Slapstick Meets Shakespeare in Leading Ladies by Ken Ludwig

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Leading Ladies

Leading Ladies will take the stage in July.

Slapstick goofiness and scrambled Shakespeare make for a delightful romp about mistaken identities, human foibles, and loves lost and found.

Some Like It Hot meets Twelfth Night in Ken Ludwig’s delightful madcap comedy, Leading Ladies.

“I love this show because it’s about something, which is so hard to find in contemporary farce,” explains Richard Israel who is directing the International City Theatre production. “Underneath all the zaniness is a very clear message that it’s okay to aspire to something, to want more out of life, to follow your dreams. But it’s all wrapped up in this endearing and very funny comedy.”

Role reversal gets a new twist and a side of laughs when two down-on-their-luck Shakespearean actors dress as women in a plot to con a dying woman out of her millions. Interweaving inside jokes about the stage, thespians and the Bard himself, Ludwig turns the play within a play model into a farcical statement about art and appearances.

Leading Ladies runs June 8-July 1; International City Theatre at the Long Beach Performing Arts Center, 300 East Ocean Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90802; $29-$44; (562) 436-4610;

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