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Home / Articles / Arts / Theater /  Coming home
. . . .
Wednesday, Apr 13, 2011

Coming home

By Martin Jones Westlin
theater John E. Alexander
As it strives to expand its future, LGBT-oriented Diversionary Theatre is reaching into the local past. Its board of trustees announced on Monday that John E. Alexander, former Old Globe Theatre associate director of development, will replace Dan Kirsch as the company’s executive director, effective in mid-July.

Alexander is the former managing director of the Naked Angels theater group, whose This Wide Night starred Edie Falco of The Sopranos and has received five 2010 Lucille Lortel Award nominations for outstanding achievement off-Broadway. He assumed his Old Globe duties in 2001 and has also served as San Diego Performing Arts League’s director of development and in a number of marketing and development projects in New York and Pasadena. He holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from UCSD and a master’s degree in theater management from Columbia University.

Alexander was also the first executive director of Mama’s Kitchen, a local meal delivery service for people with AIDS and cancer.

Kirsch, who assumed Diversionary’s executive and artistic director post six years ago, will spend the summer in Atlanta as general manager for the open-air Serenbe Playhouse. Gigi Cantin has assumed Diversionary’s executive director duties until Alexander begins his tenure. A season-announcement gala on Saturday, April 16, will mark Alexander’s introduction to the community.

Diversionary Theatre (, whose annual budget exceeds $500,000, was founded in 1986, the same year as Naked Angels.


Mommie Queerest: What if Joan Crawford—whose allegedly abusive behaviors profoundly affected her adopted daughter Christina—had been a man? Opens April 14 at Diversionary Theatre in University Heights.


King o’ the Moon: This sequel to North Coast Rep’s Over the tavern transports the hapless Pazinskis from the ’50s to the ’60s amid issues like draft evasion and divorce. In previews now, it opens April 16 at North Coast Repertory Theatre in Solana Beach. $36-$41.

Now Playing

The Lieutenant of Inishmore: Padraic’s and Mairead’s sharpshooting skills are about to come in handy amid an Irish mini-revolution over a dead cat. Produced by Ion Theatre Company, it runs through April 16 at BLK BOX @ 6th & Penn in Hillcrest. $25-$29.

In the Next Room or the vibrator play: A group of men and women get curious as a gynecologist treats “women’s problems” with a newfangled electric vibrator in 1885 upstate New York. Produced by San Diego Repertory Theatre, it runs through April 17 at The Lyceum Theatre, Downtown. $29-$53.

* Or,: The 1660s start to feel like the 1960s as free love and free thinking abound. Produced by MOXIE Theatre, it runs through April 23 at The Rolando Theatre in the College Area. $20-$40.

* Rafta, Rafta...: Two newlyweds find that starting their life together under the groom’s family’s roof is no honeymoon. Through April 24 at The Old Globe Theatre mainstage in Balboa Park. $29-$70.

The Last Five Years: Time and success move forward, then backward, then forward again for up-and-coming writer Jamie and his struggling-actor girlfriend Cathy. Through April 24 at Patio Playhouse in Escondido. $10-$19.

Shotgun Wedding Anniversary: What can happen after 25 years of marriage in a less-than-blissful union? For Basil and Petals, it can mean murder. Produced by Mystery Cafe, it runs through April 30 at Imperial House restaurant in Bankers Hill. $59.50, including dinner.

* Sordid Lives: When a Texas matriarch dies under extremely humiliating circumstances, her clan is afraid that the family skeletons will come flying out of the closet all at once. Through May 7 at OnStage Playhouse in Chula Vista. $14-$16.

The Great American Trailer Park Musical: Narrated by a Greek chorus of trailer-park divas, this show takes a look at the habits of the double-wide community. Through May 15 at the Coronado Playhouse in Coronado. $20-$25.

Cabaret: A cabaret singer, an American writer and the denizens of Berlin’s Kit Kat Klub are caught up in the swirling maelstrom of a changing society on the eve of Hitler’s rise to power. Produced by Cygnet Theatre Company, it runs through May 22 at the Old Town Theatre in Old Town. $25-$54.

* miXtape: Generation X was torn between disillusionment and hope in this cavalcade of music from the 1980s. Produced by Lamb’s Players Theatre, it runs through July 17 at the Horton Grand Theatre, Downtown. $28-$58.