Theater

Meta-morphosis

Arianne MacBean's dance-theater Big Show Co. scrutinizes the creative process

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arts@sfbg.com

DANCE Visiting from Los Angeles, the Berkeley-born Arianne MacBean introduced the Bay Area to her Big Show Co. via two works. The elaborately titled The People Go Where the Chairs Are dates from 2012; the more condensed present tense was a world premiere. Both pieces intrigued by putting on stage the process the artists go through trying to give life and shape to something inchoate.Read more »

Still hungry

Theatre of Yugen's remarkable world premiere of Chiori Miyagawa's 'This Lingering Life'

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arts@sfbg.com

THEATER A figure wanders into the void — a pristine wooden stage, that is, pinpointed by four delicate weights hovering pendulum-like at the corners, alive to the slightest ripple of air. In the back, behind a scrim and awash in crepuscular light, a large and blooming tree floats exquisitely in space. For the wanderer, the time (if such a thing can be said to exist here) is ripe. "This must be bardo, then," thinks the ghost. "I'm cool with that. I was beginning to think I'd live forever."Read more »

Rolling along

SF Opera makes a splash with a classic American musical

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Oakland roundabout

Oscar Grant, Rodney King, and everyone in between make up the chains of cause-and-effect in Chinaka Hodge's 'Chasing Mehserle'

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arts@sfbg.com

THEATER Read. Think for yourself. Speak your mind. Map the wide world. Just don't leave your house. Read more »

Burning mouse

Mike Daisey talks and dreams Burning Man, Disney World, and Occupy in 'American Utopias'

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Dress with less

Peter Brook's spare but resonant 'The Suit' takes its Bay Area bow

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No limits

Austin, Texas' Fusebox festival is 10 years young, wildly eclectic, transnational — and free!

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Sounds of silence

Nina Raine's 'Tribes' explores a specific and general deafness

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Moscow weather report

Notes from the Russia Case offerings at the Golden Mask Festival

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THEATER Moscow's temperatures had been climbing up to 70 degrees just a week before my arrival, but by the first of April, it had slipped back into the 30s and 40s, collecting snow on the ground and clouds overhead in a gloomy replay of winter. In a novel this would have looked like a cheap literary device: nature manifesting a political climate that had also grown decidedly chillier. But with Russia's recent reabsorption of Crimea, and talk everywhere of a new Cold War, it was pretty apt nonetheless.Read more »

'Venus in Fur' electrifies at A.C.T.

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Good lord, this play is hot, hot, hot. Rave reviews of its run in New York last year -- mostly heralding the rise of Broadway newcomer Nina Arianda -- gave me pause. Could our own A.C.T. pull off this super-steamy, sometimes-harrowing, consistently enthralling sex comedy without Arianda's now-famous starpower?

No fear. Sensational actors Brenda Meaney and Henry Clarke stole the audience's breath away, when playwright David Ives' perverse 2010 take on novelist Leopold von Sacher-Masoch's perverse 1870 masterpiece opened at A.C.T. last night. Prepare to be intellectually and emotionally (and even a bit physically) whipped, beaten, and thrilled into submission.

And yes, there will be a touch of Velvet Underground.

Read more »