el1.courtesy.kevin.berne

‘Dear Elizabeth’ brings to life the letters of Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell

Playwright Sarah Ruhl and director Les Waters reunite for new play at the Berkeley Rep

A theatrical production that takes its entire script from a 30-year correspondence of letters between two 20th-century poets may not sound like the most appealing of plays for the audiences of today. However, Pulitzer- and Tony-nominated playwright Sarah Ruhl and director Les Waters have masterfully crafted together one of the
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queer.vcrown

Queer artists encourage booing at SOMArts show

Bay Area performers present new works on the theme of 'This Is What I Hate'

On the first Tuesday of every month, SOMArts presents The News, a series in which queer Bay Area artists perform new theater pieces. This month’s edition saw the artists ironically dedicating their segments to what they hate most. The audience was encouraged to shout calls of disdain rather than applaud
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marypoppinscourtesy.jeremy.daniel

Just a spoonful of Madeline Trumble

Last week, Disney’s “Mary Poppins” musical premiered at San Francisco’s Orpheum Theatre. The Daily Californian spoke with Madeline Trumble — a native of Berkeley and the star of the touring production — about growing up in the Bay Area, the struggles of working on a touring show and the magic
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jukebox.cheshire.isaacs

Fortunes told at Impact Theater

In 2006, Impact Theatre debuted the very first edition of “Jukebox Stories” — a two-man show featuring stories and songs performed and written by playwright Prince Gomolvilas and singer-songwriter Brandon Patton, respectively. What began as an experiment in the basement theatre underneath La Val’s Pizza, which Impact calls home, is
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BAKER_nova

Student-produced ‘NOVA’ opens Friday

Department of music Musical Theater Prize recipient shows this weekend

What happens when the elements of musical theater, science fiction and original student creativity are combined into one? The product is “NOVA: An Original Music Drama.” The 2013 recipient of the UC Berkeley department of music’s annual Musical Theater Prize, NOVA is an original music drama written, directed and produced
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the_gospel_josh.joshua_rivedal

One-man show is a disappointment

“The Gospel According to Josh” is no gift from God

There is no one more deserving of an “A for effort” than Josh Rivedal. He wrote and stars in an ongoing one-man show about his life in which he sings and acts as a variety of characters, and he performs without inhibition. It’s the kind of show that people really
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spelling_bee.BareStage_productions

BareStage play spells its way to laughter

‘Spelling Bee’ performance is uproarious

Here’s how to put on a disturbingly hilarious and outrageously entertaining musical in a confined basement-slash-student-theater: Take six socially awkward and sensationally idiosyncratic elementary school students, give them each a Red Bull or two and have them battle it out in a local spelling bee put on by equally strange
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guys-n-dolls.ken_levin

‘Guys and Dolls’ charm at Berkeley Playhouse

Since opening in 1951, Frank Loesser’s “Guys and Dolls,” based on the stories of Damon Runyon, has been hailed as one of the greatest musicals of all time. Director Jon Tracy revives the fun romantic comedy for the Berkeley Playhouse, offering impressive musical numbers, lively dancing and plenty of laughs.
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‘Reasons to Be Pretty’ finds humor in cold hearts

There are many words in the English language that can be used to describe SF Playhouse’s latest production, “Reasons to Be Pretty.” However, “pretty” may not be one of them. Edgy? Yes. Hilariously entertaining? Yes. Pretty? Not quite. Written by American playwright Neil LaBute, the play is a witty and
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