A Press Democrat Blog


Dan Taylor on the fine arts scene.

6th Street Playhouse wins six Critics Circle awards

The 6th Street Playhouse in Santa Rosa has won six awards from the San Francisco/Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle for 2012. The Playhouse won for best ensemble performing in a theater with 100-300 seats for its production of “August: Osage County.” The show also won awards in that division for Jill Zimmerman, as best principal female in a play; John Browning, best featured male in a play, and Marty Pistone “best specialty,” for his fight choreography. For its Studio Theater… Read More »

Managing director laid off at 6th Street Playhouse

Michael Fontaine, managing director of the 6th Street Playhouse since 2011, left the theater’s staff Friday, Feb. 15, after his position was eliminated to cut costs. “Last month, in a move to reduce operating expenses, the board of directors made the challenging decision to revise its staffing model — using a single director in charge of all of the 6th Street Playhouse’s activities instead of employing both an artistic director and a managing director,” Scott Lummer, 6th Street Board president,… Read More »

Local live theater win awards from online voters

Santa Rosa’s 6th Street Playhouse has won 2012 “Theatre of the Year” and four other awards from voters on the BroadwayWorld.com San Francisco web site. 6th Street’s production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” won in the best local play category, and the show’s director, Michael Fontaine, 6th Street’s managing director, won for best direction. Craig Miller, 6th Street’s artistic director, won the best sound design award for his work on “The Great American Trailer Park Musical.” Miller also… Read More »

6th Street Improv presents ‘Holidaze!’ comedy show

Having a blue Christmas season so far? What you need are some laughs. A good place to find them is the 6th Street Improv troupe’s “Holidaze” comedy show at 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at the 6th Street Playhouse, 52 West 6th St., Santa Rosa. “We’ll have elf experts, mystery gifts, impromptu holiday songs and even a little improvised Dickens,” said Bridget Palmer, the show’s producer. Tickets: $10-$14. Information: (707) 523-4185, www.6thstreetplayhouse.com.

Toad in the Hole hosts Mostly Python 4

It’s time to start practicing your silly walk. The Toad in the Hole Pub in Santa Rosa’s Railroad Square district will stage its free “Mostly Python 4” outdoor block party from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 5. This popular little grassroots festival includes wine, ales, cider, food and — of course — live Monty Python skits. This year, Paul Stokeld of the Toad in the Hole has new partner in wackiness: The 6th Street Playhouse. “The fact that we… Read More »

‘Marvelous Wonderettes’ extended at 6th Street Playhouse

The response to the current 6th Street Playhouse production of “The Marvelous Wonderettes” has been so positive that the theater has added two more shows. The show opened April 20 and already was scheduled to continue at 8 p.m. Thursday and Friday, May 10-11, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, May 12, and 2 p.m. May 13. Now the run has been extended to include performances at 8 p.m. Friday, May 18 and 2 p.m. Saturday, May 19. Directed by Craig… Read More »

Santa Rosa poet comes out with a new book

Aside from occasional public poetry readings, Santa Rosa poet and playwright David Beckman, former New York professional actor and retired advertising writer, has been a relatively quiet presence in the community since he settled here in 2003. But some of his neighbors took notice when his play, “Becoming Walt Whitman,” a drama about a more famous poet, ran for a month at the 6th Street Playhouse Studio Theater in 2010. Now Beckman is coming out with a new book of… Read More »

Rialto screens ‘Collaborators’ at 6th Street

What happens when a satirist tangles with a tyrant? John Hodge, best-known for his “Trainspotting” screenplay, has a written a new play about an imaginary 1938 encounter between Josef Stalin and dissident Russian playwright Mikhail Bulgakov. In the play, Bulgakov — stalked by the secret police — is offered a commission to write a play about Stalin to celebrate the Premier’s 60th birthday. You can see the London production of the play, starring Alex Jennings as Bulgakov and Simon Russell… Read More »

6th Street Playhouse sells its extra costumes

Anyone who has ever dreamed of wearing a really flashy dress — and we do mean anyone — ought to check out the costume inventory liquidation sale from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 26-27, at the 6th Street Playhouse, 52 W. Sixth St., Santa Rosa. “There are fanstasy pieces, vintage clothing for men and women, and very large dresses for men,” said Pat Fitzgerald, costume director at the Playhouse. “We seem to have done a lot… Read More »

Playwright visits 6th Street Playhouse

This weekend, you’ll have a chance not only to see the current 6th Street Playhouse production, “Kite’s Book: Tales of an 18th Century Hitman,” but also meet the playwright. Playwright Robert Caisley of Moscow, Idaho, will present a pre-show discussion of his play at 7 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22, followed by the performance at 8 p.m. On Sunday, Oct. 23, 6th Street Playhouse Artistic Director Craig Miller will host a discsussion including Caisley and the entire cast and crew of… Read More »