Past Risings

Courage Under Fire: The Story of Elroy

Written & Performed by Thomas Robert Simpson
Wednesday, July 24, 2019 at 7:30pm
65 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 10+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

“Courage Under Fire” is a story about family, race, politics, and redemption. The work explores the extraordinary life of Simpson’s father, Elroy Simpson. It’s a very personal story of transcendence from Jim Crow’s insanity towards personal fulfillment through a single revolutionary act. I trace four generations of the Simpson family to understand the evolution of my father’s action to appreciate its significance to him and those of us around him. “Courage Under Fire” is a multimedia theater work based on text, video, and projections.

Grandma & Me (Reading)

Written & Performed by Brian Copeland
Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at 7:30pm
2 Hours | 1 intermission | Ages 15+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

In Brian Copeland’s highly anticipated new play, he examines the issue single parenting through a very personal story.

In 1979, Brian’s mother died suddenly, leaving behind 5 children for his 57 year-old grandmother to raise alone. 22 years later, Brian finds himself in the same predicament when the end of a marriage leaves him alone with his three kids. Through laughter and tears, he compares and contrasts trials of single parenting in the 1970s and the dawn of the 21st century as he tries to answer the question…What does it truly mean to be a father.

Overlooked Latinas

Written & Performed by Tina D’Elia
Directed by Mary Guzmán
Wednesday, June 5, 2019 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Overlooked Latinas–the new queer telenovela farce of our century!

It’s January 21, 2021–fortunately the election turns out much better this time! Butch dyke Angel Torres, thinks she’s having one of the best days of her life. She’s gaining buy-in from an NBC producer to sign onto her show sher’s directing with her buddy Carla Garcia. The TV show would highlight legendary Latinx movie stars during the McCarthy era. Enter the femme fatale creating chaos with Angel’s wife and Angel’s life.

Artist Biography

Tina D’Elia is a Bay Area award winning solo performer, actor, casting director, and co-screenwriter. Tina’s west coast premiere of Overlooked Latinas at the Brava Theater received a successful audience response of multiple standing ovations and sold-out houses. Tina’s solo show: The Rita Hayworth of this Generation, also directed by Mary Guzmán, won Best of Fringe (2015) and won Best of Sold Out Shows at the San Francisco Fringe Festival (2015). Tina is the recipient of the Best Actress Award from the Equality International Film Festival (Emeryville, CA, 2017) and received the Diversity Casting Award (2017) and the Trail Blazer Award and Executive Producer Award from the Equality International Film Festival (Sacramento, 2015). Tina and director Maria Breaux won the Frameline33 Film Festival Audience Award for her co-screenwriting in the short film Lucha, (2009).

The California Missions & Race Tour

Written & Performed by Fred Pitts
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, May 8, 2019 at 7:30pm
65 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Summer 2012. Fred is standing in the middle of a California Mission church
with a docent and 3 other visitors. One visitor is an expert on the Catholic
Church. One is an expert of Native American history. The third is an expert
on…everything else. They stare at Fred. Is his fly open? Hair mussed? They
have one thing in common. They are all experts on which famous black person Fred resembles.

Artist Biography

FRED PITTS is a San Francisco-based actor. He is a company member of
African-American Shakespeare and Custom Made Theatres and has performed with many companies throughout the Bay Area. This is his first attempt at a writing and performing a solo piece. He was an Emergency Medicine doctor for 18 years. He’s now in recovery from that job….

Vox in a Box

Written & Performed by & Candace Yvonne
Directed by Candace Y. Johnson
Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

VOX in a BOX, is an autobiographical monologue about an African
American singer’s struggle to find her voice. From opera to jazz, gospel and
spoken word, Candace Y. Johnson candidly reflects on the 20+ years it took to free her voice. Accompanied by pianist Ben Flint, Johnson engages the audience with improvised moments throughout and an opportunity for playback theater at the end. Exploring themes of cultural identity, belonging, authenticity and self-expression, this work is sure to inspire.

Artist Biography

Lyric coloratura, Candace Johnson, is a dynamic singing artist on the
voice faculty of UC Berkeley’s music department. Equally comfortable in opera, musical theater, and jazz, Johnson has performed lead roles in Howard’s End, America, Le Nozze di Figaro, The Medium, Suor Angelica, Fame, and others. She has performed at Carnegie Hall and The Manhattan Center, and is praised for her excellent vocal interpretation, fiery dramatic presence, and her ability to create spontaneous musical scenes. In unique fashion, Johnson melds her African American music heritage with her operatic training. After earning a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the University of Michigan, Johnson was awarded the prestigious Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at UC Berkeley to expand her research on the life and vocal works of African American composers. Her training has been under renowned artists such as the late Shirley Verrett, George Shirley, Willis Patterson, and Olly Wilson.
Solitary Man: A Visit to Pelican State Prison

Written & Performed by Charlie Hinton & Fred Johnson
Directed by Mark Kenward
MONDAY, March 18, 2019 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No intermission | Ages 14+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

In Solitary Man, Charlie travels to Crescent City to visit a lifer named Otis Washington (played by Fred). A 64 year old native of New York City, Otis has been imprisoned since 1975 and at Pelican Bay since it opened in 1989. He writes, “There are people who have no regrets in life, and if they had to do it all over again, they wouldn’t change a thing. Well I’m just the opposite . . . Over the decades I’ve worked hard to better myself, but at times I feel this huge void. I’ve never had a visit from my family. I only have a sister and we’re not close. Charlie, your correspondence has greatly helped me stay afloat.” During their visit, they get to know each other, and Otis explains some of what he has learned and experienced.

Artist Descriptions

Fred Johnson is a formerly incarcerated person who addresses the human rights of drug users and formerly incarcerated persons, as well as the wider community, guided by harm reduction principles. He has worked in policy analysis and syringe access programs throughout the US. He plays trumpet, and has recorded a CD, History Speaking (A Tribute to my Mentors).

Charlie Hinton attended the founding meeting of Bay Area Gay Liberation in 1975, and through BAGL began his ongoing prison work. He is also a member of Haiti Action Committee. Solitary Man is Charlie’s second theatrical endeavor, after his solo show Life Wish. He is the author of Life Wish: Essays, Letters, Songs, Solo Performance, Haiku written over time.

Trump Sonnets or: How I’ve Taken on Donald Trump (and Won)

Written & Performed Ken Waldman
joined by musical guest, John Pedersen
Directed by Ken Waldman
Wednesday, March 6, 2019 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

You want satire? We have satire! Fiddling Poet, Ken Waldman, has processed Donald Trump’s unlikely rise by writing 220 sonnets in the two years after the November 2016 election. That’s three ambitious books. 75 poems are in trump’s voice, plus 145 are commentary. Here Waldman brings a musical accompanist so the show is a combination of Appalachian-style string-band music, original poetry, and stories of how Waldman wrote these poems–and what’s happened when he’s read them around the country, including to arch-conservatives.

Artist Biography

Ken Waldman has nine full-length poetry collections, a memoir (about his life as a touring artist), a children’s book, and has recorded nine CDs, including two for kids. A former college professor with an MFA in Creative Writing, he’s been a freelance writer, musician, and performer since 1995, often touring as Alaska’s Fiddling Poet. he continues to appear at the widest range of venues, from performing arts centers, festivals, and colleges, to small clubs, and house concerts.

The Road Taken

Written & Performed by Geoff Hoyle
Directed by David Ford
Saturday, March 23, 2019 at 8:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | Ages 11+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Geoff Hoyle’s new solo show looks at how the two roads that diverge in a yellow wood become The Road Taken. Hoyle explores how “what was”
dances with “what might have been”. Biography meets autobiography,
some true, some fictional. See the show and guess the truth!

Artist Biography

Geoff Hoyle, the original Zazu in The Lion King on Broadway, clowned with The Pickle Family, Circus, Cirque du Soleil and Circus Flora. He has performed his original solo shows (The Convict’s Return, Feast of Fools, The First Hundred Years) throughout the US and Europe. His most recent solos, Geezer and Lear’s Shadow, premiered at The Marsh.

The Jap Box

Written & Performed by David Hirata
Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

In 1866, magician Namigoro Sumidagawa became the first Japanese citizen in over 200 years to receive a passport to leave the country. As part of the “Imperial Japanese Troupe,” he dazzled audiences across Victorian America with his exotic stage magic and became a media celebrity. By the time he returned home, his prize trick had been appropriated by American magicians in yellowface and rechristened as “The Jap Box.” A century later, Japanese American magician David Hirata excavates the mysteries and stories of “The Jap Box.” Through monologue and magic, The Jap Box unveils illusions and surprises from the Japanese American story.

Artist Biography

David Hirata is a Bay Area magician and solo performer. He is the creator and performer of Kanji By Starlight & Magical Holiday, which both ran at The Marsh. The Jap Box premiered at the San Diego International Fringe Festival in 2018, where it won the award for “Outstanding World Premiere Production.”

Hippie Kid

Written & Performed by Zappo Diddio
Directed by Zappo Diddio
Wednesday, January 30, 2019 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 17+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Zappo’s solo performance covers a spectrum of his extraordinary life experiences. From growing up as a kid in a hippie commune, to his work with children in schools, hospitals, and orphanages, he peels into the the rich fruits of joy and pain. The show ebbs and flows through joys and hilarity of his unique childhood, the unanswered questions relating to abandonment by his father and the profound grief he continues to navigate since his mother’s passing many years ago. Zappo goes into comical antics of growing up around rock & roll festivals and his collection of short stories and quotes from the many kids he’s worked with. Through hysterical comedy, story telling and original songs, Zappo reflects on his path to healing through loving kindness and service toward young people in crisis. Forgiveness and reconciliation are a reoccuring theme as he makes efforts to reconnect with his dad and leaning into his paternal Jewish ancestry. Exploring how life’s challenges call us into the healing of mind, body, emotion and spirit, Zappo stumbles through the gauntlet of recovering health and his once joyful life after 12 years of ongoing negotiation with Lymes disease. Like life itself, this performance leads to deep meaning as it moves along a roller coaster of hilarious, heart opening story telling.

Artist Biography

I have devoted the last twenty five years to doing what I can to spread love and joy into as many hearts and minds as I can reach. Most of this effort has been through tremendous time and energy spent in countless programs offering guidance, enrichment, and emotional healing to children of all backgrounds imaginable.

Who Killed Sylvia Plath?

Written by Lynne Kaufman
Performed by Lorri Holt
Directed by Jayne Wenger
Wednesday, January 23, 2019 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No intermission | Ages 17+

Show Description

Poet Sylvia Plath returns to her burial place in West Yorkshire, England to view the third replacement of her tombstone. The previous ones have been defaced by feminists who chiseled off her married name, claiming it was Ted Hughes who caused Sylvia’s death. Did he?  Was her suicide at 30 a good career move? Would she do it again? And what’s it got to do with us today?

Artist Biographies

Lorri Holt
Lorri has been a leading actress in the SF Bay Area for over three decades.  She has performed with Berkeley Rep, Aurora Theatre, Cutting Ball, A.C.T., The Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, San Francisco Playhouse, San Jose Rep, TheatreWorks, Civic Arts Rep, and many commercial productions in SF, Regional & International credits include work at La Jolla Playhouse, Wilma Theater in Philadelphia, Birmingham Rep in England & London’s Barbican Theatre.  For ten years, Ms. Holt was a company member of the groundbreaking Eureka Theater, where she appeared in many productions, and originated the role of Harper Pitt in Tony Kushner’s Angels In America.

Most recently, Lorri co-wrote (with Zack Rogow) and starred in her first solo show, Colette Uncensored, which premiered at The Marsh in San Francisco, was extended there and then in Berkeley, and in May of 2018 premiered in London at the Canal Café Theatre.  Colette Uncensored received stellar reviews and was nominated for a TBA Best Solo Production. Lorri was also nominated for Best Solo Performance at the 2017 Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Awards.

Lynne Kaufman
She is the author of  twenty full length plays, three novels and dozens of short stories. In 2018  she had four world premieres, “William Blake in Hollywood” was produced by the Neil Simon Festival Theatre. “Two Minds” and “Acid Test” were produced at The Marsh Theatre and “Sex Scandal” by Unscripted Theatre.

Her play “Daisy in the Dreamtime” was presented by The Fountain Theatre in Los Angeles  as a recipient of a Hot Properties Grant from the L.A. Arts Council and The A.S.K. Foundation    It had its New York City premiere at The Abingdon Theatre and its university premiere at S.F. State University as the recipient of the  Rella Lossy Playwright’s Award. “Daisy in the Dreamtime” was published in Women Playwrights: Best New Plays and by Dramatic Publishing. She was  the recipient of The Otis Guernsey Outstanding New Voice in American Theatre Award from The William Inge Theatre Festival.

Jayne Wenger is a director and dramaturg dedicated to the development of new works for the theater. Current projects include Loving Janis, a new musical by Kyra Gordon and a collaboration on Deke Weaver’s The Unreliable Bestiary . Recent projects include Blues Is A Woman, a musical collaboration with Pamela Rose; and Colette Uncensored, by Lorri Holt and Zack Rogow;. She is an alumna of Djerassi Resident Artist Program; a Guest Artist for The Last Frontier Theatre Conference; a member of the Dramatists Guild, Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas, and the League of Professional Theater Women.

Rabbi Sydney Mintz: You May Think I’m Funny But It’s Not

Written & Performed by Rabbi Sydney Mintz
Wednesday, December 12, 2018 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Rabbi Sydney Mintz wonders why so many Jews, non-Jews and wannabe Jews are completely mystified about who the Jews are, where we come from, where we’re
going and how to get there. This lesbian Rabbi’s enthralling, differently gendered, seriously funny one-woman show will touch you in your kishkes, even if you don’t know what they are. After 25 years as a rabbi at one of the largest congregations in the U.S, Sydney Mintz steps off the pulpit (for one night only!) to share the uncensored, hilarious and deeply moving stories that have transformed her vision of the world. Punctuated with stranger-than-fiction visuals and stirring live music, “You May Think I’m Funny…” takes the audience on a wild, hilarious and fast-
paced ride through the lens of a rabbi who is both devoted to her calling and constantly questioning what it all means.

Artist Biography

Rabbi Sydney Mintz was ordained as a Rabbi in 1997 by the Hebrew Union
College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York City. She has served as Rabbi at
Congregation Emanu-El for 21 years. Sydney is a member of the US State Department’s Working Group on Religion and Social Justice and led Team Emanu-El in the AIDS Lifecycle Ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles. In 2016, Rabbi Mintz became a Resident in the San Francisco Film Society’s Film House Residency program.

Border People

Written & Performed by Dan Hoyle
Directed by Charlie Varon
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Some early work-in-progress monologues from Hoyle’s new piece of journalistic theater Border People. Based on conversations and interviews from the South Bronx housing projects courtyards, Refugee Safe Houses on the Northern Border with Canada, and travels along the Southwestern Border and into Mexico.

The Designated Daughter

Written & Performed by Victoria Podesta
Directed by Mark Kenward
Wednesday, November 7, 2018 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | Ages 15+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Every family has one: the dutiful child who stays behind shouldering familial responsibilities. Victoria wasn’t that daughter. But when 73-pound Marie, her elderly mother, moves in with her–wreaking comic chaos, forcing painful confrontation with a buried past, and prompting the search for the perfect pillow–she has one last chance to build a bond of truth and love.

Artist Biography

Victoria Podesta first performed at The Marsh almost 30 years ago with the solo work “Far to Go.” Had she known that title would be prophetic, she might have chosen another. Now, she is returning to the theater with The Designated Daughter and other tales of the mother/daughter bond/bind. The Designated Daughter premiered in Three Cat Productions 2017 SOLO Chicago Festival.

I Should Have Listened

Written & Performed by Carrie Kartman
Directed by Mark Kenward
Tuesday, October 16, 2018 at 7:30pm
In the Berkeley TheaterStage
50 minutes | No intermission | Ages 10+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Does the word “family,” send a shiver up your spine? Then this frightening, true tale of one family listening and not listening, at all the wrong times, is for you. It began with a simple Sunday afternoon hike in the redwoods. What could go wrong with a hike? Plenty, when the family comes along. Within hours, a daughter who’s a mother, her partner, and her brother, suddenly find themselves fighting for the lives of their twin boys and one dangerously deluded grandmother.

Artist Biography

Carrie has been acting since the age of ten, when she appeared in a school production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She studied acting with Jean Shelton, and has degrees in Drama and Playwriting, from San Francisco State University. She has performed on Bay Area stages, and one memorable summer, she was lucky enough to be directed by Edward Albee, in a CSU Summer Arts production of his play, Finding the Sun. Her plays have been seen here at The Marsh, the Next Voices series, Playground, the Women’s Work series, DivaFest, and the S.F. Fringe Festival. She has also published articles, essays and short fiction. In her spare time she is an educator, and enjoys hanging out with kids, and yes, hiking.

The Wrong Kind of Pessimism

Written & Performed Paul Sussman
Developed with Charlie Varon
Directed by Kenny Yun
Wednesday, October 10, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No intermission | Ages 15+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

We’ve traded in our caves, tripled our life spans, written Ulysses, and gone to the moon. And along the way, melted the ice caps, oppressed the crap out of each other, and elected you-know-who. Are we getting anywhere? From the first gentrification (sorry, Neanderthals!) to the secrets of the genome, Paul takes on (and smacks down!) the big questions of Progress, Faith and Where it All Ends.

Artist Biography

Paul Sussman developed his approach to melodrama and farce through years of work in financial management with Bay Area nonprofit organizations. He has written and performed a series of solo pieces through the eyes of road-ragers, insects, Anabaptists, cannibals, and others who persist in the search for meaning amidst the puzzling evidence.

The Ins and Outs of Fingers, Spoons, and an Open Marriage

Written & Performed by Pascale Roger
Developed with Nicolette Chaffey, Andrea Hart and Tracy Ward
Directed by Andrea Hart
Wednesday, October 3, 2018 at 7:30pm
85 minutes | No intermission | Ages 18+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Throwing caution to the Canadian wind, a woman accepts her husband’s request for an open marriage and leaps into an affair with an aloof successful lawyer. How will she keep her footing in such perilous terrain? The Ins and Outs of Fingers, Spoons and an Open Marriage follows one woman as she’s shuffled between men, sexual encounters, beach and lake outings, diving into unchartered waters where she meets every challenge with increasing grit.

Artist Biography

Pascale is an actor, writer, director, who first performed her own material in New York City in the mid 90s. As an actor she is best known for the intensity of the roles she takes on such as Rosannah in Brilliant Traces, May in Fool For Love, and to have “beautifully” interpreted several of Tennessee Williams’ women because of being “rail thin and deeply in touch with her emotions for the [playwright’s] fraught women.” (Elissa Barbard, Canadian Arts Reporter). As a writer, several of her One Act Plays were produced in NYC in the 90s as well as another solo, Love From Behind. Her full-length play, Family In Church received an Arts Grant Award and was produced in Nova Scotia in 2012. Directing credits include An evening with Molière, The Four Lives of Marie, 7 Days in the Life of Simon Labrosse.

“The Happiest White Lady Ever!” & “Tennessee Times”

2 Pieces part of the Times Unseen Initiative
Performed by Pearl Louise & Rebecca Fisher
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $15

“Tennessee Times” by Rebecca Fisher

“The Happiest White Lady Ever!” by Pearl Louise

I Love Men

Written & Performed by Lynn Ruth Miller
Wednesday, September 5, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Does the perfect man exist and at the age of 84, does Lynn Ruth Miller need to find him? This show examines the men she has loved and what she had learned from each of them about the connection we all yearn for as human beings and the differences between love, infatuation, and lust.

Funny and touching stories and songs from one of London and Edinburgh’s best loved performers. This show was performed to four and five stars reviews in Edinburgh, Brighton, and London and now at The Marsh in San Francisco. Her act is autobiographical but with an infectious universality about it. The feminism in the piece is genuine, the lived plight of a woman who has dared to say no to society’s expectation Female arts 2015.

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 84, she made 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 was 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.

“Unfriending Texas” & “Inauguration Vacation”

2 Pieces part of the Times Unseen Initiative
Performed by Harriet Patterson & Annette Roman
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

“UNFRIENDING TEXAS” by Harriet Patterson
Harriet grew up a liberal democrat in Dallas. Now she lives in the Bay Area and grapples with how to communicate with conservative folks back home. Do you confront them? Try to understand? Or cut them off? As she tries to figure this out for herself, she talks to conservative Texans, many of whom are trying to understand the same questions. It’s deep research on how to maintain a civil discourse.

An Excerpt of “INAUGURATION VACATION” by Annette Roman
Armed with only a pink pussy hat, a reluctant activist heckles Trump voters on Inauguration Day and inadvertantly winds up in a viral video with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. It’s a far cry from Obama’s first inauguration, which she also attended nine years before. Now, when one outrage follows another and the worst first family appears to be stalking her, can she combat protest fatigue…?!

Artist Biographies

Harriet Patterson is a Bay-Area based writer, solo performer and nonprofit executive.  Alongside her 20+ year career in health nonprofits, she has appeared on Bay Area stages at Solo Sundays, Monday Night Marsh and Tell It On Tuesdays and her first solo show, Sail On!, debuted at the Boulder International Fringe Festival in 2017.  She will make her Bay Area debut with Sail On! in September 2018 at the San Francisco Fringe Festival. A native of Dallas, Texas, Harriet lives in the East Bay with her husband and cat where she enjoys breakfast tacos, photography, and spending time outdoors.

Annette Roman is the creator/performer of 3 solo shows: Hitler’s Li’l AbominationAnimal Love, and Inauguration Vacation, performed at 16 theater festivals in the U.S., U.K., and Canada since 2011. Her short and one-act plays have been produced in San Francisco at Holidays With a Twist 2016, the Playwrights Center of San Francisco’s Playoffs 2016, 24-Hour Playfest 2016 and 2017, and by Theater Pub in 2015. In cooperation with The World Bank and VIZ Media, she wrote 1 World Manga: Passages, a graphic novel about the developing world, which has been translated into various languages. She is a member of the Monday Night PlayGround Writers Pool. Her short play “Statuesque,” or Victoria, will receive a staged reading at this year’s San Francisco Olympians Festival.


Written & Performed by Kate Robards
Directed by Maureen Monterubio
Wednesday, August 8, 2018 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | Ages 17+
Tickets: $15

“With her experience in stand-up, Robards knows how to drop a punchline and put together a tightly wound, joke-focused story.” Theasy (New York review)

“Robards’ onstage personality and knack for comedic delivery make this unique story immensely enjoyable.” Theasy (New York review)

Show Description

PolySHAMory is new award-winning play that has toured to Tampa, Atlanta, DC, and Providence, R.I.  It is the follow up to the acclaimed Ain’t That Rich which ran for seven weeks at The Marsh in 2017. The San Francisco Chronicle said of Ain’t That Rich “Robards’ dissects with wry wit and sharp detail the socioeconomic strata. It’s not just a culture clash but a collision of different universes.”

Artist Biography

Kate Robards is a writer and performer based in New York City where she performs stand up, improv, and acts in plays and other creative projects regularly. Her three solo shows have toured the country and internationally. She is a graduate of improvisation at UCB NY and has an MFA in writing from California College of the Arts. She has studied solo performance with Dael Orlandersmith (Pulitzer Prize Nominee), David Ford (The Marsh Resident Artist), Martin Moran (Obie Award Winner), and Lauren Weedman (HBO’s Looking). A portion of proceeds from every PolySHAMory show are donated to Women and Children’s Shelters.

“I Want to Sell Democracy” & “On the Brink”

2 Pieces part of the Times Unseen Initiative
Performed by Irma Herrera & Linda Joy
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, July 11, 2018 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

How do we get fair and representative government? By making sure we have well-educated voters. Stacey Barrera, a social justice activist with a master’s degree, and a decade of work under her belt, returns to school to get a teaching credential. As a social studies teacher in an overwhelming Mexican-American public high school in Corpus Christi, Texas, Miss Barrera’s mission is to sell democracy.

“ON THE BRINK” by Linda Joy
“On the Brink” introduces audiences to people living in “the other California” and contrasts their concerns with that of professional people in the Bay Area. As part of the Times Unseen initiative, for the past two years Linda Joy has been listening to people living in Red Colusa County, the second poorest county in California with an economy based on agriculture. Living at the Stony Creek Apartments for adults over 55, she experiences the challenges of living in a remote affordable housing complex, helping her understand her neighbors to some extent. But unlike the other residents, she brings a sociologist’s eye and ear to her observations of the area. In listening to what people repeatedly talk about without prompting from her, she discovers their preoccupations and world views and then brings these characters to life onstage.

Artist Biographies

IRMA HERRERA is a playwright and solo performer. Her one-woman show, Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?, explores themes of identity and the importance of valuing cultural differences. Herrera spent five years as a journalist and three decades as a public-interest lawyer promoting gender equality and advocating on behalf of ethnic and racial minorities.

LINDA JOY – While spending 16 years as a university professor and researcher with a PhD in Sociology and another in Language, Culture and Cognition, Linda Joy yearned to exercise her spontaneity, imagination and creativity through the arts. So while her academic peers were readying their promotion files and cranking out publications, she spent summers making up scripts for solo shows at obscure venues, doing improv, writing poetry for public readings, and experimenting with video and mixed media. Then she leapt into the unknown. She now brings attention to social issues through solo performance, written commentaries, and lectures for life-long learning programs. She created and leads The Imagination Playshop for Adults with its motto: “Question, Imagine, Improvise, Create.”

Border People

Written & Performed by Dan Hoyle
Directed by Charlie Varon
Wednesday, June 27, 2018 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Some early work-in-progress monologues from Hoyle’s new piece of journalistic theater Border People. Based on conversations and interviews from the South Bronx housing projects courtyards, Refugee Safe Houses on the Northern Border with Canada, and travels along the Southwestern Border and into Mexico.

Thick & Thin

Written & Performed by Kelly Rafferty
Directed by Martha Rynberg
Wednesday, June 13, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Kelly has recently starved and over-exercised her way to success. Ph.D.? Check. Dream job? Check. Brilliant, attractive partner? Check. But the jig is up. Kelly is suddenly very sick and trying her husband’s patience. Things have to change, but how, exactly, do you stop having an eating disorder? Apparently Kelly’s recovery has little to do with food and everything to do with facing fatphobia, infidelity, and the ghost of Tony Robbins.

Artist Biography

Kelly Rafferty​ is a writer, performer, and educator. Wielding an odd sense
of humor and finely-tuned analytical skills, she makes the familiar strange and invites
audiences to see the world differently. Recent projects include The Van Life, a comedic
webseries released in 2017 and It’s a Disaster: Live, a site-specific adaptation of Todd
Berger’s film It’s a Disaster, which premiered in 2016 at L.A.’s Golden Road Brewery. The
Wendy House, a play co-written with Heather Warren-Crow, was published in Women’s
Studies Quarterly. Kelly’s work has also been produced by Collaboraction Theater
(Chicago), San Francisco Mime Troupe, Torch Theatre (Phoenix), Solo Sundays at Stage
Werx, Berkeley Art Museum, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art, Arizona State
University, and University of California, Berkeley. She has received artists’ residencies at
the San Francisco Mime Troupe, Mary Baldwin University, and the University of San Diego
and grants from the Berkeley Stem Cell Center, the Center for the Study of Sexual
Cultures, Arizona State University, and UC Berkeley. Kelly has a Ph.D. in Performance
Studies from UC Berkeley where she won the Eisner Prize for Outstanding Creative
Achievement and the Mask and Dagger Prize for her playwriting and directing. She’s a
member of the Dramatists Guild.

Trolls in Yoga Pants

Written & Performed by Lisa Rothman
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, June 6, 2018 at 7:30pm
85 minutes | 1 intermission | Ages 15+
Tickets: $15

“A natural born storyteller.” The Bay Area Reporter

Show Description

After her kids dodge bullets at the local park, Lisa brings them to a Winter Solstice Carnival in the ritzy town where she grew up. But now she’s dodging a sanctimonious parent-volunteer, a fire-breathing dragon, and–the most formidable opponent of all–her father…nagging her to move.

Artist Biography

In addition to performing, Lisa helps people make better presentations. Her previous adventures include being the executive producer of the KPFA Morning Show when Andrea Lewis and Philip Maldari were the co-hosts and ballroom dancing in China.

Sex, Math, and Seizures

Written & Performed by Bárbara Selfridge
Directed by David Ford
Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 7:30pm | BERKELEY
Live Pre-show music by Tony Salazar and the New Hope Band at 7pm

60 minutes | 30 minute pre-show music | No intermission
Tickets: $15

“…funny, sad, thoughtful stuff that cuts to the chase  of the human condition.” — The Calgary Herald

Show Description

A comedy about putting family members in mental institutions and old age homes! HaHa! As the bumper sticker says, “Be Kind to Your Children: They’ll Choose Your Nursing Home.” Featuring mathematicians, sex-addicts, and epileptics–i.e. Selfridge’s immediate family.

7pm – Live Pre-show music Tony Salazar and the New Hope Band

Artist Biography

Bárbara Selfridge is a writer & performer from Oakland, CA. This is her first full-length solo performance. Author of “Serious Kissing” a book of short stories, Selfridge has received many fellowships, including one from the National Endowment for the Arts. She works with TheaterUnlimited, a troupe that features actors and playwrights with developmental disabilities: Stagebridge, which features seniors; and The Marsh, a breeding ground for New York.

Don’t You Have Dignity, Mama?

Written & Performed by Xiaojuan Shu
Developed with David Ford
Wednesday, May 9, 2018 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Don’t You Have Dignity, Mama? is a memoir of awakening and rediscovering what it really means to come “home.” Being a peasant’s daughter was a source of great shame for Xiaojuan growing up in China. In the 1980s and 1990s, peasants, who were 80% of the population of China, were not only excluded from the social benefits that even low-paid state-run factory workers enjoyed, but they also had to pay heavy agricultural taxes. Xiaouan’s peasant mother did everything possible to support Xiaojuan and her brother in going to school so that they would not become peasants like her. She worked in polluted factories, scavenged, and even sold her own blood to pay for Xiaojuan’s schooling. Can Xiaojuan ever overcome the shame of having a peasant mother? Can she ever pay her mother back? Can she achieve her “American dream” and does she really even want to? This moving story highlights a powerful mother-daughter relationship, a Chinese immigrant’s struggles between two cultures, and a universal soul-searching pilgrimage. This narrative will take you on an authentic human voyage that is poignant at times, and very funny at others. You will laugh, cry, and walk away deeply inspired.  

Artist Biography

Xiao was born and raised in China and studied medicine and business in the universities. She started writing her own stories and cultivating her voice on the stage of The Marsh in San Francisco in 2009. She performed the early version of her show at the 2012 San Francisco Fringe Festival and shared its excerpts in various venues in the Bay Area over the years, including Monday Night Marsh, Tell it On Tuesday, Solo Sundays, Lit Crawl, and other storytelling events. In 2016, she was cast in the play Chinglish, produced by Community Asian Theatre of the Sierra (CATS) in Nevada City. In 2017, CATS sponsored her one-person show at The Open Book in Grass Valley, which was received with a standing ovation. She is grateful for all the teachings in writing, dancing, singing, acting, and performing from many mentors and friends over the years. Writing and performing her own story has been a transformational part of her life of self-discovery.

Throwing Darts in Traffic: Teaching in America

Written & Performed by Howard Egger-Bovet
Directed by Howard Egger-Bovet
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | 1 intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Throwing darts in traffic is a robust one-man play that takes a hard look at a subject generally ignored by playwrights, education in America. It may be the fastest paced one-man show ever. Punctuated with original and often touching songs, the comedy/drama takes us inside the life of a teacher who is both devoted to his calling and rapidly approaching burn-out. Anyone who is or has ever been a teacher or a student, which pretty much covers all of us, will find something to relish or regret in this surprising show.

Artist Biography

Howard Egger-Bovet holds a degree in Psychology and Performing Arts as well as having a California Teaching Credential. He has taught for over 27 years. In 1995, Mr. Egger- Bovet began performing his one-man history musical shows for children nationwide. The shows were loosely based on the Little, Brown five-book history series, USKids History Series, he co-authored. In 2001, Bert Salzman, educational filmmaker and Oscar Winner (“Angel and Big Joe,” 1975) guided the shows to Video/DVD. A feature-length film on the American Constitution “The American Constitution: Bundle of Compromises,” produced, in 2006, resulted in  reviews leading to a AEP’s Distinguished Achievement Award nomination and garnered two Telly Awards ( In 2009, Mr. Egger-Bovet began producing hip-hop films on complex 21st century issues for teens. These short films, besides dedicated to school audiences, have been part of a live multi-media school presentation for teens and have gained recognition in film festivals winning “best video” at the Sonoma International Film Festival.  Mr. Egger-Bovet has appeared on TV and numerous national radio programs such as Talk America, AP News, and he has taped shows for NPR’s affiliate WNYE in Brooklyn, New York.  Currently, Howard Egger-Bovet has just finished writing/performing a one-man show, “Throwing Darts in Traffic: Teaching in America.” (

Last of the Red Hot Tenants

Written & Performed by Lois Pearlman
Directed by Dianna Grogg
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 at 7:30pm
1 hour 45 minutes | 1 Intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

What would you do if somebody offered you over half a million dollars to leave your rent-controlled apartment? In 1980’s Manhattan Jean Herman’s response to this dilemma inspired thousands and left a third-story walk-up embedded in a 31-story office building. This is her true story.

Artist Biography

Louis Pearlman has performed in dozens of Sonoma County productions, including “Driving Miss Daisy,” and “Steel Magnolias.” She has written for several publications, including The North Bay Bohemian and The Advocate. This is her first solo show.

Yesterday is Tomorrow

Written & Performed by Genie & Marie Cartier
Directed by Genie & Marie Cartier
Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at 7:30pm
55 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 12+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Yesterday is Tomorrow is the variety show for the revolution. The Cartier Sisters take a satirical look at the past, present and future of a world increasingly hostile to artists and dominated by technology. With singing, dancing, acrobatics and comedy. Also, feminism.

Artist Biography

Genie Cartier is a San Francisco native with a background in Chinese acrobatics
and aerial rope training. She has performed a unique mix of acrobatics and hand-balancing on a folding chair all over San Francisco and Los Angeles, with companies
such as Hubba Hubba Revue, Fishnet Follies, Circus Finelli, Picklewater Clown
Festival, Literary Foolery and Machina Candeo. She was the co-creator and star of
Genie and Audrey’s Dream Show!, an award-winning two-woman circus, which
toured fringe festivals in 4 different cities. In 2016, she performed in Crescent Moon
Theater’s Isabella and the Jewel Divine, a circus theater fable staged in St Gregory’s church. She graduated from UCLA with a BA in English/ Creative Writing and earned an MFA in Creative Writing/ Poetry from SFSU. Her first novella Fog City Summer ran on as a 6-part serial.

Marie Cartier is a multidisciplinary artist born and raised, living and working in San
Francisco. A trained actor, her work in theater also spans everything from light and
sound operation to props design and education. She teaches with the San Francisco
Mime Troupe’s Youth Theater Project and even spent a year working in the booth at
the Marsh as a technician on a number of shows. Marie also goes on biking
adventures to add to her “Plein Air SF” painting series, celebrating the natural
beauty of San Francisco and Northern California. She holds BA’s in Theater and
Peace and Conflict Studies from UC Berkeley. Check out the wide variety of her
work at

Keeping Up With The Jorgensons

Written & Performed by Jeremy Julian Greco
Directed by Mark Kenward
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 15+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

The year is 1982. Reagan is President, E.T. is released, and Jeremy takes a road trip with his week-end father to Orange County. Forced to repeatedly tickle his father’s feet, sleep in his grandmother’s bed, and go to an unknown relative’s wedding, he’ll do and say anything that will secure a visit to the most magical place on Earth: Disneyland.

Artist Biography

Jeremy Julian Greco (playwright, performer): Jeremy Julian Greco, a San Francisco based actor, director, and writer. Greco’s first solo show, With Held, directed by Mark Kenward, was based on six months of interviews with San Francisco artist and writer John Held Jr. Greco performed With Held throughout the Bay Area, including The San Francisco Fringe Festival and the Marin Fringe Festival, where Greco won a Critics’ Circle Best Actor Award for his portrayal of the artist. In 2013, the Huffington Post wrote, “With Held is a quietly transformative work, insightful, compelling, humorous, and ripe with the stage should always possess – pathos.”

Greco has performed excerpts of his newest solo work, Keeping Up with the Jorgensons, at The Yes to Everything Festival and the 2017 San Francisco Fringe Festival to sold out crowds where it won Best of the San Francisco Fringe. George Heymont of the Huffington Post said, “Keeping Up With The Jorgensons proved to be a delightful hour of mirth mixed with adolescent angst brought on by a cast of characters that could make All in the Family, Roseanne, and Married…with Children seem a bit too Disneyfied.”

Stop Stopping the Unstoppable 

Performed by Ross Everett & Ben Wickham
Written & Directed by Ross Everett
Wednesday, February 21, 2018 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Join transformational life-coach “Dale Thorhammer” in his satirical look at the world of personal development you’ve been waiting for. Come see the personal development seminar that will have you laughing, thinking, loving, and growing–ALL AT THE SAME TIME.

Artist Biography

Ross Everett is an award-winning and critically acclaimed comedian and Bay Area native. Ross initially garnered notoriety from his YouTube videos and as a host on the popular YouTube channel SourceFed. Since then, his work has been featured on NBC, Fox, Discovery, and Sirius XM.

BRAVO 25: Your A.I. Therapist Will See You Now

Written & Performed by Eliza Gibson
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, January 31, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $15

“Gibson’s characters are well articulated and her stage presence is stellar.” –Donald Munro, Fresno Bee

Show Description

Amber the A.I. therapist is here. Broken hearts, addicts in recovery, a polyamorous lesbian awaits the arrival of Superintelligence, a grieving savant who likes donuts… Wait. Someone needs a piece of somebody’s liver? Maybe it’s time to return to our breath.

In BRAVO 25, winner of the ENCORE! Producers’ Award at the Hollywood Fringe Festival June 2017, Eliza Gibson draws on her real-life experience as a social worker and therapist to bring to life an A.I. avatar and six humans in a support group unlike any you’ve ever seen!

Artist Biography

Eliza Gibson is a writer and solo performer based in San Francisco. Trained as a classical pianist and drummer, she wrote her first show – Dialogues with Madwomen – in 1995 after returning to the U.S. from the former Yugoslavia, where she had been a humanitarian aid worker. And Now, No Flip Flops?!, also directed by David Ford, was performed at various Bay Area venues as well as in festivals in Fresno, NYC, and Providence, Rhode Island (2014 – 2016). A clinical social worker, Eliza currently works at a health technology company which may or may not have provided inspiration for BRAVO 25. (For more info, visit

The Clyde Always Show!

Performed by Clyde Always–The Bard of the Lower Haight
Directed by Clyde Always
Wednesday, January 24, 2018 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $15

Show Description

Bored? How about a dose of Clyde Always: raucous.. uplifting.. a sensitive-fun loving-powerhouse of zaniness! —this clever narrator guides you through an action-packed, hipsteriferous hour of shiver-giving tall-tales, foot-stomping songs, and hilarious monologues-in-verse covering everything under the urban overhang (and then some).  Side-effects may include: blown minds, somersaulting imaginations and lingering happiness.

Artist Biography

Clyde Always (the Bard of the Lower Haight), being the All-American tall-talesman and dime-a-rhyme vaudevillian that he is, has successfully provided audiences, both at home and abroad, with the refreshing splash of laughter and the snug comfort of joy; to inspire happiness is his primary objective here on planet Earth. His works have recently been accepted to exclusive publications: Poetalk, The Broke Bohemian, 17 Very Funny Very Short Stories and others. He lives in San Francisco with his wife Haylee the Ukulele.

I’m Always Drunk in San Francisco

Co-Written & Performed by Geoffrey Pond
Directed by Robert Ernst
Wednesday, December 6, 2017 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 12-90
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description

A loving tribute to the culture and history of the greatest city in the world by some of the greatest writers of all time. San Francisco history comes to life in a fun and lively show.  

I’m Always Drunk In San Francisco featuring material originally written to be read only, from such great historic journals as Colliers Magazine and The New Yorker to mention a couple and transforming them into a series of animated theatrical monologues. Jack Kerouac’s account of the famous Six Gallery poetry reading in 1955 where Allen Ginsberg first read his poem Howl, the Beat scene was born. Jack London’s terrifying eyewitness account of the ’06 earthquake and fire. H.L. Mencken’s humorous little known story of the Bourbon fueled 1920 Democratic National Convention at the then newly built San Francisco (Bill Graham) Civic Auditorium.  Mark Twain’s impressions of 1860’s San Francisco including his first public humor lecture at Maguire’s Academy of Music on Pine Street. Plus the poetic and historic writings from the author of Cool Gray City of Love: 49 Views of San Francisco, editor of San Francisco Magazine and San Francisco Chronicle columnist Gary Kamiya. Created and performed by Subterranean Shakespeare’s artistic director Geoffrey Pond, actor, musician and over fifty year resident of the Bay Area.  He offers his own take on San Francisco’s amazing cultural history that has influenced the whole world. Directed by Robert Ernst, actor, writer, director and  solo performer. He has performed and directed at every major theater in the Bay Area.

Artist Biography

He has been an observer and participant in some of the great eras of Bay Area history and culture over the past 45 years. He spent his youth attending many of the late sixties Bay Area historic events from be-ins and peace marches to witnessing some of the greatest writers and performers of the time including Allen Ginsberg, Ken Kesey, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, The Jefferson Airplane, The Grateful Dead, Joan Baez, and The Rolling Stones from The Fillmore Auditorium and Winterland to Altamont. Later he was a co-producer in the SF and LA Punk scenes working with such bands as The Dead Kennedys, Public Image Ltd,  X, Black Flag, and The Go-Go’s to mention a few. In the late eighties he went  back to his first loves, acting and playing music. Performing with The Shotgun Players in the early 90’s where he met Stanley Spenger who started Subterranean Shakespeare in Berkeley. He has been artistic director since 2001. As an actor he has played Caliban, Claudius, and Falstaff among his favorite Shakespeare roles along with the part of Shelly Levine in Glengarry Glen Ross. He has produced over 40 shows since the mid ninties. He directed a revival of John O’Keefe’s renowned anti play Mimzabim! that ran for twelve weeks in both Berkeley and San Francisco in 1999.  He has also sat behind the drum kit and sung with bands – The Sunz of Alien Techknowlogy,  The Serfs (with director Robert Ernst)  and Sub Shake’s house band The Rude Mechanicals, producing two critically acclaimed cds SHAKESPEARE’S GREATEST HITS and FOLKSPEARE. He is thrilled to be working with director Robert Ernst, the grandfather of Bay Area solo performance. 

Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name?

Written & Performed by Irma Herrera
Wednesday, November 15, 2017 at 7:30pm
65 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 14+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description

What’s in a name? A minefield of misplaced notions–comical, sad, demeaning. Irma’s observations from the front-lines, notes from American history, and laugh out-loud humor allow us to consider what it will take for all of us to get along.

Artist Biography

When Irma Herrera gives her name its correct Spanish pronunciation, some people assume she’s a foreigner. She’s not. Irma proudly claims her Tejano roots and her Mexican and American identity as well as her native languages: Spanish and English. Irma worked three decades as a San Francisco lawyer and journalist.Her solo play Why Would I Mispronounce My Own Name? was recently named Best of 2017 SF Fringe. Her play sheds light and throws shade on our prejudices and assumptions.

Fight for 52¢

Written & Performed by Howard Petrick
Directed by Mark Kenward
Wednesday, November 1, 2017 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Dunne was a fascinating character and Petrick is an expert storyteller.” –Winnipeg Free Press

“A timely show, and it tells an important story about class struggle and the roots of American organized labour. There are plenty of laughs as well.” –Apt 613 (Ottawa)

“It’s not just the forgotten history that makes V.R. Dunne so engrossing–it’s the urgent, timely message that the man brings.” –Edmonton Journal

Show Description

Vincent Raymond Dunne’s whole life and character had prepared him for the Minneapolis truck drivers strikes of 1934. Their victory would lead to the organization of over 250,000 workers across the Midwest, making them the most influential strikes in American labor history. This is the story of an organizer of those strikes and their lessons for today.

Artist Biography

Howard Petrick presented his first solo performance at The Marsh in December 2007. His show Breaking Rank! is about his experiences organizing against the Vietnam War while in the US Army in 1966-68. It played at The Marsh Berkeley as Rambo: The Missing Years in 2011. Never Own Anything You Have to Paint or Feed, his second show, was his story of working on the railroad and meeting hobos and taking to the rails himself. He has performed at over thirty-five fringe festivals winning “Best of Fringe” awards for both his shows.

Fight for 52¢ is Petrick’s show portraying the revolutionary labor leader Vincent Raymond Dunne, leader of the 1934 Minneapolis truck drivers strikes. Petrick knew Dunne and spent many hours with him in 1965-66 talking with him about his life.

Return to the Scene of the Crime

Written & Performed by David Kleinberg
Directed by Mark Kenward
Wednesday, October 18, 2017 at 7:30pm
65 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description

David Kleinberg returns to Vietnam for the first time in 50 years to revisit the base camp where his buddies died to perform his acclaimed solo theater work on the Vietnam War, “Hey, Hey, LBJ!” But David’s wife, daughter, and his ex-Vietnam buddies all tell him he’s going to get arrested for trying to stage the work without the Communist government’s approval. David is up every night at 3 looking for the first flight home.

Artist Biography

David Kleinberg has been doing solo theater performance for nine years. “Return to the Scene of the Crime” marks his fourth work. David was an editor and writer at the San Francisco Chronicle for 34 years, including 14 years as editor of the Sunday Datebook. David has also been a stand-up comedian for 10 years, appearing with Robin Williams, Richard Lewis, and Dana Carvey.

A Fatal Step

Written & Performed by Jill Vice
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Strictly Ages 13+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“A delicious turn on noir, told from the point of view of the femme fatale.” –Winnipeg Free Press

“An impressive array of body language and vocal talent.” –Huffington Post

Show Description:

On the heels of her award-winning show, Tipped and Tipsy, BEST-OF-FEST winner Jill Vice returns to The Marsh with a one-woman noir that ain’t just black and white.

A Fatal Step. Sex, Lies, & Podiatry. Sometimes a dame has to take matters into her own hands, but good intentions can lead to…MURDER.

Artist Biography:

Jill Vice is a San Francisco based acting/movement coach & director to many new and unusual solo shows (Marga Gomez’s “Pound”, Elaine Magree’s “Holding the Edge”, Rebecca Fisher’s “The Magnificence of the Disaster”, and Lisa Rothman’s “Date Night at Pet Emergency” to name a few). Her quest is to make theater more physically vibrant. For more information about her coaching services, visit

A San Francisco based solo performer herself, Vice’s previous one woman show, “Tipped & Tipsy” was developed at The Marsh in San Francisco with director David Ford and was praised by critics and audiences for its sold out performances at the 2013 SF Fringe Festival where it won Best of Fest. “Tipped & Tipsy” went on to have an extended run at The Marsh SF and has been touring the United States and Canada ever since.

Gangsters in Freaky Land

Written & Performed by David Caggiano
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“That rare solo performer whose perfected physical confidence and absolute control make you forget he’s the only one on stage.” –VUE Weekly, Edmonton, Canada

“A breathtaking and exceedingly likeable performer.” –Huffington Post

Show Description

The creator of Best of SF Fringe winner Jurassic Ark is back with another madcap physical comedy tour-de-force. On the run from the mob, Michael Conti seeks the help of a transgender palm reader. But will hit men murder them before they can escape into the psychic realm? When the New York underworld clashes with Bay Area spirituality things are bound to get really freaky!

Artist Biography

David Caggiano is a playwright and solo performer who studied acting at the HB Studio in NYC and toured with the Celebration Theatre led by Tony Montanaro a master of physical theatre. David’s plays include “Walk Like A Man” at the Noh Space, One acts: “The Arrival,” “The Tinker,” and “The Prophet” at the Soma Theatre. David’s last solo show “Jurassic Ark” won Best of San Francisco Fringe, and ran for 5 weeks at the EXIT Theater with sold out shows at the Edmonton Fringe Festival.

Old-Fashioned, Naughty, Everything: A Glimpse of Emily Dickinson

Performed by Chetana Karel-Michaan
Directed and Co-Created by Andrea Adler
Wednesday, July 19, 2017 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | 1 Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description

Chetana Karel-Machaan brings Emily Dickinson’s prolific words to bright, broad daylight, conveying Emily’s colorful, emotional palate. Chetana enthusiastically reveals Emily’s delight in the written and spoken word, her zealous religious and political views, her raw feminine desires – becoming the three-dimensional person and genius Emily Dickinson molded herself to become. You may have heard Emily Dickinson was just a luminous poet and a recluse. Not this Emily.

Chetana Karel-Michaan (Performer) holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Dramatic Art (with a minor in “Tear Gas Evasion”) from the University of California, Berkeley. Her advisor Robert Goldsby later played Socrates to her Diotima in the vignette of Plato’s Symposium she wrote for the Siddha Meditation Ashram in Oakland!

A native of San Francisco, Chetana has appeared in numerous productions and readings in the Bay Area, as well as being the 3 am sign-off voice for radio station KKHI for many years, reading the words of Baba Muktananda.

Director and Co-creator, Andrea Adler is a Broadway and TV actress, and an alumni member of Café La Mama and The Groundlings. She studied with Lee Strasberg (Actors Studio), Stella Adler (no relation) and Sherman Marks (UCLA) and went on to perform in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Uncle Vanya, Neil Simons Broadway Show, Chapter Two and several TV shows including: Police Woman, The Bob Newhart Show, Bronx. Adler is an award-winning writer:The Science of Spiritual Marketing: Initiation into Magnetism, Creating an Abundant Practiceand her breakout novel, Pushing Upward (published by Hay House), now a screenplay and soon to be produced as a film ( As the founder of, Andrea has toured the globe supporting cultural creatives in their marketing outreach, and is currently working with actors and actresses to develop one person shows.

Taking The High Road: Comedic Confessions From Behind The Cannabis Curtain

Written & Performed by Sherry Glaser
Tuesday, June 27, 2017 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 18+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description

Sherry Glaser stars in her latest solo work TAKING THE HIGH ROAD, a comedic and devastating story of her life living as a “Pot Wife” behind the Cannabis Curtain in Mendocino County.

Sherry Glaser is the star and author of “Family Secrets,” (Off-broadways Longest Running One Woman show), “Oh My Goddess,” and “The BrEaST of Sherry Glaser.” She is the founder of Breasts Not Bombs and the 1st Medical Marijuana Cooperative in the Village of Mendocino California. She is a published author and Radio host on

Two Minds

Written by Lynne Kaufman
Directed by Robert Kelley
Performed by Jackson Davis & Brian Herndon
Wednesday, June 14, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: FREE

Show Description

Ever wish you could make better decisions? So did Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky, two brilliant Israeli psychologists who won a McArthur Genius Award and a Nobel Prize for their groundbreaking research on how we think. The two men were intellectually so aligned they could finish each other’s sentences, but emotionally their differences tore them apart. TWO MINDS tells the story of their unique collaboration and troubled friendship.. And it’s funny.

Lynne Kaufman, author of “Acid test: The many incarnations of Ram Dass,” is the playwright. Robert Kelley, Artistic Director of TheatreWorks, Silicon Valley directs. Actors Jackson Davis and Brian Herndon bring Danny and Amos to dramatic life.

Lynne Kaufman wrote “Acid Test: The Many Incarnations of Ram Dass” which played for nearly a year at The Marsh in SF and Berkeley. She has had twenty full length plays produced at such venues as The Magic Theatre, TheatreWorks Silicon Valley, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Florida Studio Theatre, The Abingdon Theatre in NYC, and The Fountain Theater in LA.

Robert Kelley (Director) founded TheatreWorks Silicon Valley in 1970 and has been artistic director ever since. He has directed over 170 TheatreWorks productions, including many world or regional premieres. He has received the Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Paine Knickerbocker Award and Jerry Friedman Award for Lifetime Achievement. He has also received many BATCC and Back Stage West Garland Awards for Outstanding Direction.

Jackson Davis (Kahneman) has worked throughout the Bay Area acing in classical plays, comedies, dramas, and musicals. He has worked on the world premiers of the musicals Max Understood with Paul Dresher Ensemble, The Fourth Messenger at the Ashby Stage, Hans Christian Anderson at ACT and Josephine at TheaterWorks, as well as the workshop production of Painting America by Lynne Kaufman. He performed the solo piece An Iliad at Pacific Repertory in Carmel and again at San Jose Stage Company, and as Falstaff in The Merry Wives of Windsor at Livermore Shakespeare Festival. He has also appeared with Aurora Theater, The Magic, Marin Theater Company, San Francisco Playhouse, San Jose Repertory Theater, Word for Word, and Z Space.

Brian Herndon (Tversky) last worked with Kelley, Jack, and Lynne on “Painting America,” the musical of the life of Norman Rockwell. He’s been part of numerous New Works Festivals at TheatreWorks, and with Kelley has originated roles in two world premier musicals, “Emma” and “Being Ernest.” Brian has also worked across the Bay Area at Marin Theater Company, Aurora Theater, San Jose Stage, Berkeley Playhouse, Shotgun Players, SF Shakes, and others. He holds his MFA from the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, and studied at the Dell’Arte School. He is proud to be in the PlayGround company and the Actor’s Equity Association.

Ain’t That Rich

Written & Performed by Kate Robards
Wednesday, May 17, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Writer and comedian, Kate Robards, delivers a dazzling solo performance, one as a mesmerizing and powerful as it is funny.” –DC Metro Theatre Arts

“Like a well-made vodka punch, Kate Robards’ well-made story sneaks up on you. It starts out as a lighthearted account of how she married rich and ends up as a discomforting meditation on the relationship between money and self-image. Particularly now, we agonize over issues of money and class and race, her story packs an unexpected wallop.” — DC Theatre Scene

“A rollercoaster of emotion with a Goldilocks balance of comedy and drama. Robards shines!” —Theatre is Easy

Show Description:

Kate grew up “poor.” She thinks her husband is “rich.” His family says that’s not a nice word. As Kate straddles two different extreme ways of life, she realizes what money can and cannot buy, including the possible salvation for a loved one.

You Are Reminded That Your Safety is Your Own unnamedResponsibility

Written & Performed by Janna L. Goodwin
Directed by Lee Massaro
Wednesday, May 10, 2017 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Show Description:

“I’m traveling on my own, renting a cabin at a normally tranquil spot–that’s called foreshadowing–on the banks of the Big Laramie River at the edge of the Medicine Bow National Forest.”

So begins Janna L. Goodwin’s solo show–a series of misadventures, near-calamities and brushes with death–all of which fill the listener with wonder…as in, “I wonder how any of us survives?” Encounters with wildlife and nature’s fury, human predators, bullies, psychopaths, and the most daunting of all forces–fear itself–all unfold in landscapes of the American West. Goodwin looks for, and ultimately finds, meaning and a sense of belonging (if not security) in human relationships, in stories–and in an acceptance of time, physics, and other comfortingly familiar, observable phenomena and processes.


in The Marsh Cafe!

Written & Performed by Charlie Varon
Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at 6:30pm
3 Hours | 1 Meal Break | Ages 15+
Tickets: $30 – $40 sliding scale
*Please Note: Ticket prices include meal. There are only 20 tickets available, and Marsh passes are not valid for this special event.

Charlie Varon performs his new story “Back in the World” and serves you a homemade supper. Appetizer! Charlie’s renowned hot borscht! Fruit for dessert! A new, pop-up experience combining storytelling and food in an intimate setting. “Let me feed your body and soul.”

The Story: Back in the World
Adele Kleinberg: Octogenarian, retired social worker, full-time worrier. An unlikely series of events propels Adele out of her worries, out of her retirement home, and out of her retirement.

Charlie’s Borscht:
Hearty, delicious, revivifying – this is hot Russian borscht made with beets, cabbage, carrots, tomatoes, onion, garlic, dill, and parsley. Vegan. Served with sour cream, and bread & butter.

Artist Biography
The San Francisco Chronicle has credited Charlie Varon with ‘redefining the form’ of solo performance. Charlie has been working at The Marsh for 25 years. His award-winning shows, all developed with and directed by David Ford, include Rush Limbaugh in Night School, The People’s Violin, and Rabbi Sam. Charlie has also collaborated on and directed all of Dan Hoyle’s solo shows at The Marsh. Since 2011, Charlie has been working on a series of stories about old Jews living at a retirement home in San Francisco. These have been brought to the stage in his solo show Feisty Old Jew (2014) and in Second Time Around (2016), his duet with cellist Joan Jeanrenaud. Storyborscht is the next installment in the series.

Tales of a Sexual Tomboy1

Written & Performed by Joyful Raven
Directed by Jael Weisman
Wednesday, February 1, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 18+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Best of the Fringe”San Francisco Fringe Festival 2016

“It’s one of the funniest shows now on display on Bay Area stages.” SF Chronicle

“Raven is a talented and truthful performer…Using skillful impersonations and amazing physical comedy…she connects the stories from her life right before our eyes and comes out stronger on the other side.”Theater is Easy NYC

Tales of a Sexual Tomboy is a raucous one-woman comedy about a horny tomboy, equipped with bad boundaries from her hippie upbringing, looking for empowerment in all the wrong places. Blending standup and storytelling, Joyful Raven recounts some of the more laughable and misguided moments from her treacherous path towards sexual liberation. Her hilarious stories highlight some of the more blatant veins of misogyny that lurk in our culture and in our sex lives. With unflinching honesty, Raven delivers 60 minutes of dark comedy with deep heart.

Born into an iconic Bay Area theater family, Joyful Raven has been performing professionally since childhood. “Tales of a Sexual Tomboy” is returning to SF after touring throughout the US last summer, receiving rave reviews at the NYC international Fringe Festival and winning “Best of Fringe” at the 2016 San Francisco Fringe Festival. Some of her noteworthy theater credits include lead actor and co-author of 4 plays for “Prize of Hope” winning company Human Nature; founding member of the ensemble-driven theater company Rococo Risqué – winner of SF Weekly ‘Best Theater Ensemble’ 2005 and a supporting role in “The Pursuit of Happyness” with Will Smith. She studied theater at Sarah Lawrence College in New York and earned an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. Raven is also teaching artist and works at the Berkeley Rep School of Theater, UC Davis and Florida International University.

Director Jael Weisman is a founding member of the Dell’Arte Players Co. and during his tenure there he directed most of the company’s early works and received multiple ‘Drama-logue Awards.’ He later directed four productions at the San Diego Repertory Co. including the American premiere of Peter Barnes’ Red Noses, which received numerous awards including the ‘Best Production Award’ from San Diego Critics Circle. He has had the honor of co-directing and collaborating with such notables as Carlo Mazzone-Clementi and Joe Chaikin. He also directed the original production of The Dragon Lady’s Revenge, which traveled to NY and was awarded an Obie.

Kicking Facebookunnamed

Written & Performed by Margery Kreitman
Wednesday, January 18, 2017 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Margery is a master of deadpan delivery with the best of comic timing. I could not stop laughing at her amazing observations about breakups and being a social media ‘junkie.’ Poignant and hilarious all at the same time. This is one show you do not want to miss!” -Linda Ayres Fredrick, Bay Area Critics Circle

“Getting over a break-up has never been easy, but the 21st century brings its own set of pst-relationship complications, not the least of which is the danger of social media addiction. Margery Kreitman shares her hilarious and harrowing experiences…” -Marin Independent Journal

“I laughed so hard and felt the poignancy.”Suze Allen, Dramatist Guild

Kicking Facebook is Margery Kreitman’s serio-comic solo performance about her love/hate relationship with social media. After the breakup with her long-time partner, Margery turns to the Internet for diversion, and to seek love and connection. Distracted and unable to write, she finds herself clicking on just one more pet video, news story, or dating site. Rapidly becoming addicted to life on the Internet, her world spirals out of control.

Margery Kreitman is San Francisco playwright and performer. She is the creator and curator of LEZWRITES! for 3Girls Theatre, where she is a resident playwright. Her solo works, The Boot, A Singular Story, and Soul Stone, were launched at the 3Girls Theatre reading series. Margery’s other solo works include Home Plates (Dean Goodman Choice Awards), Thirty Years Later, Phenomenal Dread of Intimacy, Mug Shots, Payday at Pukalani (A Maui Fringe Festival winer) and Bouncing. Her most recent solo work, Kicking Facebook, was a finalist in 3Girls Theatre’s 2015 Salon Series, and was recently performed at the 2016 Fringe Festival, The One for All Solo Artists Festival, YES to Everything Theater Series, and most recently at the 2016 United Solo Theatre Festival, New York City. She has taught Theater Arts extensively, including ACT’s Young Conservatory, The Academy of Art University, and The New Conservatory Theater Center. For more information on Margery Kreitman, visit her website,

The Amazing Bubble Man’s Show for Grown-Up Kids

Written & Performed by Louis Pearlunnamed
Wednesday, December 7, 2016 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Greatest bubble show on Earth.”SF

“It’s a fantastic show. Louis Pearl playfully forms bubbles beyond imagination, and engages the audience with easygoing nonverbal slapstick.” 

“Louis Pearl — aka The Amazing Bubble Man — truly deserves his title. Most of the show is accompanied by gasps and awes…and that’s just the adults…”

“This show captivated its young audience and the adults loved it as well. highly recommended.” British Theater Guide

This is a chance for adults to enjoy Louis’s creations and comedy in a show for adults without children present. though it is a show for ‘adults,’ it is not necessarily an ‘adult’ bubble show.

Louis Pearl has been thrilling audiences worldwide for over 30 years with the art, magic, science, and fun of bubbles. An EdFringe favorite, he has sold out there for the last ten years. Louis explores the breathtaking dynamics of bubbles, combinging comedy and artistry with audience participation and enough spellbinding bubble tricks to keep everyone mesmerized. From square bubbles, fog, and helium bubbles, giant bubbles, volcanoes, tornadoes, and trampolines to people inside bubbles, the Amazing Bubble Man conjures shrieks of laughter and gasps of amazement from all ages. This show will also feature multi-instrumentalist, Jet Black Pearl, accompanying Louis with bubbly music to double your pleasure.

A Tension to Detail

Written & Performed by Gerard Harris
Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 7:30pm
80 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 17+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

“Opening night’s audience ran to the stage to hug him” – The View, Hamilton

“…doing something so unlike conventional storytelling or long-form stand-up comedy that he is dancing on the edge of a knife” – Apt 613, Ottawa

“The man lays himself bare in his stories. his catharsis becomes your own” – Peter Aguero, Host f the Month, NYC

“He just rambled on and on and on and I never wanted him to stop” (Audience Testimonial, Montreal). That’s the best description that we could find for what it’s like to see Gerard Harris live. The acclaimed British storyteller tells tales with an uncommon force, a hyper-fervid mind and “all the wit and timing of an accomplished road comic” (Winnipeg Free Press). Mixing the deeply personal with the profoundly frivolous, A Tension to Detail looks at the foundational tales we tell ourselves and the narrative choices we make as writers of our own lives. You’ll also learn about the functionality of the average bulldog brain and the most humane way to dispatch a lobster into eternity. Equal parts philosophical, psychological and scatological, this award-winning hit show is “an unforgettable storybook ride of twists and turns told by a master craftsman” (Art Murmurs, Wellington, New Zealand), as well as a fresh challenge to storytellers everywhere.

Meanwhile, here’s 30 seconds that sums up the entire show and everything we’re talking about:

A Tension To Detail at The Marsh, San Francisco, Nov 30 from gerard harris on Vimeo.

Gerard Harris is a storyteller, comedian, TV writer, and musician from the UK currently engaged on a perpetual world tour with his three solo shows, A Tension to Detail, Attention Seeker, and Tales You Lose and a ensemble piece Let’s Start a Country! 

Past career glories include guesting multiple times on CBC/PRI’s ‘Wiretap with Jonathan Goldstein’ (best known for his world on This American Life), writing cartoons for 3 year-olds at the BBC, making up jokes for one of the biggest comics in the UK, and performing ‘A Tension to Detail’ over 100 times without getting bored.

He is currently based everywhere, having taken an involuntary vow of poverty 3 years ago upon quitting what was, in retrospect, a great dayjob so he can do this and since that time he has performed in Britain, Ireland, Spain, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and Canada. This is his first legal appearance in the United States.

What They Said About Loveunnamed

Written & Performed by Steve Budd
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, November 16, 2016 at 7:30pm
53 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16+
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale

Best of Fringe: 2016 San Francisco Fringe Festival

“What They Said About Love was funny, poignant thoughtful, and revealing about the search for love. It was an amazing performance.”Richard Connema of Talkin’Broadway

Steve Budd (actor and writer) asked a bunch of couples about the push and pull of love–that is, what keeps them from pulling apart despite annoying the heck out of each other. He spoke to some singles, too, about why they can’t seem to settle down. Meet a New Age couple that met before they met, an artist who can’t resist homeless guys in her West Oakland ‘hood, a guy who falls for women who remind him of his mother, and a pair of Metal Heads who thought it would be a hoot to get married on 6-6-6. Satisfy your voyeuristic tendencies abut how others look for love–and , in some cases, find it. This is documentary theater at its best, following in the footsteps of Anna Deavere Smith. Steve Budd brings 12 characters to life, using their words from hours of interviews. The piece was developed with the help and direction of David Ford at The Marsh, with additional assistance from Slater Penney.

Steve Budd is an actor, writer, storyteller, standup comic, solo performer, and single guy. He has performed at many Bay Area venues, including The Marsh, The San Francisco Fringe Festival, Tell It ON Tuesday, T.M.I., Busting Out, The Shout, The Vent, and Solo Sundays. He’s also acted with many local theater companies, including the San Francisco Playhouse, Custom Made, the New Conservatory Theater, Impact, and Marin Shakespeare. He lives in Oakland. Find out more at

The Center of the Labyrinthunnamed

Written & Performed by Shelley Campbell
Developed with Ann Randolph & Joshua Townshend
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 15 and up
Tickets: $10 – $15 sliding scale
A Benefit for the Worldwide Forgiveness Alliance

After 25 years of spiritual seeking, through the sixties, a high minded ashram complete with brilliant unbalanced guru and imbibing the wisdom traditions of every culture, Shelley is devastated by the sudden death of her grown son.

Grief cracks her wide open as she finds her philosophical belief system is inadequate as it is washed away in the depth of her pain and disorientation. Full of sorrow and shame, she struggles to come to terms with her new life.

She turns to the labyrinth at Grace Cathedral to find a way to hold her regrets with a new awareness of the finality and closeness of death.

A  journey into forgiveness where with wit, black humor, and self-deprecation she discovers the center of her life is much simpler and closer to home than she imagined.

My Stroke of Luck1

Written and Performed by Diane Barnes
Directed by David Ford & Rebecca Fisher
Developed with David Ford
Coaching by Jill Vice
Wednesday, October 12, 2016 at 7:30pm
72 minutes | No Intermission | All Ages
Tickets: $10 – $15 Sliding Scale

“An amazing life story… A wonderful woman to spend 75 minutes with.” -London Yoedeller

“Very honest…very uplifting…” -London Free Press

Diane’s horse suddenly charges through the arena as if she isn’t on his back. Unfortunately, she is. “Why isn’t he listening?” she wonders., never guessing he knows something she doesn’t. Other riders try to take the reins. Diane refuses. She doesn’t realize the wiggly ropey things in her hands are reins.

Diane is fine. She’s in control. Has to be. A mother of two young children, they’re always on her mind. She considers then rejects the possibility she is having a stroke. She knows the symptoms, and yes, she has the worst headache of her life, but she’s a doctor. She diagnoses strokes. Strokes happen to other people. Eventually, Diane releases the reins of her horse. It takes her a lot longer to release the reins of her life and then only when her 14 year-old song yanks them from her.

Diane Barnes has performed My Stroke of Luck at Monday Night Marsh, Tell It On Tuesdays, and at the Orlando, London, Ontario, and Vancouver Fringe Festivals. She will be performing at Solo Sundays on November 13.

After surviving the hemorrhagic stroke that inspired this show, Diane discovered improvisation (Patricia Marsden Ryan and BATS)! “Yes, And,” the mantra of Improv, opened an
alternate universe for this “Humm…show me the evidence,” skeptic scientist. Diane’s
first solo performance (W. Allen Taylor) shared her experience negotiating the hurdles to
single parent adoption. Audience response galvanized her with the power of storytelling
and she’s never looked back. Diane left the practice of medicine in 2010. Now a
Meisner trained actor, Diane completed The American Conservatory Theater’s Summer
Training Congress (modern and classic), studied with Anna Deveare Smith, Ann
Randolph, Keith Johnstone, and The D’ell Arte School of Physical Drama.  Diane has
appeared at The Marsh, Ross Valley Players, College of Marin, Studio One, BATS and
Pan Theater. Diane, a NYC transplant, 3rd generation physician is a graduate of
Stanford University and Yale University School of Medicine, board certified in Diagnostic

Daughter of a Garbage Manunnamed

Written and Performed by Maureen Langan
Developed with & Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, October 5, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 17 and up
Tickets: $10 – $15 Sliding Scale

DAUGHTER OF A GARBAGE MAN is a tale of Maureen Langan’s 1970’s upbringing in New Jersey, in which her Irish mother and Bronx-born father, a New York City sanitation worker, told her to work hard, get an education and life would reward her.

But is that true? How do you tell a girl to read and write when Kim Kardashian is getting the book deals, when making a sex tape is more valued than knowing the proper use of semicolons, when oiling up your ass leads to fame and fortune? WHO IS TO BLAME? Is it our parents’ fault? America’s fault? Yes and Yes!

DAUGHTER OF A GARBAGE MAN is a funny and moving work that contrasts America’s celebrity-obsessed culture with the personal struggles of Maureen’s parents and their goals for her to live the American Dream. Maureen taps into the hearts and frustrations of hard-working people everywhere who wonder if they, too, were raised wrong.

Maureen Langan is a standup comic and talk show host. Her show, Hanging with Langan, can be heard Sunday nights from 7pm-10pm on KGO radio in San Francisco. Maureen performed on Broadway with Rosie O’Donnell and opened for Steven Wright, Dennis Miller, and Joy Behar. She’d been featured on HBO, Gotham Live, Comics Unleashed, CBS, FOX, and HLN. She’d performed at festivals in Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Ireland, and the UK.

Maureen grew up in Lake Hiawatha, New Jersey, where there is no lake. Her desire to live in a style to which she had never been accustomed led her to attend Montclair State University to study Communications and English. At the time, she believed that was the path to success.

Erased: Babi Yar, the SS and Mee394b9f8-3f48-47ec-834a-c4682aafa0a8

Performed by Corey Weinstein with Saralie Pennington and Tom Herz
Wednesday, September 28, 2016 at 7:30pm
70 minutes (with discussion afterwards) | No Intermission | Ages 13 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Erased: Babi Yar, the SS and Me is about memory, the Holocaust and the

process of negotiating the personal and communal trauma of WWII.

The play recounts the story of the ethnic cleansing of the Jews by gunfire in the
Ukraine in 1941 using the established historical record as resources. And it tells the author’s
story as he grew up in a gilded Jewish ghetto in the backwash of the Holocaust; about how
his community managed the shock and trauma.  The 15 songs that provide the backbone of
the play are interspersed with narratives about what was done, what was lost, what was
erased in our lives, and what can be recovered even now.

In the J Weekly (4/28/16) Rabbi Jane Litman said of the play “(it) weaves together
music, memories and historical data as a metaphor for the complex strands of thought that
form contemporary understanding of the Holocaust. By juxtaposing flashbacks to the death
squads of Eastern Europe with the stories about the inchoate trauma suffered by a
generation of post-Holocaust American Jews,” she continued, Weinstein “underscores the
role that history plays in the lives of ordinary people.”

Corey Weinstein is a songwriter and clarinet player born in September 1944.  He
has published two CDs of music largely inspired by the klezmer and Yiddish stage musical
traditions and leads the klezmer band Umzist which performs only for free. On stage Corey
is joined by Saralie Pennington and Tom Herz who have sung with the San Francisco
Jewish Folk Chorus and in other venues in the Bay Area.

Nice Is Not What We Dob06bebc5-c966-46a7-b50a-b17279afe153

Written and Performed by Kathleen Denny
Directed by Mark Kenward
Wednesday, September 21, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 14 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

“Funny, a wee bit poignant and entirely honest.” –Winnipeg Free Press

“Will leave you grateful…Profound.” — The Watermark – LGBT Newspaper of Central Florida

SOLD OUT at the San Francisco Fringe

Got a family? Ever wonder what might happen if people told the truth?

Kathleen tells the funny and unvarnished truth as she unwraps a gathering of her clan for their father’s funeral. She and a sibling will give eulogies. How do you sum up the life of a parent? Dad charmed the world, but not his own family. Step up for dueling eulogies!

Writer and storyteller Kathleen Denny is a relative newcomer to solo performance. Family tales and her work life as a union machinist and airframe mechanic grounded her short works for print and NPR, but she discovered the power of solo performance at The Marsh. David Ford, Ann Randolph, and the Monday Night Marsh series first put her words onstage. Nice is Not What We Do, her first full-length solo show, delighted festival audiences in Fresno, Boulder, San Francisco, Winnipeg, Canada, and Orlando. Kathleen is happy to bring it back to The Marsh.

Mark Kenward is the director of over 20 full-length solo shows. Four of those had runs at The Marsh, including Houston Robertson’s Victory for the Recycled Virgin.

Eat, Pray, Laugh!4c422e63-70bb-453d-b243-3c004bb70d37

Written and Performed by Alicia Dattner
Directed by Katie Rubin
Wednesday, August 3, 2016 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 15 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

“Best Storyteller.” -New York United Solo Festival, Off Broadway

“Sold Out Show Award.” -SF Fringe Festival

“Goofy, messy, and fun!” -SF Weekly

Jewish princess seeks Indian guru for one life stand!
In this true-life story, Alicia leaves the safety of San Francisco for a three-month solo adventure across India, in search of spiritual salvation with the masters. From seductive French yoga teachers to scary Indian toilets, Alicia pokes fun at her Western monkey-mind irritations, including the Italian fashion exporter with a Krishna fetish and mosquitoes the size of small ponies, to the Chabad House on the Ganges, ultimately, discovering the true meaning of mustaches and masala chai.

Renowned kirtan musician, Mirabai Warkulwiz opens the show and sets the stage, joining Alicia in creating a total Jew-in- India experience of homemade chai and prasad (Indian sweets), a splash of delicious kirtan music (call and response Sanskrit music), and a lot of laughter.

Voted Best Comedian in both the SF Weekly and SF Bay Guardian, Alicia Dattner has performed in Hollywood, Hawaii, New York, Bombay, and London, and she’s delighted to bring this epic show back home to the Bay where her heart is.

Alicia Dattner did her first standup set at the tender age of 18 and performed often at The Marsh’s Mock Cafe. Mentored by several talented comedians over the years, W. Kamau Bell (HBO, FX, CNN), Eugene Mirman (Bob’s Burgers), and Bill Santiago (Comedy Central), she’s been knocking out audiences at clubs like The Improv, The Punch Line, Cobb’s, and Gotham Comedy Club, in Hollywood, Bombay, New York, and London. After a dozen years of doing standup, she’s now racking up awards for her humorous, insightful one-woman shows. Fresh from an sold-out run Off Broadway in New York this spring, Alicia’s shows and extended runs have garnered her a number of awards, including Best Comedian in both the SF Weekly and SF Bay Guardian.

Mirabai (Kirtan singer) is trained in jazz and folk, and found the bhakti path in 2002. Mirabai has studied Indian music and kirtan with Jai Uttal, Sargam Shah and Krishna Das.

Katie Rubin (Director) has been toured her first comedic solo show, “Insides OUT!”, to venues across the country for 8 years and has been acting and performing ever since.


Written and Performed by Dazié Grego-Sykes
Wednesday, June 29, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 18 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Nigga-Roo: looks closely at black identity internalized racism, colorism, and the impact of oppression on the Black psyche. Dazié Grego-Sykes is known for performing multidisciplinary work that cuts through rhetoric and directly into human emotion. This has led to a style that is consistently described as being “in your face” and “unapologetic.” The ongoing question I ask myself developing this work is “what would I say about race if I were unafraid of who was listening?” The result is an hour long production that looks deeply into the collective consciousness of Black Folk.

“Nigga-Roo” materializes, in corporal form, the embodiment of life experiences, ancestral memory and pure fantasy–embracing at its core the fundamentally surreal and abstract nature of the construct of race, and by extension, blackness itself.

Dazié Rustin Grego is a poet, performance artist, and activist. Dazié’s performance work and style was developed at The Experimental Performance Institute at New College San Francisco where he received his BA in Queer Performance and Activism. He has developed and produced several solo plays including three, Where Is Adam and I AM A MAN. Currently, Dazié is studying to receive his MFA in Creative Inquiry at the California Institute of Integral Studies.

Two Big Mouths2BigMouths

Performed by Naomi Newman & Linda Hirschhorn
Wednesday, June 8, 2016 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | 1 Intermission | All Ages
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

In TWO BIG MOUTHS Naomi and Linda weave a tapestry of personal stories, songs, and theatre pieces about growing up and learning a thing or two.
Here are what some folks are saying about TWO BIG MOUTHS:
“Marvelous, healing story-telling!”  
“I laughed and cried.”  
“The mixture of strength and vulnerability was a beautiful thing.”  
“Deeply moving, from the joyful to the heartbreaking.”  
Naomi and Linda make quite a powerful pair. Jewels you both are.”
Naomi Newman co-founded a Traveling Jewish Theater in 1978. For over three decades with TJT she changed hats between director, playwright, and performer, winning awards in each field. For her contributions to the cultural life in the Bay Area, Ms. Newman has received a Tikkun Award, Mill Valley Creative Achievement Award, and Theatre Bay Area’s Community Leadership Award. A book containing an oral history of her life and career is now part of the Legacy Collection of The S.F. Performing Arts Museum. Although TJT has closed its doors, Newman remains active in the Bay Area as an individual theatre artist: she has staged multiple performances and readings of six of her short plays; she continues to perform her solo show, Becoming Grace, based on the writing of Grace Paley; and as dramaturge and director, she helps other performers develop their solo pieces.

Linda Hirschhorn is a performing singer/songwriter/composer/cantor and storyteller. She travels around the country concertizing and working with or creating community choruses. Linda has released 10 recordings of original songs and published hundreds of songs that have been covered by other artists, used in movies, choreographed by dance companies, and sung in synagogues throughout the world. Linda has been the Cantor at Temple Beth Sholom in San Leandro since 1987. Her women’s a cappella ensemble Vocolot celebrated its 25th anniversary in November of 2012.

The Moby Dick Diaries

Written and Performed by Andrea Mock
Developed with Leonard Pitt & Directed by David Ford9fd08cc7-bcea-4422-927f-17b08b23cb5b
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 16 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

LEE WEST a 16 year-old girl living in Porterville, California is hell-bent to choreograph Moby Dick. If she can win first prize at a talent contest, this will be her one-way ticket out of her boring Central Valley town and an escape from her Mom’s fate, a lifetime of washing out her husband’s underwear. She’s close to the realization of her dream when her eco-warrior boyfriend asks her to chose between her passion for his cause or her passion for Art.

Andrea Mock’s show, BRAIN_IN_A_ BOX was Critics Choice for SF Weekly, Bay Guardian, and the Oakland Tribune. Kristanna Bertelsmann of the Express wrote about it, “…a warm and witty take on today’s techno-geek culture.” Mock has received four grants from the Zellerbach Foundation for her stage productions and one grant from ODC SF.

This semi-autobiographical, dance-theater comedy was developed by Leonard Pitt and David Ford, directed by Leonard Pitt.

Wake-Up Call

Written and Performed by Jerry Franklin1896c452-143c-4813-8000-fc584d6e4d50
Directed by and Developed with David Ford
Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 18 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Fate is clearly at work when happenstance connects Jerry and his future wife Kate at a dog park in Los Angeles.  She had asked the universe to send her a Jew and the universe delivered.  Though they have about as much in common as a chrysanthemum and a kitchen mop – Jerry would be the mop in this analogy – they stay together.  And then fate intervenes again.

Jerry Franklin has been a writer all his adult life, and a performer even longer.  He’s a former print and broadcast journalist, a recovering screenwriter, a nascent playwright, and entering his third decade writing for software companies (English – not code).  He also possesses a range of professional performing credits in music, theatre, and improv comedy, and earned a standing ovation at a recent Bawdy Storytelling show.

Jerry is a native of Brooklyn, currently resides in Alameda with his two dogs, and has never stopped searching for good pastrami.

Holding the Edge–

Written and Performed by Elaine Magreea0e9a6ad-0a90-4fe0-b126-bd904b482e5a
Wednesday, May 4, 2016 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 13 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

January 28, 1986: the AIDS epidemic, the Challenger explosion, and early sobriety. What’s a woman to do? Get up, go to work, get the kids to cub scouts on time and start a riot! An irrevernt and outraged hospice nurse finds herself out there…holding the edge.

Elaine Magree’s work has been seen at The Magic Theatre, The California Shakespeare Festival, The Working Women’s Theatre Festival, Brava, The People’s Theatre Festival, The National Women’s Theatre Festival and the 54th St Theatre in New York. She has taught theatre at community colleges, The East Bay Center for the Performing Arts and in homeless shelters, recovery programs, and in prison.

Summer In Sanctuary 

Written and Performed by Al Letson
Wednesday, April 13, 2016 at 7:30pm
85 minutes | No Intermission | Ages 15 and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

“Letson’s Honesty makes it a show worth seeing. It is laugh-out-loud funny at times, intriguing and intellectual at others, but it ultimately communicates the profound truth that little bit of love goes a long way.” –Showbiz Weekly 

Summer in Sanctuary is an autobiographical piece by a performance poet/playwright/NPR Host Al Letson. Letson chronicles his journey working at a summer camp at the Sanctuary on 8th street, a community center in an economically challenged neighborhood in the south. Letson challenges perceptions about race and class, as he struggles to connect with the disadvantaged children of the Sanctuary. Funny, poignant, and ultimately inspiring, Summer in Sanctuary will take you into the heart of a community, and leave you with a better understanding of the world.

Bruce Barthol Life and Songs: A Work in Progress

Written and Performed by Bruce Bartholda8fd96f-4506-45fe-af03-9450de96b24a
Wednesday, April 6, 2016 at 7:30pm
90 minutes | 1 Intermission | All Ages
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Bruce Barthol, the original bass player for Country Joe and the Fish (1966-’68) and resident songwriter for the SF Mime Troupe (1976- 2007), plays the songs he’s written (and a few others) to explore the times he’s lived through and the places he’s been.  From Berkeley to Berlin and Madrid to Managua, from the Free Speech Movement  to draft evading in London, to a hunger strike in Jerusalem,  experience the life and songs of Bruce Barthol.

Bruce Barthol was an original member of Country Joe and the Fish, (1966-1968) with whom he earned a Gold Record. He was resident composer/lyricist with the San Francisco Mime Troupe from 1976 to 2007, with over 35 productions to his credit, including: (Factwino Meets the Moral Majority (Bay Area Critics Award  Best Score, 1981), TONY Award, Excellence in Regional Theater 1987, Seeing Double (OBIE AWARD, 1990), Eating It (Backstage West/ Drama-Logue Honorable Mention Original Score, 2000). and Stagebridge/Berkeley Rep, FSM, Berkeley 2014. He was a Harburg Fellow at NYU/Tisch where he received an MFA in Musical Theater.  He recently toured Ireland and the UK.

Solitary Man: My Visit to Pelican Bay State Prison  

Written and Performed by Charlie Hinton58586aaf-ff6c-4dde-be53-6540f6d46316
Wednesday, March 23, 2016 at 7:30pm
55 minutes | No Intermission | Some disturbing content
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

In July, 2013 I responded to an action alert to write letters of support to a number of hunger strikers held in the Pelican Bay Security Housing Units (SHUs), also known as solitary confinement. Several of them wrote me back. Through their letters, conversations with former prisoners, and my personal observations, I’ve created Solitary Man. It’s serious material, but does have a few laugh lines.

Solitary Man is my second solo show, after Lifewish. I grew up in Joplin, MO and spent 3 years in the Peace Corps in Bolivia. I joined Bay Area Gay Liberation in 1975, and through BAGL, became active around prison matters. I worked the last 19 years at Inkworks Press, a worker owned and collectively managed printing company in Berkeley that recently closed its doors, leaving me “retired.”

Mincing Words

Written and Performed by Tom Ammianobe7a0ad0-e7a1-4081-a631-fbfca2d34aad
Wednesday, March 9, 2016 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No Intermission | 18 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Sacramento. Join Tom Ammiano’s Magical Mystery Tour of his time in Sacramento as an assembly member. Enjoy his rollicking version of his “Tales From The Crypt,” describing the culture in the state capital, his colleagues, and the voter as they strive to take the ass out of assembly.

Tom Ammiano, long time San Francisco LGBT activist, comic teacher, and elected official, is a grandfather, a queen, and a lefty. He appreciates the opportunity the Emerald City has given him to pursue his goal of public service.

From Piss To Bliss

Photo By: Kenny Yun

Written and Performed by Ady Lady
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, February 24, 2016 at 7:30pm
55 minutes | No Intermission | 14 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Ady desperately wants to love mankind. How is she supposed to do this on Muni? Can salvation be found on a Segway? What about in a porta-potty at a breast cancer walk? Is our peace really all around us, or was Deepak lying about that? One thing is certain: a golden shower is NOT a baptism. In her hilarious new one-woman show, Ady valiantly tries to find and maintain her compassion among the pee smells. Namaste, people.

A native of the Bay Area and a graduate of UC Berkeley, Ady has been performing on stage for much of her life.  In 2003 she co-founded Heretic Theatre and performed original works with them throughout the Bay Area until 2009.  She wrote and performed her first one-woman show, What Ever Happened to Sara Jane? which premiered at the 2012 SF Fringe Festival and was performed to enthusiastic audiences at The Marsh, Stage Werx, and the Los Angeles Women’s Theater Festival. Ady has been incredibly fortunate to work with David Ford in the development of both her first show as well as From Piss to Bliss.

Mom Spilled Guts On My Tater Tots8898c1d1-f61e-4424-8453-13d42b1d5c69

Written and Performed by Kenny Yun
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | 15 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

A new immigrant family story with a twist! Oh no, mom is starting again. I want to eat my tater tots in peace. People at nearby tables are staring. How can I get her to stop? Too late, mom’s spilling her guts.

Kenny Yun is a solo show performer, director, and teacher. His first work “Lettuce Town Lies” about growing up in Salinas of California ran at The Marsh and won “Best Solo Show” with SF press. His dark dada comedy “The Kim Jong-IL Experience” had a workshop run at The Marsh. He has an English Literature degree from U.C. Berkeley. He has performed standup comedy and acted in classic and modern plays. He studied acting and directing at A.C.T. and Berkeley Rep. He was the winner of the Russian River Comedy Contest.

Who Was I?

CoreyFischerWritten and Performed by Corey Fischer, Ross Gualco, John Hoy
Directed by Naomi Newman
Wednesday, February 3, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | 15 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Corey Fischer, who’s been making theatre for over 45 years – he co-founded Traveling Jewish Theatre and worked with them for their 34 years of existence as actor, writer and director – is developing a new musical theatre piece about the brain, memory, identity and aging. His own songs and spoken-word hybrids are embedded in the piece and he’ll be accompanied by pianist/arranger Ross Gualco and guitarist John Hoy. As Corey, now 70 years old, sings, “We may be old, but we are not done!”

Corey Fischer, actor, writer, director and composer, has been creating and performing theatre for over forty-five years. In 1978 he co-founded Traveling Jewish Theatre, with whom he collaborated on more than two dozen works until the company closed in 2012. His last project with TJT was In the Maze of Our Own Lives, based on the history of the Group Theatre. Corey worked with visionary director Joseph Chaikin and the legendary improv group, The Committee, and appeared in the films M*A*S*H, Macabe and Mrs. Miller, Funny Lady, Bee Season, 5-Year Engagement and dozens of TV shows. In addition to making theatre, he teaches, coaches and consults privately.

Naomi Newman (Director and Dramaturge) was a co-founder of Traveling Jewish Theatre. She wrote, directed and performed dozens of original theatre pieces with the company during its 34 year-long life, winning awards in each area. For her contributions to Bay Area cultural life she has received a Tikkun Award, a Mill Valley Creative Achievement Award, and Theatre Bay Area’s Community Leadership Award. A book containing an oral history of her life and career is now part of the Legacy Collection of The S.F. Performing Arts Museum. Before co-founding TJT, Newman was a concert singer, television actor, improvisational theater director, and psychotherapist. Her interviews and anthologized writings have appeared in many publications.

Grey Matter

JulieKatzWritten & Performed by Julie Katz
Directed by Lexi Diamond
Wednesday, January 13, 2016 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | 15 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

You probably know some of the people that work for The Company in San Francisco. There’s the IT prodigy who’s bored out of his mind, the Office Manager who can’t catch a break, the dreamer in legal who longs for a creative life, and the deep thinker who started it all. When The Company makes a controversial decision, its employees are forced to examine their morals and what it means to show up to work every day. Come see how they deal with a matter that is not all black and white, because you might discover you’re part of their team too.

Julie Katz, Performer/Writer: Julie Katz is a performer, writer, and aspiring lead singer of a non-existent band. She moved to San Francisco from New York City in 2013, and before venturing westward, she spent her time improvising in various basement theaters in New York. She was a musical improv house team member at both the Magnet Theater and The P.I.T. Also in New York, Julie co-produced a monthly comedy extravaganza with her all female sketch and improv team, Candy Slice, who had a video tweeted by the one and only Ludacris. She has conceived and performed numerous solo performances, and toured the country (and Canada!) with a sketch comedy group called Fresh Meat. She was a member of the Brooklyn Soundpainting Company, a Brooklyn based company that used Soundpainting as both a means and an end to performance. Soundpainting is the universal multidisciplinary live composing sign language for musicians, actors, dancers, and visual artists. In San Francisco, Julie teaches and performs at Endgames Improv. She has completed the advanced study improv training program at Upright Citizen’s Brigade Theater and received her BFA in Drama from Tisch School of the Arts at NYU.

Lexi Diamond, Director: Lexi Diamond is a director, dramaturg, playwright, and performer. Since graduating from Vassar College in 2013, she has worked at Berkeley Repertory Theatre as the Peter F. Sloss Dramaturgy Fellow, a member of the Ground Floor New Works Lab artistic staff, and with the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre. Prior to her move to the Bay Area, she worked in the literary office and education department at Trinity Repertory Company in Providence, RI, and as an assistant director with the Brown University/Trinity Rep MFA program. She is also an improviser and producer at Endgames Improv in the Mission.

Second Time Around: A Duet for Cello and Storyteller

Photo: Ted Weinstein
Photo: Ted Weinstein

Written & Performed by Charlie Varon
Composed & Performed by Joan Jeanrenaud
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, November 18, 2015 at 7:30pm
70 minutes | No Intermission | 15 and up
Tickets: $10-$15 Sliding Scale

An exciting new collaboration between The Marsh’s own Charlie Varon and world-renowned cellist Joan Jeanrenaud. Charlie and Joan, working under the direction of David Ford, have adapted Charlie’s new short story, “Second Time Around,” into a fully-scored duet for cello and storyteller. Come see what happens when the magic of storytelling joins the soul-stirring music of the cello.

Story written and performed by Charlie Varon.
Original cello score composed and performed by Joan Jeanrenaud.
Developed with and directed by David Ford.

Charlie Varon has been credited with “redefining the medium” of solo performance (SF Chronicle). His hit shows at The Marsh have included Rabbi Sam, Rush Limbaugh in Night School, The People’s Violin and Feisty Old Jew. He has also collaborated on and directed Dan Hoyle’s many hit shows.

Joan Jeanrenaud is a cellist, composer, arranger, and improviser. She was the cellist of the Kronos Quartet for 20 years. Her work with Kronos included more than 30 recordings and over 2000 performances that took her to virtually every major concert hall worldwide. During those years the group became – in the words of New York Times critic John Rockwell – “the world’s best known, most innovative contemporary-music quartet.”

David Ford is the one of the nation’s leading directors of solo theater. He has collaborated with Charlie Varon for over two decades, and with dozens of other performers, including Geoff Hoyle, Brian Copeland, Marilyn Pittman and Echo Brown. For this project David has also taken on the role of conductor (although he will not appear on stage).

The Absent Father, The Wayward Son

Brandon HughesWritten, performed and directed by Brandon Hughes
Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 7:30pm
75 minutes | No intermission | 15 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

A powerful, funny, and necessary story about David “DayDay” Williams. David has never met, talked to, or seen his father in person, though the discovery of photos under his mother’s bed affirm he looks nearly identical to him. This leads to David questioning his worth, resulting in an angry, confused, and wayward life. When he’s seventeen, David’s mother reveals a secret that drives him to express his feelings about the father he’s never met, and how different his life would’ve been if he had. Laced with lively characters, The Absent Father, the Wayward Son is a story about love, repentance, forgiveness, and redemption.

“Thought-provoking!” – USF Prof. James Taylor
Theater patron reviews: “This is precisely what brilliance looks like!”
“Brandon Hughes is some kind of wonderful . . .”

Victory for the Recycled Virgin

Written & Performed by Houston Robertson

recycled virgin
Houston Robertson

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 at 7:30pm
60 minutes | No Intermission | 15 and up
Tickets: $10-$15 Sliding Scale

In Victory for the Recycled Virgin, a naïve, divorced virgin bride of the 1950s grabs you by the heart with all her 79 years as she exposes the culture bred lies she and her husband have been living. When a revelation launches the painful collapse of the marriage, she catapults through the fearless and funny episodes of her midlife madness until she discovers a sexy, independent woman. Or am I a take-charge bitch? she wonders. Like life, Victory is full of surprises including some hot tips for parenting your own mother through a delayed adolescence. “The Buddha got his insights getting bird-crapped on while sitting under a Bodhi Tree. Houston arrives at the same realizations following a much more enticing path of bourbon, dating and clowning around.” San Diego Theatre Reviews.

Program Notes
Like life, this show is full of surprises as Houston Robertson romps through the fearless and funny episodes of her midlife madness. Witness the moment that dumps her in the trash and the moments that recycle her into the sexy, independent woman she is today. Or am I a take charge bitch? she wonders.
Developed with and Directed by Mark Kenward ( Additional direction from Jill Vice (

Houston Robertson is “an insanely expressive and inspiring spirit” and brings to her solo work her experience as a writer, clown, and motivational speaker. Her motivational Talks and Tales for the Renaissance Years promote a developmental view of aging. Houston is a member of the Storytellers Association of California and the recipient of two Advanced Communicator Awards from Toastmasters. Houston has performed Victory at the Rogue Festival, San Diego Fringe Festival and Boulder Fringe Festival. She has performed locally at Monday Night Marsh, Tell it on Tuesdays, Solo Sundays and the Peacock Theater, Walnut Creek.

Colette Uncensored


Written by Zack Rogow & Lorri Holt
Performed by Lorri Holt
Directed by David Ford
Wednesday, October 21, 2015 at 7:30pm

75 minutes | No intermission | 15 years and up
Tickets: $10-15 Sliding Scale

Setting: A lecture hall in Paris in the late 1940s or early 1950s.
Colette Uncensored tells the story of the author’s life as a writer, a woman, a pioneer for social change, and a lover. Colette wrote the books that the movies Gigi and Cheri were based on, as well as fifty other works. In addition to a prolific career as a writer, Colette blazed trails in many areas, from women’s empowerment, to respect for nature, to sexual liberation.

The play includes several excerpts from a newly published collection of Colette’s writings, Shipwrecked on a Traffic Island and Other Previously Untranslated Gems, translated by Zack Rogow and Renée Morel. Last winter Lorri Holt did a series of readings at Bay Area bookstores to launch the publication of this new collection of Colette’s work, with introductions by Renée and Zack. The response to these reading was so enthusiastic that Zack and Lorri decided to approach the Kennedy Center in Washington DC about doing a one-woman show based on Colette’s life and work, during the recent revival of the musical Gigi. Lorri performed a staged reading of an early version of the show on February 8, 2015, at the Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center.

Zack and Lorri have extensively revised the script under the guidance of director David Ford. The show now presents an overview of Colette’s life in an intimate theater piece, interwoven with excerpts from the author’s work that display Colette’s gifts for storytelling, social commentary, humor, and description of nature.

Lorri Holt (actor, playwright) has been a leading actress in the San Francisco Bay Area for more than three decades, working with Berkeley Rep, ACT, The Aurora, The Magic, Marin Theatre Company, SF Playhouse and many others. Most recently she originated the role of Joyce Rumsfeld in Cutting Ball Theater’s critically acclaimed production of Mount Misery by Andrew Saito. Other recent credits include Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike at Berkeley Rep, Ella in Curse of the Starving Class at the Wilma Theater in Philadelphia, and Susan in Becky Shaw at SF Playhouse. For ten years she was a leading actress with San Francisco’s acclaimed Eureka Theatre, where she originated the role of Harper Pitt in Tony Kushner’s Angels in America. Regional and international credits include work at Birmingham Rep in England, the Barbican Theatre in London, La Jolla Playhouse, and Actors Theatre of Louisville. Most recent film credit is Josh Kornbluth’s new film, Love & Taxes. Lorri holds a BA in dramatic art from UC Berkeley and an MFA in writing and literature from Bennington College, and has received honors and awards for both her acting and her published short stories. This is her first solo show.

Zack Rogow (playwright) is the author, editor, or translator of twenty books or plays. His translations from French include the novel Green Wheat by Colette. His adaptation and translation of the play Marius by Marcel Pagnol was produced by the Aurora Theatre in Berkeley and by the Storm Theatre in New York. He is writing a series of plays that incorporate the works of authors into their life stories, including Things I Didn’t Know I Loved, about the Turkish writer Nazim Hikmet, which had staged readings in Berkeley directed by Barbara Oliver; and at the annual AWP conference. Carleton College and University of Alaska have hosted staged readings of his play Tangled Love, about the Japanese woman poet Yosano Akiko. His play La Vie en Noir about Senegalese poet Léopold Sédar Senghor had a staged reading performed by the Lorraine Hansberry Theatre in San Francisco. Rogow has received the PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Award for his co-translation of André Breton’s Earthlight, and the Bay Area Book Reviewers Translation Award for his English version of George Sand’s Horace. He is an associate faculty member in the low-residency Master of Fine Arts in Writing program at the University of Alaska Anchorage.