Arts & Events

Around & About Theater: 'Weller: International Mad Man' at East Bay Media Center; Brecht's 'Galileo' at Masquers Playhouse; mugwumpin's 'The Great Big Also'

By Ken Bullock
Friday March 22, 2013 - 10:42:00 AM
Bill McClave (left) and Stanley Spenger (right) in Bertolt Brecht's The Life of Galileo at Masquers Playhouse.
DC Scarpelli
Bill McClave (left) and Stanley Spenger (right) in Bertolt Brecht's The Life of Galileo at Masquers Playhouse.

—'Weller: International Mad Man': "A collection of insane stories told ... as only the International Mad Man can, with a mix of comedy, storytelling—& fear!" From Heavy Metal to Martial Arts ... Another notch up in the new performance series at the East Bay Media Center in Berkeley's downtown Arts District. 8 p. m. Saturday, 1939 Addison (between Milvia & MLK). $20. 843-3699; 

—Bertolt Brecht's 'Life of Galileo' was originally performed in English by Charles Laughton (who also translated his friend's script), directed by Joseph Losey (who replaced Orson Welles) in Los Angeles & New York in 1947—near the time when Brecht turned in his own performance before HUAC and left for East Germany, where he founded the Berliner Ensemble. Losey later directed Topol, of 'Fiddler on the Roof' fame, playing the great scientific pioneer and target of the Inquisition in an American Film Theatre version with the young Colin Blakely and John Gielgud. This Friday, Masquers Playhouse opens a production in David Hare's newer, lucid translation, directed by Bruce Coughran, with Stanley Spenger in the title role ... Fridays & Saturdays at 8, Sundays at 2 (April 7 & 14 only) through April 27 (special dinner benefit show April 21 at 2; dinner at Hotel Mac—$50) 105 Park Place, Point Richmond. $22. 232-4031;
—mugwumpin, the Bay Area's premiere performance troupe, who've situated themselves between the rigors of physical theater and the unmapped territories of performance art—are into the last week of their new opus, 'The Great Big Also,' an ensemble piece about The New Settlers, an American sect that believes ... The Rift is coming ... to usher in an identical mirror world, devoid of humans, excepting those who've prepared to shift. Thursday through Saturday at 8, Sunday at 3, Z Space (formerly Theater Artaud in Project Artaud), 450 Florida (near 17th & Harrison) in San Francisco's Mission-Potrero district. $25-$30