Stage listings are compiled by Guardian staff. Performance times may change; call venues to confirm. Reviewers are Robert Avila, Rita Felciano, and Nicole Gluckstern. Submit items for the listings at firstname.lastname@example.org. For further information on how to submit items for the listings, see Picks.
A Tale of Two Genres SF Playhouse, 533 Sutter, SF; (415) 869-5384, www.un-scripted.com. $10-20. Previews Thurs/17, 8pm. Opens Fri/18, 8pm. Runs Thurs-Sat and Dec 20-21, 8pm (no show Sat/19 or Nov 24; additional shows Sat, 3pm). Through Dec 21. Un-Scripted Theater Company presents an improvised musical inspired by Charles Dickens.
Absolutely San Francisco Alcove Theater, 414 Mason, Ste 502, SF; (415) 992-8168, www.thealcovetheater.com. $32-50. Schedule varies, through Dec 29. Not Quite Opera Productions presents Anne Nygren Doherty's musical about San Francisco, with five characters all portrayed by Mary Gibboney.
Almost Nothing, Day of Absence Lorraine Hansberry Theatre, 450 Post, SF; (415) 474-8800, www.lhtsf.org. $43-53. Wed/16-Sat/19, 8pm (also Sat/19, 2pm); Sun/20, 2pm. The Lorraine Hansberry Theatre christens its grand new home near Union Square with two well-acted one-act plays under sharp direction by artistic director Steven Anthony Jones. Almost Nothing by Brazilian playwright Marcos Barbosa marks the North American premiere of an intriguing and shrewdly crafted Pinteresque drama, wherein a middle-class couple (Rhonnie Washington and Kathryn Tkel) returns home from an unexpected encounter at a stop light that leaves them jittery and distracted. As an eerie wind blows outside (in David Molina's atmospheric sound design), their conversation circles around the event as if fearing to name it outright. When a poor woman (Wilma Bonet) arrives claiming to have seen everything, the couple abandons rationalization for a practical emergency and a moral morass dictated by poverty and class advantage — negotiated on their behalf by a black market professional (Rudy Guerrero). Next comes a spirited revival of Douglas Turner Ward's Civil Rights–era Day of Absence (1965), a broad satire of Southern race relations that posits a day when all the "Neegras" mysteriously disappear, leaving white society helpless and desperate. The cast (in white face) excel at the high-energy comedy, and in staging the text director Jones makes a convincing parallel with today's anti-immigrant laws and rhetoric. But if the play remains topical in one way, its too-blunt agitprop mode makes the message plain immediately and interest accordingly pales rapidly. (Avila)
Annapurna Magic Theatre, Bldg D, Fort Mason Center, Marina at Laguna, SF; (415) 441-8822, www.magictheatre.org. $20-60. Showtimes vary, through Dec 4. Magic Theatre performs Sharr White's world premiere drama about love's longevity.
Fela! Curran Theatre, 445 Geary, SF; www.shnsf.com. $31-200. Wed-Sat, 8pm (also Wed and Sat, 2pm; no show Nov 24); Sun, 2pm (also Nov 27, 7:30pm). Through Dec 11. The life and music of Nigerian superstar Fela Kuti is captured in this show with choreography by Bill T. Jones.
Forgetting the Details Bindlestiff Studio, 185 Sixth St, SF; www.nicolemaxali.com. $20. Thurs/17-Sat/19, 8pm. In one memorable scene of performer Nicole Maxali's solo show Forgetting the Details, her artist father, Max Villanueva, takes her to see a Precita Eyes mural he's been helping to paint. After pointing out the tree he painted, and describing the minute detail he imbued it with, he has her stand away from the mural to observe how quickly the details vanish, but not the integrity of the piece. It's an instructive life lesson, and also the perfect approach to appreciating Maxali's show. Ostensibly about her relationship with her grandmother, who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's, Forgetting the Details winds up delving deeply into Maxali's complicated relationship with her freewheeling, artistic dad, whose unexpected death in the summer of 2011 gives her show an unexpected trajectory as her grandmother's slow decline gradually takes a backseat to the more immediate trauma of her father's untimely passing. Maxali's efforts to draw parallels between her grandmother's in-the-moment mentality with her father's artistic sensibilities and her own artistic journey are not always seamless, but the emotional content rings with a sincerity and depth often lacking from similarly-constructed solo performances. Just like a mural viewed from a distance, the play's integrity lies not in the details, but rather in the vitality of the whole. (Gluckstern) How to Love Garage, 975 Howard, SF; www.pustheatre.com. $15. Fri/18-Sat/19, 8pm; Sun/20, 2pm. Three demigod-like personalities at the center of the earth are charged with answering life's mysteries, big and small, but find themselves stymied by their latest task, namely, explaining "how to love." They have only a week to do it, for some reason, or humanity will be consigned to everlasting consternation, or something like that — coherence is not a priority here — anyway: stakes are high. Their boss, the Magistrate (Geo Epsilanty), has them present their findings each day, but each of them — the Very Sexy One (Jessica Schroeder in sassy lingerie), the Stern One (Gloria MacDonald in girl-school uniform), and the Young One (Brian Martin in caped crusader outfit) — comes up with bupkus. Finally, the Young One gets the inspiration to kidnap a surface-dwelling earthling (Valerie Fachman) to help them figure it all out. Local playwright Megan Cohen's mumbling comedy, directed with robust attention to blocking and movement by Scott Baker for Performers Under Stress, is far too skit-like a conceit to merit its two plodding acts. More to the point, its humor is very silly but generally dim. Despite being set at the center of the earth, this is too shallow and glancing an investigation of love to intrigue or tickle the genuinely curious. (Avila)
The Importance of Being Earnest Notre Dame Senior Plaza, Community Room, 347 Dolores, SF; (650) 952-3021. Free. Fri/18, 7:30pm; Sat/19-Sun/20, 3pm. 16th Street Players perform the Oscar Wilde classic.
*The Kipling Hotel: True Misadventures of the Electric Pink '80s Marsh San Francisco, 1062 Valencia, SF; (415) 282-3055, www.themarsh.org. $15-50. Sat, 8:30pm; Sun, 7pm. Extended through Dec 18. This new autobiographical solo show by Don Reed, writer-performer of the fine and long-running East 14th, is another slice of the artist's journey from 1970s Oakland ghetto to comedy-circuit respectability — here via a partial debate-scholarship to UCLA. The titular Los Angeles residency hotel was where Reed lived and worked for a time in the 1980s while attending university. It's also a rich mine of memory and material for this physically protean and charismatic comic actor, who sails through two acts of often hilarious, sometimes touching vignettes loosely structured around his time on the hotel's young wait staff, which catered to the needs of elderly patrons who might need conversation as much as breakfast. On opening night, the episodic narrative seemed to pass through several endings before settling on one whose tidy moral was delivered with too heavy a hand, but if the piece runs a little long, it's only the last 20 minutes that noticeably meanders. And even with some awkward bumps along the way, it's never a dull thing watching Reed work. (Avila)
Language Rooms Thick House, 1695 18th St, SF; www.brownpapertickets.com. $20-28. Thurs-Sat, 8pm (no show Nov 24); Sun, 7pm. Through Dec 4. Golden Thread Productions and Asian American Theater Company present the West Coast premiere of Yussef El Guindi's dark comedy.
Making Porn Box Car Theatre Studios, 125A Hyde, SF; www.brownpapertickets.com. $25-50. Thurs, 8pm; Thurs, 8pm; Fri-Sat, 9pm; Sun, 7pm. Extended through Nov 27. Ronnie Larsen brings back his crowd-pleasing comedy about the gay porn industry.
*"Master Harold" ... and the Boys Phoenix Theater, 414 Mason, Ste 601, SF; 1-800-838-3006, www.offbroadwaywest.org. $18-40. Thurs/17-Sat/19, 8pm. Based loosely on personal history, Athol Fugard's drama explores institutionalized racism in South Africa's apartheid era ensconced in the seemingly innocuous world of a Port Elizabeth tea room. The play opens during a rainy afternoon with no customers, leaving the Black African help, Willie (Anthony Rollins-Mullens) and Sam (LaMont Ridgell), with little to do but rehearse ballroom dance steps for a big competition coming up in a couple of weeks. When Hally (Adam Simpson), the owner's son, arrives from school, the atmosphere remains convivial at first then increasingly strained, as events happening outside the tea room conspire to tear apart their fragile camaraderie. The greatest burdens of the play are carried by Sam, who fills a range of roles for the increasingly pessimistic and emotionally-stunted Hally — teacher, student, surrogate father, confidante, and servant — all the while completely aware that their mutual love is almost certainly doomed to not survive past Hally's adolescence, and possibly not past the afternoon. Ridgell rises greatly to the challenges of his character, ably flanked by Rollins-Mullens, and Simpson; he embodies the depth of Sam's humanity, from his wisdom of experience, to his admiration for beauty, to his capacity to bear and finally to forgive Hally's need to lash out at him. It is a moving and memorable rendering. (Gluckstern)
More Human Than Human Dark Room Theater, 2263 Mission, SF; (415) 401-7987, www.brownpapertickets.com. $25. Thurs/17-Sat/19, 8pm. B. Duke's dystopian drama is inspired by Philip K. Dick.
Not Getting Any Younger Marsh San Francisco, Studio Theater, 1062 Valencia, SF; (415) 826-5750, www.themarsh.org. $15-50. Thurs-Fri, 8pm; Sat, 8:30pm; Sun, 3pm. Extended through Dec 17. Marga Gomez is back at the Marsh, a couple of too-brief decades after inaugurating the theater's new stage with her first solo show — an apt setting, in other words, for the writer-performer's latest monologue, a reflection on the inevitable process of aging for a Latina lesbian comedian and artist who still hangs at Starbucks and can't be trusted with the details of her own Wikipedia entry. If the thought of someone as perennially irreverent, insouciant, and appealingly immature as Gomez makes you depressed, the show is, strangely enough, the best antidote. (Avila)
*The Odyssey Aboard Alma, Hyde Street Pier, San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park, SF; www.weplayers.org. $160. Fri/18, 12:30pm. Heralding their hugely ambitious Spring 2012 production of The Odyssey, which will take place all over Angel Island, the WE Players are tackling the work on a slightly smaller scale by staging it on the historic scow schooner Alma, which is part of the Maritime National Historical Park fleet docked at the end of Hyde Street Pier. Using both boat and Bay as setting, the essential chapters of the ten-year voyage — encounters with the Cyclops, Circe, the Underworld, the Sirens, Aeolus, the Laestrygonians, and Calypso — are enacted through an intriguing mash-up of narration, choreography, sea chanteys, salty dog stories (like shaggy dog stories, but more water-logged), breathtaking views, and a few death-defying stunts the likes of which you won't see on many conventional stages. High points include the casual swapping of roles (every actor gets to play Odysseus, however briefly), Ross Travis' masked and flatulent Prometheus and sure-footed Hermes, Ava Roy's hot pants-clad Circe, Charlie Gurke's steady musical direction and multi-instrumental abilities, and the sail itself, an experiential bonus. Landlubbers beware, so much time facing the back of the boat where much of the action takes place can result in mild quease, even on a calm day. Take advantage of the downtime between scenes to walk around and face forward now and again. You'll want to anyway. (Gluckstern)
Oh, Kay! Eureka Theatre, 215 Jackson, SF; (415) 255-8207, www.42ndstmoon.org. $20-50. Wed/16, 7pm; Thurs/17-Fri/18, 8pm; Sat/19, 6pm; Sun/20, 3pm. 42nd Street Moon performs George and Ira Gershwin's Prohibition-set comedy.
*On the Air Pier 29 on the Embarcadero (at Battery), SF; (415) 438-2668, love.zinzanni.org. $117 and up (includes dinner). Wed-Sat, 6pm; Sun, 5pm. Through Dec 31. Teatro ZinZanni's final production at its longtime nest on Pier 29 is a nostalgia-infused banquet of bits structured around an old-time radio variety show, featuring headliners Geoff Hoyle (Geezer) and blues singer Duffy Bishop. If you haven't seen juggling on the radio, for instance, it's pretty awesome, especially with a performer like Bernard Hazens, whose footing atop a precarious tower of tubes and cubes is already cringingly extraordinary. But all the performers are dependably first-rate, including Andrea Conway's comic chandelier lunacy, aerialist and enchanting space alien Elena Gatilova's gorgeous "circeaux" act, graceful hand-balancer Christopher Phi, class-act tapper Wayne Doba, and radio MC Mat Plendl's raucously tweeny hula-hooping. Add some sultry blues numbers by raunchy belter Bishop, Hoyle's masterful characterizations (including some wonderful shtick-within-a-shtick as one-liner maestro "Red Bottoms"), a few classic commercials, and a healthy dose of audience participation and you start to feel nicely satiated and ready for a good cigar. Smoothly helmed by ZinZanni creative director Norm Langill, On the Air signals off-the-air for the popular dinner circus — until it can secure a new patch of local real estate for its antique spiegeltent — so tune in while you may. (Avila)
*Pellas and Melisande Cutting Ball Theater, Exit on Taylor, 277 Taylor, SF; 1-800-838-3006, www.cuttingball.com. $10-50. Thurs, 7:30; Fri-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 2pm); Sun, 5pm. Through Nov 27. The Frog Prince, Rapunzel, the Swan Maiden: shimmering strands of each timeless tale twist through the melancholy tapestry of the Maurice Maeterlinck play Pelleas and Melisande, which opens Cutting Ball Theater's 12th season. Receiving a lushly atmospheric treatment by director and translator Rob Melrose, this ill-fated Symbolist drama stars Joshua Schell and Caitlyn Louchard as the doomed lovers. Trapped in the claustrophobic environs of an isolated castle at the edge of a forbidding forest and equally trapped in an inadvertent love triangle with the hale and hearty elder prince Golaud (Derek Fischer), Pelleas' brother and Melisande's husband, the desperate, unconsummated passion that builds between the two youngsters rivals that of Romeo and Juliet's, and leads to an ending even more tragic — lacking the bittersweet reconciliation of rival families that subverts the pure melodrama of the Shakespearean classic. Presented on a spare, wooden traverse stage (designed by Michael Locher), and accompanied by a smoothly-flowing score by Cliff Caruthers, the action is enhanced by Laura Arrington's haunting choreography, a silent contortionism which grips each character as they try desperately to convey the conflicting emotions which grip them without benefit of dialogue. Though described by Melrose as a "fairy tale world for adults," the dreamy gauze of Pelleas and Melisande peels away quickly enough to reveal a flinty and unsentimental heart. (Gluckstern)
Savage in Limbo Actors Theatre of San Francisco, 855 Bush, SF; (415) 345-1287, www.actorstheatresf.org. $26-38. Wed-Sat, 8pm. Through Dec 3. Actors Theatre of San Francisco performs John Patrick Shanley's edgy comedy.
SexRev: The José Sarria Experience CounterPULSE, 1310 Mission, SF; (415) 552-4100, www.therhino.org. $10-25. Previews Thurs/17-Fri/18, 8pm. Opens Sat/19, 8pm. Runs Thurs-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 10:30pm; no show Nov 24); Sun, 3pm. Through Nov 27. Theatre Rhinoceros performs John Fisher's musical celebration of America's first queer activist — a hit for the company in 2010.
"Shocktoberfest 12: Fear Over Frisco" Hypnodrome Theatre, 575 10th St, SF; (415) 377-4202, www.thrillpeddlers.com. $25-35. Thurs/17-Sat/19, 8pm. In its annual season-scented horror bid, Thrillpeddlers joins forces with SF's Czar of Noir, writer-director Eddie Muller, for a sharply penned triplet of plays that resurrect lurid San Francisco lore as flesh-and-blood action. In the slightly sluggish but intriguing Grand Inquisitor, a solitary young woman modeling herself on Louise Brooks in Lulu (an alluringly Lulu-like Bonni Suval) believes she has located the Zodiac killer's widow (a sweet but cagey Mary Gibboney) — a scenario that just can't end well for somebody, yet manages to defy expectations. An Obvious Explanation turns on an amnesiac (Daniel Bakken) whose brother (Flynn de Marco) explains the female corpse in the rollaway (Zelda Koznofski) before asking bro where he hid a certain pile of money. Enter a brash doctor (Suval) with a new drug and ambitions of her own vis-à-vis the hapless head case. Russell Blackwood directs The Drug, which adapts a Grand Guignol classic to the hoity-toity milieu of the Van Nesses and seedy Chinatown opium dens, where a rough-playing attorney (an ever persuasive Eric Tyson Wertz) determines to turn a gruesome case involving the duplicitous Mrs. Van Ness (an equally sure, sultry Kära Emry) to his own advantage. The evening also offers a blackout spook show and some smoothly atmospheric musical numbers, including Muller's rousing "Fear Over Frisco" (music composed by Scrumbly Koldewyn; accompaniment by Steve Bolinger and Birdie-Bob Watt) and an aptly low-down Irving Berlin number — both winningly performed by the entire company. (Avila)
Shoot O'Malley Twice StageWerx, 446 Valencia, SF; www.viragotheatre.org. Thurs-Sat, 8pm (no show Nov 24). Through Nov 26. Virago Theater Company performs Jon Brooks' world-premiere existential comedy.
Sticky Time Brava Theater, 2781 24th St, SF; www.vanguardianproductions.com. $15-40. Wed/16-Fri/18, 8pm. Crowded Fire and Vanguardian Productions present playwright-director Marilee Talkington's multimedia science fiction about a woman running out of time in the worst way. The prolix and histrionic story is the real sticking point, however, in this otherwise imaginatively staged piece, which places its audience on swivel chairs in the center of Brava's upstairs studio theater, transformed by designer Andrew Lu's raised stage and white video screens running the length of the walls into an enveloping aural (moody minimalistic score by Chao-Jan Chang) and visual landscape. Thea (Rami Margron) heads a three-person crew of celestial plumbers managing a sea of time "threads," an undulating web of crisscrossing lines (in the impressive video animation by Rebecca Longworth). The structure is plagued by a mysterious wave of "time quakes" that Tim (Lawrence Radecker) thinks he may have figured out. Coworker Emit (Michele Leavy), meanwhile, goofing around like a hyperactive child, spots some sort of beast at work in the ether. When Thea gets stuck by a loose thread, she becomes something of a time junky, desperate to relive the color-suffused world of love and family lost somewhere in space-time as reality starts to unravel (with a dramatic assist from cinematographer Lloyd Vance) and the crew seeks help from a wise figure in a tattered gown (Mollena Williams). A little like a frenetic, stagy version of Andrey Tarkovsky's Solaris (1972), the story gets credit for dramatizing some confounding facts about time and space at the particle level but might have benefited from less dialogue and more mystery — just as the audio-visual experience works best when the house lights are low. (Avila)
The Temperamentals New Conservatory Theatre Center, 25 Van Ness, SF; (415) 861-8972, www.nctcsf.org. $25-45. Wed-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Dec 18. New Conservatory Theatre Center performs Jon Marans' drama about gay rights during the McCarthy era.
Totem Grand Chapiteau, AT&T Park, Parking Lot A, 74 Mission Rock, SF; cirquedusoleil.com/totem. $58-248.50. Tues-Sun, schedule varies. Extended through Dec 18. Cirque Du Soleil returns with its latest big-top production.
Two Dead Clowns Box Car Theatre Studios, 125A Hyde, SF; www.brownpapertickets.com. $20. Fri-Sat, 7pm. Through Nov 26. Ronnie Larsen's new play explores the lives of Divine and John Wayne Gacy.
The Waiting Period MainStage, Marsh San Francisco, 1062 Valencia, SF; (415) 282-3055, www.themarsh.org. $15-35. Fri, 8pm; Sat, 5pm. Through Nov 26. Brian Copeland (Not a Genuine Black Man) presents a workshop production of his new solo show.
*Working for the Mouse Exit Theatre, 156 Eddy, SF; www.brownpapertickets.com. $22. Thurs-Sat, 8pm (no performances Nov 24-26). Through Dec 17. It might not come as a surprise to hear that even "the happiest place on earth" has a dark side, but hearing Trevor Allen describe it during this reprise of 2002's Working for the Mouse will put a smile on your face as big as Mickey's. With a burst of youthful energy, Allen bounds onto the tiny stage of Impact Theatre to confess his one-time aspiration to never grow up — a desire which made auditioning for the role of Peter Pan at Disneyland a sensible career move. But in order to break into the big time of "charactering," one must pay some heavy, plush-covered dues. As Allen creeps up the costumed hierarchy one iconic cartoon figure at a time, he finds himself unwittingly enmeshed in a world full of backroom politics, union-busting, drug addled surfer dudes with peaches-and-cream complexions, sexual tension, showboating, job suspension, Make-A-Wish Foundation heartbreak, hash brownies, rabbit vomit, and accidental decapitation. Smoothly paced and astutely crafted, Mouse will either shatter your blissful ignorance or confirm your worst suspicions about the corporate Disney machine, but either way, it will probably make you treat any "Casual Seasonal Pageant Helpers" you see running around in their sweaty character suits with a whole lot more empathy. (Note: review from the show's recent run at La Val's Subterranean in Berkeley.) (Gluckstern)
Annie Berkeley Playhouse, Julia Morgan Center for the Arts, 2640 College, Berk; (510) 845-8542, www.berkeleyplayhouse.org. $17-35. Thurs-Sat, 7pm; Sun, noon and 5pm. Through Dec 4. Berkeley Playhouse performs the classic musical.
Doubt: A Parable Live Oak Theatre, 1301 Shattuck, Berk; www.aeofberkeley.org. $12-15. Fri/18-Sat/19, 8pm. Actors Ensemble of Berkeley performs John Patrick Shanley's Pulitzer-winning drama.
How to Write a New Book for the Bible Thrust Stage, 2025 Addison, Berk; (510) 647-2949, www.berkeleyrep.org. $14.50-73. Wed/16 and Sun/20, 7pm (also Sun/20, 2pm); Thurs/17 and Sat/19, 2 and 8pm. An aspiring writer who later becomes a priest, Bill (Tyler Pierce) is the caregiver for his aging mother (Linda Gehringer) during her long bout with cancer. His father (Leo Marks), though already dead, still inhabits his mother's flickering concept of reality, made all the more dreamlike by her necessary dependence on pain medication. His brother (Aaron Blakely), meanwhile, has returned from Vietnam with survivor guilt but lands a meaningful career as a schoolteacher in the South. The latest from playwright Bill Cain (Equivocation, 9 Circles) is a humor-filled but sentimental and long-winded autobiographical reflection on family from the vantage of his mother's long illness. It gets a strong production from Berkeley Rep, with a slick cast under agile direction by Kent Nicholson, but it plays as if narrator Bill mistakenly believes he's stepped out of an Arthur Miller play, when in fact there's little here of dramatic interest and far too much jerking of tears. (Avila)
*The Internationalist Ashby Stage, 1901 Ashby, Berk; www.justtheater.org. $15-30. Thurs/17-Sat/19, 8pm; Sun/20, 5pm. Lowell (Nick Sholley, as rumpled everyman) is the American fish out of water at the center of playwright Anne Wasburn's smartly written and very funny comedy, now receiving a terrific West Coast premiere courtesy of Just Theater and director Jonathan Spector. Arriving for a business trip in some unnamed but vaguely Eastern European country with a funny-sounding language he hasn't had time to study, Lowell is met at the airport by Sara (a persuasive Alexandra Creighton), a beautiful colleague who takes him to dinner, then takes him home. Next day in the office, the increasingly exhausted American meets his friendly counterparts, and discovers Sara is at the bottom of the office totem pole, where the filing happens. All the characters speak English with varying levels of proficiency when making with the usual small talk — "I'm always curious about what Americans know and what they don't know," says one po-faced innocent (Kalli Jonsson) with reference to the American Indian genocide — but revert to rapid-flowing gibberish whenever they tire of catering to the foreigner. Things get slowly weirder over the next couple of days, however, as the dynamics of this catty office (filled out wonderfully by Michael Barrett Austin, Lauren Bloom, and Harold Pierce) lead to a bewildering implosion that leaves Lowell sightseeing, and maybe seeing things, with a case of jet lag as big as the zeitgeist. (Avila)
Rambo: The Missing Years Cabaret at Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; (415) 282-3055, www.themarsh.org. $15-50. Thurs-Fri, 7pm; Sat, 8:30pm. Through Dec 10. Howard "Hanoi Howie" Petrick presents his solo show about being an anti-war demonstrator — while also serving in the Army.
Sam's Enchanted Evening TheaterStage at Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; (415) 282-3055, www.themarsh.org. $15-50. Thurs-Fri, 8pm; Sat, 8:30pm. Through Nov 26. The Residents wrote the script and did the musical arrangements for this musical, featuring singer Randy Rose and pianist Joshua Raoul Brody.
The Soldier's Tale Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison, Berk; (510) 843-4822, www.auroratheatre.org. $10-55. Previews Wed/16, 8pm. Opens Thurs/17, 8pm. Runs Tues, 7pm; Wed-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2 and 7pm. Through Dec 18. Aurora Theatre presents a re-imagined version of Igor Stravinsky's 1918 musical by Tom Ross and Muriel Maffre.
The World's Funniest Bubble Show Marsh Berkeley, TheaterStage, 2120 Allston, Berk; (415) 826-5750, www.themarsh.org. $8-50. Sun and Nov 25-26 and Dec 26-30, 11am (no show Dec 25). Through Dec 31. Louis "The Amazing Bubble Man" Pearl returns with this kid-friendly, bubble-tastic comedy.
"Bare Bones Butoh Presents: Showcase #23!" Studio 210, 3435 Cesar Chavez, SF; email@example.com. Fri-Sat, 8pm. $5-20. Butoh performance featuring new and in-progress works by local, national, and international artists.
"BrokeBACH Mountain" Mission Cultural Center, 2868 Mission, SF; www.lgcsf.org. Fri-Sat, 8pm. $15-30. The Lesbian/Gay Chorus of San Francisco opens its 32nd season with a mix of modern and classical hits, inspired in part by Brokeback Mountain.
"Club Chuckles" Verdi Club, 2424 Mariposa, SF; www.brownpapertickets.com. Fri, 8pm. $20. Comedy with Neil Hamburger, Natasha Leggero, Tim Heidecker, Duncan Trussell, and "The Kenny 'K-Strass' Strasser Yo-Yo Extravaganza."
"Fox and Jewel" Dance Mission, 3316 24th St, SF; www.genryuarts.org. Fri-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. $20-25. Gen Ryu arts presents Melody Takata's interdisciplinary work that uses a Japanese myth to address current concerns about arts and culture in Japantown as the neighborhood redevelops.
"From Wallflower Order to Dance Brigade: A 35-Year Retrospective Celebration" Novellus Theater, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 700 Howard, SF; (415) 273-4633, www.dancebrigade.org. Fri-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Free. Krissy Keefer marks 35 years of Dance Brigade with The Great Liberation Upon Hearing and other works.
"I'd Eat Them Both" Purple Onion, 140 Columbus, SF; kellymccarron.eventbrite.com. Fri, 7 and 9pm. Comedian Kelly McCarron performs for a recording of her first comedy album.
LEVYdance Z Space, 450 Florida, SF; 1-800-838-3006; www.levydance.org. Thurs-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. $18-23. The company presents its Fall 2011 Home Season, featuring the world premiere of ROMP.
Liss Fain Dance Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission, SF; (415) 978-2787, www.lissfaindance.org. Thurs-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 9:30pm); Sun, 5pm. $12.50-25. The company presents performance installation The False and True Are One.
San Francisco Hip Hop DanceFest Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, 3301 Lyon, SF; (415) 392-4400, www.cityboxoffice.com. Program A: Fri, 8pm; Sat, 9:30pm. Program B: Sat-Sun, 6pm. $40 (two shows, $75). The 13th annual festival, produced by Micaya, welcomes 19 companies from places as diverse as Oakland, San Francisco, Paris, Brooklyn, and London.
"10 Women Campaign: Who Is Tending the City?" ODC Theater, 3153 17th St, SF; (415) 863-9834, www.flyawayproductions.com. Thurs, 7:30pm. $25 ($50 to include reception at 6:30pm). Flyaway Productions honors ten community leaders with a performance and ceremony.