The inviting natural setting of the Will Greer Theatricum Botanicum could only enhance any play that performs here and that is more so for a play with such significant social meaning as Cherry Docs.
Starring Alan Blumenfeld (Danny Dunkelman) and (Mike Downey) Mark Cecil (and later Andrew Walker), Cherry Docs tells the story of a Jewish liberal attorney assigned by the public defenders' officer to represent a Neo Nazi skinhead who has just killed an immigrant worker. The title, Cherry Docs, derived from the steel toed boots that the skinhead used in killing his victim and the attorney must alter his preconceived notion of humanity in order to discover forgiveness.
One does not have to be a Jewish liberal lawyer or a Neo Nazi skinhead to appreciate the conflict in the play. The audience, themselves, are forced to examine their own feelings as Danny, dealing with his own family issues and disgust from his colleagues, comes up with a defense for the boy by reaching into his own limits of liberalism and Mike is forced to come to terms with his own inhumanity.
The 80 minute play, which is directed by Kalo Glow and assisted by Mike Peebler, is written by Canadian writer David Gow, also has the benefit of a moderated discussion after the performance. In addition to a wonderful play, attorneys also get their CEUs!! Imagine watching a play and getting credit for it! Cherry Docs is not only what happens in the room, but what happens outside when we try to build an "understanding" of the "other."
Premiering in Toronto in 1998, Cherry Docs, which has been produced all over Canada and the US, it has become one of the most internationally produced plays over the last decade. Cherry Docs offers an unblinking examination of hatred and the explosive effect it has on our society as well as the hurdles that we must confront as we examine it. Also preformed as a radio play, this two man theatre has been translated into Spanish, Polish, Hebrew and German and also become a film called Steel Toes, staring Academy Award nominee David Strathairn and Andrew Walker.
Costume, designed by Andrea Molina and sound and lighting by Shali Mals.
There are only six performances (9/6; 9/13; 9/20.9/27. 10/16. and 10/13) and the theatre, itself, is the smaller setting, so you want to reserve your seats right away. Call 310 455 3723 or go to www.theatricum.com for tickets. Admission is $20. Parking within the theatre is $5.
Be sure you bring some OFF bug spray or lotion to keep the critters away and a sweater, as it gets chilly in the evenings. Cushions are available for purchase, or you can bring your own. Picnickers are welcome before and after the presentation. The theatre, midway between Ventura Blvd and Malibu, is located at 1419 N Topanga Cyn Blvd.
For more information, one might read Frank Meeink's book, "Autobiography of a Recovering Skinhead."