West Side Story
If you’ve never seen rival gangs bust out the jazz hands at a dance-off to prove their turf dominion, you really need to check out West Side Story. (This kind of thing definitely doesn’t go down on The Wire.) A revival of the hoodlum-rumbling, game-changing 1957 musical about a lower-class Romeo and a Puerto Rican Juliet in New York City comes to San Francisco with all the verve - if not quite the shock - of the original.
Berkeley Rep’s Green Day rock-opera “American Idiot”- which world premiered last night at Berkeley Rep - is a hugely ambitious project that bombards with sound, vision and thrashing emotion. It looks, smells and sounds like teen spirit.
The plot takes a familiar path that goes like this: the anti-hero leaves home, lives in squalor, becomes disillusioned, rocks, rages against the machine, takes drugs, angsts more, rocks more and does more drugs. The end point is either death or redemption. And that's pretty much it.
The menu for the 2009-2010 theater season features some of the most buzzed about direct-from Broadway shows. Plays opening in San Francisco in the coming months include Tony-winning musicals, some old chestnuts and at least one high-profile flop. Two of the hottest Broadway shows - a new revival of West Side Story and In the Heights - reflect a newfound attention to racial and cultural diversity, specifically Latino culture.
Here's what's on our radar.
The nominations for the 63rd annual Tony Awards were just announced and even if you had seen most of the nominated plays -- and gave a fig -- the Tonys broadcast is not exactly must-see TV. (It’s June 7, if you must know.)
A not half bad alternative: rent the movie versions! This year, some of the top Broadway nominees are actually movicals – stage musicals based on movies.