Los Angeles Theater Feature: DIE, MOMMIE, DIE! (Celebration Theatre in Hollywood)

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by Tony Frankel on February 16, 2017

in Theater-Los Angeles


Charles Busch’s Die, Mommie, Die! is equal parts comic melodrama, Greek tragedy and Hollywood kitsch—and all campy noir classic in the vein of 1960s gothic horror films like Hush…Hush, Sweet Charlotte. I saw the first production at the Coast Playhouse back in 1999 starring the playwright, the great Wendy Worthington, and Greg Mullavey (remember him from TV’s Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman?).

Well, it’s about time this clever, kitsch, psychedelic drag-fest satire came back home to Los Angeles. This Greek tragedy on acid, an over-the-top comedy of Gay Hollywood proportions, opens this weekend at the Celebration Theatre in Hollywood, and runs through March 26, 2017.

Except this time the hysterical Drew Droege will play Angela Arden, a faded Hollywood Star who is both trapped in a loveless marriage and estranged from her ill-tempered offspring. Angela attempts to set herself free by murdering her ailing Swifty Lazar-like husband, but when her children begin to suspect their mother in their father’s death, Angela’s hopes for a new life fall apart; the outrageous results include a whodunit.

There’s a boy-toy lover, scissors, show-stoppers, sarcastic one-liners, unsavory situations, hidden agendas, twists and turns, large distorted facial expressions, a die-hard Republican religious fanatic maid, gorgeous costumes and plenty of wigs (it almost sounds like the White House, doesn’t it?).

Also in the cast are Pat Towne, Julanne Chidi Hill, Gina Torrecilla, Andrew Carter and Tom DeTrinis. Directed by Ryan Bergmann the design team is Pete Hickok (sets), Matthew Brian Denman (lights), and Allison Dillard (costumes).

photos by Matthew Brian Denman

Die, Mommie, Die!
Celebration Theatre and JohnMichael Beck
Lex Theatre, 6760 Lexington Ave. in Hollywood
Thurs-Sat at 8; Sun at 2
ends on March 26, 2017 EXTENDED to April 22, 2017
for tickets, call 323.957.1884 or visit Celebration

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