I and You, LA

One thing you can count on with the Fountain Theatre, they never put on a really bad play or production. On the other hand, not everything they do is perfect, or a crowd-pleaser. "I and You" falls in the latter category. There is a lot to like, but not  ...

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

  Program C, performed during Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s annual residency at Cal Berkeley, featured three dances first performed by the company in 2014. This program marked the increasing inclusion of guest choreographers, a few West Coast Premieres, and wrapped up predictably—sweetly--with their signature dance, “Revelations.” The most  ...

Iris (2014)

  Less is more, Mies van der Rohe's memorable dictum, must be anathema to Iris Apfel, the subject of documentarian Albert Maysles' final film before his death earlier this year. Like his other films--"Grey Gardens," "Gimme Shelter," and many more-- "Iris," filmed over a period of four years, is  ...

Head of Passes

We often wonder why tragedies occur, particularly when they affect good people. It’s a question as old as the story of Job or Jesus’s cry, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” In "Head of Passes," playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney, a 2013 MacArthur “genius” grantee, presents us with  ...

Between You, Me and the Lampshade

Family secrets and dreams are explored in Raul Castillo’s “Between You, Me and the Lampshade” in a world premiere being staged by Teatro Vista. Set in a barren area of Rio Grande County in south Texas, the play addresses immigration issues as well as family tensions. Jesse (beautifully played  ...

What Is Luxury? London

A thought-provoking new exhibition at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum poses the question “What Is Luxury?” and challenges our traditional notions and definitions of luxury. If you are expecting Louis Vuitton handbags, de Beers diamonds or Patek Philippe watches, you won’t find them here, for this exhibition explores the notion  ...

Paul Taylor Dance Company

With 142 dances under his dance belt, produced within a 61-year career, seeing any of Paul Taylor’s dances is always a combination of a modern dance history lesson and retrospective. Programs C was no exception with works created from 1961 to 2006 that in some cases parody themselves and in  ...

The Power of Duff, LA

I keep hoping for transformative theatrical moments at Westwood's inviting Geffen Playhouse. Sadly they are few and far between. There is no doubt that playwright Stephen Belber thinks he has penned such a piece with "The Power of Duff." Billed as thought-provoking and witty, it is the story of a  ...

Q & A w/ choreographer Liam Scarlett

San Francisco Ballet danced Liam Scarlett’s “Hummingbird,” this season for the second year running, the piece having been set on the company last season. The following is an interview with Scarlett, conducted via email in April, 2015.   Toba Singer: In working on “Hummingbird” with the San Francisco  ...