Esa-Pekka Salonen and Philharmonia Orchestra London

An out of town visitor always excites interest, even envy, and Philharmonia's music director and Finnish-born conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen's return visit to his former California turf certainly did, and with three programs, including two by former Angeleno Igor Stravinsky this could not be anything but musical heaven, which it  ...

It Can’t Happen Here

With startlingly prescient timing, Berkeley Rep’s current production is a new adaptation of Pulitzer Prize winner Sinclair Lewis’ 1935 satirical political novel, “It Can’t Happen Here.” Originally written as a warning about the dangers of Hitler’s and Mussolini’s fascism as well as Louisiana Senator Huey “Kingfish” Long’s demagoguery, “It Can’t  ...

Seared

October 11, 2016 Here's a play that could have turned into a yawner, but ended up as the opposite - engaging, vibrant, fascinating. The world premiere of Theresa Rebeck's "Seared" at the San Francisco Playhouse (http://sfplayhouse.org/sfph/2016-2017-season/seared/), which commissioned the play, is yet another triumph for a small company.  ...

Q&A w Glynn Turman

The actor Glynn Turman, now appearing in “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” at the Mark Taper Forum, began his acting career at 13, as a member of the original Broadway cast of “A Raisin in the Sun,” received an Emmy award for his portrayal of Alex Prince, Sr., in the  ...

The Lion, The Old Globe

I once had a public speaking teacher suggest we occasionally step out from behind the podium. I tried it, but it was uncomfortable. The podium provided a wall of separation from the audience, protection. I didn’t like feeling naked in front of my peers. Benjamin Scheuer faces a similar  ...

Beyond Caravaggio

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, bad boy of Baroque art, defier of precedence and authority, produced strikingly original and emotionally-charged paintings in his short life. Dramatically lit and rich in colour and gesture, his work had an immediate impact on his contemporaries and followers, and a lasting influence on European  ...

Picasso Portraits

Revolutionary though the art of Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) may have been, at its core was the human figure, and portraiture was always an important part of his output. In association with the Museu Picasso Barcelona, the National Portrait Gallery has assembled over 80 portraits by the  ...

Turandot, Opera Philadelphia

Andre Barbe’s set and costume designs for Opera Philadelphia’s current production of Puccini’s Turandot are so spectacular, that they keep giving during the entire time. The detailing and cultural template recalls the golden age of Hollywood and the impact threaten to upstage not only the singers, but Puccini. Fortunately, the  ...

Don Giovanni, English National Opera

After a rollercoaster year of budget cuts and high-profile walkouts, English National Opera's 2016-17 season opens with this much-heralded new "Don Giovanni" from fêted director Richard Jones. Oddly enough, given Jones's 25-year association with the company, this is the first time he's tackled Mozart at the Coliseum. It's  ...