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That Beautiful Laugh: OC Register Feature

Clowns. Some people love them, others hate them, but now the entire family can go out and laugh at them at them when the Award-winning, nationally-touring company Four Clowns presents "That Beautiful Laugh" at the Long Beach Playhouse opening March 1.

The Los Angeles based troupe, known for its improv-style sketch comedy, is for the first time rolling out aimed at children and families.

The Four Clownns improv theatrical troupe is staging a new show for family audiences in Long Beach.

"That Beautiful Laugh" is a story told through shadow puppets and acting about a wise old man who comes to earth only to find that there is no longer any laughter. Throughout his journey he assembles an arsenal of clowns who travel with him around the world in pursuit of laughter.

Jeremy Aluma, artistic director of Four Clowns and producer of "That Beautiful Laugh," said the transition to children's shows was a gratifying and smart decision for the company.

"Adult audiences are great but the youth are so giving, they're such an honest audience," he said. "They have such a brightness and intelligence about them, they're very responsive and curious. Its just so great to see the excitement on their faces and what a gift to give them laughter and laugh with them."

Four Clowns productions are loosely scripted shows revolving around a mixture of physical comedy and improvisation, sometimes in the form of games involving audience interaction.

"What's most important about (our shows) is that we have a connection to the audience. There's never a fourth wall and we want to interact with them in a positive way. We're definitely rooted in comedy but it's derived from the human condition, though there is still some silly humor as well."

"That Beautiful Laugh" debuted on a smaller scale last summer at the Hollywood Fringe Festival, where it picked up several awards. The show's creators are exhilarated to finally be able to première the play to a mass audience. Aluma said though the show is full of fun and entertainment there is definitely a message he hopes the audience can take away.

"The greatest thing we could all do is just laugh together and have a good time. There's wonderment to the show, there's a few magical moments that will fill excite both the adults and kids," Aluma said. "There's no lesson in the show but the lesson of laughter is the best medicine."

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