Leading Female Performance – Pamela Dunlap, Heart Song
Leading Male Performance – Tim Cummings and Bill Brochtrup, The Normal Heart
Supporting Female Performance – Lisa Pelikan, The Normal Heart
Supporting Male Performance – Verton R.Banks, Matt Gottlieb, Fred Koehler, The Normal Heart
Zombie Joe’s Underground will host the 35th annual L.A. Weekly Theater Awards on April 7 at Exchange LA. The awards honor what the paper’s committee of critics have deemed the best work performed in theaters of 99 seats or less in the 2013 calendar year.
Tim Cummings, Bill Brochtrup (photo by Ed Krieger)
The Fountain Theatre’s acclaimed production of Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart directed by Simon Levy earned 4 Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award nominations, including Best Production (Revival) and Best Lead Performance for actor Tim Cummings.
The LADCC Award nominations for The Fountain Theatre are:
Best Production (Revival) – The Normal Heart
Best Lead Performance – Tim Cummings, The Normal Heart
Best Sound Design – Peter Bayne, The Normal Heart
Best Video Design – Adam Flemming, The Normal Heart
I was going to write a hardcopy letter but decided to use this route instead. Please, if you think it appropriate, pass my comments along to all of the cast members.
As you know, I was in the audience last Friday. Somehow or other I had missed seeing this play up until now. It was and is a very important play in the history of g/l/b/t rights and the AIDS epidemic. As someone who joined his local gay rights organization in Seattle one week to the day after the beginning of the Stonewall riots, I have been very involved with the movement since then. However, given the passage of time, some of my memories of that awful period in my life and the life of this country had dimmed. The superb job you did on the play brought that whole awful period back to me with stunning clarity. I left the theater an emotional mess.
While I am sure that I took away a different experience from others in the audience last Friday, I was happy to see younger people there. Hopefully they came away with some inkling of what we went through then. I had forgotten, over time, the maddening denial of governmental officials as well as members of the press that anything was going on that needed attention. One of the important aspects of that period that the play brought to life was the pain we all felt as our friends died with frightening suddenness. All of these emotions were brought to the audience in a very palpable way.
Tim Cummings and Bill Brochtrup
I do not want to single out any performer more than another for praise as everyone contributed to the effectiveness of the evening. I must say though that Tim Cummings certainly brought all the passion and anger of his character to life very effectively. Bill Brochtrup was a great foil to that anger. His progression in the disease was very effective, especially the makeup he wore at the end of the play. Having had several close friends die of the disease, when he appeared towards the end his appearance caused me to suddenly remember that yes, that was exactly what my friends looked like. Stephen O'Mahoney's portrayal of a closeted gay person wanting to come out but unable to because of his job and background hit the right note. Matt Gottlieb's portrayal of a man trying to be supportive of his brother but also constrained by his professional responsibilities also rang true. Fred Koehler's anguish at the end over his job as well as what was happening in his life as part of the GMHC was heartbreaking. Lisa Pelikan's anger at what was happening and her inability to get anyone to do anything about it rang true. Dan and Jeff and Verton's rolls as important supporting characters were just right for their roles. In short I want to say thank you to all of you. The cast of course are deserving on praise but also the director and the rest of the crew for provided me with one of the most important evenings of theater I've had in many, many years.
I come in to Los Angeles frequently for cultural events as there is nothing here in the desert to equal the quality of what I can see in Los Angeles. This evening was well worth the late-night drive back to Palm Springs. You all are to be commended for doing an outstanding job.
Andrew F. Johnson, Palm Springs, CA
The Normal Heart Now to Dec 15th (323) 663-1525 MORE
Enjoy this new promo video for our acclaimed production of The Normal Heartby Larry Kramer. Our exclusive Los Angeles revival directed by Simon Levy has earned rave reviews, overwhelming audience response, and has been extended to December 15th by popular demand.
This promo video was created by our friends and colleagues at the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). GLAAD amplifies the voice of the LGBT community by empowering real people to share their stories, holding the media accountable for the words and images they present, and helping grassroots organizations communicate effectively. By ensuring that the stories of LGBT people are heard through the media, GLAAD promotes understanding, increases acceptance, and advances equality.
The Fountain Theatre production of The Normal Heart has been hailed “brilliant” and “outstanding” and a “must-see”. It is highlighted as a Critic’s Pick and is Ovation Award Recommended. Broadway World exclaims, “This production at the Fountain Theatre certainly exemplifies that great theatre is alive and well in Los Angeles.”
The cast features Verton R. Banks, Bill Brochtrup, Tim Cummings, Matt Gottlieb, Fred Koehler, Stephen O’Mahoney, Ray Paolantonio, Lisa Pelikan, Dan Shaked and Jeff Witzke.
Continuing its ongoing series of post-show Q&A Talkback discussions immediately following performances of The Normal Heart, the Fountain Theatre will host a conversation on “Religion, AIDS and the LGBT Community” this Friday night, Nov 1st. Led by Rev. Kathy Cooper-Ledesma of the Hollywood United Methodist Church (aka the Red Ribbon church) and Rev. Joe Shore-Goss of MCC in the Valley, the post-show audience discussion will also include members of the cast and the director.
Rev. Joe Shore-Goss
The Fountain Theatre is committed to reaching out and serving the wide variety of diverse communities that create the vibrant fabric of Los Angeles. At the Fountain, we encourage our audiences to not only watch a play but also engage in the conversation. Please join us for these invigorating, inspiring and thought-provoking discussions. See our acclaimed and powerful production of The Normal Heart this Friday and stay for the conversation.
The Normal Heart has been extended to December 15th! MORE
Actors from our acclaimed production of The Normal Heart participated in the Models of Pride LGBT Youth Conference today at the University of Southern California (USC). This one-day conference is presented by the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center’s LifeWorks program and focuses on the concerns and interests of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) youth up to age 24, and their allies.
The Models of Pride conference offers over 100 workshops, a huge resource fair, exciting entertainment, lunch and dinner, and an evening dance with DJ. The workshops cover many areas of life that are experienced by LGBT youth transitioning to adulthood including but not limited to LGBT issues.
The Normal Heart actors were joined at the conference today by Fountain Co-Artistic Stephen Sachs and Associate Producer/ASM Terri Roberts . The Fountain hosted a table at the outdoor event. The group handed out flyers, interacted with hundreds of young people, and networked with dozens of other organizations. It was a beautiful, sunny afternoon and a very productive day.
Reaching out to young people is a vital goal and ongoing process for the Fountain Theatre and the company of The Normal Heart. The smash hit production has educational, historical, cultural and artistic importance for young audiences who were born after the initial AIDS crisis exploded on the scene in the early 1980’s. The Fountain was determined to be at today’s LGBT Youth Conference. To keep AIDS and Gay Rights awareness alive in young minds and remind young people that the battle is not over. And to encourage them to see an important play that brings these issues — and so much more — dramatically and passionately to life.
Enjoy These Snapshots from Today’s Conference
The Normal Heart Extended to Dec 15th (323) 663-1525MORE
Lily Brown and friend chat with actor Tim Cummings
All of us at the Fountain Theatre feel it is important for young people to see our current production ofThe Normal Heart. Larry Kramer’s powerful, funny and deeply moving chronicle of the dawn of the AIDS crisis in 1981 has been named one of the 100 Greatest Plays of the Twentieth Century by the Royal National Theatre of Great Britain. Our production has earnedrave reviewsand overwhelming audience response and has just been extended to December 15th.
An entire generation of young people have grown up with little or no awareness of AIDS. Many think the AIDS crisis is “old news” and something that happened “back then” with no relevancy today. Not true. More than 30 million people have died worldwide from the AIDS virus so far, with over 1 million people still dying every year — today, now — in 2013.
Our acclaimed production of The Normal Heart is not a history lesson. It is a riveting drama, a heartfelt love story, a compelling political thriller. It is powerful theater, life-changing theater, necessary theater. With the force to inspire and open the eyes and hearts of young people. As this message from college student Lily Brown states so eloquently:
There have been so few times in my life that a piece of theater has moved me so much as to push me to the point of tears. Tears for heartbreak, tears for sorrow, tears for pure rage and tears for lost time and lost lives. But more than deeply moved, I was deeply inspired. As a 20-year-old college student working to get a degree in political theater and Spanish, there is nothing more valuable to me than getting to see the type of work that I aspire to make brought so wonderfully and vivaciously to life. It gives me hope for the future of theater and hope for the future of my career -- I can only hope to make something so powerful someday. Thank you for an evening not soon forgotten.
All my love and appreciation,
The Normal Heart Extended to Dec 15 (323) 663-1525MORE
Special Guests from LA Unified School District HIV/AIDS Prevention Unit to Discuss AIDS and Young People
This Thursday, Oct. 17, immediately following the 8 p.m. performance of The Normal Heart at The Fountain Theatre, guest speakers Timothy Kordic, Project Manager of the LAUSD HIV/AIDS Prevention Unit, and Nancy Ramos, Positively Speaking Facilitator, will host a special talkback with high school students and audience members about the reality of AIDS in 2013 and living with/preventing the disease. Director Simon Levy will moderate the discussion.
The Normal Heart is Larry Kramer’s groundbreaking drama about public and private indifference to the onset of the AIDS crisis, and one man’s fight to awaken the world to its urgency. The title of the play is taken from a line in a poem by W.H. Auden.
The Fountain Theatre is committed to reaching as many high school and college students as possible with the show. According to Advocates for Youth (www.advocatesforyouth.org), a national organization that champions efforts to help young people make informed and responsible decisions about their reproductive and sexual health, almost 40 percent of new HIV infections in the United States occur in young people ages 13 to 29.This generation is also the first one to have never known a world without AIDS.
“I think it is important to educate our youth on the effect HIV had in the past and why the AIDS movement historically gained so much traction early on,” says Kordic. “It now needs to be put into perspective for this generation why the fight is not over.”
Special $12 student tickets are available for the Oct. 17 performance only. (Student discount is regularly $25.) The talkback is included in the ticket price. Mention “LAUSD” when calling to make reservations in order to get the reduced price. Adult tickets are $34.
The Normal Heart is directed by Simon Levy and features Verton R. Banks, Bill Brochtrup, Tim Cummings, Matt Gottlieb, Fred Koehler, Stephen O’Mahoney, Ray Paolantonio, Lisa Pelikan, Dan Shaked and Jeff Witzke.
Jacqueline Schultz, Terri Roberts, Barbara Goodhill, Stephen Sachs, Simon Levy
The Fountain Theatrejoined more than 25,000 others yesterday for the 2013 AIDS Walk LA in West Hollywood. The event raised $2,520,684 for AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) and more than 25 other critically important AIDS organizations. These funds will enable APLA and its community partners to continue their far-reaching prevention and advocacy work, as well as provide urgently needed food, access to dental care, counseling, linkages to safe housing, and other crucial direct services to thousands of people in need living with HIV/AIDS.
The Fountain raised $910 on its AIDS Walk team page. The Fountain Team had a terrific time at the AIDS Walk on Sunday, passing out flyers for our acclaimed AIDS drama The Normal Heart and raising money for AIDS research and services. The actual walk itself stretched 6.2 miles and wounds its way through West Hollywood. In addition to the tens of thousands of people walking the route, streets were lined with thousands more cheering on the walkers. The festive, Mardi Gras atmosphere made it a lively, exhilarating and unforgettable day of community.
Members of the Fountain Theatre Team at the AIDS Walk were staff members Stephen Sachs, Simon Levy, Barbara Goodhill, Terri Roberts; actor Verton R. Banks from The Normal Heart; and Fountain Family members Jacqueline Schultz and Heidi Singh.
Enjoy Some Fountain Snapshots from the AIDS Walk LA
The Normal Heart Extended to Dec 15 (323) 663-1525MORE