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BWW Reviews: CHARLIE BROWN & NUTCRACKER on Van Ness Review BWW Reviews: CHARLIE BROWN & NUTCRACKER on Van Ness
by Harmony Wheeler - December 22, 2014

Short and sweet, A Charlie Brown Christmas does not arrive until the second half of San Francisco Symphony's current holiday concert. But Charlie is worth the wait. In their West Coast debut, Charlie and friends dance about the Davies Hall stage and warm many a heart with feel-good cheer. Celebrating the Christmas spirit does not come any better than what the Symphony offers. Across the street at the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco Ballet continues its run of Tchaikovsky's beloved Nutcracker, set in early 1900's San Francisco. Choreographer Helgi Tomasson's production sweeps young Clara into a world of dreams orchestrated by a magical Drosselmeyer, present throughout to wave his fantastical cape and usher in new surprises. (more...)


BWW Reviews: ELF is MAGICAL at San Francisco's Curran Theatre Review BWW Reviews: ELF is MAGICAL at San Francisco's Curran Theatre
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - December 18, 2014

Get up off your couch; pass through the seven levels of the Candy Cane forest, through the sea of swirly twirly gum drops, and head on down to the Curran Theatre to see everyone's favorite Elf - Buddy! This family friendly Christmas spectacular is going to bring the whole family into the holiday season with a hop skip and a Christmas carol with the whole cast of Elf. Playing now through December 28, Santa, Buddy and the whole cast of Elf are sure to bring Christmas joy to every girl and boy - and adults! (more...)


BWW Reviews: PETER & THE STARCATCHER Flies at Theatreworks Review BWW Reviews: PETER & THE STARCATCHER Flies at Theatreworks
by Harmony Wheeler - December 10, 2014

Peter and the Starcatcher may not match your idea of the perfect Christmas show, but it's certainly best friends with the holidays. An emotional and inspirational experience awaits at Theatreworks' production of the Pan prequel. And there's always the company's faux snow after each performance. (more...)


BWW Reviews: KINKY BOOTS in San Francisco Review BWW Reviews: KINKY BOOTS in San Francisco
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - December 08, 2014

Ladies, gentleman and those who are yet to make up your mind -- strut your stuff down to the Orpheum Theatre and march those stilettos into Kinky Boots! This, mind-bending tour-de-force will open up your mind, open up your heart, and maybe open up your legs -- to dancing in your boots (don't think so dirty!) Playing now through Dec 28th at the Orpheum Theatre Kinky Boots is dazzling, joyous and fun. (more...)


BWW Reviews: WHITE CHRISTMAS a Happy Holiday at Hillbarn Review BWW Reviews: WHITE CHRISTMAS a Happy Holiday at Hillbarn
by Harmony Wheeler - December 08, 2014

Pierce Peter Brandt and Jim Ambler lead the energy and talent of Hillbarn Theatre's White Christmas. The two equity actors give great character and Broadway-quality vocals to song and dance partners Bob Wallace and Phil Davis. Behind them, an ensemble provides perfect harmonies attuned to the show's 1950's era. And although the scenic design remains simple throughout, a grand finale features Kuo-Hai Lo's gorgeous mountain background and an audience surprise that we won't spoil here. (more...)


BWW Reviews: KURIOS full of Curiosities with Cirque du Soleil Review BWW Reviews: KURIOS full of Curiosities with Cirque du Soleil
by Harmony Wheeler - November 18, 2014

Cirque du Soleil has always been a cabinet full of curiosities, and the fact of the matter finally found its own title and concept in Kurios, the latest show to tour under the grand chapiteau. While the imagery of the production harkens back to previous LA Cirque show Iris and the robotics of BBC's Dr. Who, Cirque's Kurios finds incredible new ways to display its artistry and talent. (more...)


BWW Reviews: CHICAGO Delights at the Orpheum Review BWW Reviews: CHICAGO Delights at the Orpheum
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - November 11, 2014

You could feel the excitement rising as the crowd began to enter the theatre; the pull of liquor and jazz tugging them towards their seats as the opening night of Chicago at San Francisco's SHN was about to begin. Filled with songs that have become Broadway classics, such as 'All That Jazz', 'Razzle Dazzle', 'Cell Block Tango,' and really the list goes on, the revival is the winner of six 1997 Tony Awards, outperforming the 1976 original which received ten nominations but no wins. Celebrity murderesses, jazz, greed, lime light, and amazingly inspired Fosse style dancing - what could be better than a night of Chicago, playing now through November 16 at SHNSF's Orpheum Theatre. (more...)


Reflections: Latest CHICAGO Tour Has Strong Leads in MacLeod, Marroquin Review Reflections: Latest CHICAGO Tour Has Strong Leads in MacLeod, Marroquin
by Oliver Oliveros - November 06, 2014

CHICAGO on Broadway's Terrra C. MacLeod and Bianca Marroquin are back on the road as the accused celebrity killers and reluctant vaudeville partners Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart, respectively, whose combination delivers equally strong lead performances. (more...)


BWW Reviews: THE BOY FRIEND is the Best Friend Around Review BWW Reviews: THE BOY FRIEND is the Best Friend Around
by Harmony Wheeler - November 05, 2014

Today women go to college to get their MRS degree, but apparently, back in the day, the youthful elite traveled to the south of France for school, and with great hopes of finding the perfect boyfriend. Such is the setting for 42nd Street Moon's latest production, "The Boy Friend," a delightful romp through the sunny beaches and high societies of 1920's Nice. It's nicer in Nice, but it's just as lovely at the Eureka Theatre in San Francisco, where director and choreographer Cindy Goldfield offers the most creative dancing and staging for the most adorable characters currently on stage. (more...)


BWW Reviews: 6th Street Playhouse's THE ADDAMS FAMILY Review BWW Reviews: 6th Street Playhouse's THE ADDAMS FAMILY
by Meg Masterson - October 21, 2014

As for The Addams Family musical, the 6th Street Playhouse does the show justice. The production values are high - a live band, well-done lighting and sets, and great costumes - and the acting is very good. (more...)


BWW Reviews: MASKED BALL in San Francisco Review BWW Reviews: MASKED BALL in San Francisco
by Harmony Wheeler - October 20, 2014

Verdi was a master at crescendo. In "Masked Ball," the score foreshadows and defines even while characters defy fate. As Count Anckarstrom laments his wife's betrayal in the opera's third act, the harp and violin take turn in old romance and revenge, building to a grand determination. Like Verdi's "Rigoletto" and "Il Trovatore," "A Masked Ball" concludes with a game-changing revelation in answer to an incredible setup. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Say a Happy Hello to BYE BYE BIRDIE in Walnut Creek Review BWW Reviews: Say a Happy Hello to BYE BYE BIRDIE in Walnut Creek
by Harmony Wheeler - October 19, 2014

Contra Costa Musical Theatre knows how to put on a happy face. You will, too, after two and a half hours of living with Bye, Bye Birdie. Inspired by the likes of Elvis Presley, Ed Sullivan and the bright colors and square designs of the 1950's, CCMT's production features its usual high-tech scenic design and familiar faces in lead roles. (more...)


BWW Reviews: DO I HEAR A WALTZ Plays A Flat Tune Review BWW Reviews: DO I HEAR A WALTZ Plays A Flat Tune
by Harmony Wheeler - October 07, 2014

When Broadway actress Emily Skinner takes the stage and opens 42nd Street Moon's current offering, the next two hours look bright and worthwhile. Venice, Italy, as displayed on stage by set designer Hector Zavala promises magical, mystical miracles. Yet as the musical progresses, rather slowly at that, the script turns Skinner's immediately likeable character into a flawed one, condemned for what may seem to many like reasonable judgment calls. (more...)


BWW Reviews: PIPPIN Revival Hits the Heights - Now thru October 19th Review BWW Reviews: PIPPIN Revival Hits the Heights - Now thru October 19th
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - September 29, 2014

The air was crackling with excitement on opening night for the much anticipated revival of Pippin at San Francisco's Golden Gate Theatre. And for good reason. The show won four Tony Awards last year including Best Musical Revival, with Diane Paulus taking home the Tony for Best Director. Patina Miller as the Leading Player took home Best Actress, while Andrea Martin won Best Featured Actress. Not to be outdone, the national tour signed Sasha Allen, Lucie Arnaz, and John Rubinstein, not to mention Canada's circus troupe, Les 7 doigts de la main. Talk about the wow factor. Pippin is an exuberant, extravaganza of a show and it plays now through October 19 at SHN's Golden Gate Theatre. (more...)


BWW Reviews: SF Opera's SUSANNAH a Stunning Masterpiece Review BWW Reviews: SF Opera's SUSANNAH a Stunning Masterpiece
by Harmony Wheeler - September 11, 2014

Set in Tennessee around the time of the Dust Bowl, 'Susannah' takes its inspiration from a story in the book of Daniel. Composer Carlisle Floyd's decision to remove the original's redemptive prophet seems to condemn Christianity, but also gives his revised version the dramatic thrust needed to explore the human condition and turn out a masterpiece. (more...)


BWW Reviews: Hillbarn Theatre's FUNNY GIRL is Fabulous, Now Through 9/21 Review BWW Reviews: Hillbarn Theatre's FUNNY GIRL is Fabulous, Now Through 9/21
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - September 05, 2014

'Hello gorgeous.' The Hillbarn Theatre in San Mateo kicked off its 2014-2015 season with the sensational Funny Girl. Based on the life of Fanny Brice, Funny Girl originally starred Barbra Streisand in the icon role of the famous vaudeville and Ziegfeld Follies legend. It was a part that catapulted her into stardom and made Streisand a household name. Hillbarn Theatre showed a lot of chutzpah in putting on a show so closely associated with a major star, but this is their 'Season of Awakening,' therefore daring, dreams and self-discovery are most definitely in the air. Debuting Executive Artistic Director Dan Demers wraps it all up with this quote from Mark Twain (by way of Demers' mother): The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why,' which certainly could be a quote about Ms. Brice. (more...)


BWW Reviews: WICKED Defies Gravity Once Again Now Thru September 14th Review BWW Reviews: WICKED Defies Gravity Once Again Now Thru September 14th
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - September 03, 2014

Glinda and Elphaba have flown into San Jose to appear in Wicked and have broken box office records at San Jose's Center for the Performing Arts, grossing $1,516,245 during the first week of its three-week engagement. The two witches will be in town (along with a phenomenal cast) through September 14 only so get your tickets now before somebody drops a house on you. Hodges & Hodges are seasoned Wicked audience viewers, but we're here to tell you that this company is spectacular and you're in for a wonderful night of theatre at Broadway San Jose. (more...)


BWW Reviews: FIDDLER ON THE ROOF Brings Tradition to Merced Review BWW Reviews: FIDDLER ON THE ROOF Brings Tradition to Merced
by Harmony Wheeler - September 01, 2014

Great theatre is tradition in Merced, where Playhouse Merced just opened its 2014-2015 season with "Fiddler on the Roof," now in its 50th Anniversary. The classical musical has become a tradition of its own in theatres across the world. (more...)


BWW Reviews: PIRATES OF PENZANCE a Glorious Thing Review BWW Reviews: PIRATES OF PENZANCE a Glorious Thing
by Harmony Wheeler - August 11, 2014

A paradox! A paradox! A most ingenious paradox! Only the ridiculous humor and unpredictable circumstances of Gilbert and Sullivan could make so much sense. In the capable hands and clear diction of Lamplighters Musical Theatre, it is, indeed, a glorious thing to be a pirate king, or the audience of one. (more...)


BWW Reviews: PIXAR in Concert at SF Symphony Review BWW Reviews: PIXAR in Concert at SF Symphony
by Harmony Wheeler - July 18, 2014

The San Francisco Symphony plays Toy Story, Finding Nemo, Ratatouille, A Bug's Life, WALL-E, Cars, Up, The Incredibles, Monsters Inc. and Brave through Sunday July 20 at the building with perfect acoustics, Davies Symphony Hall. Film clips accompany their counterparts, and even the few Pixar films that disappointed find new life and movement when highlighted with their scores. Two hours of Pixar music is pure magic. (more...)


BWW Reviews: JERSEY BOYS Breaks Box Office Records at Broadway San Jose - Playing Now thru July 20! Review BWW Reviews: JERSEY BOYS Breaks Box Office Records at Broadway San Jose - Playing Now thru July 20!
by Linda Hodges and Nick Hodges - July 17, 2014

When you hear the term The Four Seasons and you think of 'Sherry,' 'Big Girls Don't Cry,' 'Oh, What a Night,' and 'Walk Like a Man' instead of snow, leaves, rain or sunshine, then the hit musical Jersey Boys is a must see! (more...)


BWW Reviews: SCT's SPAMALOT Full of Character Review BWW Reviews: SCT's SPAMALOT Full of Character
by Harmony Wheeler - June 30, 2014

Stockton Civic Theatre's Spamalot is an animated musical well-fitting the over-the-top humor of its Monty Python inspiration. With golden facial expressions from Bill Yee as King Arthur's manservant Patsy, a myriad of accents from Tom MacDonald's multiple characters, and even a conductor (of Stockton's brand new, live orchestra) with great personality, the production had its opening night audience laughing uncontrollably. Oh yeah, and that King Arthur guy was pretty good too. (more...)


BWW CD Review: San Francisco Symphony's WEST SIDE STORY is a Triumph Review BWW CD Review: San Francisco Symphony's WEST SIDE STORY is a Triumph
by David Clarke - June 23, 2014

When it comes to contemporary classics in American musical theatre, just the sheer mention of Leonard Bernstein's WEST SIDE STORY is enough to get any fan of the medium listening. His clever orchestrations, drive and ambition, and unique construction made the show a hallmark of the genre that is still adored and studied today. (more...)


BWW Reviews: ORPHAN OF ZHAO at ACT-SF is Intense Powerful Drama Review BWW Reviews: ORPHAN OF ZHAO at ACT-SF is Intense Powerful Drama
by Harmony Wheeler - June 13, 2014

Beginning with small truths and oral tradition, legend eventually turns to the written word. At the heart of this process is Ji Junxiang's ancient play, The Orphan of Zhao, rooted in real events and a resonating theme of loyalty and justice. Currently reworked for American Conservatory Theatre (co-produced with La Jolla Playhouse) after a controversial run at Stratford in 2012, James Fenton's adaptation brings characters full circle, even in the midst of an onslaught of tastefully staged deaths. (more...)


BWW Reviews: TheatreWorks' MARRY ME A LITTLE Has Humor and Appeal Review BWW Reviews: TheatreWorks' MARRY ME A LITTLE Has Humor and Appeal
by Harmony Wheeler - June 09, 2014

Reset to San Francisco with a technology-inspired flair, TheatreWorks' current production of 'Marry Me A Little' is at once charming and original. (more...)


 
🔀SAN FRANCISCO SHOWS
Kinky Boots in San FranciscoKinky Boots
(Runs 12/2 - 12/28)
James and the Giant Peach in San FranciscoJames and the Giant Peach
(Runs 12/27 - 1/4)
Red Hot Patriot: The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins
(Runs 11/21 - 1/4)
Promises, Promises
(Runs 11/18 - 1/10)
Our Town
(Runs 12/4 - 1/11)
Camelot
(Runs 1/13 - 1/14)
Next to Normal in San FranciscoNext to Normal
(Runs 1/9 - 1/18)

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