Countdown to ACT’s `Carol’

Dec 11

James Carpenter (center) is Scrooge in American Conservatory Theater’s annual production of A Christmas Carol. Photo by Kevin Berne American Conservatory Theater’s annual production of A Christmas Carol is in full swing in downtown San Francisco. Rather than reviewing this holiday perennial, let’s just hit some of the major points. Herewith, in...

Read More

Humbug! Here we come a-`Carol’-ing

Dec 04

James Carpenter plays Ebenezer Scrooge “dead seriously.” “It’s just like when you play farce,” Carpenter explains. “You don’t play it funny. You have to invest as fully as you can.” Carpenter, 56, one of the Bay Area’s most revered actors, is now in his third year as Scrooge in American Conservatory...

Read More

Theater moments: Reflections on 2007

Jan 02

I’ve already offered up my Top 10 list of 2007’s best Bay Area theater (see it here). That’s all well and good, but there was way too much good stuff in 2007 to contain in a polite numbered list. What follows, in no apparent order, are some of the year’s most distinctive theater moments (mostly good, some not so much). The shows in the Top 10...

Read More

Review: Charles Dickens’ `Oliver Twist’

May 17

Opened May 16 at Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s Roda Theatre Berkeley Rep gives Dickens a dark Twist Three stars Grim ‘n’ grand We’re told early on in Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist, a bracing stage adaptation of the classic novel, that what we’re about to see is complete fiction. The story concerns “hope flourishing when all hope has passed,”...

Read More

New twist on `Oliver’

May 09

Get all that merry singing and dancing out of your head. A new theatrical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist arrives at Berkeley Repertory Theatre this weekend, and it’s nothing like the 1963 musical Oliver! Director Neil Bartlett originally created Oliver Twist for the Lyric Hammersmith in London, and it became a huge hit. Wrote the London...

Read More