Front Row Reviews

“People Where They Are” Dissolves the “Us and Them” Paradigm

CATHLEEN RIDDLEY, BRADY MORALES-WOOLERY Photos by Dave Lapori Anthony Clarvoe’s powerful play at The Stage in San Jose reflects the contemporary landscape of racial and socio-economic conflicts, gun violence, and the spreading of white supremacy. But the time of the play is the 1950’s, and the place is the Highlander Folk School in Monteagle, Tennessee. … Read more

“Sylvia” Portrays The Bond of Canine Companionship

 David Shirk (Greg), Melody Payne (Sylvia) all photos by Miller Oberlin oberlinphotography.com A.R. Gurney introduces us to “Sylvia,” a canine rescue that steals the show at Sonoma Arts Live. A truth well-known to most dog owners: Introducing four-legged friends into any family inevitably alters the whole family dynamic. Sylvia, played by tail-wagging, couch-stealing, overly-affectionate human, … Read more

My Home on the Moon

Vietnamese New Year Year of the Dragon

“My Home on the Moon,” written by Minna Lee and superbly directed by Mei Ann Teo at SF Playhouse, creatively spotlights the invasion of Corporate Greed on cultural identity. The talents of Lee and Teo deliver a poignant portrayal of a Vietnamese pho restaurant struggling to save their culture from gentrification. The corporation’s star worker … Read more

“Miriam and Esther go to the Diamond District” Fails to Sparkle

Andrea Gordon’s world premiere of “Miriam and Esther go to the Diamond District” at the Magic Theatre blends a fictionalized autobiography, fantasy, opera, and dancing. The plot line is a predictable siblings-come-together-after-parent-dies tale. Miriam and Esther, daughters of a renowned pianist and opera-singing mother, find themselves back in their childhood home after the recent passing of … Read more