Sirs Ian and Patrick in conversation

Aug 04

Sirs Ian and Patrick in conversation

It's not the worst thing in the world to have to spend an hour with two of England's finest: Sir Ian McKellen and Sir Patrick Stewart. Though more famous from TV and film than for their extraordinary stage careers (on both sides of the Atlantic), the two journeymen actors are giving up the sci-fi/fantasy limelight to return to their first love: the stage.

They are currently on stage at Berkeley Repertory Theatre's Roda Theatre in Harold Pinter's No Man's Land co-starring Billy Crudup and Shuler Hensley. (Good luck getting a ticket; they're awfully hard to come by, as you might expect.)

I interviewed McKellen and Stewart for an article in the San Francisco Chronicle. You can read the full story here (subscription may be required).

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Wilson Jermaine Heredia goes from Rent to Camelot

Jul 15

Wilson Jermaine Heredia goes from <i>Rent</i> to <i>Camelot</i>

When Wilson Jermaine Heredia decided to make a splash in the Broadway world, he dove right in and created giant waves. For his performance as the dazzling Angel Schunard in the Pulitzer Prize-winning Rent he won Tony, Drama Desk and Obie awards and was nominated for an Olivier when he reprised the role in London.

Since that splash, Heredia has worked consistently – his most recent Broadway gig was opposite Harvey Fierstein in the Tony-winning revival of La Cage aux Folles, but for his next chapter, the 41-year-old actor has taken a road that has led him away from his native New York (he was born and bred in Brooklyn) and to a new home and a new life here in San Francisco.

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Marin’s Godot and the impression we exist

Jan 30

Marin’s <i>Godot</i> and the impression we exist

I suspect Samuel Beckett knew exactly what he was doing when he wrote Waiting for Godot and left more questions unanswered than answered. The less specific you are, the more your audience members project their own business onto the characters and their situation.

The world Beckett creates could be the depressed past or the post-apocalyptic future. He could be writing about God and religion or about the hell of human existence. His main characters, Vladimir and Estragon, could be clowns or tragic figures or both. It's all up for discussion, open for interpretation. Everything is symbolic or nothing is symbolic and just is what it is and the population has increased. And that's the genius of Beckett and the joy of his most famous play.

The current production at Marin Theatre Company...

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Living history and meeting cute

Mar 16

Living history and meeting cute

In which there are reminiscences of an eighth grade field trip to Alcatraz and links to a feature story and a review relating to the TheatreWorks production of Now Circa Then, a romantic comedy at TheatreWorks by Carly Mensch.

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Forget Leap Day – it’s Purim, biotch!

Mar 01

Forget Leap Day – it’s Purim, biotch!

The year always goes by so quickly. March 7 and 8 – next week, people – is Purim already. Where does the time go?

If you haven't made your festive Purim plans, you should go see The Whole Megillah 2: Uncut, a co-production of The Hub at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco and sketch comedy troupe Killing My Lobster. For a second year, the Lobsters, with help from The Hub's Dan Wolf, lampoons all things Purim while adhering to the Purim tradition of telling tales from the Book of Esther, otherwise known as the Megillah.

I interviewed Wolf and Lobster Creative Director Andy Alabran for a story in the San Francisco Chronicle. Read the story here.

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Hall’s journey from Billy to War Horse to Pitmen

Jan 20

Hall’s journey from <i>Billy</i> to <i>War Horse</i> to <i>Pitmen</i>

The Bay Area has been pretty good to Lee Hall of late. Last year, his musical adaptation (with music by Sir Elton John) of his movie Billy Elliot received rapturous notices (though closed a month early) at the Orpheum Theatre in San Francisco. It's a show that had already won the British scribe a 2009 Tony Award for best book of a musical.

Hall's Broadway follow-up to Billy was a play called The Pitmen Painters, another exploration of arts influence on the population of Northern England. Now that play makes its West Coast debut courtesy of TheatreWorks in Mountain View.

I spoke with Hall about his many and varied projects for an interview in the San Francisco Chronicle. Click for more.

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