Sahar Yousefi

Go-Go’s musical Head Over Heels misses the beat

Edited by Jessica Vaden

Peppermint (center) will become the first woman who is trans to originate a role on Broadway, starring as Pythio (The Oracle of Delphi), pictured here with members of the ensemble performing the Go-Go’s “Vision of Nowness.” All photos courtesy of Joan Marcus, 2018.

San Francisco got a peek at the new musical Head Over Heels before it heads to Broadway; it features hits from the iconic ’80s new wave band the Go-Go’s, known for their fun, cheeky songs. But underneath the funky stockings and pop sensibilities is a groundbreaking band led by five women, who ventured into what turned into the boys’ club of the late ’70s Los Angeles punk scene, playing legendary venues such as Whiskey a Go Go and The Masque. They wrote fierce lyrics, jammed with the rockers, made their way onto MTV, and paved the way for an entire generation of women who play. [read the whole post]

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Not much has changed since 1677 — Role Players Ensemble brings Aphra Behn’s The Rover to the Danville Village Theatre

Edited by Jessica Vaden

David J. Bohnet plays Don Pedro, Florinda’s overbearing brother. Nicolette Ellis is Florinda and Terrance Smith as Belville. Photos by Marian Bliss, 2018, courtesy of RPE.

Perhaps now more than ever we are questioning the social constructs that have been put into place for us, especially for those of us on the margins, or in places where our identities intersect. In an attempt at dismantling oppression, we look at its history… starting from gender bending to gender breaking, and finally, to what we assume will become the complete elimination of gender roles. [read the whole post]

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Edited by Jessica Vaden

Dance of the Holy Ghosts returns to playwright’s native Oakland roots

Berwick Haynes (Oscar) with Viola’s famous sweet potato pie and Michael Curry (Marcus) with his precisely organized Crayolas™?. Photo courtesy of Simone Finney, 2018.

They say the brain only recalls the parts it wants to remember. And so it goes, memory is fragmented, and unreliable, as we come to learn in Ubuntu Theater Project’s production of Dance of the Holy Ghosts by Marcus Gardley.

Gardley is an Oakland native, and there’s something about seeing a play in the space that it’s intended for that really draws on the fragility that a memory play evokes. Walking through the doors of Oakland Peace Center, one immediately confronts a specific time and place which then colors the viewer’s experience. Bringing it all together, a complete choir of gospel singers open the show in this untraditional but very fitting setting. [read the whole post]

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