DEALS & DISCOUNTS--It has been said that “Robot Monster, the Musical” is the best musical of 2017! It might be if you have a great sense of humor, love of sci-fi, music, dancing, romance, adorable children, and a gorilla monster robot! That’s right, a gorilla monster robot from another planet. Just in case you did not see the original cult B- movie from 1953, here is your opportunity to see a live theatrical re-make that is now a musical.

DEALS & DISCOUNTS--On my first day at my new job, one of my co-workers was complaining that it had taken her a long time to drive to work due to the millions of illegals that are driving on the Los Angeles freeways. After questioning her, she repeated what she heard Sean Hannity say on radio that morning. I told her not to listen to that stuff, and, in frustration, went to my cubicle to cry over ignorant rhetoric both on the air and passed down by everyday people. 

DEALS & DISCOUNTS--I guess you could say that it all started when I met this artist named Leland when I was volunteering for the GLAAD Media Awards … 

So there I was in front of City Hall, listening to the mayor after a long May Day march, when I ran into this Leland fella once again and he invited me to go have a drink with him and a couple of his friends later in WeHo. Of course, I said I’d be delighted and we parted ways with much adieu. 

I arrived in the San Vicente/Santa Monica Boulevard area at around 7 pm. I drove around and tried to find street parking but finally opted for the library parking off of San Vicente. I scuttled on up to Santa Monica and met Leland and his pals at Rage. 

I have to tell you that I really had no idea what I was in for. 

The tables were all arranged facing a stage area and it dawned on me that we were not only having a drink but seeing a show. In fact, one of my newfound pals, Terrence, was due to be in the show. 

The show began with a tall lean dude with glasses lip-singing a rousing rendition of “Rose’s Turn” from Gypsy as the divine Miss M belted it out from a screen up above. The live performer was shaking his groove thing and shimmying his shoulders and I thought, “What the heck is going on here!” 

It became clearer with each number that Musical Mondays at Rage is a rager of a deal. 


Leland and his pal Elizabeth had never seen the show either and we were astounded at the depth of talent in the group of performers before us. They would strut and scoot and sashay hither and tither as they seemingly belted out tunes from Trouble in River City to All That Jazz while videos played overhead. 

Some of them were so good at lip-singing that I’m still convinced they WERE singing. 

The joint rocks a happy hour too. I enjoyed a glass of Pinot Grigio for $7. You never know how wine will be in a bar but this was just fine. They also offer up tasty food items at reasonable prices. I have to admit that I had already eaten so didn’t sample the fare but would love to hear from a reader on that score! 

One thing is perfectly clear. Everything’s Coming Up Roses at Monday Night Musicals at Rage and I plan to take my friends there the next chance I get. They’ve made a musical lover out of me. Who knows, maybe I’ll see if I can take a stab at it myself! 

Thanks to the awesome performers Andrew Blau, Bobby Beus, Pilar Herrera, Gerson Rapoport, Brian Treadway, Chris Ahears, Imani Estese, Danielle Dee, Frank Woo, Jason Rasmussen, Martin “Free” Ramon, Ryan Provencher, Kevin Clager, Coleen Quinn-Allen, David Shepherd, Rudy Villa, Chris Lilly and Jose Gallegos – and the Ishka Maher for producing this wonderful night and her husband Keith Jacobson the VJ.



Rage nightclub

8911 Santa Monica Blvd.

West Hollywood, CA


Starting at 6 PM, VJ Keith Jacobson plays all your FAVORITE Broadway and movie musical clips. Then, at 10 PM, the show begins!

(Jennifer Caldwell is a an actress and an active member of SAG-AFTRA, serving on several committees. She is a published author of short stories and news articles and is a featured contributor to CityWatch. Jennifer can be reached at  Facebook: - Twitter: @checkingthegate ... And her website: 




DEALS & DISCOUNTS--Going into the office for a job interview, the first thing I noticed was the painting hanging in the conference room, a large cheerful collage of colors. It somehow comforted my nervousness while trying to search for the “right” answers, for the routine questions, “where do you see yourself in 5 years”, “what are your greatest weakness?” 

Concluding the interview, the conversation came to a silent lull, and the COO used this painting as a talking point. Even though it looks like one large painting, it is actually made up of 24 individual canvases, each a 6” squares. He proudly explained at the last holiday party, each employee painted one square. The outline of the flower was already sketched, but no one knew what the finished product would be. Using imagination, each person did what they wanted with their canvas square. 

One person painted a golf course with a hole and sand trap, another boats on a river, a collage of leaves, flowers, an abstract of facial profiles, and so on. When people had completed their painting, they moved on to their neighbor’s square and enhanced their design even further with more color and details. 

Each individual square on its own looks somewhat child-like, but alright. But when put all together, the whole painting transforms into something so much better. The painting is dimensional, upbeat and creative, interesting, and DYANMIC. Who would not want to be a part of a synergetic company like that? 

So I got the job, and I have been here for the past 5 weeks. It is a good thing I like that painting because I stare at it from 8 am to 5 pm as the conference room is next to my cubicle. I have heard the CEO and COO tell the painting schpeel so many times already. Obviously I am not the only person impressed; the creation of this painting is impressing potential staff and clients alike. 

Since this painting happened before I came on staff, I like to try to pick out who painted which square. It is a great way to get to know my colleagues in a different light, as their square tells a lot about their personalities and their backgrounds. They happily recall an enjoyable and playful experience painting together. For a brief moment that person seems different, I can see their inner child that so rarely comes out to play in the workplace. 

The symbolism behind speaks loud and clear that this company values individuality, cultivates creativity, cares about the good of the team, as well as, we are each a part of a bigger picture whether we know it or not.  

Expressing creativity, hence the event’s name Co/creation, and building community is exactly the mission of Nick Spano, the owner of Re/Creation (the names are a little confusing). I would say that he is accomplishing it by inspiring others to find their inner artistic, creative, musical, child-like self in a non-judgmental, group based environment. Once a Disney child actor, solar power business owner, farmers markets coordinator, real estate investor, and now events producer, Nick has incorporated his unusual and unique background, his passions, and his organizational abilities to produce small and large-scale events in the Los Angeles area.

With his thousands of followers and events regularly selling out, he is doing something right, and not afraid to stick his neck “outside the box”. He regularly produces and facilitates paint events for free, and other events catering to thousands of participants, Rave On Wheels (ROW) as in roller-skating with DJs playing a variety of beats in Hollywood, and Goddess Celebration – a semi-annual retreat empowering women with yoga, music, food, and massages by masked men in Malibu. Fun and popular, but maybe not designed for the corporate world. 

I, for one, am very grateful to Nick’s creative, community-building paint events which convinced me to join the staff of my current employment. Also I first-hand witness the benefits of the group project and the experiences that went into creating this work of art daily. 

I would like to encourage others to give Co/create a try, especially designed for team building for corporate holiday parties, staff retreats to family reunions, wedding parties or any other group you may want encourage. 

Learn more about Nick and Re/creation, by visiting him online.











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