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Review: DEAR SAN FRANCISCO: A HIGH FLYING LOVE STORY at Club Fugazi

The show is created by The 7 Fingers.

Review: DEAR SAN FRANCISCO: A HIGH FLYING LOVE STORY at Club Fugazi

Dear San Francisco: A High Flying Love Story

Created by The 7 Fingers

Club Fugazi, San Francisco

How can the historic Club Fugazi follow up on Beach Blanket Babylon, the world's longest-running musical revue, which played for more than 17,200 performances and to over 6.5 million? With yet another crowd-pleasing San Francisco specific immersive experience currently packing em in and likely to run for quite some time.

Montreal-based The 7 Fingers is one of the largest contemporary circus troupes, providing a stripped-down version that retains the breathtaking essence of acrobatics, modern dance, and some obscure circus art like the Chinese pole, Korean plank, and hoop diving. The creators behind this spectacle include The 7 Fingers co-founders and Bay Area locals Shana Carroll and Gypsy Snider and they smartly frame the tableaus with the history of San Francisco represented through local music, video projections and the Beat poets of the 50's and 60's.

Review: DEAR SAN FRANCISCO: A HIGH FLYING LOVE STORY at Club Fugazi
Shengnan Pan

The 1906 earthquake plays its part of course, the fog makes an appearance, and the audience is asked to participate in an acid-laced romp (hard candy treats are dispensed!) and there's an homage to our famous poets like Ferlinghetti, Ginsburg, Kerouac, Snyder and DiPrima. The choreography is exciting and extremely gymnastic including hand to hand balancing elements. Performers including Sereno Aguilar Izzo, Dominic Cruz, Isabella Diaz, Ruben Ingwersen, Maya Kesselman, Jérémi Levesque, Shengnan Pan, Enmeng Song, Sabine Van Rensburg are skilled at their individual genres.

Review: DEAR SAN FRANCISCO: A HIGH FLYING LOVE STORY at Club Fugazi
sabella Diaz (left) and Kalani June Ridolfi-Dunn (right) hold Natasha Patterson

Juggling, unicycle riding, a giant seesaw, Chinese yo-yo and some astounding pole and trapeze work round out the tableaus. Circus skills are getting a well-deserved opportunity to be showcased, and audiences seem to like the immersive aspects of the show (a sing-along to "San Franciso", a group photo and the aforementioned 'candy acid trip'. The cast work hard at working up the emotional connection of the material and audiences, reading handwritten messages relating their love of San Francisco. Can it become too ingratiating? Nah, we all love our city and its stories.

Review: DEAR SAN FRANCISCO: A HIGH FLYING LOVE STORY at Club Fugazi
Hoop work

The refurbished Club Fugazi is a wonderfully accommodating venue for this type of production. Dear San Francisco: A High Flying Love Story has huge crowd appeal and the potential to expose folks to little seen art forms that have survived for generations.

Dear San Francisco: A High Flying Love Story has an open-ended run. Tickets ($35-$89) are currently on-sale and available online at clubfugazisf.com or by calling 415-273-0600.

Photo Credits: Kevin Berne, Fishshapes



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