Wednesday, January 27, 2010

From Foster Care to Fabulous!

Opens this Saturday night in Westwood!

Opens this Saturday night in Westwood!

Here's what's being said about the show:

“It’s all truth,” Patrick Burns explains as he describes “From Foster Care to Fabulous”, his one man autobiographical musical extravaganza that chronicles his teenage years in and out of foster care. “Sometimes the truth is horrifying. Sometimes the truth is hilarious. But it’s never cliché. It’s never preachy. It’s just the truth.”

Between the ages of fourteen and seventeen, Patrick Burns lived with four foster families in the Oakland, California area. His self-written, self-performed musical details this experience from the day he moved into his first foster home to the moment when he cut ties with his last foster mother. The one-man musical features myriad songs (both well-known and original), a plethora of jaw dropping anecdotes and side splitting yarns, and an avalanche of horrifying, hilarious, and ultimately heartbreaking characters. Indeed, a major reason why Burns decided to sculpt his stories into a one-man show is precisely because he had spent years riveting his friends and acquaintances with the stories of his life. While doing so, he became adept at portraying the parts of his multiple foster parents, sibling, and relatives as well as the roles of his biological family. The stories were so vivid, the characters so captivating, and Burns’ personal portrayal of his life was so mesmerizing that a theatrical retelling of this chapter in his life performed by Burns himself is nothing short of an inspired next step.

Foster care is an institution most of us modern Americans know little about. The creative team behind “”From Foster Care to Fabulous” are committed to breaking down the hackneyed clichés associated with the subject, and replace these commonplace stereotypes with complex truths. As Burns says, “This is a personal account of foster care. This is my story. There are so many stereotypes of foster kids-orphans, troublemakers, and victims. But I wasn’t a stereotype. I wasn’t just some kid.” At its heart, this is what “From Foster Care to Fabulous” is about. Behind every statistic is a face that refuses to be blurred into the background. Behind every cliché is reality demanding to be recognized.

From Foster Care to Fabulous runs from January 29th to February 13th, midnight on Saturdays and 8PM on Sundays at the Improv Space in Los Angeles. Produced by the Ahimsa Collective, the show is written by and stars Patrick Burns and is directed by Ahimsa Collective Artistic Director Negin Singh. For tickets visit

photo credit: Raymond Lui
article credit: Kit Steinkellner

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Mwaka mpya mwema!

People are still saying "Happy New Year."

How long do they get to keep doing this? In an effort to not be an asshole, I will reply "you too," or "Oh yeah, New Year." I guess we're only nine days in and the sentiment to continue to congratulate me on flipping the biggest page on my calendar is in good spirits. But I have to think about whether anything worth talking about has occured in these people's lives since the ball dropped. If I were to blatantly ask this question of my holiday well-wishers and the only response they could muster was "well, it is a new year," I would throw the nearest colorful thing at them and yell in Swahili. At least then they could tell their friends about that instead of boring them with the holiday slogan that is starting to wear out its welcome.