marines memorial theatre

Jane Kaczmarek reads a story by Katherine Heiny at Selected Shorts: Too Hot For Radio at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre on January 26, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Tommy Lau

As a longtime listener of Symphony Space’s Selected Shorts, a short story reading radio program broadcast locally on KQED-88.5 on Saturday nights, I was thrilled to see that Sketchfest was bringing the show to the Festival for the first time ever this year. What made the live performance even more special and fun was that it promised to offer stories “too hot for radio” – ones that, for various content reasons couldn’t be read over the air during the regular program, but could be read to a non-broadcast, live theater audience. As an added bonus on top of that, as is typical with Selected Shorts, the stories would be read by famous, well-regarded actors. For “Too Hot for Radio” we were graced with Arrested Development regular and comedian David Cross, actors Lance Reddick (The Wire) and Academy Award nominee David Strathairn (an alumni of Larkspur’s Redwood High School), and actress and Symphony Space regular reader Jane Kaczmarek (Malcolm in the Middle). The live show, held on Friday, January 26th at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre, didn’t disappoint, and more than lived up to my expectations.

[read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

Annie Ellicott sings with Jeff Goldblum (on piano) and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre on Jan. 28th. (Photo courtesy of: https://www.facebook.com/pg/goldblumofficial/photos)

For the third year in a row, SF Sketchfest fans were treated to the affable charm of actor and musician Jeff Goldblum, who brought his Mildred Snitzer Orchestra jazz band to the Marines’ Memorial Theatre last Sunday for a cabaret-style evening of jazz, movie clips, and a whole lot more. Goldblum’s laid-back and amiable presence is always enjoyable, and he seems to take just as much pleasure in his show and his audience interaction as his fans do. [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

Boots Riley and Patton Oswalt (photo by Steve Agee)

Boots Riley and Patton Oswalt (photo by Steve Agee)

Patton Oswalt, comedian and actor extraordinaire, isn’t sure why he’s getting a “tribute” from SF Sketchfest. Sure, he’s been touring the comedy circuit since ’88, has amassed millions of fans, exudes a remarkably conscious presence on social media, and generally is utterly recognizable in voice, manner, and his own creative palate — but is that really the sort of thing to have a “tribute” for? This, more or less, was the way he asked the question that kicked off the afternoon show, which saw Oswalt discussing his history, perception of comedy in decades gone by and in the modern age, and the vastly-deepening social awareness that exists to meld the worlds of comedy and reality together in (hopefully) wonderful ways. Despite the fact that the tribute was for him, and Boots Riley — the frontman of Oakland’s own hip-hop masterminds The Coup — was the one he was “in conversation” with, Oswalt was the first onstage, and introduced both the show and his guest, and remained the driving force for the conversation for the rest of the afternoon.

[read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

The Music Edition.

The Music Edition.

This year, I seem to have been a little cursed when trying to get to a Sketchfest show at Marines Memorial Theatre. I had two events there this year, and both times, I couldn’t avoid being late. The first time, I missed most of the show due to insane traffic. This past weekend, I missed fifteen or twenty minutes because I had to make a choice: leave the day’s first event (The Benson Movie Interruption: “Twilight: New Moon,” something I looked forward to all year long) early, or take my chances with being late to event number two. I opted for the latter, rushing out in the rain to my car, across town, and to do my best to quickly find parking near the venue. Even so, I was late and there was nothing to be done about it except sit down, shut up, and enjoy the rest of the show. I’ve requested to review Celebrity Autobiography before: Rachel Dratch, Fred Willard, Florence Henderson, Pamela Adlon… Need I say more? [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }