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WHEN MUSIC POPS, WE TURN IT UP

Jane Fonda and company shine in ’33 Variations’!

Jane Fonda and company shine in ’33 Variations’!
February 13, 2011 MICHAEL KNUDSEN
Jane Fonda

The other night I attended the Los Angeles premiere of 33 Variations (at the Ahmanson) starring the legendary Jane Fonda reprising her critically-acclaimed role originated on Broadway. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect (certainly not Cher who was sitting a few seats away from me), I didn’t want to read too much about the play beforehand so I went in with an open mind, and let me tell you, I completely loved it! I had been itching for a good play and this fit the bill perfectly. I’m a huge fan of Jane’s and I thought I’d never have the chance to see her perform live and thankfully she surpassed all my expectations, she was excellent (along with the rest of the cast including Samantha Mathis and Zach Grenier). The play focuses on a Beethoven scholar who’s trying to unravel the mystery of his infamous ’33 variations’ on Austrian music publisher Diabelli‘s waltz (known as the Diabelli Variations), written between 1819 and 1823. Not only is she trying to understand what drove Beethoven to become obsessed with this project, she’s also coping with declining health and a rocky relationship with her daughter. I became totally engrossed in the story, by the end the entire audience leapt to their feet for a standing ovation, while wiping a few tears away. The play is only here until March 6th, so if you’re in LA make sure to get your tickets before they’re gone! Trust me when I say, do not miss 33 Variations.

33 Variations

A Beethoven scholar is driven to solve the genius’ greatest mystery while her own life rumbles around her: all gracefully underscored by a live pianist sharing the stage. In a journey that spans 200 years, 33 Variations is a sublime waltz between past and present, fact and speculation, art and life, mother and daughter.

Two-time Oscar winner Jane Fonda heads a cast of eight in the new American play written and directed by Moisés Kaufman (author of The Laramie Project and director of I Am My Own Wife and Bengal Tiger at the Baghdad Zoo).

33 Variations