American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.)

The Hard Problem Review - San Francisco A.C.T.

Stoppard’s ‘The Hard Problem’ has problems

Tom Stoppard, one of the most acclaimed living playwrights, jokes about being “the house playwright” for the American Conservatory Theater. Program notes inform me that he is second only to Shakespeare in number of productions mounted here (17 to Shakespeare’s 21). Stoppard’s fame is rightly deserved, and we’re lucky...
Chester Bailey @ A.C.T. - Review

Must-See Theater: ‘Chester Bailey’ is best world premiere in recent memory (Review)

"This is why you see live theater. It sticks with you, haunting, and beautiful. At its best, it shines an inspiring, if not at times challenging, light on our own lives." Chester Bailey is the kind of play you wish everyone had the opportunity to see. At its core, this...

‘Last Five Years’ a sleeper hit at A.C.T. San Francisco (Review)

The imaginative geometries created by Roberts Wierzel’s lighting design are so striking that whole dissertations could be directed at explicating how their crisp precision advances the plot in ways that hold one’s attention without being intentionally attention-getting.

The Lion, a roaringly good new musical

“What makes a lion a lion?” Alone onstage with seven guitars, Benjamin Scheuer sings, “My father has an old guitar, and he plays me folk songs.” That’s the start of Benjamin’s passion for music, but it’s also a cause for his troubled relationship with his father. Depressed and quick to...

Theater Picks: Cyrano, Tales of Our City, Triplets of Belleville, Colette Uncensored, Boeing Boeing, The Lion

"I think there is no world without theatre." - Edward Bond Looking for a show to see? Stark Insider is here to help. This edition of our theater and arts round-up includes new shows, some swashbuckling, mile high laughs, and a cinematic experience inside one of San Francisco's newest and most exciting...
The Realistic Joneses - Theater Review

Unwrapping ‘The Realistic Joneses’

The underlying tension plays against the duration of the play even more than it plays between characters. We wait for coherency like we wait for Godot.
The Unfortunates - Musical Review - San Francisco

Bold and Bizarre: The Unfortunates at ACT

Three a cappella group members walk into the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. It’s not the start of a joke; it’s the birth of a musical. Or a rock opera. Or a staged concept album. It’s hard to pin down what, precisely The Unfortunates is, but it doesn’t need to be...
Satchmo at The Waldorf

What a Wonderful World! ‘Satchmo at the Waldorf’ (Review)

Looking at the cultural cradle that these greats rock out of, we reconstitute ourselves again, not as polarized ions, clinging to one positive or negative charge, but as whole people.
video

Golden Globe Winner: Brie Larson ROOM Interview (Video)

For Brie Larson being trapped in a room wasn't so bad after all. The newly minted Golden Globe winner (best actress) spoke to Stark Insider about the film that's been short-listed by many as one of the best of the past year. "There's so many reference points," she says. "It...
A.C.T. Strand Theater - Lobby

New Strands Festival lineup announced

American Conservatory Theater (A.C.T.) today announced the lineup for its first-ever New Strands Festival. Running January 21-24, the festival features "new theatrical pieces, works in progress, readings, and experimental work." In other words, it sounds very much in line with what artistic director Carey Perloff told us she envisioned...