THEATER REVIEW: SAN FRANCISCO
Show #44: Reborning, SF Playhouse, May 12.
When I heard that Impact Theatre artistic director Melissa Hillman was going to be helming Romeo and Juliet this year, the tag lines started to write themselves in my mind (“never was a story of more whoa”–that sort of thing). Although Impact specializes in new plays, Hillman’s own stagings for the company each year have been fast-paced productions of Shakespeare (or other classics like John Ford’s ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore).
I rarely miss a show at Berkeley’s Impact Theatre, because I’ve always liked the company’s fast and loose energy and its knack for finding outrageously funny new comedies. And from the name alone, The Play About the Naked Guy looked to be one of them. I’ve enjoyed several of the cast members in other things, and have been impressed with some of the shows director Evren Odcikin has helmed lately at Brava and Boxcar.
An old colleague of mine from the good old days of the East Bay Express, Daniel Heath has done pretty well for himself since he took up playwriting five years ago to join the PlayGround pool of one-act writers. Last year PianoFight produced his Choose Your Own Adventure-style audience-voted sex comedies, Fork Off Down Your Own Forking Adventure Which You’ve Forked: FORKING! and A Merry FORKING! Christmas, and this December the Climate Theatre will unveil his rock musical update of a Restoration comedy, The Man of Rock.
THEATER REVIEW: BERKELEY
Show #92: MilkMilkLemonade, Impact Theatre, September 10.
It’s funny that the night after I saw The Breach, in which racist imagery is offered up as an exhibit of the continuing harmful legacy of slavery, I’d see a show that’s also critiquing ethnic stereotypes, this time by gleefully reveling in their very offensiveness. Impact Theatre’s world premiere of Enrique Urueta’s Learn to Be Latina is an often screamingly funny show offering a heaping helping of “oh no he didn’t,” plus what’s no doubt the most priceless glory hole moment I’ve ever seen on stage.