At The Old Place

A forlorn woman and the pull of an equally forlorn house present more mysteries than are solved in the world premiere of “At The Old Place,” at the La Jolla Playhouse. We first meet middle-age, college poetry instructor Angie (Heidi Armbruster) as she wearily drags a  ...

Guys and Dolls

Psst! Looking for a sure bet? Put your money on the Old Globe’s rollicking, toe-tapping revival of “Guys and Dolls.” In this musical fable of depression-era Broadway, con man Nathan Detroit (J. Bernard Calloway) has two loves: The oldest established floating crap game and his fiancé of  ...

The Glass Menagerie

Written in 1944, “The Glass Menagerie” by Tennessee Williams (1911–1983), still wields the power to convey truth about the way in which love and need can help and hurt the American family. Standout performances by Karen Aldridge and Sean San José give fresh life to this biographical memory play about  ...

How to Be a Rock Critic

Two writers for the website Third Coast Review—Nancy Bishop and Karin McKie—went to see Erik Jensen’s one-man performance of the life and times of rock critic Lester Bangs. Nancy wrote the review and Karin added {comments}. This is what they thought. Amidst a sea of beer cans, pill  ...

Lucky Boy

“Lucky Boy,” by Berkeley-based writer Shanthi Sekaran, is two stories in one. Either of which, rich in prose and character development, would be worthy of being its own novel, but how much more satisfying with the merging of divergent accounts. At its core is a story of motherhood - that  ...

An Octoroon

From the opening minutes of “An Octoroon” when BJJ, the stand-in for author, MacArthur Fellow Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, appears on a blank stage in his underwear and announces that he is a black playwright, you know that you are in for an exciting theatrical experience. And then it  ...

Splendour

Four women wait in a luxurious yet austere room in an unnamed eastern European city waiting for an important man who may never arrive. This is the premise of “Splendour” by U.K.’s Abi Morgan (screenwriter of “Suffragette” and “The Iron Lady”), an intriguing glimpse into women’s relationships, the vagaries  ...

Ah, Wilderness!

"Ah, Wilderness!", Eugene O’Neill’s only comedy, is a charming, light-hearted play with an element foreign to most O’Neill scripts: a happy ending. The hero, teenaged Richard Miller (truthfully played by Niall Cunningham) is a young man who loves poetry and radical thought, and ends up winning the love  ...

brownsville song (b-side for tray)

Kimber Lee’s powerful and profound one-act drama, “brownsville song (b-side for tray)” takes an all too familiar headline of a young black man gunned down in his Brownsville, Brooklyn neighborhood and develops it into a relatable personal tragedy that left many in the audience teary-eyed, including this reviewer. Inspired by  ...