If falsetto warblings make you weak in the knees, Jersey Boys could induce a seizure. The boys are back in town and opened on Saturday at theCurran Theatre, kicking off an eight-week run. On Friday night, we got the chance to quaff choice cocktails (Walk like a MANhattan or Joy-zee Juice anyone?) and talk a little dirty with the handsome-as-hell cast at a Q&A happy hour; we're still convinced the Curran Balcony's never seen that much booze.
Frankie Vallie and the Four Seasons are played by Nick Cosgrove (Frankie Vallie), John Gardiner (Tommy DeVito), Miles Jacoby (Bob Gaudio), and Michael Lomenda (Nick Massi). The four "men" -- (sorry but Nick looks like a fresh-faced elfin boy, all sweet grin and fair skin) -- were all dashing in full suits, coiffed do's, and winsome smiles. They poised, preened, and waxed a bit poetic about "the process," their journeys as performers, and of course, San Francisco; they also got a little naughty. Here's a juicy little round-up of what these blue collar Broadway badasses had to say for themselves.
One of the most visible, prolific, and best of San Francisco's stand-up comedians, and a co-founder of The Business (SF Weekly's 2012 Best Night of Cheap Comedy), Alex Koll is, well, leaving us. Though raised in L.A., he has lived in the Bay Area since he was a teenager, and this is where he cut his teeth as a comic.
Sari Gilman has been editing other people's documentaries for 15 years. Last year, she made one of her own. An attentive group portrait of five people living at a Florida retirement resort, Kings Point marks an impressive debut, not least because it earned its maker a nomination for an Academy Award. The film itself seems innately modest, just half an hour long and neither technically nor narratively showy. What distinguishes it, though, is Gilman's clear-eyed point of view. Kings Point isn't the place to look for reassuring bromides about riding off into the sunset of life. Gilman's subjects aren't just adorably wrinkly wisdom dispensers; they're people, with wounds and worries, who've lived long enough to speak very frankly about the hardships of human connection. "Everybody's a user here," one resident says. "Self-preservation is number one," says another. Gilman, who lives in San Francisco, spoke with us by phone recently about how the film came to be, what her Oscar nomination feels like, and where she hopes to take our cultural conversation about growing old.
In Octavio Solis' new play, Se Llama Cristina, which had its world premiere at the Magic Theatre on January 30, a man and a woman wake up in a room with no memory of who they are or how they got there. And they have a sneaking suspicion they might be parents.
By Emilie Mutert
Paul F. Tompkins is, as his official bio states, a comedian. Besides having a handful of comedy albums, stand-up specials, and stints on Mr. Show with Bob and David and Best Week Ever, he's become internet-famous in the comedy podcast boom era. You'll hear him most often on Comedy Bang Bang! or his own The Pod F. Tompkast in character as one of a handful of his quasi-celebrity alter-egos: rapper and SVU-er Ice-T, cake boss Buddy Valastro, or director Garry Marshall, among others.
Tompkins has stepped outside stand-up, cobbling together comedy and storytelling and old-fashioned variety shows in live performances, web videos, and particularly podcasts, a medium that he says has found its footing and has started to be taken seriously. He's coming to San Francisco from his Los Angeles home base to partake in his at-least-eighth SF Sketchfest. We talked to him about his many projects, following in Adele's musical footprints, and what's worth seeing at this year's festival.
It's about 5 p.m. on Sunday, January 20. The 49ers just secured a place in the Superbowl, but I'm not out celebrating, because I'm locked in a room with 11 strangers. Inside the room is a desk, a couch, art, and some random furniture. There are two doors, and both of them are locked. One with a padlock, and the other with a regular door knob. We have one hour to escape.
Say what you will about the prevalence of human feces and sky-rocketing rents -- the Bay Area is still an indisputably beautiful place. These videos by Shia Productions capture some of the natural and man-made wonders of San Francisco and Oakland that are rife for exploration, cheap dates, or just to gawk at the sheer loveliness of our hilly homes.