Reviewed by Michael Edwards
, an Open Fist Theatre Company production, now playing at the Atwater Village Theatre is an absolute romp. Directed by Scott Peterman, musical direction by Jan Roper, this dazzling play holds its audience rapt, not so much by the 'seen it before but glad to see it again' storyline, but by the constantly amazing visual, musical and vocal arrangements being offered by a wonderful set, projection screen design and an electric cast of seasoned professional showstoppers.
Starmites is the tale of a comic book loving girl named Eleanor (a wonderful Talia Gloster) living a sheltered life in her protective mother's (a magnificent Cat Davis - especially for her turn as Diva) home. Unfortunately for the young girl the mother throws the young girl's comics in the trash at every turn. The young woman rebels against her mother and somehow falls into the world of one of her comic books where she is caught up in a series of adventures with her new friends the Starmites as they battle an evil queen Diva.
Though the plot is lighthearted and quite fun for the entire family, the opportunity to really 'rock out' onstage that these artists take is quite breathtaking. From the songwriters (music and Lyrics by Barry Keating) to the choreographer (an electric and efficient Becca Sweitzer), to the brilliant screen projections with flowing images mesmerizing us throughout the show (designed by Peterman and Linda Strawberry), but most of all the performers (a powerful and charming Reives Bowers, along with the remaining Starmites; Bradley Sharper, Jasper Wong and Alex Hogy - not to mention the Starmites nemesis, the feisty Banshees -
Elle Engelman, Lindsey Moore Ford, Sarah Martellaro and Sophie Oda)
, each and every performer appears committed to pushing the envelope for excellence with each musical number. It was nice to take in such detailed, beautiful work, all for the sake of families having real fun together. Catch it if you can. Starmites is a really fun show.
Open Fist's Starmites plays Friday, Saturday and Sunday with a varied schedule that includes both evening at 8pm and matinee performances at 3pm through July 9. For tickets and schedule go to
Atwater Village Theatre at: 3269 Casitas Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90039.
There is a free public lot P/1 south of the theatre as part of the AVX (Atwater Village Crossing) complex. Ample street parking is also available.