'For the Record: The Brat Pack' Aims to Become L.A. Institution
The latest live musical cinematic tribute is an '80s extravaganza at Break Room 86.
Los Angeles has gotten totally tubular.
For the Record: The Brat Pack, the latest show from the L.A.-based live entertainment series that creates musical theater tributes to movie classics, is playing now — fittingly at the 1980s-themed speakeasy Break Room 86, located inside Koreatown's The Line Hotel.
Evolved from an earlier For the Record production, Dear John Hughes, the new show is heavily dominated by the '80s teen-movie master's canon (The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, Some Kind of Wonderful, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Weird Science) with an insertion of Cameron Crowe's Say Anything. The talented, spirited ensemble of six (the Brain, the Athlete, the Basketcase, the Princess and the Criminal, plus the Authority Figure) bring iconic scenes to life while performing a nonstop 90-minute set of soundtrack hits, including Simple Minds' "Don't You (Forget About Me)," David Bowie's "Young Americans," The Beatles' "Twist and Shout" and Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes," all arranged by music supervisor Jesse Vargas.
Director Anderson Davis and choreographer Sumie Maeda make ingenious use of the intimate space, where the bar lowers at showtime to reveal the stage (and at one point, a soda gun is deployed for a shower scene). The immersive experience begins with an hourlong pre-party, during which guests may find themselves pulled by an actor into one of Break Room 86's private booths for "detention karaoke." VHS cartridges hold the themed drink menu (two-drink minimum per person) and snack packs — retro metal lunchboxes holding spiked Capri Suns (Capri-Funs) and artisanal sandwich creations from PBJ.LA — are on sale.
For the Record: The Brat Pack runs nightly Thursday through Sunday and currently is scheduled to close June 9, although if the show is a hit, there is a possibility it could be extended indefinitely to become one of L.A.'s must-see institutions, similar to Beach Blanket Babylon in San Francisco or Sleep No More in New York. General admission tickets (a.k.a. "tuition") is $86 with standing room ("hall passes") going for $19.86.
The show is produced by For the Record's Shane Scheel and Siobhan O'Neill, in association with Houston Hospitality, and stars James Byous, Michael Thomas Grant, Patrick Ortiz, Doug Kreeger, Parissa Koo, Emily Lopez, Kenton Chen, Alex Nee, Zachary Zaret, Claire Blackwelder, Faydean Kielty, Derek Manson and Kyle Sherman. Music director Jared Stein leads the live band, with Michael Berger, Ben Soldate and Steve Mazurek designing lights, sound and costumes, respectively.