Arts & Culture

Broadway Arrives To The Peninsula

March 10, 2014 6:00 AM

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Evita (credit: JUAN MABROMATA/AFP/GettyImages)

Evita (credit: JUAN MABROMATA/AFP/GettyImages)

149178735 Broadway Arrives To The Peninsula Evita (credit: JUAN MABROMATA/AFP/GettyImages)

Find The Best Spring 2014 Theater Productions On The Peninsula

Perhaps you have a New Year’s resolution to see more live theater in 2014. Here are a few good opportunities to do just that. This spring, there’s a splash of Sondheim, a smattering of Lloyd Webber and a soupçon of George Bernard Shaw across Peninsula live theaters. When Times Square and Piccadilly Circus are just too far for a night out, look no farther than your own backyard for quality and value productions by talented neighbors. Here’s where you can support your local community theaters.

149178727 Broadway Arrives To The Peninsula

(credit: JUAN MABROMATA/AFP/GettyImages)

“Evita”
Broadway by the Bay
Fox Theater
2215 Broadway St.
Redwood City, CA 94063
(650) 369-7770 579-5565
www.broadwaybythebay.org

Date: March 28 – April 13, 2014

The historic Fox Theater, opened in 1929, shares its era with Argentina’s own Eva Perón (1919-1952), making it an evocative setting for this spring production. This grand space is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Re-live the remarkable, poignant story of the rags-to-riches woman, the slums-to-presidential palace leader who was well ahead of her time. Enjoy outstanding songs such as “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina” from the musical that was first brought to the stage by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice in 1979.

“The Dixie Swim Club”
Coastal Rep
1167 Main St.
Half Moon Bay, CA 94109
(650) 726-0998
www.coastalrep.com

Date: April 4 – April 26, 2014 

Dive into the story of five funny BFFs who manage their relationships stretching back to college swim team days. Free from children and chores, they meddle in one another’s lives on an annual summer weekend over 33 years. Come see it with your own best friend forever. Coastal Repertory Theatre has been breaking a leg on the community stage since 1986. Friday and Saturday night performances plus a Sunday matinee make it a great weekend choice. An intimate venue of 158 seats means there’s not a bad seat in the house.

“The Color Purple”
Hillbarn Theatre
1285 E. Hillsdale Blvd.
Foster City, CA 94404
(650) 349-6411
www.hillbarntheatre.org

Date: May 9 – June 1, 2014 

The sixth oldest continuously operating amateur theater company in the nation has been staging productions for Bay Area audiences since 1941. This musical was nominated for 11 Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book and Best Original Score. The 2005 musical adaptation co-produced by Oprah Winfrey is based on Alice Walker’s award-winning novel and is now on national tour, also having enjoyed a rave limited run in London in 2013. Your evening journey begins in Georgia in 1909.

“Marry Me A Little”
TheatreWorks SIlicon Valley
Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts
500 Castro St.
Mountain View, CA 94041
(650) 463-1950
www.theatreworks.org

Date: June 4 – 29, 2014 

With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, what could be better? This show is dubbed Sondheim’s “most intimate musical” and features some of the master music man’s less heard works. As a New York Times critic put it in 2012, Sondheim’s remnants, “…are more beguiling than so much of what passes for contemporary musical theater.” Celebrate Sondheim melodies once written for hits including “Company,” “Follies” and “A LIttle Night Music,” now put to the boy-meets-girl story of two 20-something Brooklynites.

“Smash”
Dragon Theatre
2120 Broadway St.
Redwood City, CA 94063
(650) 493-2006
www.dragonproductions.net

Date: April 11 – May 4, 2014 

A play adapted from George Bernard Shaw’s 1910 novel, “An Unsocial Socialist” says it all when it comes to wit. Remember the exchange attributed to G.B.S. and Winston Churchill? The playwright invited the prime minister-to-be saying, “I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend…if you have one.” Upon which Churchill replied, “Cannot possibly attend first night; will attend second, if there is one.” Watch as political comedy mixes with political manners, a sprinkling of love triangles and mistaken identities for some good old-fashioned Brit-style fun produced by this non-profit company in its intimate venue.

Laurie JM Farr is a freelance writer covering all things in her adopted San Francisco. A dedicated urbanite, she’s a transplanted New Yorker by way of a couple of decades in London as a hotel sales and marketing manager. Follow her work on @ReferencePlease, USA Today, Yahoo! and on Examiner.com.

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