Over 45,000 Season One listeners heard the call of six LA zip codes, so it just makes sense that other zip codes demonstrating LA’s historic and cultural diversity air their special histories. After last year’s hit audio series, The Zip Code Plays, Antaeus Theatre Company decided to offer six more exciting zip code tales this season starring Echo Park (90026), West Hollywood (90069), Inglewood (90303), Pacoima (91331), North Hollywood (91601), and Monterey Park (91754).
In $10 AND A TAMBOURINE, Echo Park offers the audience an enticing look at the Angelus Temple, the Pentecostal megachurch built in 1923 by evangelist Aimee Semple McPherson (Eve Gordon), a clever lady who created the mold for present-day televangelists everywhere. Written by Mildred Inez Lewis and directed by Gigi Bermingham, this tale is about the fantastical meeting between the famous evangelist, deceased African American preacher William J. Seymour (Leonard Earl Howze), and well-known city engineer William Mulholland (Mike McShane). Even if the meeting never happened, it’s certainly a fascinating trip down memory lane. Besides, Echo Park’s earlier name, Edendale, marks the birth of Hollywood.
BRUNCH, INTERRUPTED, written by Sean Abley and directed by Michael A. Shepperd, journeys to West Hollywood, a small city within a much larger one, the small city in which 40 percent are LGBTQ residents. Joe (Bill Brochtrup) and Moses (Parnell Damone Marcano) are an interracial gay couple arranging a fundraiser for the pediatric AIDS Foundation when they first meet their newest straight neighbor Ruby (Anne Gee Byrd). But first impressions may easily lead to judging a book by its cover.
THE VIG give a voice to Inglewood’s Hollywood Park Racetrack – just ten days before it closed forever in December 2013. Authored by Paula Cizmar and directed by Bernadette Speakes, THE VIG features its own creative tale when out-of-towner Lina (Ellis Greer) encounters old-timers Jimmy (Don R. McManus) and Sonny (Keiana Richard) while searching for a long-lost uncle.
GOLD & SHINE spotlights Pacoima, where the past collides with the present as Dr. LaShae Fair (Karen Malina White), a disillusioned university professor, meets up with Sampson (Dale E. Turner), a weathered old black man, and his mule Doby – both visiting from California’s Gold Rush days. Even better than a DNA rush, LaShae sees a family history she never suspected. For people die, but history lives forever as long as people remember it. Written by Khari Wyatt and directed by Saundra McClain, GOLD & SHINE also features Tamika Katon-Donegal.
END OF THE LINE is set in North Hollywood, where curious Aimee-Lynn (Tamarra Graham) and husband Lamont (Rob Nagle) are searching for answers. And maybe for the right questions too. Penned by Peppur Chambers and directed by Gregg T. Daniel, END OF THE LINE also features Mildred Marie Langford.
BINGO BITCHES honors Monterey Park’s long history of Asian-Americans who settled in the “nation’s first suburban Chinatown.” BINGO BITCHES follows the gamesmanship of seniors Kwan Tai (Karen Huie) and her old friend Wong Tai (Cici Lau) as they try to win big from their nemesis Mrs. Boodakian (Jade Hykush). Written by Elizabeth Wong and directed by Jennifer Chang, this is a story tapping into the diversity that is truly Los Angeles.
Season Two of ZIP CODE PLAYS is a fascinating compilation of history, geography, and culture in one of the most diverse cities in the U.S. Sometimes tapping into actual historic events and sometimes cleverly developing stories loosely based on the past, the second season of ZIP CODE PLAYS podcast series is worth a listen.
ZIP CODE PLAYS is presented by the Antaeus Theatre Company and is available on demand to podcast listeners beginning on Thursday, 5/20/21. This is a free event developed in the Antaeus Theatre’s writer’s workshop.