Friday, December 30, 2016

Theatergoing 2016: The List

I neglected to do this in 2014 or 2015, but let's bring back my year-end tradition of the Theatergoing Report!

In 2016, I saw 41 fully staged* productions, listed here in chronological order:

*the dividing line between "full production" and "rough experiment" can get blurred in indie theater but my rough rule is "did the actors memorize it? if so, it's a production. if not, it's a staged reading."
  1. Of Serpents & Sea Spray, by Rachel Bublitz, at Custom Made Theatre
  2. The Morrissey Plays, by various authors, at San Francisco Theater Pub
  3. Satchmo at the Waldorf, by Terry Teachout, at American Conservatory Theatre
  4. Over the Rainbow, by Tonya Narvaez, at San Francisco Theater Pub
  5. Pas de Quatre, by Margery Fairchild, at Dark Porch Theater
  6. Sam and Dede, by Gino DiIorio, at Custom Made Theatre
  7. The Nether, by Jennifer Haley, at San Francisco Playhouse
  8. School of Rock, by Andrew Lloyd Webber, Glenn Slater, and Julian Fellowes, presented by Oakland School of the Arts at the Curran Theatre (my piece for American Theatre on this)
  9. Dogeaters, by Jessica Hagedorn, at Magic Theatre
  10. Shortlived 2016, Round 3, by various authors (including me), at PianoFight
  11. Hotel Burlesque, by Red Velvet and Amanda Ortmayer, at DivaFest
  12. Chinese Whispers: Golden Gate, by Rene Yung, at the Southside Theater
  13. On the Spot 2016, by various authors, at Theater Pub
  14. Middletown, by Will Eno, at Custom Made
  15. American Psycho, by Duncan Sheik and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, on Broadway
  16. La ménagerie de verre, by Tennessee Williams, at Théâtre National de la Colline (Paris)
  17. Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, at Shotgun Players
  18. Sticky Icky, by Colin Johnson, at Theater Pub
  19. Six Degrees of Separation, by John Guare, at Custom Made
  20. Maggie's Riff, by Jon Lipsky, at FaultLine Theatre
  21. The Village Bike, by Penelope Skinner, at Shotgun Players
  22. Red Velvet, by Lolita Chakrabarti, at SF Playhouse
  23. Confessions of a Catholic Child,  by Elizabeth Appell, at EXIT Theatre
  24. Adventures in Tech, by Stuart Bousel, at PianoFight
  25. Portal: The Musical, by Kirk Shimano and Jonathan Coulton, at Theater Pub
  26. Hunting Love, by Susan-Jane Harrison, produced by Local Dystopia at the Flight Deck
  27. The Thrush and the Woodpecker, by Steve Yockey, at Custom Made
  28. Campo Maldito, by Bennett Fisher, produced by People of Interest
  29. The Awakening, adapted by Oren Stevens, at the Breadbox
  30. Pint-Sized Plays 2016, by various authors (including me), at Theater Pub
  31. Stupid Ghost, by Savannah Reich, at Theater Pub
  32. Caught, by Christopher Chen, at Shotgun Players
  33. Chess, by Tim Rice, Benny Andersson, and Björn Ulvaeus, at Custom Made Theater
  34. Gravedigger: The Musical, by Dylan Waite and Casey Robbins, at Theater Pub
  35. Casa Valentina, by Harvey Fierstein, at NCTC
  36. The Hard Problem, by Tom Stoppard, at American Conservatory Theatre
  37. Into the Beautiful North, by Karen Zacarias, at Central Works
  38. King Lear, by William Shakespeare, at Theater Pub
  39. Paradise Street, by Clive Barker, at EXIT Theatre (thoughts)
  40. Rapture Blister Burn, by Gina Gionfriddo, at Custom Made
  41. Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley, by Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon, at Marin Theatre Co.
If you tally the above list by playwright gender, 22 of the shows had male writers or all-male writing teams, 15 had female writers or all-female writing teams, and 4 were mixed-gender anthologies. So, a roughly 60:40 male:female ratio. Not perfect, but not awful, either, considering that the Counting Actors Project often posts numbers that show a male:female playwright ratio of more like 80:20. It's possible to admit there's room for improvement while also being thrilled at how easy it feels nowadays to see interesting plays by women, right?

I also attended the following staged readings, in which female playwrights were even better represented:
  1. An Ear for Voices by Alina Trowbridge, at Custom Made's Undiscovered Works program
  2. Cypress, Sin, and Care by Alandra Hileman, at the Breadbox
  3. The Princess and the Porn Star, by Kirk Shimano, at Custom Made's Undiscovered Works program
  4. You'll Not Feel the Drowning, by me, at Custom Made's Undiscovered Works program (3 separate readings, in May, September, and December)
  5. Oceanus, by Dan Hirsch and Siyu Song, at Custom Made's Undiscovered Works program
  6. Better than Television (4 nights), by Megan Cohen and various authors, at Theater Pub
  7. Queen of the Sword, by Alandra Hileman, at Loud and Unladylike
  8. Christine Emerges, by Tonya Narvaez, at Loud and Unladylike
  9. Juana, or The Greater Glory, by me, at Loud and Unladylike
  10. A Night of New Works, excerpts of plays by various authors (including me), at Playwrights Foundation
  11. Hades by Jason Wimbish and Hecate by Neil Higgins, at the Olympians Festival
  12. Styx by Christine Keating, Acheron by Patsy Fergusson, and Lethe by Alan Olejniczak, at the Olympians Festival
  13. Macaria, or The Good Life by me, Charon, or Ferryman by Bridgette Dutta Portman, and Ascalaphus, or Tattletale by Elizabeth Flanagan, at the Olympians Festival
  14. Thanatos by Barbara Jwanouskos and Julianne Jigour, Morpheus by Kirk Shimano, and Hypnos, or Cardenio by Alan Coyne, at the Olympians Festival
  15. Drumming With Anubis, by David Templeton, at the Olympians Festival
  16. Being Your Own Bunny by Veronica Tjioe & Tootsie's Jook Joint by Jovelyn Richards, at the Olympians Festival
  17. Cyrus by Tonya Narvaez and The People of the Shifting Sands by Nirmala Nataraj, at the Olympians Festival
  18. Demeter, or Ceres en Victoria by Stuart Bousel, at Cafe du Nord
Plus, I watched broadcasts of two shows at home from my laptop!
  1. Stegosaurus, or Three Cheers for Climate Change by Andrew Saito, produced by FaultLine Theatre, shown on HowlRound TV
  2. She Loves Me, by Jerry Bock, Sheldon Harnick, and Joe Masteroff, shown on BroadwayHD
And I saw two operas at SF Opera:
  1. Don Carlo, by Verdi
  2. Don Pasquale, by Donizetti
My previous year-end Theatergoing reports: 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010

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