Archived entries for Burt Grinstead


The Los Angeles LGBT Center’s
Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center
and Sixth Avenue present

the West Coast Premiere of
By Ike Holter
Directed by Ken Sawyer

LA LGBT logoThe Los Angeles LGBT Center and Sixth Avenue have announced the West Coast premiere of Hit the Wall by Ike Holter. This acclaimed play brings audiences into the famed 1969 Stonewall riots, credited historically as the beginning of the modern LGBT rights movement. Directed by Ken Sawyer with a cast of 10, a live three-piece band, and original music by Anna Waronker (former singer for That Dog) and Charlotte Caffey (guitarist for The Go-Go’s), Hit the Wall will play three previews on September 15, 16, and 17, and opening is set for Friday, September 18 at 8pm. Hit the Wall will run through October 25 Extended Through November 15 in the Davidson/Valentini Theatre.

The cast will feature (in alphabetical order) Jason Caceres, Burt Grinstead, Charlotte Gulezian, Matthew Hancock, Kristina Johnson, Roland Ruiz, Shoniqua Shandai, Adam Silver, Donnie Smith, and Blake Young-Fountain.

Revolution starts with a hot night out. Hit the Wall focuses on the wild and enigmatic first night of the riots, placing the audience right in the center of the conflict. With an imaginative and theatrical blend of history and mythology, Hit the Wall shines a contemporary light on the legacy of Stonewall. Playwright Holter introduces characters who archetypically represent some who took part in the historic uprising. The show’s producers and director will completely redesign the Center’s black-box Davidson/Valentini Theatre, making the production as immersive as possible. Hit the Wall was originally performed at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Garage Theatre, with a subsequent production at the Barrow Street Theatre in New York City.

The scenic design is by Desma Murphy, lighting design is by Matt Richter, costume design is by E.B. Brooks, and sound design is by Ken Sawyer. The production will also feature original music by Anna Waronker & Charlotte Caffey, choreography by Yusuf Nasir, and fight choreography by Edgar Landa. The stage manager is Kathleen Jaffe. The producers for the LGBT Center and Sixth Avenue are Jon Imparato and Adam Silver.
There will be three preview performances of Hit the Wall on Tuesday, September 15, Wednesday, September 16, and Thursday, September 17, all at 8pm. Opening is set for Friday, September 18 at 8pm. The engagement will run through October 25 Extended Through November 15 with performances on Friday and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 7pm. Preview seats are $20 and admission for regular performances is $30. Tickets are available online at, or by calling (323) 860-7300.

The Davidson/Valentini Theatre is located at the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 N. McCadden Place (one block east of Highland, just north of Santa Monica Boulevard), in Hollywood, 90038. Free onsite parking is available.

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Announcing: “Deathtrap” Set to Return To G&L Center in September



Deathtrap - Ken Werther PublicityThe much acclaimed, ‘Ovation Recommended’ production of Ira Levin’s classic comedy thriller Deathtrap is set to return to the Davidson/Valenti Theatre for six weeks only, opening on Friday, September 21 and running through Sunday, October 28. Directed by Ken Sawyer, Deathtrap recently enjoyed a ten week sold out run at the Davidson/Valenti Theatre, located at the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center in Hollywood. Net proceeds will benefit the entire array of the Center’s free and low-cost programs and services.

Deathtrap’s famously complex script provides genuine, edge-of-your-seat thrills, and is perfectly tailored to jolt audiences out of their seats. Playwright Ira Levin is perhaps best known for his suspense novels Rosemary’s Baby, The Boys from Brazil, and The Stepford Wives. Of Levin, famed author Stephen King said, “He is the Swiss watchmaker of suspense novels, making the rest of us look like cheap watchmakers in drugstores.”

Director Ken Sawyer has won a total of eight Ovation Awards for his work in the suspense/horror genre, three for Dracula at the NoHo Arts Center, and five for The Woman in Black at the Road Theatre Company. The entire cast will be returning, and they are (in alphabetical order) Brian Foyster, Cynthia Gravinese, Burt Grinstead, Elizabeth Herron, Carl J. Johnson, and Stephen Mendillo. The set design is by Joel Daavid, lighting design is by Luke Moyer, costume design is by Paula Higgins, and sound design is by Ken Sawyer. Deathtrap is produced by Jon Imparato, artistic director of the Lily Tomlin/Jane Wagner Cultural Arts Center.

Opening night is set for Friday, September 21, and this return engagement of Deathtrap will run through October 28 only. The running schedule is Friday and Saturday at 8pm, and Sunday at 7pm. General seating admission is $25 on Friday and Saturday, and $20 on Sunday. Tickets are available online at, or by calling (323) 860-7300.

The L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center provides a broad array of services for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, welcoming nearly a quarter-million client visits from ethnically diverse youth and adults each year. Through its Jeffrey Goodman Special Care Clinic and on-site pharmacy, the Center offers free and low-cost health, mental health, HIV/AIDS medical care and HIV/STD testing and prevention. The Center also offers legal, social, cultural and educational services, with unique programs for seniors, families and youth, including a 24-bed transitional living program for homeless youth. Information about the Gay & Lesbian Center is available on the Web at

The Davidson/Valenti Theatre is located at The Village at Ed Gould Plaza, 1125 N. McCadden Place (one block east of Highland, just north of Santa Monica Boulevard), in Hollywood. Free parking is available.

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