Berkeley Repertory Theatre is the best. Every season has challenging, culturally relevant shows put on by top-rate directors and actors. This last season, An Octoroon was particularly thought-provoking for me as it looked at racism both past and present in the United States. I have enjoyed recent shows on the Black Panthers, football head injuries, and The Last Tiger in Haiti. Some of my Advanced Placement U.S. History students went to see Roe which gave them a clearer picture of life for women in the 1970's then I could have through lecturing. As a teacher, Berkeley Rep has a reduced rate for season subscribers so I can afford to see shows on my limited salary.
I am in avid theater-goer in the San Francisco Bay Area; I have subscriptions to SHN, A.C.T. and Berkeley Rep, and also regularly attend productions at the Shelton Theater, Gough St. Playhouse, BATS, and other small houses in San Francisco. I also have attended many theatrical productions in other cities, including New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Chicago, Seattle, London, Sydney, and Auckland. Nowhere in all of these places have I seen more consistently compelling, innovative, thought-provoking, and well-done productions than I have at Berkeley Rep. I learn something every time I go to a Berkeley Rep show, but it isn't that painful or unpleasant kind of learning, like taking your medicine. Because the shows are consistently well-staged, well-acted, well-directed, and well-produced, I enjoy watching the productions AND learning from them. I find myself thinking about them long after I've gone home, and bringing them up in conversations with others. I have been to many shows on and off Broadway and in London's West End, but I have to say that the best shows I've ever seen have been at Berkeley Rep.
Thank you for your lovely review! We're pleased to know how much you enjoy theatre, and especially Berkeley Rep.
Berkeley Rep represents the best of Bay Area theater and more. I've been attending plays since the late 70s and it has always produced consistently remarkable theater. No need to go to New York, we have Broadway-caliber theater right here in the Bay Area.
I've had so many experiences I never would have had otherwise. I never would have bought tickets to Green Day but I loved it so much, i saw it twice. Berkeley Rep has expanded my world.
The first play I ever saw at The Berkeley Rep Theatre was Samuel Becket's "Waiting for Godot." This was back in 1989. As an English Major I had of course studied the play before, and I knew it was a modern classic. What I experienced that evening was a respectful handling of a classic play, but a stunning example of live theater at its best. From the spare stage design, to the electric performances, The Berkeley Rep brought Becket to life it way that was both heart-breaking and life affirming at the same time.
I have seen many, many productions at Berkeley Rep since then, and it remains for me the company that most embodies what theater can and should be.
The actual theater experience is the best in the theater-rich bay area, buy beyond that, Berkeley Rep embodies the spirit of the community. At my level of donation, one of the perks is that I get to donate tickets to a charity of my choice so in addition to enjoying excellent entertainment I am able to make someone else happy or participate in another fundraiser.
The plays are often great and always an interesting experience. The outreach programs for teachers and students is a great resource in the community. We need quality arts!!!
We love Berkeley Rep. The professional plays and variety of productions never fail to entertain and give us the opportunity to explore issues that affect us personally or globally
I was actually drawn into participating at Berkeley Rep initially through my childrens' involvemet in their inspiring school of theater. I had been a season ticket holder for a few years and had always enjoyed their wide range of fantastic plays but getting to watch my kids thrive and experiment clarified for me how many ways aside from the actual performances Berkeley Rep was enhancing the community, as well as reinforcing how much fabulous experimentation was occurring onstage, within Berkeley Rep's choices for each season. This past Summer, I got to witness tidbits of truly inspiring new works in progress through their new Ground Floor program. I'm always excited to see what's next!
I love Berkeley Rep and have been a subscriber for several years. It's first on my list of how to spend my recreational dollars. I am virtually never disappointed in their selection of works and the quality of the productions. I look forward to each play and bask in the glow of time well spent for several days after attending.
Berkeley Rep always does the unexpected, but An Illiad surpassed them all. A one-man show on a bare stage talking about the Trojan was did not sound promising, but I was captivated after 30 seconds and almost didn't blink for the 100 uninterrupted minutes of the play. Brilliantly written, fresh writing and clear delivery, passion and emotion and humor, with some verbal fireworks included, it was a stellar experience to see a master at work.
Seeing "An Iliad" was a great theatre experience for myself and my guest. The person I attended with is an expert on ancient Greek literature, and a theatre goer who appreciates good productions. And, as a former stage, TV, and film director, my standards for determining good theatre are pretty high as well. Both of us enjoyed the production and were in awe of the actor's ability. We can honestly say that it was one of the best theatre experiences we've had a long time, and easily the best ever in the Bay Area. Congratulations, and our thanks!
Berkeley Rep is one of the top theatre companies in the Bay Area. Excellent play selections and acting. Innovative new works premiered. Wonderful guest artists doing solo shows. The smaller of the two theaters is an intimate space which, depending on the production, can make you feel part of the play. I especially appreciate the collaboration with Oregon Shakespeare Festival to bring commissioned works to the Bay Area.
BRT has been the theatre leader in the Bay Area for many years, challenging traditions and providing audiences with a rich experience. BRT is at the forefront of stagecraft and uses both of its stages at their best. Many professionals in the region just dream of working there some day, and that's why it's important to support this organization (everyone will benefit).
I have subscribed for over 20 years. I am a donor and have named BRT in my estate plan. I am a trustee. All of my involvement grew out of my long, favorable experience as an audience member. BRT puts on challenging works that address the issues of our time and give me much to think about. They do not play to the lowest common denominator, but to the highest part of the audience's intelligence. BRT supports new artists through its commissioning program.
I have been going to performances at Berkeley Rep for over 20 years. Uniformly, I have been impressed with the Rep's venturesome approach. They are not afraid to take risks. This year, for examply, their production of American Idiot was mesmerizing. A rock opera/play/happening which compared well to Tommy. Superb.
Berkeley Rep has become a magnet for the most interesting playwrights, directors and theater artists from around the country. And the audiences are smart and appreciate the fact that BRT takes artistic risks, challenges what you're thinking about and always entertains. We used to think it was the best thing going in the arts in the East Bay, but folks from across the country have heard about it and are talking about it. Berkeley Rep is a Very Big Deal, and a theater to watch.
Berkeley Rep has brought exciting, excellent theatre to the Bay Area for over 40 years, creating a wonderful sense of community! Subscribers benefit from top quality productions of a wide range of theatre experiences which add up to much more than the sum of its parts. It's a "happening" place.
The experience before, during and after the performance is fun and entertaining. I know I can count on this well run theatre to put on a great perfromance and make it a great night out.
An excellent producing theater and great place to work. This is not only an important place for theater locally, and in California, but for the whole country, and globally now too. But never losing integrity or quality as it grows and fame spreads.