Rick Willett’s A Terminal Event

Don’t miss the final world premiere performances of A Terminal Event

I finally got a chance to chat with my friend playwright Rick Willett yesterday. Rick has had several off-Broadway plays produced on the east coast over the years, but his most recently opened play, A TERMINAL EVENT is the first time his work has opened out here on the west coast. It was a fun, but frustrating conversation.

On one hand, A TERMINAL EVENT is his most accessible work. It’s a fun and heartbreaking romantic comedy, the actors are hitting it out of the park, and the audiences have been responding fantastically, laughing at thew funny stuff and being moved by the emotional journey his characters are taking. The play just received the sort of magnificent review every writer dreams of receiving. If judged purely on artistic and critical terms and against the goal of creating an engaging night of theater, A TERMINAL EVENT is a success.

Unfortunately, that success is pushing against the current post-pandemic trend of low theater attendance. Friday night performances have been canceled, and there are only four performances remaining in the world premiere run at the Victory Theatre in Burbank :

June 25th – 8 pm
June 26th – 4 pm
July 9th – 8 pm
July 10th – 4 pm

If you’re in the Los Angeles area on those dates, please do yourself and the cause of the performing arts a favor, buy tickets for you and as many loved ones as you can (and/or perhaps even some people of whom you’re only mildly fond) and treats yourselves to night of local theater.

Tickets prices range from $17-40 and are available at the box office or online.

Victory Theatre
3326 West Victory Bl
Burbank, CA 91505
(818) 841-4404

Friday Video: David Plunkert

Visit to a David Plunkert

Whenever I get too hung up on nostalgic yearnings for the good ol’ days when I was a young pup, and balance it against all the artistry and culture that’s readily available for free in these days of miracles and wonders.

For example, here’s eight minutes plus of artist David Plunkert on the Criterion Collection’s YouTube channel giving us a tour of his process.

Truly there is no good excuse for being bored.

Friday Video: The Loneliness of the Long Distance Erogenous Explorer

The Thin Line Between Juicy Details and TMI

“Show, don’t tell” is a bit of writing advice that is oft repeated. There’s plenty of validity to that rule, but sometimes just putting some characters together and having them talk to each other is more rewarding than the most elaborate big budge action set piece. This scene from Letterkenny is a good case in point.

Friday Video: A White Suit, a Banjo, & an Arrow Through His Head

A Night of Peak Wild and Crazy

It’s difficult to convey decades later what a phenomenon Steve Martin was in the late seventies before he traded stand-up comedy for a career as film actor. Comedy just exploded around this period and a large part of that was due to the comic as superstar success of Steve Martin. I don’t mean to diminish the work of other comedians at the time, but Martin just kicked the doors wide open for everyone who came after him.

So here is Steve Martin at the peak of his self-involved seventies absurdist persona before a massive audience in the Universal Amphitheatre in September 1978. This is not too long before he stepped away from stand up. I’m somewhere in that crowd with my mother and father as a gift for my birthday. A bonus chunk of trivia is that the first Blues Brothers album was recorded over the three nights they were the opening act for Martin in this venue.

Note: the video title lists this as being in 1979, but that’s when the concert aired on television, not the year of the actual performance.

Friday Video: Mad Oscilloscopic Skills

The BBC Radiophonic Workshop lays down some cool beats.

The British science and technology tv series, TOMORROW’S WORLD takes a 1965 video visit to the state-of-the-art BBC Radiophonic Workshop where sound engineers Delia Derbyshire and Dick Mills demonstrate how to they create sound effects and electronic music like the famous DOCTOR WHO theme by Ron Grainer.