Theater Listings: January 22 – 28, 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



Hemorrhage: An Ablution of Hope and Despair Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St, SF; $20-25. Opens Fri/24, 8pm. Runs Thu-Sat, 8pm (Feb 8, shows at 4 and 7pm); Sun, 6pm. Through Feb 8. Dance Brigade presents this “dance installation at the intersection of the new San Francisco and world politics.”

Lovebirds Marsh San Francisco Studio, 1062 Valencia, SF; $15-50. Previews Thu/23-Fri/24, 8pm. Opens Sat/25, 8:30pm. Runs Thu-Fri, 8pm; Sat, 8:30pm. Through March 15. Theater artist and comedian Marga Gomez presents the world premiere of her 10th solo show, described as “a rollicking tale of incurable romantics.”

“SF Sketchfest: The San Francisco Sketch Comedy Festival” Various venues, SF; Prices vary. Jan 23-Feb 9. This year’s 13th Sketchfest features over 200 shows in more than 20 venues, featuring both big-name talents (Alan Arkin, Tenacious D, Laura Dern and the cast of Enlightened, Maya Rudolph, etc.) and up-and-comers, plus tributes to films, theatrical and musical events, improv showcases, and more. Much, much, much more.

Ubu Roi Exit on Taylor, 277 Taylor, SF; $10-50. Previews Fri/24-Sat/25, 8pm; Sun/26, 5pm. Opens Jan 30, 7:30pm (gala opening Jan 31, 8pm). Runs Thu, 7:30pm; Fri-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 2pm); Sun, 5pm. Through Feb 23. Cutting Ball Theater performs Alfred Jarry’s avant-garde parody of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, presented in a new translation by Cutting Ball artistic director Rob Melrose.


Geezer Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; $25-50. Opens Thu/23, 8pm. Runs Thu, 8pm; Sat, 5pm. Through March 1. Geoff Hoyle moves his hit comedy about aging to the East Bay.

The Grapes of Wrath Hillbarn Theatre, 1285 E. Hillsdale, Foster City; $23-38. Opens Fri/24, 8pm. Runs Fri-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Feb 9. Hillbarn Theatre continues its 73rd season with Frank Galati’s adaptation of John Steinbeck’s classic American novel.

Man in a Case Berkeley Repertory Theatre, 2015 Addison, Berk; $45-125. Previews Sat/25, 8pm. Opens Sun/26, 7pm. Runs Tue and Thu-Sat, 8pm; Wed, 7pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Feb 16. Mikhail Baryshnikov returns to Berkeley Rep to star in a play based on a pair of Anton Chekhov’s short stories, “Man in a Case” and “About Love.” Obie-winning Big Dance Theater stages the high-tech adaptation.


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.

Jerusalem San Francisco Playhouse, 450 Post, SF; $20-100. Previews Wed/22/-Thu/23, 7pm; Fri/24, 8pm. Opens Sat/25, 8pm. Runs Tue-Thu, 7pm; Fri-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 3pm); Feb 2, 9, 16, 2pm. Through March 8. SF Playhouse performs the West Coast premiere of Jez Butterworth’s Tony- and Olivier-wining epic.

Major Barbara ACT’s Geary Theater, 415 Geary, SF; $20-140. Tue-Sat, 8pm (also Wed/22 and Jan 29, 2pm); Sun, 2pm. Through Feb 2. American Conservatory Theater performs a new production of George Bernard Shaw’s political comedy.

Noises Off Shelton Theater, 533 Sutter, SF; $38. Thu-Sat, 8pm. Through Feb 8. Shelton Theater presents Michael Frayn’s outrageous backstage comedy.

Pardon My Invasion Phoenix Theatre, 414 Mason, SF; $15-30. Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun/26 and Feb 2, 2pm. Through Feb 8. A pulp fiction writer’s characters come to life in this dark comedy by Joy Cutler.

The Paris Letter New Conservatory Theater Center, 25 Van Ness, SF; $25-45. Wed-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 2pm. Through Feb 23. New Conservatory Theatre Center performs Jon Robin Baitz’s tale of a Wall Street powerhouse desperately trying to keep his sexual identity a secret.

The Pornographer’s Daughter Z Below, 470 Florida, SF; $32. Opens Wed/22, 8pm. Runs Thu-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 10:30pm); Sun, 5pm. Through Feb 16. Liberty Bradford Mitchell, daughter of Artie Mitchell (half of porn’s infamous Mitchell Brothers, he was shot and killed by brother Jim in 1991), performs her solo show about “growing up on the fringes of an X-rated world.”

Shit & Champagne Rebel, 1772 Market, SF; $25. Fri-Sat, 8pm. Through Feb 8. D’Arcy Drollinger (Sex and the City Live) performs “a whitesploitation comedy with dance.”

The Speakeasy Undisclosed location (ticket buyers receive a text with directions), SF; $60-90 (add-ons: casino chips, $5; dance lessons, $10). Thu-Sat, 7:40, 7:50, and 8pm admittance times. Through March 15. Boxcar Theatre presents Nick A. Olivero’s re-creation of a Prohibition-era saloon, resulting in an “immersive theatrical experience involving more than 35 actors, singers, and musicians.”

Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind Boxcar Playhouse, 505 Natoma, SF; $11-16. Fri-Sat, 9pm. Through Jan 31. Thirty plays in 60 minutes, with a show that varies each night, as performed by the Neo-Futurists.

The World’s Funniest Bubble Show Marsh San Francisco, 1062 Valencia, SF; $8-11. Sun, 11am. Through March 9. The popular, kid-friendly show by Louis Pearl (aka “The Amazing Bubble Man”) returns to the Marsh.


Can You Dig It? Back Down East 14th — the 60s and Beyond Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston, Berk; $20-35. Sat, 8:30pm; Sun, 7pm. Through Feb 2. Don Reed’s new show offers more stories from his colorful upbringing in East Oakland in the 1960s and ’70s. More hilarious and heartfelt depictions of his exceptional parents, independent siblings, and his mostly African American but ethnically mixed working-class community — punctuated with period pop, Motown, and funk classics, to which Reed shimmies and spins with effortless grace. And of course there’s more too of the expert physical comedy and charm that made long-running hits of Reed’s last two solo shows, East 14th and The Kipling Hotel (both launched, like this newest, at the Marsh). Can You Dig It? reaches, for the most part, into the “early” early years, Reed’s grammar-school days, before the events depicted in East 14th or Kipling Hotel came to pass. But in nearly two hours of material, not all of it of equal value or impact, there’s inevitably some overlap and indeed some recycling. Note: review from an earlier run of the show. (Avila)

Sherlock Holmes: The Broken Mirror Berkeley City Club, 2315 Durant, Berk; $20-28. Thu-Sat, 8pm; Sun, 3pm. Through Jan 26. Jeff Garrett portrays all the characters (Sherlock, Watson, Mrs. Hudson, Moriarty…) in this adaptation of William Gillette’s Holmes play.

Silent Sky TheatreWorks, Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro, Mtn View; $19-73. Tue-Wed, 7:30pm; Thu-Sat, 8pm (also Sat, 2pm); Sun 2 and 7pm. Through Feb 9. Lauren Gunderson’s drama explores the life of groundbreaking early 20th century astronomer Henrietta Leavitt.

Tristan & Yseult Berkeley Rep’s Roda Theatre, 2025 Addison, Berk; $17.50-81. Wed/15, 7pm; Thu/16-Sat/18, 8pm (also Thu/16, 2pm). Kneehigh presents an innovative take on the ancient love-triangle tale.


BATS Improv Bayfront Theater, B350 Fort Mason Center, SF; $20. “Theatresports,” Fri, 8pm; “Improvised Downton Abbey,” Sat, 8pm.

“The Buddy Club Children’s Shows” Randall Museum Theater, 199 Museum Way, SF; Sun/26, 11am-noon. $8. With comedy magician Robert Strong.

Caroline Lugo and Carolé Acuña’s Ballet Flamenco Peña Pachamama, 1630 Powell, SF; Sat/25, Feb 1, 8, 14, 16, 22, 6:15pm. $15-19. Flamenco performance by the mother-daughter dance company, featuring live musicians.

The Day of the Locust Revisited” Mechanics’ Institute, 57 Post, SF; Wed/22, 6pm. $20. Dramatic reading (with accompanying photography) by filmmaker Lucy Gray, putting a new spin on Nathanael West’s Depression-era Hollywood tale.

“Dream Queens Revue” Aunt Charlie’s Lounge, 133 Turk, SF; Wed/22, 9:30-11:30pm. Free. Drag spectacular with Colette LeGrande, Ruby Slippers, Sophilya Leggz, and more.

Feinstein’s at the Nikko Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason, SF; This week: “An Evening With Joan Ryan,” Thu, 8pm, $30-40; “Sam Harris: Ham: Slices of a Life,” Fri/24, 8pm; Sat/25, 7pm, $25-35.

“KaMau: Traveling in Black Colors” Red Poppy Art House, 2698 Folsom, SF; Thu/23, 7:30pm. $10-15. The multidisciplinary artist (also known as Pitch Black Gold) performs.

“Magic at the Rex” Hotel Rex, 562 Sutter, SF; Sat, 8pm. Ongoing. $30. Magic and mystery with Adam Sachs and mentalist Sebastian Boswell III.

“Point Break Live!” DNA Lounge, 373 11th St, SF; Feb 7, March 7, and April 4, 7:30 and 11pm. $25-50. Dude, Point Break Live! is like dropping into a monster wave, or holding up a bank, like, just a pure adrenaline rush, man. Ahem. Sorry, but I really can’t help but channel Keanu Reeves and his Johnny Utah character when thinking about the awesomely bad 1991 movie Point Break or its equally yummily cheesy stage adaptation. And if you do an even better Keanu impression than me — the trick is in the vacant stare and stoner drawl — then you can play his starring role amid a cast of solid actors, reading from cue cards from a hilarious production assistant in order to more closely approximate Keanu’s acting ability. This play is just so much fun, even better now at DNA Lounge than it was a couple years ago at CELLspace. But definitely buy the poncho pack and wear it, because the blood, spit, and surf spray really do make this a fully immersive experience. (Steven T. Jones)

“Rise” Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Lam Research Theater, 701 Howard, SF; Thu/23-Sun/26, 8pm. $24-45. Robert Moses’ Kin Dance Company presents an evening of choreography by Robert Moses, including two world premieres.

“Word Performances” Lost Church, 65 Capp, SF; Wed/22, 8pm. $15. Poetry, prose, fiction, memoir, comedy, and more all pop up in this reading series; featured performers include Nato Green, Sylvie Simmons, Zahra Noorbakhsh, Tim Toaster Henderson, and others.


“Egghead Comedy Showcase” Pacific Pinball Museum, 1510 Webster, Alameda; Sat/25, 8pm-midnight. $15 (adults only). Comedy to support the Pacific Pinball Museum with Natasha Muse, Jonathan Ott, Duat Mai, and Ethan Orloff.

“Die Fledermaus” Lesher Center for the Arts, Hoffmann Theatre, 1601 Civic, Walnut Creek; Fri/24-Sat/25, 8pm (also Sat/25, 2pm); Sun/26, 2pm. $15-59. Lamplighters Music Theatre (noted for its Gilbert and Sullivan productions) performs Johann Strauss’ “bubbly tale of revenge and temptation.” Continues at Bay Area theaters through Feb 23; visit for future dates.

“Hand to Mouth/Words Spoken Out #63” Rebound Bookstore, 1611 Fourth St, San Rafael; Sat/25, 4-6pm. Free (donations requested). With Roy Marsh (launching his new book, Buyer’s Remorse), Connie Post, and Susan Zerner.

“Julius Caesar” Berkeley Public Library, 2090 Kittredge, Berk; Sun/26, 2pm. Free. San Francisco Shakespeare Company presents its touring company’s presentation of the Bard’s ancient-Rome drama.

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

“reveries and elegies” Milkbar, Sunshine Biscuit Factory, 851 81st St, Oakl; Sat/25-Sun/26, 4:45pm. $20. Mary Armentrout’s new site-specific project is timed to coincide with sundown on each performance day.

“Winter Concert 2014: Shall We Dance?” Lesher Center for the Arts, Margaret Lesher Theatre, 1601 Civic, Walnut Creek; Sat/25, 7:30pm. $12. Winds Across the Bay presents “music written with feet in mind,” including works by Benny Goodman and from Fiddler on the Roof. *