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'Ripe' -- A Juicy One Woman Show by Wendy Hammers

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Horacio Mancilla
Horacio Mancilla

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The life-affirming, "juicy," Wendy Hammers
Photo: Wendy Hammers' website/Wendy Hammers
Courtesy of: Wendy Hammers

Wendy Hammers dances throughout her impressive, brave, honest, touching, funny, intimately revealing one-woman show about the most recent 10 years of her life, from age 40-50. In fact, the show is billed as "a juicy new dance with words." Juicy for its title -- ripe, and for its peach graphic. But also for the joy Hammers has learned to extract from life each day, in part as a result of lessons from 9/11 and from the death of her friend Judy Toll following a five-year bout with cancer.

In the process of reinventing herself after those two events, Hammers realized the fleeting nature of life and how little time we really have. She divorced her husband, plunged into the dating world, and learned to accept and love her "juicy," ample body.

We see Hammers reenacting giving birth and raising her child through his teenage years; doing impressions of various friends and relatives; singing; making quick, on-stage costume changes; interacting with the slides behind her. All the material was developed and grew organically through Hammers' dancing and moving her body, in particular at a hip hop dance class.

Hammers' wide-ranging show business background has given her impressive performing skills from which to draw. She has worked in TV, film, theater, stand-up comedy, hosting, commercials, audience warm-up, and voiceover. You may have seen her in The Sopranos, Curb Your Enthusiasm, All My Children, Oprah, Rosie O'Donnell, The Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and in the films, Nighthawks, Crossover Dreams, and Babe II: Pig in the City. She's also the creator and hostess of Tasty Words, a monthly Los Angeles spoken word salon. Her book, Tous Mesregimes.Com, was just published by Marabout Press. Wendy also coaches writer/performers in her Write at Home™ classes in LA and privately.

The show is testament to Hammers' belief that life truly does begin at 50. At the end, the audience was moved to give her a standing ovation -- and no doubt to sign up for a hip-hop class or two.

Ripe plays October 19-November 11 on Fridays and Saturdays, with curtain at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 7 p.m. at the Greenway Court Theatre, 544 N. Fairfax Avenue Los Angeles, California 90048. Tickets available for purchase by visiting greenwayarts.tix.com.