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‘Mean Gurlz’ music parody comes to Los Feliz

LOS FELIZ — Kate Pazakis loves the film “Mean Girls” so much that she has written a “love letter” about it.

“The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Mean Gurlz” — with performances at Rockwell: Table & Stage in Los Feliz from Thursday to April 15 — is adapted from the 2004, Tina Fey cult film starring Lindsay Lohan as Cady Heron. The home-schooled student is a hit with The Plastics, the A-list girl clique at her new high school, but that sudden popularity is short lived when she makes the monumental mistake of falling for Aaron Samuels, the ex-boyfriend of alpha Plastic Regina George.

“ ‘The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Mean Gurlz’ is a love letter to one of my favorite movies. It’s not insulting,” said Pazakis, the executive director who wrote the musical parody with her husband, Joseph Gonzalez. “There’s some poking fun at the characters and quotable moments.”

‘MEAN GURLZ’

“The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Mean Gurlz” is the seventh musical parody since 2015 that Pazakis has written at Rockwell: Table and Stage. Previous performances — which have helped the unauthorized musical parodies attract a large LGBTQ following — include “Troop Beverly Hills,” “Hocus Pocus,” “The Devil Wears Prada” and “Home Alone.”

Janis Ian (E.K. Dagenfield) and Regina George (Corbin Reid) have a confrontation in “The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Mean Gurlz.” Photo: Bryan Carpender.

In “The Unauthorized Musical Parody of Mean Gurlz,” the story is narrated by a fanboy (Ryan O’Connor) who is obsessed with the movie and its actors. He recounts the story Cady (Bianca Gisselle), who rises up the clique ladder and becomes friends with The Plastics and Regina (Corbin Reid), their “Queen Bee.”

The two girls find themselves vying for the affections of the same hottie classmate, Aaron Samuels, alternatingly played by Jason Michael Snow and Michael Thomas Grant. Cady, however, cooks up a delicious scheme to make Aaron hers and, with the help of her underdog friends Janis Ian (E.K. Dagenfield) and Damien (Andy Arena), knock Regina off the top of the school’s social heap.

“Girls are that mean in high school. They can be cut throat,” Pazakis said. “People remember those girls and the popularity games.”

‘KITSCH FACTOR’

Memorable lines also are a factor when Pazakis decides which film to parody.

“The kitsch factor also makes a good parody,” she said. “ ‘Troop Beverly Hills’ and ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ have been our best performances.”

Rockwell: Table and Stage seats 166 people for performances, which allows for not only intimacy with the audience, but also an immersive and interactive experience.

“It’s a theater event with audience involvement,” Pazakis said. “I wanted something a little different. I’m a huge cabaret fan. I love being in a small room and the intimacy.”

About the author

Phillip Zonkel

Award-winning journalist Phillip Zonkel spent 17 years at Long Beach's Press-Telegram, where he was the first reporter in the paper's history to have a beat covering the city's vibrant LGBTQ. He also created and ran the popular and innovative LGBTQ news blog, Out in the 562.

He won two awards and received a nomination for his reporting on the local LGBTQ community, including a two-part investigation that exposed anti-gay bullying of local high school students and the school districts' failure to implement state mandated protections for LGBTQ students.

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