Kentwood Players Upcoming Shows
Onstage in Los Angeles

January 8 – February 13, 2016
A Raisin in the Sun
by Lorraine Hansberry
Directed by Harold Dershimer
Produced by Kathy Dershimer

A Raisin in the Sun is the groundbreaking play which starred Sidney Poitier, Claudia McNeill, Ruby Dee and Diana Sands in the Broadway production which opened in 1959. Set on Chicago’s South Side, the plot revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee, his wife Ruth, his sister Beneatha, his son Travis, and family matriarch Lena, called Mama. When her deceased husband’s insurance money comes through, Mama dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. However, her son Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans: buying a liquor store and being his own man while Beneatha dreams of attending medical school.

The tensions and prejudice they face form this seminal American drama, centering on sacrifice, trust and love among the Younger family and their heroic struggle to retain dignity in a harsh and changing world. The play is a searing and timeless document of hope and inspiration.

Produced by special arrangement with SAMUEL FRENCH, INC.
March 11 – April 16, 2016
Man of La Mancha
Book by Dale Wasserman
Music by Mitch Leigh
Lyrics by Joe Darion
Directed by Susan Goldman Weisbarth
Produced by Gail Bernardi and Margie Bates

Inspired by Miguel de Cervantes and his seventeenth-century masterpiece Don Quixote, the 1966 multiple Tony Award winning musical Man of La Mancha tells the story of the “mad” knight, Don Quixote, as a play within a play, performed by Cervantes, his manservant, and his fellow prisoners as he awaits a hearing with the Spanish Inquisition. Cervantes takes out a makeup kit from his trunk and in a few short moments, transforms himself into Alonso Quijana, an old gentleman who has read so many books on chivalry and thought so much about injustice that he has lost his mind and now believes he should go forth as a knight-errant, renaming himself Don Quixote de La Mancha and setting out to find adventures with his “squire” Sancho Panza. The musical continues to play in many countries around the world with its principal song, “The Impossible Dream” a much-loved standard.

Due to expected demand for tickets, we have added Thursday performances for March 31, April 7, and April 14 at 8pm.

Produced by special arrangement with Tams-Witmark Music Library, Inc
May 13 – June 18, 2016
Clybourne Park
by Bruce Norris
Directed by George L. Rametta
Produced by Lauren A. Jarvis

As a companion piece to A Raisin in the Sun, this savagely funny and ferociously smart play won the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for drama and the 2012 Tony Award for Best Play. Clybourne Park is set in Chicago and explodes in two biting and satiric acts, 50 years apart! Act I takes place in 1959, as nervous white community leaders anxiously try to stop the sale of a middle-class home to a black family. Act II jumps to 2009, in the same house, as the now predominantly African-American neighborhood battles to hold its ground in the face of urban renewal by a Caucasian couple. This topical, insightful, and relevant show about racial discord, civic engagement, and foibles of miscommunication contains adult situations and language, and is not appropriate for children.

CLYBOURNE PARK is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York.
July 8 – August 13, 2016
Olive and the Bitter Herbs
by Charles Busch
Directed by Kirk Larson
Produced by Lori A. Marple-Pereslete

Olive Fisher is an elderly character actress whose claim to fame was her iconic “Gimme the Sausage” commercials of the 1980s. She is a classic New York curmudgeon, at war with the world and in particular her gay next door neighbors. Her closed-off life is shaken by the appearance of a spectral male figure viewed through her living room mirror. This appearance, with the help of the father of the co-op’s board president and Olive's only “friend,” brings together the feuding neighbors for a comedic Passover Seder. Then a series of strange and outrageous coincidences reveals that the man in the mirror has intimate links to everyone in Olive’s world, encouraging her that it’s never too late to change one’s life and perhaps find love.

Produced by special arrangement with SAMUEL FRENCH, INC.
September 9 – October 15, 2016
Wait Until Dark
by Frederick Knott
Adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher
Directed by Kathy Dershimer
WAIT UNTIL DARK is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc., New York.
November 11 – December 17, 2016
Young Frankenstein
Book by Mel Brooks and Thomas Meehan
Music and Lyrics by Mel Brooks
Directed by Alison Mattiza
Produced by Lori A. Marple-Pereslete
YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI)
January 13 – February 18, 2017
The Imaginary Invalid
by Molière
Translated by Charles Heron Wall
Directed by Susan Stangl
Note: All announced shows are subject to change
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