Theater Listings: August 27 - September 2, 2014


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



Funny Girl Hillbarn Theatre, 1285 East Hillsdale, Foster City; $23-42. Opens Thu/28, 8pm. Runs Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Sept 21. Hillbarn Theatre performs the classic romantic musical comedy, with music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Bob Merrill, and book by Isobel Lennart.

The Last Days of Judas Iscariot Flight Deck, 1540 Broadway, Oakl; $15-25. Opens Thu/28, 8pm. Runs Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 7pm. Through Sept 21. Stephen Adly Guirgis' courtroom drama takes on the fate of the New Testament turncoat.

Life Could Be a Dream Center REPertory Company, Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic, Walnut Creek; $37-66. Previews Fri/29-Sat/30, 8pm; Sun/31, 2pm. Opens Tue/2, 7:30pm. Runs Wed, 7:30pm; Thu-Sat, 8pm (also Sept 20 and 27, 2:30pm); Sun, 2:30pm. Through Oct 5. CenterREPertory Company performs Roger Bean's doo-wop musical.

Rapture, Blister, Burn Aurora Theatre, 2081 Addison, Berk; $32-50. Previews Fri/29-Sat/30, 8pm; Sun/31, 2pm; Tue/2, 7pm. Opens Sept 4, 8pm. Runs Tue and Sun, 7pm (also Sun, 2pm); Wed-Sat, 8pm. Through Sept 28. Aurora Theatre Company opens its 23rd season with Gina Gionfriddo's drama about three generations of women "struggling with feminism's foibles."

Wonder of the World Douglas Morrisson Theatre, 22311 N. Third St, Hayward; $10-32. Previews Thu/28, 8pm. Runs Fri-Sat and Sept 18, 8pm (also Sept 13, 2pm); Sun, 2pm. Through Sept 21. Douglas Morrison Theatre opens its 35th season with David Lindsay-Abaire's comedy about self-fulfillment.


Buyer & Cellar Curran Theatre, 445 Geary, SF; $80-100. Wed/27-Sun/31, 7:30pm (also Sat/30-Sun/31, 2pm). One ordinary gay man, one unusual mall, and one iconic (slightly terrifying) customer are the three simple ingredients that made a delectable offering of Jonathan Tolins' Off-Broadway hit comedy. Now on the road, Buyer & Cellar comes to town with its one-man cast and original star, Michael Urie (of comedy series Ugly Betty), as Alex More, a young actor who lands a day job as the sole attendant in Barbra Streisand's custom-made private basement shopping mall. What sounds like a made-to-order gay fantasy only intrigues Alex, who is less prone to Barbra idolatry than his live-in boyfriend, who discourses on the nitty-gritty of Streisand trivia with sociological rigor. Meanwhile, the diva herself (channeled with half-kittenish, half-matronly eccentricity by Urie) seems to have found a new object for her collection. Director Stephen Brackett's staging is as elegantly spare and sharp as an old-fashioned straight razor, which suits the cutting humor of this ultimately warm-blooded dissection of celebrity and self. But more than anything it serves Urie who, wily shopkeeper that he is, needs no fancy sets or costumes to sell us the premise and every seemingly tossed off line with dazzling comic precision and unflagging charm. (Avila)

Each and Every Thing Marsh San Francisco Main Stage, 1062 Valencia, SF; $20-50. Thu-Fri, 8pm; Sat, 8:30pm (starting Sept 6, Sat shows at 5); Sun, 2pm. Extended through Oct 4. The latest solo show from celebrated writer-performer Dan Hoyle (Tings Dey Happen, The Real Americans) winds a more random course than usual across the country and abroad but then that's the idea — or at least Hoyle warns us, right after an opening encounter with a touchy young white supremacist, that the trip he's taking us on is a subtle one. Displaying again his exceptional gifts as a writer and protean performer, Hoyle deftly embodies a set of real-life encounters as a means of exploring the primacy and predicament of face-to-face communication in the age of Facebook. With the help of director Charlie Varon (who co-developed the piece with Hoyle and Maureen Towey), this comes across in an entertaining and swift-flowing 75-minute act that includes a witty rap about "phone zombies" and a Dylan-esque screed at a digital detox center. But the purported subject of connection, or lack there of, in our gadget-bound and atomized society is neither very original nor very deeply explored — nor is it necessarily very provocative in a theater, before an audience already primed for the live encounter. Far more interesting and central here is Hoyle's relationship with his old college buddy Pratim, an Indian American in post-9/11 America whose words are filled with laid-back wisdom and wry humor. Also intriguing is the passing glimpse of early family life in the Hoyle household with Dan's celebrated artist father, and working-class socialist, Geoff Hoyle. These relationships, rather than the sketches of strangers (albeit very graceful ones), seem the worthier subjects to mine for truth and meaning. Indeed, there's a line spoken by Pratim that could sum up the essence of Hoyle's particular art: "It's so much better," he says, "when you find yourself in other people than when you just find yourself." Hoyle's real frontier could end up being much more personal terrain, much closer to home. (Avila)

Foodies! The Musical Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter, SF; $32-34. Fri-Sat, 8pm. Open-ended. AWAT Productions presents Morris Bobrow's musical comedy revue all about food.

From Red to Black ACT Costume Shop, 1119 Market, SF; $7.50-20. Wed/27-Thu/28, 7pm; Fri/29-Sat/30, 8pm. San Francisco Playhouse performs Rhett Rossi's detective drama as part of its Sandbox Series.

Into the Woods San Francisco Playhouse, 450 Post, SF; $20-120. Tue-Thu, 7pm; Fri-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 3pm); Sun, 2pm. Through Sept 6. SF Playhouse performs Stephen Sondheim's fractured fairy-tale musical.

Millicent Scowlworthy Thick House Theatre, 1695 18th St, SF; $20. Thu/28-Sat/30, 8pm. 99 Stock Productions presents Rob Handel's spooky tale that cautions against burying tragic events in the past.

Motown the Musical Orpheum Theatre, 1192 Market, SF; $45-210. Tue-Sat, 8pm (also Wed and Sat, 2pm); Sun, 2pm. Through Sept 28. Over 40 hits ("My Girl," "Ain't No Mountain High Enough") pack this tale of Motown founder Barry Gordy's career in the music biz.

Noises Off! Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter, SF; $38. Thu-Sat, 8pm. Through Oct 25. Shelton Theater performs Michael Frayn's outrageous backstage comedy.

O Best Beloved This week: Glen Canyon Park, 70 Elk, SF; Sun/31, 2pm. Free (donations accepted). Through Sept 13 at various NorCal venues. Idiot String's Joan Howard and Rebecca Longworth bring their SF Fringe Festival hit, an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling's Just-So Stories, to local public spaces aboard a mobile stage.

Pleiades Phoenix Theatre, 414 Mason, Sixth Flr, SF; $20-25. Thu/28-Sat/30, 8pm. Marissa Skudlarek's world premiere reimagines the Greek myth of the seven Pleiades sisters as a story about Baby Boomers in their youth.

The Ripple Effect Troupe Studio Space, 855 Treat, SF; Free (suggested donation for this show, $20. RSVPs required as seating as limited). Also Sat/30, 2pm, free (donations accepted), Peacock Meadow, Golden Gate Park, SF; and Sun/31-Mon/1, 2pm, free (donations accepted), Dolores Park, 19th St and Dolores, SF. The veteran San Francisco Mime Troupe stays current by skewering San Francisco's ever-dividing economy; think rising rents, tech-bus protests, and (natch) Glassholes.

The Taming of the Shrew This week: Presidio, Marin Post Parade Grounds, between Graham and Keyes, SF; Free. Sat-Sun and Mon/1, 2pm. Continues through Sept 21 at various Bay Area venues. Free Shakespeare in the Park presents this take on the Bard's barb-filled romance.

Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind Boxcar Theatre, 505 Natoma, SF; $11-16. Fri-Sat, 9pm. Ongoing. The Neo-Futurists perform Greg Allen's spontaneous, ever-changing show that crams 30 plays into 60 minutes.


Berlin to Broadway with Kurt Weill Masquers Playhouse, 105 Park, Point Richmond; $22. Fri, 8pm; Sat, 7pm; Sun/31, Sept 7, and 14, 2pm. Through Sept 20. Masquers Playhouse performs a revue celebrating the life and work of Kurt Weill.

Cops and Robbers Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; $20-100. Fri, 8pm; Sat, 8:30pm. Through Sept 13. Hip-hop artist and law enforcement officer Jinho "The Piper" Ferreira performs his 17-character solo show.

Fetch Clay, Make Man Marin Theatre Company, 397 Miller, Mill Valley; $35-58. Tue-Sat, 8pm; Wed, 7:30pm; Sun, 2 and 7pm. Through Sept 7. Marin Theatre Company performs the West Coast premiere of Will Power's historical drama.

An Ideal Husband Forest Meadows Amphitheater, 890 Belle, Dominican University of California, San Rafael; $12-35. Runs in repertory Fri-Sun through Sept 27; visit website for specific performance dates and times. Marin Shakespeare Company performs Oscar Wilde's witty tale.

Moonlight and Magnolias Dragon Theatre, 2120 Broadway, Redwood City; $10-30. Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Sept 7. Dragon Productions presents Ron Hutchinson's behind-the-scenes drama about the filming of Gone With the Wind.

Penthesilea — Queen of the Amazons John Hinkel Park, 41 Somerset, Berk; Free. Sat-Sun and Mon/1, 4pm. Through Sept 7. Inferno Theatre and Actors Ensemble of Berkeley perform Giulio Cesare Perrone's adaptation of Heinrich Von Kleist's Amazonian action fantasy.

Romeo and Juliet Forest Meadows Amphitheater, 890 Belle, Dominican University of California, San Rafael; $12-35. Runs in repertory Fri-Sun through Sept 28; visit website for specific performance dates and times. Marin Shakespeare continues its 25th season with the Bard's timeless tragedy.

Semi-Famous: Hollywood Hell Tales from the Middle Marsh Berkeley Main Stage, 2120 Allston, Berk; $20-100. Sat, 5pm; Sun, 7pm. Through Sept 7. Don Reed's new solo show shares tales from his career in entertainment.

The Tempest Old Mill Park Amphitheatre, behind the Mill Valley Public Library, 375 Throckmorton, Mill Valley; Free. Sat-Sun and Mon/1, 4pm. Through Sept 14. Curtain Theatre returns with the Bard's magical romance for its 14th outdoor performance.

Water By the Spoonful Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro, Mtn View; $19-74. Tue-Wed, 7:30pm; Fri-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 2pm); Sun, 2 and 7pm. Through Sept 14. TheatreWorks performs Quiara Alegría Hudes' Pulitzer Prize-winning drama about strangers who meet in an online chat room.


"BATS Summer Improv Festival" Bayfront Theater, B350 Fort Mason, SF; Through Sept 20. $20. This week: "Theatre on the Edge," an improvised Brechtian musical, Fri/29-Sat/30, 8pm.

Caroline Lugo and Carolé Acuña's Ballet Flamenco Peña Pachamama, 1630 Powell, SF; Sat/30, Sept 6, 13, 21, 28, Oct 4, 11, 18, 26, 6:30pm. $15-19. Flamenco performance by the mother-daughter dance company, featuring live musicians.

"Dash: Improv in a Flash" Un-Scripted Theater Company, 533 Sutter, Second Flr, SF; Sat/30, 10pm. $15. A late-night, free-form improv show with Un-Scripted Theater Company.

Feinstein's at the Nikko 222 Mason, SF; This week: "City Singers:" "Clairdee: The Melody Makers," Wed/27, 7pm, $15.

"Magic at the Rex" Hotel Rex, 562 Sutter, SF; Sat, 8pm. Ongoing. $25. Magic and mystery with Adam Sachs and mentalist Sebastian Boswell III.

"Mommy Queerest" Bindlestiff Studio, 185 Sixth St, SF; Fri/29-Sat/30, 8pm. $25-40. Guerrilla Rep and Bindlestiff Studio present Kat Evasco in her solo show (co-written with John Caldon) about a closeted lesbian mother and her out lesbian daughter.

"Out of Line Improv" Stage Werx, 446 Valencia, SF; Sat, 10:30pm. Ongoing. $12. A new, completely improvised show every week.

"People in Plazas" Various locations, SF; Through Oct 3. Free. Lunchtime concerts in various downtown locations showcasing jazz, world, funk, and other styles of music.

"San Francisco Comedy College" Purple Onion at Kells, 530 Jackson, SF; Ongoing. $5-15. "Weekly New Talent Shows," Wed-Thu, 7pm. "Purple Onion All-Stars," Wed-Thu, 8:15pm. "The Later Show," Wed-Thu, 10pm. "The Cellar Dwellers," Fri-Sat, 7:30pm.

"Terminator Too: Judgment Play" and "Point Break LIVE!" DNA Lounge, 375 11th St, SF; Sept 5, Oct 3, Nov 7, and Dec 5, Terminator at 7:30pm; Break at 11pm. $20-50. The raucous, interactive staged recreations of two of 1991's greatest action films return to the DNA Lounge.

"Yerba Buena Gardens Festival" Yerba Buena Gardens, 760 Howard, SF; Through Oct 26. Free. This week: Quetzal, Sun/31, 1-2:30pm.


"MarshJam Improv Comedy Show" Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; Fri, 8pm. Ongoing. $10. Improv comedy with local legends and drop-in guests. *