kate west review
by David Nadelberg
Running in Los Angeles: Wednesday, July 21 at 8 p.m. at
the M Bar, 1253 (corner of Vine/Fountain), $5, for tix call (323) 856-0036
in New York: June 17 & 19 at 8 p.m. at the Magnet Theater, 254 W. 29th Street,
NYC 10001, $10, for tix call (212) 244-8824
Nadelberg, writer/producer/angstologist, has come up with the perfect idea for
the perfectly simple show: humiliate your actors by having them read their teenage
and childhood diary excerpts in public. Performing bicoastally and on "This
American Life", NPR's popular homespun radio show, "Mortified"
is as entertaining as it is clever.
latest show playing in Los Angeles features Johanna Stein, Melissa Wolfe, Angela
Pupello, Christopher Wood, Sascha Rothchild, Krista and Keleigh Lanphear, Chris
Farah, Will Seymour and Mark Phinney. Ranging from the Lanphear sisters' ludicrously
heartfelt original song about the Challenger tragedy, to Will Seymour's casual
passing reference to living next door to "Aunt" Liza Minnelli, the show
presents adolescent angst and absurdity quite well. Melissa Wolfe's vehement attack
on her childhood teacher is uproarious as well. And after each show, the audience
is abuzz with excitement, as each of us can relate to how wildly different children's
points of view can be.
assembles the show adeptly, plugging in appropriate pop songs and pacing his actors
just the right amount of time. No one is on stage too long and each excerpt is
long enough to give us amusing details, but short enough that we don't get as
restless as school children. He picks likeable actors, for the most part, encouraging
them to let their guards down, resulting in sincere human appeal and making us
laugh until we cry.
a great show and a terrific idea. You have many chances to see it; both in Los
Angeles and New York so don't miss it. And don't forget to check out their detailed
website too at www.getmortified.com.