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Culture, Stage Berkeley Rep's <i>Strange</i> <i>Devices</i>: Boredom ... boredom ... boredom ... PAIN

Berkeley Rep's Strange Devices: Boredom ... boredom ... boredom ... PAIN

For Isabel Hewlett (Kate Eastwood Norris), a lifelong obsession began with a single photograph. As a 10-year-old in 19th-century Boston, she saw a photo of a nearly naked Japanese man, his body covered in tattoos. She was entranced — aroused,…
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Culture, Stage Mere Words

Mere Words

Theater groups are always fretting about how to make Shakespeare relevant. Fearing that plots peopled with long-dead Scottish thanes and Egyptian queens (not to mention iambic pentameters riddled with "thees," "thous," and "vouchsafes") might clash with modern sensibilities, community-minded companies…
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Culture, Stage Pleasant Confusion

Pleasant Confusion

Naomi Iizuka's 17 Reasons (Why) reminds me in a funny way of The Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters. Spoon River is a poem cycle, not a play, but it fleshes out an Illinois town using a fugue of…
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Culture, Stage


If there was any skepticism about playwright Naomi Iizuka's popularity, she might have quieted it with 36 Views, a world premiere with bold British director Mark Wing-Davey at the helm. Named after Japanese artist Hokusai's series "Thirty Six Views of…
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Culture, Stage


Hits and Myths Polaroid Stories. By Naomi Iizuka. Directed by Delia MacDougall. Starring Margo Hall, Luis Saguar, Robert Hampton, Sean San Jose, and Andrea Thome. Presented by Campo Santo at Intersection for the Arts, 446 Valencia (at 16th Street), through…
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