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'Passion Play' takes us on a fun, fascinating, clever journey through history

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'Passion Play' written by award winning playwright, Sarah Ruhl

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By Joan Alperin-Schwartz

Whenever I attend a play or a film, I can tell usually within the first few minutes, what kind of experience I'm in for. and with...

...Sarah Ruhl's 'Passion Play', which was named one of the 'Ten Best Plays of 2008' by The New Yorker, it was a really fine experience..

Miss Ruhl is an award winning playwright, as well as a 2010 Pultizer Prize finalist. Many of her plays mix the mundane with the mythical and supernatural, exploring the delicate line between life and death.

'Passion Play' is inspired by the historic festivals, where everyday citizens came together to elevate their communities, by staging the death and resurrection of Christ.

Ruhl has given us a very funny, profound and imaginative take on these pagents

Her three part saga follows 3 different acting troupes, as they stage the classical passion play, at different moments in history.

We start out in 16th century England, where Queen Elizabeth threatens to shut don a small town's production...Then we travel to Nazi Germany, where Hitler's arrival at the famous Oberammergau Passion Play greatly influences the lives of its cast and finally...

The audience finds themselves in Spearfish, South Dakota in 1984, as a local production becomes a campaign stop for a famous actor-turned-President running for election. Care to guess who that might be?

'Passion Play' now playing at the Odyssey Theatre is definitely a 'must-see'. The play, directed by Bart DeLorenzo, will make you laugh, think, and stay with you, long after the curtain falls.

The cast, including Bill Brochtrup, Tobias Baker, Shannon Holt (excellent as Queen Elizabeth, Hitler, Reagan) Brittany Slattery, a standout as the Village Idiot) Daniel Bess, Christian Leffler, Dorie Barton, Beth Mack, John Charles Meyer, Dylan Kenin, Amanda Troop and John Prosky are all wonderful.

'Passion Play' presented by the Odyssey Theatre Ensemble and Evidence Room opened January 25th and runs through March 16, 2014.

It plays Friday and Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm.

There is also a Wednesday, March 5th and Thursday, March 13th production.

General admission is $25 on Wednesday-Friday and $30 on Saturday and Sunday.

Student/SAG-AFTRA/EQUITY performances are $15 on Friday evenings.

The Odyssey Theatre is located at 2055 South Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles 90025

Call 310-477-2055 ext 2 or www.OdysseyTheatre.com for tickets

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