All Reviews

All Reviews

January 2019

“The North Pool” Pulls Us In, at Bread & Butter, S.F.

“Hand to God” Grabs Us by the Funny Bone, at Altarena Playhouse, Alameda

“Paradise Square” Celebrates Song & Dance in Civil War Manhattan, at Berkeley Rep

“Come from Away”—Finds New Land in Our Hearts, at SHN, S.F

“Skin of Our Teeth” Taunts US, Terrifically, at Actors Ensemble, Berkeley

“Arcadia”—A Lively & Witty Mystery, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

December 2018

“A Time for Hawking” Tickles the Universe, at Indra’s Net, Berkeley

“A Noh Christmas Carol”—Hypnotic, Haunting Holiday Treat, at Yugen, S.F.

“Dear Evan Hansen” Challenges Millennial Myths, at The Curran, S.F.

“It’s a Wonderful Life”—Comfortable Music with a Moral, at S.F. Opera

“A Christmas Carol”: Miraculous & Meaningful, at ACT, S.F.

“The Wickhams: Christmas at Pemberley” Lights Up a Revolution, at MTC, Mill Valley

“Arcadia” Paints a Bleak, Loveless Future at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

“Avenue Q” Spices Up the Holidays, at NCTC, S.F

“Santaland Diaries”: Hilarious Working Elf Reflects, at TheatreWorks, Los Altos

“Conference of the Birds”: A Flutter of Wisdom & Fun, at Ubuntu, Oakland

“Dear Evan Hansen” Challenges Millennial Myths, at The Curran, S.F.

“Ripcord”: Hilarious Odd Couple Takes a Leap, at CCCT, El Cerrito

“Great Expectations”: Frenetic Dickensian Coming of Age, at Town Hall, Lafayette

“Oakland Raiders, True Crime, & Coming of Age in SF”—at The Marsh

“The Jewelry Box” Overflows with Love & Laughter, at the Marsh, S.F.

November 2018

“House of Yes”—A Kennedy Delusion, at Main Stage West, Sebastopol

“A History of World War II”—A Queer Eye on Sharp Nazis, at The Marsh, S.F.

“Taylor Mac’s Holiday Sauce” Makes Mincemeat of Christmas, at The Curran, S.F.

“Pike Street”—Amazing Array of Lower East Side Lives, at Berkeley Rep

“Mary Poppins” Inspires Rich & Poor, at S.F. Playhouse

“Volta”—Big Tent Acrobats Amaze & Electrify, at Cirque du Soleil, S.F.

“Wonderland: Alice’s Rock & Roll Adventure”—A Retro Treat, at BACT, Berkeley

“Everything is Illuminated” Sheds Light on WWII Ukraine, at Aurora, Berkeley

“Crazy for You” Defies the Great Depression, at Bay Area Musicals, S.F.

“Wizard of Oz”—Charming Stage Pictures, at Berkeley Playhouse

“All the Way” Makes LBJ Real to Us, at Palo Alto Players

“Tartuffe”—Thoroughly Modern Moliere, at CAL, Berkeley

“In the Heights” Elevates Immigrant Spirit, at Custom Made, S.F.

“Aida”—A Kinetic Explosion! at Broadway by the Bay, Redwood City

“Twelfth Night”—A Delightful Whirlwind, at Arabian Shakes, S.F.

“Cardboard Piano” Shocks with War & Love in Uganda, at NCTC, S.F.

“Men on Boats”─A Rollicking Pioneer Delusion, at ACT, S.F.

October 2018

“The Boy from Oz” Dances into Our Hearts, at Rhino, S.F.

“Dancing Lessons” Shimmies and Shakes, at Center REP, Walnut Creek

“Arabella” Engages Musically and Theatrically, at S.F. Opera

“You Mean to Do Me Harm”—Four Superb Actors Expose Our Obsessions, at S.F. Playhouse

“Dracula”—A Haunting Masterpiece, at Theatre Lunatico, Berkeley

“Hedda Gabler” Surprises and Charms, at Pear Theatre, Mountain View

“The Resting Place” Exposes Horrifying Family Secrets, at Magic Theatre, S.F.

“Women Laughing Alone with Salad” Gets Salty, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

Main Stage West—Best of the Best, in Sebastopol

“Graveyard Shift” Digs Up Texas Terror, at S.F. Playhouse

“Thoroughly Modern Millie”—Antiquated, yet Charming, at CCMT, Walnut Creek

“Hamlet” Breaks New Ground, Amazingly, at Ubuntu, Oakland

“The Night Alive” Illuminates Dubliners’ Dark Lives, at Main Stage West, Sebastopol

“Chekhov’s Ward 6″—Still Critical & Passionate, at Central Works, Berkeley

“Oslo” Pinpoints Palestine/Israel Accord, at MTC, Mill Valley

“Seen/By Everyone” Lyrically Dissects Online Grief, at Yugen, S.F.

“The Obligation” Delivers Life Lessons, at Potrero Stage, S.F.

“Fairview” Takes Back Black Culture, at Berkeley Rep

“70 Scenes of Halloween”—Terrorizes and Delights, at Playhouse, U.C. Berkeley

“Fun Home”—Heartfelt Sexual Coming Of Age, at TheatreWorks, Mountain View

“Uncle Vanya”—A Vibrant Cage Match of Discontent, at Cutting Ball, S.F.

“Tosca”—A Beautifully Sung but Unimaginative New Production, from S.F. Opera

“Good Night, Gorilla”—Adorable Intro to Theater, at BACT, Berkeley

“Red Scare on Sunset” Hilariously Spoofs McCarthyism, at NCTC, S.F.

“Clybourne Park”—Captivating Comedy of Class & Race, at Altarena, Alameda

“Sweat”—A Passionate Portrait of U.S. Workers, at ACT, S.F.

“The Revolutionists”—Didactic Comedy of Ideas, at Town Hall, Lafayette

“Refugee Voices & Trojan Women” Awakens Our Empathy, at Multi Ethnic Theater, S.F.

“Acid Test” Delivers Insight from Other Dimensions, at The Marsh, S.F.

“dirty butterfly” Destroys and Rebuilds, at Anton’s Well, Berkeley

September 2018

“Dreamgirls” Hits the High Notes, at Berkeley Playhouse

“The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence”—Actors Shine, at Dragon, Redwood City

“Allegiance”—Dark, Yet Uplifting, At CCCT, El Cerrito

“Baby Doll” Teases Out Tense Truths, at Shelton Theater, S.F.

“Black Odyssey” Returns, Astounds! at Cal Shakes, Orinda

“The Goat, or Who Is Sylvia?”—Best of Breed! at Custom Made, S.F.

“Church” Blows the Roof Off Religion, at Crowded Fire, S.F.

“Hedwig and the Angry Inch” Makes Us Lift Up Our Hands, at Ray of Light, S.F.

“Dead and Breathing” Turns Toward Life, at Rhino, S.F.

“for colored girls” Unifies & Sanctifies, at African American Shakes, S.F.

“Cavalleria Rusticana” & “Pagliacci”—Stellar Singing and Acting from S.F. Opera

“Cat in the Hat”— An English/Spanish Riot, at BACT, Berkeley

August 2018

“Dȇmos Krátos Theátro” Inspires Laughs & Voting, at PianoFight, S.F.

“A Doll’s House, Part 2” Redefines Marriage, at Berkeley Rep

“Caesar Maximus” Strolls & Struggles in Golden Gate Park, at We Players, S.F.

“Detroit ‘67” Depicts Days of Fear & Rebellion, at Aurora, Berkeley

“Mamma Mia!” I think I’ll go AGAIN! to Center REP, Walnut Creek

“Northanger Abbey” Highlights Subtle Progressive Messages, at The Pear, Mountain View

“Kiss” Challenges Illusions & Delusions, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

“Mahabharat”—Epic Immersion, at Naatak, Palo Alto

“Pool of Wonders” Glows & Beckons, at Ubuntu, Berkeley

“Native Gardens” Cultivates Border Wars, at TheatreWorks, Mountain View

“War of the Roses” Makes History LIVE, at Cal Shakes, Orinda

“Woman on Fire” Haunts & Unsettles, at Those Women, Berkeley

“Washed Up on the Potomac” Liberates Mad Men, at S.F. Playhouse

“Anniversary!”—A “Deep Kiss” & A “Victory Lap,” at Word For Word, S.F.

“#GetGhandi” Delights and Inspires, at Z Space, S.F.

“Where the Boys Are” Explodes, the Myth of Men, at Faultline, S.F.

“King of Cuba” Tickles, Triumphs at Central Works, Berkeley

“What They Said About Love” Charms, Thrills, at The Marsh, S.F.

July 2018

“Each and Every Thing” Triumphs, at The Marsh, Berkeley

“Hold These Truths” Captivates Hearts, at TheatreWorks, Palo Alto

“King of Cuba” Dissects Revolution, at Central Works, Berkeley

“Everybody” Speaks Boldly, Beautifully, at Cal Shakes, Orinda

“Oedipus at Palm Springs” Seduces and Shocks, at Theatre Rhinoceros, S.F.

“White” Unleashes Hidden Voices, at Shotgun, Berkeley

“Hunchback of Notre Dame” Dazzles, Delights, at Bay Area Musicals

“White” Blends Pigments Artfully, at Shotgun, Berkeley

“Sunday in the Park with George” Glitters, at S.F. Playhouse

“Dry Powder” Ignites Greedy Passions, at Aurora, Berkeley

“Measure for Measure” Mocks First World Problems, at Lunatico, Berkeley

“Seeing Red” Brings Cheers, Shouts, at S.F. Mime Troupe

“Universal Robots” Mesmerizes, at Quantum Dragon, S.F.

June 2018

“Two Mile Hollow” Ridicules Ruling Class, at Ferocious Lotus, S.F.

“In Braunau” Thrills with Dark Past, at S.F. Playhouse

“Soft Power” Musical Brings Hard Laughs, at The Curran, S.F.

“Straight White Men” Speaks to All, at MTC, Mill Valley

“Straight White Men” Captivates Curious Minorities, at MTC, Mill Valley

“Good. Better. Best. Bested.” Exposes Glitter and Gloom at Custom Made, S.F.

“A Walk on the Moon” Rocks the Crowd at ACT, S.F.

“Pete The Cat” Thrills Kids at BACT, Berkeley

“Quixote Nuevo” Attack La Frontera, at Cal Shakes, Orinda

“Das Rheingold” Gleams at San Francisco Opera

“A Lesson From Aloes” Explodes a Thorny Past, at Z Below, S.F.

“Sense and Sensibility” Slides into Town Hall, Lafayette

“Dry Land” Locker Room Talk Grabs Us, at Shotgun, Berkeley

May 2018

“Hamlet”—Family Affair Rocks Outdoors, at Marin Shakes, San Rafael

“Scapegoat”—Comic Artist Soars Close to Sun, at Playground Festival, S.F.

“The Tin Woman” Really Finds Her Heart, at Ross Valley Players

“Two Minds” Meld, then Clash, Brilliantly, at The Marsh, S.F.

“Topdog/Underdog”—Taut and Absorbing, at Ubuntu, Berkeley

“Bright Shining Sea” Moves Us to Tears, at Playground Festival, S.F.

“An Entomologist’s Love Story” Magnifies Dating Wars, at S.F. Playhouse

Angels in America, “Perestroika” Flies Us to Heaven, at Berkeley Rep

“Judy Moody and Stink, the Mad, Mad Treasure Hunt, at BACT, S.F.

“What the Constitution Means to Me” Updates Us on Our Rights, at Berkeley Rep

“Roman Women”—A Hit with Intensity, at We Players, S.F.

Michael Menager—Consummate Poet, Minstrel, at ArtsUp, S.F.

“Waafrika 123” Transfixes with Fire, at TheatreFIRST, Berkley

“Marjorie Prime”—Memories Come Alive, but May Not Be True, at MTC

“All the Shah’s Men” Highlights CIA Conspiracy in Iran Coup, at Arabian Shakes, S.F.

“The Congresswomen” Take Charge, at Exit Theater, S.F.

“Angels in America”—Flying on a Thread, at Berkeley Rep

“Father Comes Home from the Wars” Unlocks a Worker’s Worth, at ACT. S.F.

“Angels in America”: A Legendary Roy Cohn, at Berkeley Rep

“Tinderella”—Sexting, BART, & Lost Heels, at Custom Made, S.F.

Angels in America” More Powerful and Prophetic than Ever, at Berkley Rep

“Eureka Day” Deliciously Skewers Best Parental Intentions, at Aurora, Berkeley

April 2018

“Mystery of Love and Sex” Queries Friend-Sex in Gay Comedy, at NCTC, S.F.

“Inside Out & Back Again”: A Heartfelt Homecoming, at BACT, Berkeley

“Eureka Day”–An LOL Comedy on Parenting, at Aurora, Berkeley

“Mother Lear”—Intimate Glimpse into Dementia, at We Players, S.F.

“The Dream of Kitamura”: A Surreal Whodunit, at CAL, Berkeley

“Head Over Heels” Spews Dazzling Chaos, at Curran, S.F.

“Gangster of Love”—A Spectacular Family Reunion, at Magic Theatre, S.F.

“American Jornalero” Incarnates Workers’ Woes, at Ubuntu, Oakland

“Signs” Sends a Magical Signal, at PianoFight, S.F.

“Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”—Playful Dark Comedy, at CCCT, El Cerrito

“Daughter of a Garbageman” Garnishes Oppression with Humor, at The Marsh, S.F.

“The Fantasticks” Delight! at Novato Theater Company

“Timon of Athens”—A Raunchy, Violent Tale, at Cutting Ball, S.F.

“What they Said About Love” Wrestles the Riddle of Love, at The Marsh, Berkeley

“Shirley Valentine” Celebrates Life, at Center REP, Walnut Creek

“A Different Long Stretch of Earth”—New West Wrestles Old, at Ragged Wing, Oakland

“Nijinsky”—Dancer’s Genius Flows Again, at S.F. Ballet

“Shifting Spaces” Explores the True Self, at Those Women, Berkeley

March 2018

“Red” Opens an Artist’s Mind, at Bread & Butter Theatre, S.F.

“Saturday Night” Romances With Charm, at 42nd Street Moon, S.F.

“Crystal” Cracks Barriers, at SAP Center, San Jose

“Iron Shoes” Weighs Us Down to Lift Us Up, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

“The Wolves” Entertains with Musical Dialogue, at MTC, Mill Valley

“The Effect”—A Litmus Test for Love, at S.F.Playhouse

Call Me by Your Name—Desire Under the Lombard Sun

“Heisenberg”— Intriguing Tango for Two, at ACT, S.F.

“Dance of the Holy Ghosts” Takes Us to Church, at Ubuntu, Oakland

“Cowboy vs. Samurai”—Sweet & Hilarious, at Pear Theatre, Mountain View

“It’s Only a Play” Dazzles with Stage Scandals, at NCTC, S.F.

“A Number” Prophesies a Clone Crisis, at Aurora, Berkeley

“Kursk” Dives Deep to Subterranean Depths, at Lunatico, Berkeley

“All in the Timing: Short Comedies” Inspire Love, at U.C. Berkeley

“Hooded” Tickles with Dark Humor, at Custom Made, S.F.

“Mystery of Edwin Drood” Kills with Laugher, at Marin Onstage, San Rafael

“Vietgone”: Tantalizing Trip across Alien(ated) America, at ACT, S.F.

“Transitions” Launches Drag Queen at Drumpf & Putin, at The Rhino, S.F.

A Streetcar Named Desire” Spellbinds, Chills, at African American Shakespeare. S.F.

“Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again.” Exhilarating, at Crowded Fire, S.F.

“Between Us” Forges New Paths, at TheatreFIRST, Berkeley

“Office Hour”: A Dose of Bone Chilling Reality, at Berkeley Rep

“Ragtime,” the Musical, Stuns and Wows, at Berkeley Playhouse

“Widowers’ Houses” Ridicules Gentrification, at Aurora, Berkeley

February 2018

“Between Us” Breaks Down the Barriers, at TheatreFIRST, Berkeley

“Bamboozled” Steals Your Heart, at Central Works, Berkeley

“Berkeley Dance Project 2018” Takes Us Inside, at Playhouse, U.C., Berkeley

“Reel to Reel” Opens Our Ears to Love, at Magic Theatre, S.F.

“The Secret in the Wings” Spins a Magical Tale, at CCCT, El Cerrito

“Lucia Berlin: Stories”–A Dark, Rich World, at Word for Word, S.F.

“What They Said About Love” Evokes Laughter, Introspection, at The Marsh, Berkeley

“Man of La Mancha” Shines Amidst Challenges, at Custom Made, S.F.

“A Streetcar Named Desire” Explores Primal Places, at Ubuntu Theater, Oakland

“A Streetcar Named Desire” Thrills, Chills, at Ubuntu Theater, Oakland

“Red Speedo” Exposes Our Competitive Madness, at Center REP, Walnut Creek

“Widowers’ Houses” Rocks with Comic Genius, at Aurora Theatre, Berkeley

“A Fatal Step”: Femme Fatale Spirals into Control, at The Marsh, S.F.

“Still at Risk” Sparkles with Style & Savvy, at NCTC, S.F.

“Skeleton Crew” Reveals Workers’ Woes, at Marin Theatre, Mill Valley

“Why I Died, a Comedy!” Internalizes Humor, at PlayGround, S.F.

“Megabytes! The Musical” Keeps Phones in Pockets, at Shelton Theatre, S.F.

Alabama Story” Revels in Rabbits & Rage, at City Lights, San Jose

January 2018

“Born Yesterday” Arouses Laughter, Reflection, at S.F. Playhouse

“Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike”: Comic Riff on Family Life, at Altarena Playhouse, Alameda

“Sleeping Beauty” Stunningly Revived, by S.F. Ballet

“The Motherf**ker with the Hat”: A Compelling Ride, at Four Lost Souls, S.F.

“The Vagina Odyssey” Refreshes Feminism, at Monkey House, Berkeley

“RENT” Reflects Bay Area 20 Years Later, at Broadway San Jose

“Beautiful Oops!” A Planned Accident for Kids at BACT, Berkeley

“The Birthday Party” Shocks with Political Allegory, at ACT, S.F.

“Road to Mecca” Intrigues at Pear Theater, Mountain View

“What Just Happened?” Magnifies Mundane Moments, at PlayGround, S.F.

“Our Great Tchaikovsky” Melds Gender & Genius, at TheatreWorks, Silicon Valley

“Dear Dad” Calls for Action via Laughter, at ACT, S.F.

“Man of La Mancha” Gives Dreamers Hope, at Custom Made, S.F.

“Kipling Hotel” Invites Laughter & Love, at The Marsh, S.F.

“Partition” Celebrates Spiritual Insights, at Indra’s Net, Berkeley