Three from the ‘Heart’

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From left, Tamlyn Tomita, Pamela Dunlap and Juanita Jennings star in Stephen Sachs’ “Heart Song,” directed by Shirley Jo Finney and opening May 25 at the Fountain Theatre. (Photo by Ed Krieger)

Three friends embark on a joyous journey of sisterhood, discovering their inner “duende” through a flamenco class for middle-aged women.

“Heart Song,” the newest comedy/drama from writer Stephen Sachs, opens at the Fountain Theatre on Saturday, May 25, with Shirley Jo Finney directing and choreography by internationally renowned flamenco dancer Maria “Cha Cha” Bermudez.

Pamela Dunlap stars as Rochelle, a middle-aged Jewish woman struggling with a crisis of faith. When Tina (Tamlyn Tomita) convinces her to join a flamenco class for “seasoned” out-of-shape women, Rochelle’s life is changed forever. There, she meets Daloris (Juanita Jennings) and an unforgettable circle of women who propel Rochelle on a hilarious and deeply moving course of unexpected self-discovery.

“‘Heart Song’ is funny but also allows me to explore serious issues about faith, spirituality and mortality that are deeply personal to me,” says Sachs. “The play dramatizes how art, in the form of flamenco — like religion or spiritual faith — has the power to heal and transform.”

The Fountain Theatre, recipient of critical acclaim and multiple awards for its stage productions, is also L.A.’s foremost presenter of flamenco.

Tomita starred in the Fountain’s very first production, “Winter Crane,” in 1991, and is known for such films as “The Karate Kid Part II,” “Come See the Paradise,” “The Joy Luck Club,” and “The Day After Tomorrow,” as well as numerous TV appearances, most recently on “Bones,” “Touch,” “Glee,” and “Days of Our Lives.”

“Heart Song” performances are on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m., from May 25 through July 14. Preview performances May 18-24. Tickets are $34, except previews, which are $15. On Thursdays and Fridays only, seniors over 65 and students with ID are $25.

The Fountain Theatre is located at 5060 Fountain Ave. (at Normandie) in Los Angeles. Secure, on-site parking is available for $5. The theater is air-conditioned and wheelchair-accessible. For reservations and information, call (323) 663-1525 or go to www.FountainTheatre.com.

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