Golabek’s family history through music returns to the Bay Area in ‘The Pianist of Willesden Lane’ at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

Mona Golabek received piano instructions from her mother, Lisa Jura, as a small child, but learning to play was only a fraction of the lessons she learned as she sat … Continue reading Golabek’s family history through music returns to the Bay Area in ‘The Pianist of Willesden Lane’ at TheatreWorks Silicon Valley

NYC Review Roundup: Scintillating ‘Slave Play,’ the cruel world of Hades and sexy ‘Oklahoma!’

I was in New York in November for the annual American Theatre Critics Association conference, where I saw six shows in three days, a mix of Broadway and off-Broadway. The … Continue reading NYC Review Roundup: Scintillating ‘Slave Play,’ the cruel world of Hades and sexy ‘Oklahoma!’

Review: Poetic justice abounds in brilliant ‘Becky Nurse of Salem’ at Berkeley Rep

Anyone who has analyzed the amazing, powerful and critical piece of theatre known as Arthur Miller’s “The Crucible” can articulate what it’s truly about. You have John Proctor, a man … Continue reading Review: Poetic justice abounds in brilliant ‘Becky Nurse of Salem’ at Berkeley Rep

Review: Broadway San Jose’s ‘Waitress’ is a little slice of heaven.

There is something so incredibly appealing about a perfectly crafted slice of pie. For Jenna, it is her life’s work, a tradition borne of a mother stuck in an abusive … Continue reading Review: Broadway San Jose’s ‘Waitress’ is a little slice of heaven.

Review: CMTSJ’s strong ‘Matilda’ flies through the imagination

Young Matilda is a bit like Kevin McAllister from the hit 1990 holiday film “Home Alone.” She is the smartest person in the room, unflappable, loaded with presence and in … Continue reading Review: CMTSJ’s strong ‘Matilda’ flies through the imagination

Review: A longer summer is needed for Broadway San Francisco’s ‘Summer’

It seems a bit odd to advocate for a play’s run time to be longer. Yet for as many things that Donna Summer’s musical does well, one of the show’s … Continue reading Review: A longer summer is needed for Broadway San Francisco’s ‘Summer’

Review: Despite some lull, Curran’s ‘Cursed Child’ is a jaw-dropping tour through Harry’s world

One of the greatest appeals of the character of Harry Potter is how ordinary he is despite his elevated status in the wizarding world. His bespectacled face, consternation towards his … Continue reading Review: Despite some lull, Curran’s ‘Cursed Child’ is a jaw-dropping tour through Harry’s world

Review: A magical mouse is the hero in wonderful ‘Despereaux’ at Berkeley Rep

Early in the wonderfully magical Berkeley Repertory Theatre production of “The Tale of Despereaux,” the narrator, aka the Librarian laments the plight of Despereaux, the little runt of a mouse … Continue reading Review: A magical mouse is the hero in wonderful ‘Despereaux’ at Berkeley Rep

Review: The life of Townsend compels in The Marsh’s ‘Living the Shuffle’

Throughout the 90 consecutive minutes of Hollywood pioneer Robert Townsend’s autobiographical one-man show “Living the Shuffle,” it’s easy to see that in every way possible, he is a complete product … Continue reading Review: The life of Townsend compels in The Marsh’s ‘Living the Shuffle’

Review: Shotgun’s magical ‘Elevada’ lifts its souls off the ground

There are two dueling realities that exist in the delightfully charming and poignant production of “Elevada” from Shotgun Players in Berkeley. First, there is a love story that hits off … Continue reading Review: Shotgun’s magical ‘Elevada’ lifts its souls off the ground