Geffen Playhouse

Theater
Geffen Playhouse Searching for plays & performances at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles? Check out Party Earth for schedules, photos, videos, & more for this great theater! Los Angeles United States 34.063554 -118.444521
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Geffen Playhouse  - Theater in Los Angeles.
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INFO The Geffen Playhouse, originally named the Westwood Playhouse, is a non-profit performing arts theater situated in Westwood, owned by the University of California, Los Angeles. Since the house reopened in 1995, plays at... ... read more

Geffen Playhouse Information

Geffen Playhouse  - Theater in Los Angeles.

The Geffen Playhouse, originally named the Westwood Playhouse, is a non-profit performing arts theater situated in Westwood, owned by the University of California, Los Angeles. Since the house reopened in 1995, plays at the Geffen have played an important role in the city’s theater scene.

Originally constructed in 1929, the building served as a Masonic clubhouse for UCLA students and alumni. In 1994, the theater was donated to UCLA and renamed the Geffen Playhouse in honor of David Geffen (an American record executive, film producer, and philanthropist) and his $5 million donation.

The venue went through heavy renovations from 2002 to 2005; while the historic character of the theater was maintained, the interior was changed and the 125-seat Audrey Skirball-Kenis Theatre was added. The Geffen Playhouse currently has a capacity of around 600 people.

The Geffen is noted for its mix of classic and contemporary plays, in addition to its compelling new productions; indeed, it has been awarded more than 40 regional theater awards. It presents five plays per season on the main stage and three to four plays on the second stage.

As a non-profit organization, the Geffen Playhouse maintains an extensive outreach program with its surrounding communities in an effort to stimulate creativity. Each season, the theater serves over 20,000 individuals through its school-based and community events.

Geffen Playhouse User Reviews

Average rating:
The most pleasant theater-going experience in Los Angeles
Leland F. Aug 26, 2013
I'm a theater geek. Big time. Hell, I study theater at UCLA. But when I say that the Geffen is my favorite theater to go to in the city, that's not just local pride. Out of all of the many theaters I have been to in Los Angeles, none of them has the class, range of productions, and general pleasantness of the Geffen Playhouse. It starts before you even step inside. The Geffen's courtyard is a surprisingly green and classic space that is completely at odds with the grime of Westwood around it. You immediately get the feeling that you have stepped into another world, and at night the courtyard can feel out and out magical. Within, the foyer is spacious and airy. If you attend one of their numerous themed nights, you could be greeted with free cups of white and red wine from a smiling server. From there, three different theater spaces present themselves. Each one brings a unique feel to performance, from a small black box to a larger, Broadway-esque stage. This means that shows performed there are more suited to their space, instead of being expanded or crushed down for different stages, and also that as many as three productions can be ongoing at any time. While the quality of the shows varies according to taste (I personally adored the close-up magic of Nothing to Hide but disliked Mamet's break-through American Buffalo), the variety is fantastic. Classics, new works, and non-traditional performances are represented in equal measure so that no matter which way your tastes run, there is something for you. Seating is abundant, but for the more popular shows it is best to buy your tickets in advance. Student Rush is something that my friends and I often take advantage of where, as UCLA students, we can get a discount on shows that are not completely sold out. While Westwood is not the best place to eat if you're not a college student or teenager, the 405 is about two steps away and the rest of Los Angeles is easily reached. With clean, attractive facilities and a wide range of excellent performances, the Geffen is my personal choice for best traditional theater in the city.
Impress Your Granny or Your Girlfriend
Carly Z. Sep 6, 2012
There's not many places that manage to attract all ages. But the Geffen is always filled with octogenarians and hipsters alike, making it a perfect place for dates with your visiting grandparents or a night out with friends or a first date when you're trying to avoid that whole dinner and a movie thing. Dinner and a play is much better. Thanks to its celebrity namesake, the theater attracts a lot of celebrity stars in its own right. I've seen everyone from Kathleen Turner to Alicia Silverstone tread the boards. Usually the plays aren't the super-famous names that have posters on every lamppost in every major city. They tend to be more limited, but no less amusing. There are also a bunch of events that aren't part of the usual season, which can be found at the website. The events seem to include everything from super-indie productions to before & after parties. The Geffen has a scene of its own, without being too pretentious, so its a could place for first time theater-goers.
One of LA's Theatre Gems
Ian C. Aug 21, 2012
LA Theatre (note the different, pretentious Anglo-Saxon spelling) is a strange animal: You have your super elaborate big shows at places like the Pantages, Mark Taper Forum, REDCAT, Ahmanson, Orpheum, Kirk Douglas and The Greek, which usually are very expensive and 'safe' adaptations or revivals ... and then there are a countless number of small theatres featuring scant one man shows, showcases, and off-off-off-off Broadway pieces which usually range from the mediocre to the terrible... though occasionally a brilliant one comes through. This causes a dilemma for the average person, nobody wants to spend money or time on a bad show even though everyone wants to discover a new piece, but at the same time you pay a premium for this privilege of 'safe' and proven, material which is less exciting to see because it has been discovered. This partly explains why so few people in LA go to theatre. This is what's great about The Geffen since they bridge the gap of both areas. They constantly are bringing in west coast premieres, new and contemporary plays which are thought provoking AND their prices are reasonable for LA theatre. Plus the beautiful architecture both indoors and outside is not to be missed, as well as the surrounding Westwood neighborhood. I have yet to have seen a bad play here. Come early and you might find free street parking, or you check out the nearby Palazzo lot which allows $4 parking. Also, don't forget to ask about signing up with the 4th Wall - a company of young Hollywood producers looking to bring in a younger crowd of theatre patrons with more engaging, exciting programming, fun parties and events where you get free food, drink and get to mingle with the cast, and also get deep ticket discounts (which also can be found on goldstar.com, brownpapertickets.com or plays411.com).
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