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The Waiting Room Is Waiting

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The Company of Angels opens Lisa Loomer's The Waiting Room tonight at 8 pm in Silver Lake. Directed by Cornerstone Theater Company veteran Armando Molina, this provocative black comedy about female beauty, stereotypes, and medicine hasn't been performed in Los Angeles since its 1994 world premiere at the Taper, but the issues it addresses loom even larger today (I Want A Famous Face, anyone?)

We aren't the first culture, nor will we be the last, to experiment with extreme modification of the female body for dubious reasons. The Waiting Room puts our own Botox-shooting ways into historical perspective. In a clever Caryl Churchillesque device, the story unites three women from three different time periods: "...a tightly-corseted Victorian Englishwoman suffering from “hysteria,” an eighteenth-century Chinese woman whose bound feet are causing her to lose her toes, and a contemporary New Jersey gal having problems with her third set of breast implants. " They meet, of course, in a doctor's waiting room, trying to fix the problems they have with their bodies.

So, if you're wondering how we got to be so weird about beauty in LA, The Waiting Room won't answer your questions, but it will leave you with more. The opening promises to be special - playwright Lisa Loomer will be a guest tonight and the theatre lobby features a display of Asian rice paper paintings by Mi Hye Bae, photography by Charlie D. Cho, and abstract art by William Liese.

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The Waiting Room performs Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays at 8 pm through Oct. 22. The Company Of Angels' theatre is located at 2106 Hyperion Ave., Silverlake, att the corner of Lyric and Hyperion. Tickets are $18, students and seniors $13, which makes this show one of the cheapest theatre tickets in town. Reservations: (323) 883-1717 or online at www.companyofangels.org.