,” introduces members to emerging local and international artists with gallery exhibitions and innovative performances in art, music, dance, film, and multimedia. In time for the debut of the 2012 schedule, individual members enjoy a 20% discount on up to two tickets to each of REDCAT’s theatrical productions, which include Lars Jan’s genre-defying Abacus, with high-tech effects and compelling performances that explore media’s persuasive power. With 24 hours’ notice, members can trade in tickets for another date, increasing their chances of catching chats with filmmakers such as William E. Jones, comedy sets by jokesters such as Sandra Bernhard, or recollections of '70s New York by former Yankees shortstop Lou Reed.
The 24th Street Theatre blurs the line between adult and children’s theater with programming that's simultaneously accessible and nuanced. But the organization accomplishes much more than that. Stewards to the Teatro Nuevo Latino Initiative, music services, and outreach programs for at-risk youths, 24th Street Theatre's creatives draw neighborhood adolescents into the arts. And they're obviously doing something right. As Jack Black once said of the theatre’s director, according its website, “I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t met Deb Devine, my first drama teacher.”
Knightsbridge Theatre's talented cadre of thespians presents a schedule of lovingly crafted stagings of classic theatrical texts in an intimate, newly restored theater. Five- and 10-seat subscriptions allow patrons to use their seats any way they like, bringing along a mass of friends for one show or sitting on a friend’s shoulders and plopping down into a single seat, or gifting tickets to a friend, family member, or favorite landscaper. Upcoming shows include Steel Magnolias, the original musical comedy Bergeracky, Rostand's comical French romance Cyrano De Bergerac and the medieval tale of intrigue The Lion in Winter. Shows take place in a renovated 1920s silent-movie house that contains just 99 seats, creating an intimate atmosphere that allows actors to connect to the audience without the use of duct tape.
Led by Allen Levin, an experienced actor, producer, and writer, Lifebook Acting Class’s celebrity-extolled workshops impart budding performers with the art of dramatization. Stratified into three levels ranging from orientation to advanced, classes for aspiring professionals mix improv and character building with career coaching to prevent missteps such as starring in a western with talking tumbleweeds. Acting hobbyists develop comedic and dramatic talents in Acting for Non-Actors and First Timers, a self-confidence strengthening romp through the basics of theatrics. For those with proven celebrity or one major credit to their name, the Master Class sharpens already deadly dialogue skills into a force to be reckoned with in time for a prized audition, starring role, or first meeting with future in-laws.
In the intimate confines of Atwater Playhouse, a new 45-seat theater, acting teachers impart the skills behind not acting. Most commonly known as method acting, their style hinges on actually feeling a character's emotions, rather than simply mimicking them. This immersive approach, used by greats such as Meryl Streep and Al Pacino, has landed students roles in productions such as The Dark Knight Rises, Drive, and Weeds.