A theater performance can be fleeting: a show happens, and then it’s gone. The best productions, though, stick with you forever. Here are 10 Bay Area shows from the ’2010s that were impossible to forget. With over 300 stages in the greater Bay Area here is my list of Plays and Musicals best of the DECADE
My Favorite Show of The Decade
NUMBER ONE - HAMILTON CONTINUES TO BE A PHENOMENAL AMERICAN EXPERIENCE THIS AMERICAN MUSICAL STILL IS A HUGE BLOCKBUSTER THAT HAS AN OPENED RUN NOW IN SAN FRANCISCO Book and Music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Directed by Thomas Kail ORCH SEATS ARE NOW AS LITTLE AS 50.00 AT THE SF ORPHEUM THEATRE trough 2020
NUMBER TWO - THE FOUR IMMIGRANTS An American Musical Manga, AMERICA’S FIRST GRAPHIC NOVEL, Henry Yoshitaka Kiyama’s 1925 STORY OF LOVE AND FRIENDSHIP IN 1905 SAN FRANCISCO IS A HIT NEW MUSICAL. A NEW AMERICAN MUSICAL - THEATREWORKS HAS SCORED ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT NEW WORKS OF THE DECADE Book, Music, & Lyrics by Min Kahng. Based on Manga Yonin Shosei by Henry Yoshitaka Kiyama, Directed by Leslie Martinson
NUMBER THREE - BLASTED - SHOTGUN THEATRE AN HONEST AND BRAVE STORY OF THE HUMAN HEART. SARAH KANE’S DARK VISION OF WAR CRIMES IS “NO FAIRIES, NO NARNIA, NO NOTHING” THIS PLAY EXPLODED THE 2010’s By Sarah Kane, Directed by Jon Tracy
Production team; Nina Ball, Heather Basarab, Miyuki Biertein, Devon Labelle, Christian Larson, Ekena wright and Dave Maier.
NUMBER FOUR - HAND TO GOD The Berkeley Rep (2016) “HAND TO GOD” IS EDGY FUN, BLOODY DRAMA THAT ALSO EXPLORES HATE, LUST, VIOLENCE AND FEAR, THIS PUPPET WILL MAKE YOU THINK written by Robert Askins and directed by David Ivers. This play has since been staged at THE SAN JOSE STAGE, ALTARENA and in the North Bay.
NUMBER FIVE - DEAR EVAN HANSEN - CURRAN THEATRE - “IS ANYBODY WAVING BACK AT ME” THE POWER OF TRUTH, DEAR EVAN HANSEN’ ARRIVED IN SAN FRANCISCO - THE MOVING SOLD OUT NATIONAL TOUR OF DEAR EVAN HANSEN IS A THEATRICAL SENSATION it will steal your emotions and the songs will not stop ringing in your ears. Book by Steven Levenson, composers Benj Pasek & Justin Paul, Directed by Michael Greif.
NUMBER SIX - THE JUNGLE - CURRAN THEATRE “THE JUNGLE” EXPLODED AT THE SF CURRAN. THE JUNGLE IMMERSES YOU INTO A WORLD OF HOMELESS IMMIGRANTS THAT HAVE CREATED ITS OWN NEW WORLD UNIVERSE, A BRILLIANT THEATRE EXPERIENCE by Joe Murphy and Joe Robertson, Directed by Stephen Daldry and Justin Martin
NUMBER SEVEN - FUN HOME - CURRAN THEATRE - CARTOONIST ALISON BECHDEL’S GRAPHIC NOVEL IS A BOLD MUSICAL. 'Fun Home' tells a troubled family's story with heart and song An engaging musical by Jeanine Tesori (music) and Lisa Kron (lyrics and book) won rave reviews and the 2015 Best Musical Tony Award. Also staged at THEATREWORKS Silicon Valley
NUMBER EIGHT - HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD Curran Theatre San Francisco and New York are the only two cities in the United States where fans can see this, the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, a six-hour production, presented in two parts. With a brilliant cast and eye popping magic Written by Jack Thorne. Adapted from J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Directed by John Tiffany.
NUMBER NINE - VALLEY OF THE HEART - SAN JOSE STAGE The founder of El Teatro Campesino, director and writer Luis Valdez calls his new work VALLEY OF THE HEART an epic story or a “memory play” about the origins of the great silicon valley. This powerful three hour tail of two farm working families in the 1940’s Written and Directed by Luis Valdez.
NUMBER TEN - ‘BITCH SLAP - OASIS - D’ARCY DROLLINGER BRINGS 80’s CAMP A CUTTING EDGE LAUGH RIOT- HILARIOUS HEELS AND WIGS ARE FLYING HIGH IN THE BITCH FESTIVAL AT SF OASIS CRAZY TAKE ON DYNASTY AND A BACKHAND TO THE FACE Directed and written by D'Arcy Drollinger
OTHERS TO MENTION :
Clybourne Park, The Scottsboro Boys, The Motherfucker with the Hat, TAYLOR MAC’S A 24-Decade History of Popular Music
We lost many loved actors and crafts Bay Area artists the past 10 years - but the young actor and producer I celebrate every year is KEVIN REDRICO an East Bay talent who we lost way too early - Kevin's favorite show was SPONGEBOB - The musical opened after he was gone -
In this clip he is with his singing group #SanFran6.
They sing a SPONGEBOB Medley
Kevin is with Cherilyn Acorda, Jess Walsh, Jaron Liclican,
Del Lazaro, and Danny Cavero
Shout out to Carole Shorenstein Hays an icon in SF Bay Theatre community - she did lose control of the CURRAN - in the final battle between SHN and Hays - But she is very active and will resume staging theatre after Potter leaves in a few years -
MONTY’S MURDER SPREE IS JUST IN TIME FOR THE SPRING
‘A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER’ IS BLOODY FUN
March 2, 2020
KATRINA LAUREN MCGRAW IS A TOUR DE FORCE AS BESSIE SMITH
February 3, 2020
“ON THE PERIPHERY” REMAINS OPEN DURING THE COVID-19 THEATRE SHUT DOWNS/ A PERFECT IMPORTANT PLAY TO SEE THIS MONTH