Composer-singer Peter W. Tucker dedicates his new musical, “As Always,” to a San Francisco Parks Trust program called Music in Parks, which is the modern counterpart to a city-sponsored youth theater program he attended decades ago, a pursuit that sparked his lifelong interest in the arts.
Now he comes full circle, performing with vibrant singers Jessica Fisher and Nephi Speer, pianist Frederick Harris and cellists Cornelia Leuthold and Severin Suter in this modest-scale, 85-minute show featuring melodic original songs. Read More
Lorraine Hansberry Theatre is closing its 30th season in top form at Fort Mason’s Southside Theatre with a top-flight production of “Fabulation,” a sharp, funny and unapologetically unsentimental story about a self-centered woman who finds love and family only as a result of losing money and power.Lynn Nottage, Pulitzer Prize winner for “Ruined,” now onstage across the Bay at Berkeley Repertory Theatre, is the author of the edgy morality tale, subtitled “The Re-education of Undine.” Margo Hall fully embodies the character, Undine Barnes Calles, a self-made, high- Read More
When the American Conservatory Theater curtain rises to reveal the slightly angled set — a dimly lit, cavernous room, so dingy you can almost smell the mildew; an imposing staircase leading to unimaginable activities above — you know you’re in vintage Pinterland, that slightly seedy place where human relationships are glimpsed in midstream, unpredictable and ominous. Read More
It seems like a stretch of the imagination, seeing guys from Journey and Night Ranger on the musical theater stage. But there they were for an instant, helping cast members of “Rock of Ages” revel in the glory of the 1980s during Wednesday’s opening-night curtain call at the Curran Theatre.
The show’s appealing star, Constantine Maroulis of “American Idol” fame, shouted out to the audience to acknowledge the “real” rockers, whose music still sounds good — even in the unlikely form of a hit Broadway jukebox musical on a tour stop in San Francisco. Read More
Comedian James Judd doesn’t get his laughs from fiction. His hilarious personal tales are the root of his award-winning show, which returns to the stage this weekend at the Exit Theatre in a revamped production, “7SINS…One More Time.”Called “David Sedaris on a pot of coffee” by one critic, Judd’s autobiographical comedy has been known to split a few sides. “Someone always asks me at the end of the night, ‘That story wasn’t really true, was it?’ Yes, the stories are true,” is Judd’s emphatic response. Read More
Somewhere deep in the Congo, Mama Nadi is trying to keep the war at bay. Outside her makeshift bar and brothel, the sounds of explosions and gunfire can be heard at regular intervals. Inside, customers are required to check their bullets at the door.In “Ruined,” Lynn Nottage’s powerful drama of war and gender, Mama’s place is a refuge — not just for the soldiers and miners who come there for drinks and comfort, but for the women she employs to serve them. Yet even as they try to escape the war outside, those women are living symbols of its cruelty. Read More
For Constantine Maroulis, playing the lead in the musical “Rock of Ages” represents a very particular dream come true. “I wanted to be in ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ and ‘West Side Story’ at the same time,” he says with enthusiasm, knowing how his background was perfect preparation for the role of an aspiring rocker in the hit 1980s-set jukebox musical opening Wednesdsay at the Curran Theatre. Read More
The definition of diva can range from a woman blessed with great musical talents to one cursed with a difficult or demanding nature. Both ends of that spectrum have been applied to Patti LuPone.The Broadway star drops in at the Palace of Fine Arts on Tuesday for a City Arts & Lectures chat with Steve Winn and possibly a few songs. The subject of the evening — rescheduled from an event canceled last fall — is LuPone and her life and times as chronicled in her recent memoir. Read More
San Francisco’s Ensemble Parallele, a contemporary chamber opera company, is up for a new adventure, presenting the local premiere of Philip Glass’ “Orphée” (“Orpheus”) this weekend at Herbst Theatre.Ensemble Parallele music director and conductor Nicole Paiement is at the helm of the production, featuring one of Glass’ more accessible scores, with design and direction by Brian Staufenbiel. Read More
“He is the reason I am in the theater,” Carey Perloff says of the late Harold Pinter.Perloff, director of American Conservatory Theater since 1991, is at the helm of her company’s production opening next week of the Nobel laureate writer’s 1964 “The Homecoming,” which won a 1967 Tony Award for Best Play.Describing it as “a most astonishing play, which will never feel dated,” Perloff says “The Homecoming” deals with “predatory creatures in the jungle, fierce, sexual, true and shocking” and shows that “human beings are mysterious and unknowable.” Read More