If you’re looking for a belated Valentine’s Day gift, a pair of tix to “La Bohéme” is sure to bring your sweetie a smile. Puccini’s moving love story has been the toast of the Ahmanson Theater’s 2003-2004 season, drawing rave reviews and sold-out shows.

Buz Luhrmann’s new production moves the action to Bohemian Paris circa 1957, where the usual suspects are transformed into stylish hipsters sporting swing skirts, trench coats and black berets. The result is a fresh twist on an old classic that is sexy, sizzling and oh-so romantic.

A who’s who of both Hollywood and Broadway turned up for the opening night performance, including Dennis Franz, David Hyde Pierce, Eva Marie Saint, Neil Simon and Blythe Danner.

After a seemingly endless round of bravos, the cast and about 900 lucky guests made their way from the Ahmanson to the Grand Hall of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for a French-themed post-performance bash.

There was bubbly, but of course, as well as a full of spread of Alcasian sausages, croque monsieurs and crepes suzette. Soprano Kelly Kanduce, who played the part of Mimi, and Tony Award-winning tenor David Miller, who took on the role of Rodolfo, made the rounds while Center Theater Group artistic director Gordon Davidson was congratulated on another memorable production. La Bohéme ends its run on Sunday. Tres manifique!


Ooh la la! Speaking of underpants, that’s also the name of a new play makes its West Coast debut at the Geffen Playhouse on March 9. If you’re a lover of Steve Martin’s theatrical endeavors, “Underpants” is a must-see.

The wild and crazy guy has adapted Carl Sternheim’s celebrated 1910 farce. It’s the story of a newly married couple whose lives are thrown into chaos when the misses’ knickers fall down during a high-profile parade for the local potentate. Now that’s what I call top-drawer entertainment!


It seems a bit before their time, but apparently locals Courtney Cox and David Arquette are big fans of the ’60s kids show “H.R. Pufnstuf.” They joined creators Sid and Marty Krofft at the Museum of Radio and Television in Beverly Hills to celebrate the 35th Anniversary of the show and its three-disc release on DVD. The wacky adventures of Jimmy, his magic flute, Witchiepoo the witch and a six-foot dragon is what you might call an acquired taste. One reviewer on the Internet Movie Database put it this way:

“This show was, to put it kindly, totally insane. I can well understand how Jack Wild could become an alcoholic after being associated with this venture in psychedelic entertainment.”