California Suite Review - Presented by the LATW

Ever wonder what it takes to produce a radio show these days?  Well, you can check it out at the Skirball Cultural Center where they regularly perform staged plays for radio productions. Each event is broadcast five times.  These productions, once recorded are played on NPR public radio.

Their next program, Neil Simon’s California Suite will open on Wednesday, February 17th at 8 pm and play through Sunday February 21 2010.  Wednesday through Friday the shows start at 8 pm.  On Saturday, the recording is at 2:30 pm, while Sunday, it is heard at 4 pm.   Using old fashioned mikes, but modern sound effects, the play comes to life under the tutelage of established actors right as you’re listening.  Those staring in this performance will be Marsha Mason (one of the premiere interpreters of Neil Simon’s work), along with Bruce Davison, Amy Pietz and Dennis Boutsikaris.  

LATW - Bruce Davison performing in California Suite

California Suite is a 1976 play by Neil Simon. Similar in structure to his earlier Plaza Suite, the comedy is composed of four playlets set in Suite 203-04, which consists of a living room and an adjoining bedroom with an ensuite bath, in The Beverly Hills Hotel.

LATW - Marsha Mason performing in California Suite

In Visitor from New York, Hannah Warren is a Manhattan workaholic who flies to Los Angeles to retrieve her teenaged daughter Jenny after she leaves home to live with her successful screenwriter father William. The bickering divorced couple is forced to decide what living arrangements are best for the girl.
Conservative middle-aged businessman Marvin Michaels is the Visitor from Philadelphia, who awakens to discover a prostitute named Bunny unconscious in his bed after consuming a bottle of vodka. With his wife Millie on her way up to the suite, he must find a way to conceal all traces of his uncharacteristic indiscretion.
The Visitors from London are British actress Diana Nichols, a first-time nominee for the Academy Award for Best Actress, and her husband Sidney, a once-closeted antique dealer who increasingly has become indiscreet about his sexual preference. The Oscar is an honor that could jumpstart her faltering career, although Diana knows she doesn't have a chance of winning. She is in deep denial about the true nature of her marriage of convenience, and as she prepares for her moment in the spotlight, her mood fluctuates from hope to panic to despair.

LATW - Kate Burton - performing The Constant Wife

The Visitors from Chicago are two affluent couples who are best friends. Stu Franklyn and his wife Gert and Mort Hollender and his wife Beth are taking a much-needed vacation together. Things begin to unravel quickly when Beth is hurt during a mixed doubles tennis match and Mort accuses Stu of having caused her injury by lobbing the ball.

LATW (Los Angeles Theatre Works) has a long history of performing Simon’s plays.

LATW - RFK Journey to Justice

Their schedule for the following months includes RFK: The Journey to Justice  an original docudrama about Robert Kennedy and the Civil Rights Movement.  March 17-21st.

LATW - RFK: Journey to Justice

Somerset Maugham’s The Constant Wife is performed with Kate Burton, John Delancy and Katherine Meisle on April 14-18 while She Stoops to Conquer appears on June 16-20 with James Marsters (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) and Roy Dotrich. 

LATW: James Marsters performing She Stoops to Conquer

Tickets range from student prices $20 to $47 can be purchased from  or call 310 827 0889  The Skirball Center is located at 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd in Brentwood.

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