The First Grade at Aurora Theatre


World premieres are fun because you get to sit smugly with the knowledge that you're one of the first people on the planet to see whatever it is you're seeing. We all like to be smug on occasion. Aurora Theatre is a darn good place to see such premieres, as it pulls down plenty of respect and kudos from the theater-y folks.

The First Grade, the world premiere in question, was developed at Aurora last year as part of GAP (Global Age Project) by esteemed Chicago playwright Joel Drake Johnson. The full production is now playing in conjunction with this year's GAP. TheFirst Grade features a schoolteacher whose ex-husband still lives with her - and that's just the first of her problems. Her daughter is depressed, her grandson's on Ritalin, and her first graders are...first graders. Inescapably so. Plus, she has to rescue her physical therapist while being subjected to the indignity of bouncing therapeutically around on a large rubber ball.

Through February 28 at Aurora Theatre in Berkeley. Tickets: (510) 843-4822 or


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