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Category: Musical

“Ain’t Misbehavin’”: A Crowd Pleaser, at 42nd Street Moon, S.F.

“Ain’t Misbehavin’”: A Crowd Pleaser, at 42nd Street Moon, S.F.

Fats Waller and Friends Still Swingin’ and Jivin’  by Kim Waldron Picture two men dressed to the nines, bowler hats to spats, with three women, draped in purple, shimmery green and scarlet dresses. They dance and sing to “Handful of Keys,” Fats Waller’s 1933 love song to the piano. Suddenly, the dapper five line up across the stage without missing a step. They extend right and left hands and demonstrate how to play stride piano. It’s a stunner, the simultaneous…

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“Ain’t Too Proud—The Tempations” Dazzles with Harmony, at Berkeley Rep

“Ain’t Too Proud—The Tempations” Dazzles with Harmony, at Berkeley Rep

Otis Williams Reveals Facts Behind Music by Robert M. Gardner “Ain’t Too Proud—The Life and Times of The Temptations” takes us on a whirlwind tour of music by The Temptations, The Supremes, and other Motown groups that we have loved for five decades.  The Motown Sound is the soundtrack of my youth, growing up in the Midwest before MTV. Even in the racially charged 60s, no one could deny the beauty and artistry that exploded out of Motown. The music…

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“Hair”: Still Hirsute and Contradictory, at Great Star Theatre, S.F.

“Hair”: Still Hirsute and Contradictory, at Great Star Theatre, S.F.

Millennial Notes Sixties Tribal-Rock Musical Sage & Aging  by Phil Fagundes  As the 50th Anniversary of the Summer of Love draws to a close in San Francisco, Landmark Musical Theater has revived the classic musical “Hair.” The tribal rock musical celebrates the hippie counterculture of the 60s, and the protests against the Vietnam War. “Hair,” of course, refers to the luscious locks that grace the head of nearly each cast member, a rejection of the 50s crew cuts. The show…

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“Black Odyssey”: A Spiritual Epic Triumphs, at Cal Shakes, Orinda

“Black Odyssey”: A Spiritual Epic Triumphs, at Cal Shakes, Orinda

Millennial Notes Marcus Gardley’s Epic Tale of Struggle and Perseverance by  Adam Kaddoura At Cal Shakes, Director Eric Ting has spectacularly staged Marcus Gardley’s spiritual story of African American life. “Black Odyssey,” based on Homer’s Odyssey, transforms Ulysses into Ulysses Lincoln, an Afghan War veteran. Gardley turns The Odyssey into an epic journey home for our Black American hero. Local playwright Gardley has given us a triumphant story grounded in Oakland lore.  The cast features plenty of talented actors playing…

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