I am Not Mark Twain

“I Am Not Mark Twain”, Written and Performed by Steven Cragg
a kate west review
directed by Ron Lagomarsino
at the Groundlings Theatre, 7307 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles 90046
(323) 934-4747, Running Mondays February 2004

Steven Cragg, alumnus of the well-known Groundlings Troupe is currently performing his unusual one-man show “I Am Not Mark Twain” at the Groundlings Theatre through February. The previous incarnation was directed by Melanie Graham (another Groundlings alumna) and depicted Cragg, southern accent and all, in a Mark Twain costume with the disclaimer that he is most definitely not Mark Twain. (You need to see the show to get the joke). The one act is actually about Cragg’s personal life which he shares with the audience in painful detail. From his crazy road exploits with a drinking buddy, to the terrible scare he had when his son was diagnosed with a serious disease, Cragg keeps the audience in turn involved, sympathetic, enchanted and dismayed.

The current production directed by Rob Lagomarsino is an extension of the earlier work, maintaining the same emotional intensity and pathos. Combining sarcasm, witty humor and revealing frankness, Cragg once again holds the audience captive. Along with his “not-Mark-Twain” costume, he presents slides of his life, daring us to judge his choices, while keeping his dignity and integrity intact. This is an amazing show and an amazing insight into a complex and intelligent man. It is well worth time invested and may leave you dizzy from all the strongly exposed passion. Don’t miss it. Read more!


written & directed by Sarah Johnson
starring Angelique Little

Under the new-and-different category comes an usual independent film. "Hairless" is a movie about baldness. More specifically, about Alyssa, who tries to hide her hairless state from potential suitors. But this proves to be a daunting task, as she has no hair anywhere, due to a disease called alopecia areata (see info below on the very real condition).

Check out the website www.hairlessmovie.com

From The National Alopecia Areata Foundation

Alopecia areata is a common autoimmune disease that results in the loss of hair on the scalp and elsewhere. It usually starts with one or more small, round, smooth patches. It occurs in males and females of all ages and races, but onset most often occurs in childhood. It is estimated that approximately two percent of the population will be affected at some point in their lives, or over 4.5 million people in the United States.

In alopecia areata, the affected hair follicles are mistakenly attacked in groups by a person’s own immune system (white blood cells), resulting in the arrest of the hair growth stage. These affected follicles become very small, drastically slow down production, and grow no hair visible above the surface for months or years. The scalp is the mostly commonly affected area, but the beard or any hair-bearing site can be affected alone or together with the scalp.

Some people develop only a few bare patches that regrow hair within a year. In others, extensive patchy loss occurs, and in a few, all scalp hair is lost (referred to as alopecia totalis) or, hair is lost from the entire scalp and body (referred to as alopecia universalis). No matter how widespread the hair loss, the hair follicles remain alive and are ready to resume normal hair production whenever they receive the appropriate signal. In all cases, hair regrowth may occur even without treatment and even after many years.

At present, there is no cure for alopecia areata, although the hair may return by itself. There are various treatments, which are most effective in milder cases, but none are universally effective.

For more information, please check the website of the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, at www.naaf.org.

More from Angelique Little:
The Smartest Person Who Ever Lived
Read more!