Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Oh, My God! (of Carnage)

When you're not able to create your own art all the time, the best thing to do is to immerse yourself in other people's art.  As an actor, I like to take in a good theater production from time to time, and study professional actors in their purest and rawest form.  

Finding quality theater in Los Angeles can be tricky.  To guarantee a high quality and professional show, you'll need to go to one of the better known theaters like the Pantages, the Ahmanson or the Mark Taper Forum.  I've always enjoyed a great show at those venues, but have had less luck at the "local" neighborhood theaters.

This time around, I went to see "God of Carnage" at the Ahmanson Theater, starring Jeff Daniels, Hope Davis, James Gandolfini and Marcia Gay Harden.  It was an uninterrupted 90 minutes of comedy, mayhem and inspired acting that only professionals of this caliber could deliver.  I brought binoculars so that I could study their faces and their movements on stage, but found myself being drawn into the crazy, dysfunctional story that was unfolding in front of me.  The show closed this past Sunday, but it might be playing in neighboring cities.  Someone also told me that there may be a movie in the works.  If that's the case, definitely add this to your "saved" list on Netflix.

I can hear the voices now: "...But tickets to the Ahmanson Theater are really expensive and I can't afford to go all the time!"  Yes, regular price tickets are expensive ($150 for orchestra seating) but if you've been following this blog, you'll know that I rarely pay full price for entertainment items.  There are websites like Goldstar.com and Stubdog.com that offer deep discounts on special event tickets, ranging from theater to baseball games to motorsports races.  The Ahmanson theater and Mark Taper Forum also offer $20 hot tix, which are available in person at the box office on the day of the show.  I went during lunch time to pick up my hot tix, but most of the time, you can just show up an hour or so before show time and buy the hot tix as long as they're not sold out.  You can find more information about hot tix at centertheatregroup.org.  Follow this guide to avoid paying $15 for parking when you go to these theaters.

Always immerse yourself in that which you love.  It doesn't have to be something fancy; even a trip to the Santa Monica Promenade can be inspiring, as you walk past the various artists performing on the street.

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