[THEATER REVIEW] Freeway Dreams Explores L.A. Traffic Through Song

Darren Mangler, Leslie Rubino, Stephanie Andersen, and Jonathan Brett on the”freeway.” Photo by Jim Blanchette

In Los Angeles we have a special relationship with our cars, so almost everyone can relate to the problems of being stuck in heavy traffic. Freeway Dreams, a new musical onstage at Brick House Theatre in North Hollywood, explores the angst that comes from dealing with freeway gridlock.

The show, written by composer and lyricist Wayne Moore, originated as a cabaret in 1992, but this production marks the world premiere of its stage version.

I spoke with Moore and director Jim Blanchette to find out more about the show.

Four commuters stuck in a freeway traffic jam begin to daydream, resulting in songs like “Manic-Depressive Blues,” “On a Pizza To Go” and “A Big Woman Needs a Big Man.”

“The characters start to fantasize in their cars, and after a while they begin to appear in each others’ fantasies. The characters grow throughout the show. Everyone changes.” Moore said.

Blanchette added a philosophical note. “You’re never really alone on the freeway. Being in a car in Los Angeles can be very lonely. You’re surrounded by people, but you’re alone at the same time,” he said.

Freeway Dreams is on stage until June 11th at Brick House Theatre, 10950 Peach Grove Street. Fridays, Saturdays at 8 p.m.; Sundays at 6 p.m. $15. www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2951519; Street parking.

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