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Author: Ben Sloan

“brownsville song” Offers Raw Reality, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

“brownsville song” Offers Raw Reality, at Shotgun Players, Berkeley

Millennial Notes Kimber Lee Takes Us Behind the Horrific Headlines by Ben Sloan When we watch “brownsville song (b-Side for tray)” at Shotgun Players, we are tasked with a question: Why does the young African-American Tray (Davied Morales) fall like so many others, even though he clearly chooses a better path? The question lingers from the start, when Tray’s grandmother Lena (Cathleen Riddley) berates us, as a loving mother who has just lost one of her two kids. Sitting in…

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“Mother Night” Shines Light on Nazi Trickery, at Custom Made Theatre, S.F.

“Mother Night” Shines Light on Nazi Trickery, at Custom Made Theatre, S.F.

Millennial Notes Brian Katz & Kurt Vonnegut Collude on WWII Drama by Ben Sloan 2017 marks a resurgence of Russian collusion, Neo-Nazis, and American nationalism. What marks the dividing line between shady Russians, and white male oligarchs, like D.T., who now represents the much trumpeted “Freest” country in the world? It’s getting hard to tell. Custom Made Theatre’s smart and sizzling adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut’s novel, Mother Night, brings cogent commentary to our contemporary crisis. Director Brian Katz has adapted…

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“Overnight” Challenges Capitalist Cathedral, at Flight Deck, Oakland

“Overnight” Challenges Capitalist Cathedral, at Flight Deck, Oakland

Millennial Notes Anna Shneiderman Spotlights Oakland Gentrification Crisis by Ben Sloan “Overnight,” a new play by Oakland’s Flight Deck, thrusts “the now” right in your face.  The Flight Deck’s groundbreaking reflection of Oakland is just what the doctor ordered. “Overnight,” conceived by Anna Shneiderman, gives us a glimpse into a world where buildings rise up in one night, where a cup of coffee costs $4.00, and smart phones or “how your ass looks” occupies most of our alienated attention. “Overnight”…

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“A Thousand Splendid Suns” Shines on Women, at A.C.T., S.F.

“A Thousand Splendid Suns” Shines on Women, at A.C.T., S.F.

Millennial Notes Sarma Adapts Aghan Novel in Spectacular Style by Ben Sloan American Conservatory Theater has succeeded in putting Khaled Hosseini’s best selling novel on the stage in grand fashion in a world premiere adaptation by Ursula Rani Sarma. Directed by Artistic Director Carey Perloff with epic splendor, the show recreates the story of “A Thousand Splendid Suns” with the allure of an actual voyage to the East.  The on stage story dazzles with its opulence and humanity, taking arms…

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