San Francisco Ballet Gala, 2019

“This is Passion” was the theme of San Francisco Ballet’s 2019 gala. Apart from excesses on display at the several-tiered after party across from the War Memorial Opera House at City Hall, the passion invested in audience attire was less visible than usual. Stage passion,  ...

Betrayal

The Lantern Theater Company’s production of Harold Pinter’s ‘Betrayal’ is more than a reminder of what great material Pinter gave actors to work with and how compelling his theatrical voice was. Under Kathryn MacMillan ’s direction, this is provocative, erudite Pinter performed by a fine  ...

PHILLY POPS Jazz Orchestra

When trumpeter Terell Stafford conducts the Jazz Orchestra of Philadelphia the stellar big jazz band he founded, he picks up his horn for some brief solos, but sounding as warm as if he had been playing all night. As a guest soloist for the PhillyPOPS  ...

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Program B offered three Bay Area Premieres by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, including; “Perfectly Voiceless”, “For All Its Fury”, “Everything Must Go” featuring original compositions by London-born producer Devonté Hynes (aka Blood Orange) and were performed live by Grammy Award-winning, Chicago-based Third Coast Percussions. Hynes  ...

Paradise Square

An innovative, ambitious, and multilayered world premiere musical, “Paradise Square,” about the companionable life of Irish immigrants and free blacks in the Five Points slum of New York in 1863, opened on January 10, 2019,  ...

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Hubbard Street Dance Chicago returned to Zellerbach Hall to present four complementary dances as part of “Program A.” The dances (1983-2011) were created by four diverse choreographers, Nacho Duato, William Forsythe, Alejandro Cerrudo, and Crystal Pite and, smartly tie together, stylistically and theatrically. The evening  ...

Linda Vista

If you like your existential misery wrapped in snappy one liners, Tracy Letts is the playwright for you. He did it in “August Osage County” and he is doing it again in “Linda Vista” at the Taper. Our protagonist is Wheeler (Ian Barford); Wheeler is  ...

Best of 2018: Movies

I saw fewer films of higher quality in 2018, a pretty good year for diversity and imagination at the multiplex despite the repetitive CGI blur of far too many box office hits. 1. SCIENCE FAIR  ...

Stan & Ollie (2018)

The first thing to note about this film is its PG rating. Don’t let it fool you. It’s more badge of distinction than Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. It pays homage to a specie of humor we associate with the Vaudeville era when slapstick was  ...