L.A. Theatre Works: Lucy Loves Desi
February 24, 2023 | RCU Theatre
Lucy Loves Desi: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Sitcom is the hilarious and true story behind one of America’s most beloved TV comedies.
Lucille Ball paved the way for many of today’s top comediennes, while forcing Hollywood to begin dealing with the rising power and influence of women artists both on-screen and behind the scenes. Her iconic series, I Love Lucy, remains one of the most groundbreaking and influential shows in television history.
Playwright Gregg Oppenheimer—son ofI Love Lucycreator Jess Oppenheimer—spins this witty, fast-paced tale of Lucy and Desi’s battles with CBS over the pioneering ideas that changed the face of television forever: Lucy insisted on Desi Arnaz, her Cuban-born bandleader husband, as her TV co-star—instead of the “All-American” leading man preferred by the network. The couple wanted the show filmed in Hollywood, here they planned to raise a family—not broadcast live from New York like other major TV programs of the time. They demanded and won the right to own the show themselves. Their writers incorporated Lucy’s real-life pregnancy into the program’s story line—an absolute taboo in 1950s America—resulting in the highest audience share ever recorded. And they proposed the unheard-of notion of airing “reruns” on the network in order to accommodate Lucy’s mid-season maternity leave—an experiment that ultimately turned the entire TV industry’s business model on its head.
Tickets start at $25 plus taxes and fees.
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