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Author: Irene Nelson

“Macbeth” Goes Primal at Theatre Lunatico, in San Rafael

“Macbeth” Goes Primal at Theatre Lunatico, in San Rafael

Shakespeare Remains All Too Timely by Irene Nelson An ensemble of 13 actors plays Shakespeare’s tragedy of ambition and tyranny with a black wall, three wooden crates, and a handful of props. Rather than a conventional stage, the audience is pressed up against the action, with most of it performed on the floor immediately before us. A stage without sets requires the audience to buy into an imagined world, to participate. The immediacy of the actors’ performances and Shakespeare’s words…

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“Jitney” Fires Up at African-American Shakespeare Company, S.F.

“Jitney” Fires Up at African-American Shakespeare Company, S.F.

August Wilson Shows Why Black Traditions Matter by Irene Nelson I love a play full of conversation where words flow like poetry, like music. I love a play about regular working people. I love a play alive with fully drawn characters. It is not surprising I had an excellent evening at the African-American Shakespeare Company’s production of August Wilson’s “Jitney,” directed by and starring our own top-flight L. Peter Callender. An August Wilson play often features a father and son…

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“Four Dogs and a Bone”: Brash & Boisterous at Firescape Theatre, S.F.

“Four Dogs and a Bone”: Brash & Boisterous at Firescape Theatre, S.F.

Shanley’s Indie Lust Breeds Big Screen Brawl by Irene Nelson Director Robert Zimmerman goes full tilt to keep us on board for the ride in “Four Dogs and A Bone” (1993), a funny, bitter thriller with lots of laughs and energy, like a roller coaster ride. The bold opening of this indie film industry satire captured me instantly: A mountain-sized man in bright colored sweats is lying on the floor, while a sexy young girl straddles him. As she tries…

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