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Aurora Theatre

Master Harold at Aurora: a Spellbinding Journey Across a Global Canvas on a Small Stage

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.29.2016 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Hally (Andrew Humann) and Sam (L. Peter Callender) relive a soaring moment with a kite as Willie (Adrian Roberts) observes. Photos by David Allen A...

Heir Apparent at Aurora: Low Comedy That Soars to Heights of Hilarity

Leo Stutzin | Posted 05.04.2016 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Digging for gold: Julian López-Gorillas as Geronte, plied by imposters Patrick Kelly Jones, Khalia Davis and Kenny Toll as phony nieces Photos by Da...

The How and the Why at Aurora: A Densely Packed Exploration of Ideas and Emotions

Leo Stutzin | Posted 03.29.2016 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Nancy Carlin as a confident professor, right, and Martha Brigham as a nervous graduate student: a toast in academia Photos by David Allen Playwright...

Little Erik in Berkeley: A Skeletal, Flawed Adaptation of a Domestic Drama by Ibsen

Leo Stutzin | Posted 02.06.2016 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Mark Jackson is recognized as one of the Bay Area's most adventurous and successful playwrights, but the pursuit of fresh challenges always carries an element of risk. Climbers sometimes slip. With Little Erik, his adaptation of Henrik Ibsen's rarely produced domestic drama Little Eyolf, Jackson slips badly.

Monster-Builder at Aurora: Hilarity and Bizarre Twists in the World of Architecture

Leo Stutzin | Posted 11.16.2015 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

One thing can be said with certainty about Aurora Theatre's production of Amy Freed's The Monster-Builder: It's hilarious. Big laughs start early and continue through to the play's bizarre climax.

Fifth of July at Aurora: Nostalgia, Laughs and Agony in a Decade of Disillusionment

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.25.2015 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Playwright Wilson's treatment of the psychological trauma faced by many veterans was one of the first theatrical explorations of the topic. And his treatment of the relationship between Ken and his lover was not only rare, but so controversial that many early reviewers could not even mention it.

Talley's Folly at Aurora: A Radiant Staging of a Small Theatrical Gem

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.13.2015 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Lanford Wilson's Pulitzer Prize-winning Talley's Folly is small, involving only one 40-ish man, one 30-ish woman and some 90 minutes of interplay between them. Their personal chemistry, along with the external realms that that the play explores, are things of theatrical beauty.

Rapture, Blister, Burn: Feminism and Laughs Open Aurora's Season

Leo Stutzin | Posted 11.08.2014 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

It's heady stuff, to be sure, and possibly controversial to some viewers. But it's wildly funny, too, giving a bright start to the company's 23rd season.

Aurora Revives American Buffalo With as Much Thunder as Ever

Leo Stutzin | Posted 08.23.2014 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

David Mamet's American Buffalo and Aurora Theatre's postage-stamp stage were made for each other.

Seeing Double in Berkeley: Two New Theaters, Two Compelling Shows

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.28.2014 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Episodes of cruelty, humiliation, struggle and resilience punctuate the narrative, delivered most often with the innocence and bewilderment of a child, and generating laugh after laugh, before reflection.

Hamlet, Faustus and Luther: Founts of Hilarity in Wittenberg

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.14.2014 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Friendly antagonists: Dan Hiatt, right, as the pious Martin Luther, Michael Stevenson as the irreverent Doctor Faustus Alas, poor Hamlet! Methough...

Stressed-Out Wait for Armageddon in Aurora's A Bright New Boise

Leo Stutzin | Posted 01.23.2014 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

An Obie award winner in 2011, the play is receiving a theatrically compelling, fierce and often funny Bay Area premiere at Aurora Theatre in Berkeley.

Idealism, Truth and Family Values Collide in Revolution at Aurora

Leo Stutzin | Posted 11.09.2013 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

How's this for a theatrical rarity: a drama that's deeply steeped in politics in which leftists are portrayed as flawed, troubled people.

Race, Sex, Shaky Facts and Sizzle in This Is How It Goes at Aurora

Leo Stutzin | Posted 08.26.2013 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Race, sex, three thorny relationships, dubious truths: Schematically, that's the spine of Neil Labute's taut but hollow play, which is receiving a riveting production in its West Coast debut at Aurora.

'Arsonists' at Aurora: A Sizzling Dissection of the Perils of Apathy

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.16.2013 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Fifty-five years later, at Berkeley's Aurora Theatre, The Arsonists has resurfaced as a sizzling triumph of theatricality, and a wake-up call to any who choose to be awakened. It carries a simple but profound warning: Ignore or appease destructive forces at your own peril.

Aurora's Practical Heaven: A Flawed Look at Life, Issues in the 21st Century

Leo Stutzin | Posted 04.07.2013 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Playwright Anthony Clarvoe credits Anton Chekhov with providing much of the inspiration for his drama Our Practical Heaven, which is receiving its world premiere at Aurora Theatre in Berkeley. It's doubtful that the Russian master would be flattered.

Lively, Versatile Performances Carry Thornton Wilder One-acts at Aurora

Leo Stutzin | Posted 11.12.2012 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

In the late 1950s Thornton Wilder started a project that was to become a series of short plays depicting the fabled Seven Ages of Man. The first two works, Infancy and Childhood, sparkle on Aurora Theatre's intimate stage in Berkeley.

Pro Wrestling Takes Center Stage in Aurora's Flashy, Physical Satire

Leo Stutzin | Posted 09.05.2012 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

The play uses professional wrestling as a metaphor for all sorts of perceived American sins, and treats promoters and athletes alike as partners in a flashy scam whose spectacles separate enthralled and willing suckers from their cash.

Aurora's Salomania: A Gripping Look at Long-Forgotten Case of War Hysteria

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.28.2012 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Mark Jackson's Salomania,is debuting with its world premiere at Aurora Theatre in Berkeley. Jackson carries the tale from the trenches of France to Old Bailey to taverns, bedrooms and other venues with remarkable fluidity and force.

Aurora Repolishes a 19th Century Gem in Schnitzler's Lively Anatol

Leo Stutzin | Posted 06.16.2012 | San Francisco
Leo Stutzin

Anatol, a play by Arthur Schnitzler, is receiving a lively, whimsical resurrection at Aurora Theatre in Berkeley.