“La Cage aux Folles”: Sassy Songbirds Singing, at S.F. Playhouse

“La Cage aux Folles”: Sassy Songbirds Singing, at S.F. Playhouse

Fierstein & Herman’s Drag Queens Conquer Conformity by Tyler Jeffreys At S.F. Playhouse’s “La Cage aux Folles,” the curtains, stage, and the audience are bathed in a fuchsia tint. Georges and Albin’s living room features a peacock palette—with teal, purple, and gold trimmings. And Director Bill English teases us with creative wallpaper that adds to the story. In “Cage,” the blue-green wallpaper is adorned with gold French lilies, hinting at French aristocrats and revolution. “La Cage aux Folles” is the…

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“This Land Was Made” Resurrects Rebels, at Ubuntu Theater, Oakland

“This Land Was Made” Resurrects Rebels, at Ubuntu Theater, Oakland

Tori Sampson’s Explosive Take on Black Panther Heyday by Adam Kaddoura The very stage of “This Land Was Made, ” a workshop production, shows the contradictions underlying Tori Sampson’s play. Presented by Ubuntu Theater Project at the Brooklyn Preserve in Oakland, the stained glass of the former Grace Presbyterian church creates a dazzling contrast to the shelves lined with brown and green booze bottles. The shimmering windows and the dirty bottles mimic each other as light shines through them. The…

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“Elvis Has Left the Building” Springs Seventies Surprises, at Castro Valley

“Elvis Has Left the Building” Springs Seventies Surprises, at Castro Valley

Chanticleers Theatre’s Two Elvises Rock the House by Barry David Horwitz In the rollicking comedy “Elvis Has Left the Building,” Chanticleers Theatre features The Colonel, a blustering, self-centered huckster and con-artist who calls himself “The Snowman.” The Colonel can trick anybody into buying anything—except for the sharp reporter, Jill Tanner, who refuses to  buy his bullshit. The Colonel, a loud-mouthed quasi-southern gentleman discovered Elvis Presley, but is losing control of The King. The intense confrontations between the sleazy Colonel (the…

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“Winter” Grasps a Woman’s Soul, at Central Works, Berkeley

“Winter” Grasps a Woman’s Soul, at Central Works, Berkeley

Julie Jensen’s Powerful Story Affects Us All by Sarah Klebanoff “The only philosophical question worth considering is suicide” –Albert Camus “Winter” by Julie Jenson offers a thought-provoking picture of a family facing a crisis, brought about by the mother’s cognitive decline, presumably due to Alzheimer’s disease.  “Winter” explores the conundrum of suicide and autonomy in a good marriage and a loving family. Directed by Gary Graves, the play is set in the home of an affluent older couple, over the Thanksgiving holiday. Central…

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