Enchantment, off-key comedy in revised Cinderella

May 05

Enchantment, off-key comedy in revised <i>Cinderella</i>

If audiences get confused by this abundance of Cinderella that's completely understandable, especially if they assume that the Rodgers and Hammerstein version has something to do with Disney. Any confusion will only be exacerbated by the 2013 Broadway production, which involved some major revision in the book by Douglas Carter Beane and a production design that looks like it took inspiration from Disney's Beauty and the Beast.

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Oh do do the Xanadu that you do so well

Dec 12

Oh do do the <i>Xanadu</i> that you do so well

When I called playwright Douglas Carter Beane to interview him for a San Francisco Chronicle story on Xanadu: The Musical at the New Conservatory Theatre Center, he happened to be taking a break from rehearsals for his latest Broadway show, Lysistrata Jones. That musical, a hip, funny adaptation of the Aristophanes classic, happens to rehearse in the same building as the Foxwoods Theatre, home to Broadway's notorious web slinger, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark.

With his ear pressed to his cell phone, Beane surveyed the crowded sidewalk and quipped. "I hope people don't think I'm buying tickets."

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Bless my Blu-ray forever…

Feb 06

The Sound of Music, Julie Andrews, 1965. TM and Copyright © 20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved. Courtesy: Everett Collection.   Back in the dark ages of VHS, I remember being thrilled when I could actually buy The Sound of Music and watch it whenever I wanted, not just on whatever holiday the networks chose to trot it out. Ever since I saw the...

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Broadway by the Bay’s musical man

Apr 01

As someone who has loved musicals since his formative years, Jim Gardia is certainly in the right business. And to think, he could have ended up as a swim coach. In college, Gardia, who was a competitive swimmer, was seriously considering a career as a swim coach. “But theater pulled me harder,” he says. For six years he worked with Los Angeles’...

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New seasons: TheatreFIRST, Broadway by the Bay

Oct 22

TheaterFIRST, under the new artistic direction of Dylan Russell, has announced its 15th anniversary season, which will run from January to June 2009 and will include a staged reading series and a Harold Pinter revival. The season opens with a staged reading series from mid-January to mid-February. Plays and location still to be announced, but the readings will be at...

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Broadway baby Peters can still be a blast

Jul 26

Last night at Davies Symphony Hall, Bernadette Peters was in a good mood. Her voice was in great shape (and her shape was in GREAT shape). In other words, Peters’ “Summer in the City” concert was a triumph. Last time Peters was in town, she was performing a theatrical concert at the Orpheum Theatre to promote her new Rodgers and Hammerstein...

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