Review: Bay Area Premiere of Mickle Maher’s “There Is A Happiness That Morning Is” presented by Performers Under Stress (*****)

by Charles Kruger New York theatre gives us Broadway, and the best of commercial theatre, and the great American Musical, and a whole lot of other good stuff, but Chicago gives us . . . the alternative. Better theatrical minds than mine have tried to parse the differences between theatre as it is in the […]

Review: Puccini’s ‘Manon Lescaut’ at SF Opera (***)

by Charles Kruger Lianna Haroutounian as Manon and Brian Jagde as the Chevalier des Grieux in SF Opera’s production of Puccini’s first great success, “Manon Lescaut.” Photo Credit: Cory Weaver/SF Opera. Much less familiar than Puccini’s “big three” masterpieces (La Boheme, Tosca, and Madama Butterfly), Manon Lescaut was the composer’s first great success. The story […]

Bay Area Cabaret Opens Its Exciting 16th Season With Maurice Hines performing with the Diva Jazz Orchestra in the Venetian Room at the Fairmont Hotel

by Charles Kruger This Sunday, Bay Area Cabaret will open its 16th season with a one-night-only appearance by tap dancer extraordinaire and Tony nominee Maurice Hines. Still tapping in his 8th decade, Hines (and his family) are the stuff of show business legend. He began performing professionally as a tap dancer at the age of […]

Review: ‘Dance Nation’ at SF Playhouse (***)

by Charles Kruger No doubt about it: “Dance Nation” is an extraordinary play and people will talk about it. In ten years of reviewing theatre in the Bay Area, seeing as many as 60 to 80 shows each year, I have never seen a production that has elicited such strong visceral reactions as “Dance Nation.” […]

Review: ‘Top Girls’ at A.C.T. (****)

by Charles Kruger Marlene is a successful young executive, moving up in the world, past her male competition, and as happy as a clam. She is charming, smart, charismatic, decent, and considerate. Or is she, really, quite as she seems? Churchill’s play is feminist in tone, but it is unusual in its exploration not only […]