The Penelope Poems

The Penelope Poems

Wednesday, Mar 25th, 2020 at 7:30 pm
San Francisco Main Stage

Writer and Director: Patti Trimble
Music Director: Peter Whitehead
Set/ Video: Lauren Elder and Patti Trimble

Spoken Word Penelope: Patti Trimble
Spoken Word Chorus and Song: Julia Norton
Spoken Word Chorus: Maya Khosla
Instrumental Music, Composition, and Song: Peter Whitehead
With Songs by Leonard Cohen, Imelda May, and Tim Buckley

Show Details

Patti Trimble presents her spoken-word Penelope—originally performed at the Commonwealth Club—reimagining Homer’s Odyssey for the 21st century. Julia Norton and Maya Khosla create a tiny chorus, praying, singing and often deconstructing the tale, and Peter Whitehead weaves his signature improvisations on flutes and strings.

Trimble’s delightful text bridges millennia, celebrating Penelope as a beloved, living, literary collage. This is a Penelope who’s been written, again and again. And she’s clearly a woman who reads, with muses such as Judith Butler, Socrates, Ovid, Virginia Woolf, Aristophanes, James Joyce, and Ferlinghetti. 

Mostly, Penelope speaks from her experience, and she speaks to us personally. She’s savvy on heroism, Sirens, gender, monsters, childbirth, faithfulness, and murder. Also about unweaving as a form of reparation, and about the art of living on this wild Earth.


Artist Biography

Since the 1990s Patti Trimble has mesmerized audiences with smart lyric spoken word, performing in the USA and Europe. With support from Lannan Foundation, Poets&Writers, Djerassi Foundation, Adirondack Review, INDA Italy, and a Pushcart nomination, her writings speak to our lives: in theater and dance productions, clubs and festivals, museum installations, publications, and recordings. New York poetry impressario Bob Holman writes, “with her skilled blend of poesy and music, there’s no other journey so worth taking”. Patti lives half-time in Europe; she teaches in the Bay Area and writes for the SF Ethnic Dance Festival. www.pattitrimble.com

Peter Whitehead is a composer, performer, songwriter and instrument builder. He performs solo and creates scores for film, television, radio, and dance, including for Mikhail Baryshnikov, Susan Marshall, Anna Halprin, Charles Moulton and Sarah Shelton Mann & Contraband. His music is available online and from out of round records. He is also a painter & photographer, his most recent project a book of photographs of Treasure Island. 

Julia Norton is an award-winning singer, actor, composer and storyteller, for 20 years teaching others how to use their whole voice. Her podcast ‘Dark and Twisty Tales’ combines grim folk tales with improvised song. Her album ‘Lullaby Island’ mixes Celtic style vocals, traditional lullabies, and Victorian poems. www.julianorton.com

Maya Khosla is a wildlife biologist, currently Poet Laureate of Sonoma County. Her poems have been nominated for Pushcart Prizes and featured in The Literary Review, River Teeth, Poem, and other journals. Her books are All the Fires of Wind and Light, Sixteen Rivers Press; Web of Water: Life in Redwood Creek, a guide book; Keel Bone, winner Dorothy Brunsman Poetry Prize; and Heart of the Tearing, Red Dust Press. https://creekshade.wixsite.com/mayakhosla

Other Risings at The Marsh

He Wants to Run – Rising

He Wants to Run

Written & Performed by David Kleinberg

Tuesday, Apr 7, 2020 at 7:30 pm
San Francisco Main Stage


David Kleinberg’s latest solo theater work – “He Wants to Run” – is the story of a guy who hates running and dogs, and how he ends up running with his neighbor’s dog Butler for 13 years in rural California, and what Butler teaches David about living and dying.

When David and his wife bought a vacation home along the Russian River, David — a life-long basketball player, having no ball game around — was forced to do something HE ABSOLUTELY HATED! Running in the country by himself. Then the neighbor’s dog started following him. David told the dog repeatedly, “Go home.” He tried to talk with the dog’s owner. But Butler wouldn’t quit following David. So David just gave up, and they ran together for 13 years. In the end, it’s a beautiful meditation about living and dying as told through the story of a man running with a dog. David wants to thank his great director Mark Kenward, the Marsh’s David Ford for development, and Rebecca Fisher and Charlie Varon for guidance and moral support. And special thanks to Marsh artistic director Stephanie Weisman for creating the space for solo performers to develop and perform their works over the last 30 years. Oh, yes, at one point in “He Wants to Run,” David says to Butler, “Hey, Butler, we’ve been running for 10 years and there’s not one picture of us.” And Butler gives a look that seems to say, “Dave, this relationship has never been about Instagram!”

Artist Biography

This is David’s fourth solo show following a 34-year editing/writing career at the San Francisco Chronicle, the last 14 years as editor of the paper’s Sunday Datebook. His last two shows dealt with the Vietnam war — “Hey, Hey, LBJ!” charted David’s duty as an army combat correspondent in Vietnam in 1966. And his last work — “Return to the Scene of the Crime” — followed David’s return to Vietnam for the first time in 50 years to visit where his buddies died and try to perform “LBJ!” under threat of arrest from the communist government. Before turning to theater, David spent 10 years as a stand-up comedian, and worked with Robin Williams, “Saturday Night Live’s” Dana Carvey and “Curb Your Enthusiasm’s” Richard Lewis.  David is also a native of San Francisco and still lives in the city.  

Other Risings at The Marsh

Too Soon?

Too Soon

Written & Performed by Alicia Dattner

Wednesday, February 5th, 2020 at 8:00 pm
San Francisco Main Stage


In her new standup show, Alicia explores what’s so funny (or not) about climate change, Instagram, and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. 

“Raw, uncensored, apocalyptic, non-dual, post-feminist ukulele comedy at its finest!”

Artist Biography

Raised in an extremely liberal branch of Judaism known as an Ashram, Alicia’s spiritual roots – and propensity for poking fun at them – go deep. She did her first standup set at 18 and graduated from Hampshire College with a degree in standup comedy and filmmaking.

Mentored by several talented comedians over the years, including W. Kamau Bell (CNN, FX), Eugene Mirman (Flight of the Conchords), and Bill Santiago (Comedy Central), she’s been rocking clubs like The Improv and Gotham Comedy Club, playing in San Francisco, New York, London, Hollywood, Honolulu, Bali, and Bombay. She’s performed with Ali Wong, Maria Bamford, Moshe Kasher, Arj Barker, Kate Willett, Ann Randolph, and many more luminaries.

Tickets $15 cash at the door

Other Risings at The Marsh

I Never Said I Was Nice

I Never Said I Was Nice

Written & Performed by Lynn Ruth Miller

Friday, January 10th, 2020 at 8:00 pm
San Francisco Studio Stage


Show Details

Lynn Ruth Miller is the poster girl for growing old. She’s 86 years old, and the only thing that frightens her is her own reflection. She hates ageism and tells shocking stories about dating octogenarians, what it’s like being the oldest female stand up in the business (RIP Joan Rivers). Young people of the world, see how far we have come and how outrageous you can be when you are too old to give a damn. This show tells you what happened to thrust her into a comedy career and what she has learned from a long life of misunderstandings and false starts.

Artist Biography

LYNN RUTH MILLER started doing comedy on stage when she was 70 years old. She was dubbed the new Joan Rivers of Fringe Comedy at The Edinburgh International Fringe. Now 85, she made the top 4 comedians in America’s Got Talent, 2008, won People’s Choice in 2009, Branson Comedy Festival, the finals in Bill Word’s Funniest Female Contest 2009 and semi-finals in the SF International Comedy Competition and Star of the Brighton Fringe Festival in 2009.

She has been performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival since 2005. She is a regular at the SF Punchline and The Stand in Scotland and made the top 100 in the UK in Britain’s Got Talent. She won the TO&ST AWARD 2014 in Edinburgh for best Cabaret Edinburgh Fringe, 2015 Liberty Award, Leicester Comedy Festival; 2015 finalist Old Comedian of 2015; London. She has numerous five-star cabaret and comedy shows that she has toured all over the world.

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Get A Grip

Get A Grip

Written & Performed by Lynn Ruth Miller

Saturday, January 18th, 2020 at 8:30 pm
Berkeley Cabaret


Show Details

Fear is the ultimate fantasy. Lynn Ruth Miller is 86 years old and has lived a lot. Nearly died a few times too. She’s faced massive fears and fought a churning tummy and grinding teeth. 2013 TO&ST award-winner Lynn-Ruth Miller guides us through eight decades of triumphs and failures, wit and wisdom, and the faith in the impossible that kept her from jumping.

I wallowed in fear until I was well into my fifties. Bit by bit, I learned to ignore the doubts that stopped me in my tracks and get on with my life. I still have not eliminated fear, and that is a good thing. If you are absolutely sure of everything, you really know nothing at all. Every adventure, every decision, indeed every action has pitfalls, and the trick is to recognize them, allow for them and continue forward

Artist Biography

LYNN RUTH MILLER started doing comedy on stage when she was 70 years old. She was dubbed the new Joan Rivers of Fringe Comedy at The Edinburgh International Fringe. Now 85, she made the top 4 comedians in America’s Got Talent, 2008, won People’s Choice in 2009, Branson Comedy Festival, the finals in Bill Word’s Funniest Female Contest 2009 and semi-finals in the SF International Comedy Competition and Star of the Brighton Fringe Festival in 2009.

She has been performing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival since 2005. She is a regular at the SF Punchline and The Stand in Scotland and made the top 100 in the UK in Britain’s Got Talent. She won the TO&ST AWARD 2014 in Edinburgh for best Cabaret Edinburgh Fringe, 2015 Liberty Award, Leicester Comedy Festival; 2015 finalist Old Comedian of 2015; London. She has numerous five-star cabaret and comedy shows that she has toured all over the world.

To purchase tickets online, please click on a date below
(please review price descriptions above):

  • No upcoming events
AEC v1.0.4

Also at The Marsh