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7 Bay Area Arts and Entertainment Events to Check Out This Week, April 18-24

Artists Byron Guo, Sam Wessels, May Ramos, Jan Gilbert, and Yasmine Aishah Khan are all perfectly fine with their grief on Killing My Lobster’s “Good Grief.” Photo: Kayleigh McCollum/Kill My Lobster

The Chronicle’s guide to notable arts and entertainment events in the Bay Area.

Comedy and tragedy are a double-edged sword in Killing My Lobster’s ‘Good Grief’

Maybe he’s horrified that the world can blithely move forward, not caring about all the people, all the time, all the memories the pandemic has taken from us. Maybe you’re just not okay right now.

Killing My Lobster feels your pain. If existential despair doesn’t sound like water to the skit factory, then “Good Grief,” which performs at PianoFight in San Francisco after a run at the company’s Oakland outpost, proves that laughter and Tears can be equally valid responses to the same tragedies, both mundane and world-upending.

“Small losses get worse,” reads the show’s opening number, written by allison Page, in a sentiment that needed to be sung if ever there was one. In Elaine Gavin’s sketch “Ashes to Ashes,” a father records a video will that is so apt he might begin to wonder if the whole comedy is somehow psychologically delivered on the verge of death.

Siyu Song directs.

“Good Grief”: 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, April 21-23. Until April 30. $16-$42.50. Piano Fight, 144 Taylor St., SF www.killingmylobster.com

-Lily Janiak

Barbra Streisand and Ryan O’Neal drive a Volkswagen through the streets of San Francisco in the 1972 comedy What’s Up Doc. Photo: Courtesy Warner Bros./Warner Brothers (Warner Bros.)

‘What’s new old man?’ brings laughs (and an epic chase) to Total SF Movie Night

“What’s new old man?” it co-stars Barbra Streisand and was directed by Peter Bogdanovich at the height of his popularity. But the real star is San Francisco, where almost the entire 1972 movie was filmed.

The wacky romantic comedy about two hapless leads caught in the middle of a luggage exchange mix-up involving a jewelry heist and a government plot culminates in the second-best chase through San Francisco. (Respect to the creators of “Bullitt”). It includes a trip through the Richmond district and Chinatown and up the steps of Alta Plaza Park, where damage from filming without permission can still be seen.

“What’s new old man?” is the 12th Total SF Movie Night, playing at the Balboa Theater in San Francisco’s Richmond District at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 21: A return to the Balboa after several virtual movie nights. There will be trivia, prizes, live music, and an appearance by Total SF’s mascot, Norton the It’s It. (The Balboa sells It’s Its and local beers). tickets in balbomovies.com.

“What’s New Old Man?”; 7 p.m. Thursday, April 21. $12.50-$15. Balboa Theatre, 3630 Balboa St., SF Tickets: www.balbomovies.com

— Chronicle staff

Anamaria Vartolomei in “Happening”. Photo: Film Library of the Pacific

‘Happening’, a Cesar award-winning French drama about abortion, set in the 1960s, screens at BAMPFA

“Happening” was a huge critical success in France, with Anamaria Vartolomei winning a well-deserved César Award for Most Promising Actress, an award that in most cases heralds a great career.

Based on the autobiographical novel by Annie Ernaux (“The other one”, “Simple passion”), it is the story of a young student and entrepreneur who finds out that she is pregnant and decides to have an abortion. The obstacle? We are in the 1960s and abortion is illegal. So the film becomes the harrowing story of a woman trying to get an illegal abortion that won’t kill her.

The film is being shown as part of the San Francisco International Film Festival, and director/co-writer Audrey Diwan will appear and answer questions from the audience.

“Happening”: 7 p.m. Friday, April 22. $18. Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2155 Center St., Berkeley. www.bampfa.org

—Mick La Salle

Director Nicholas McGegan Photo: Laura Barisonzi

Nicholas McGegan will conduct the Oakland Symphony in music by Mendelssohn

Mendelssohn’s music for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is one of the great creative puzzle acts in classical music. After composing the overture at age 17 as a stand-alone orchestral work, Mendelssohn returned to it 17 years later and created a set of incidental pieces to accompany it. They fit perfectly.

That suite, with spoken narration by Ellen Geer, is the title piece of an upcoming Oakland Symphony concert program directed by guest conductor Nicholas McGegan. Libby Larsen’s orchestral work “Sunset at the Palace of Reason,” an evocation of life at the Enlightenment court of Frederick the Great, is also on the bill, along with Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5 with soloist Natasha Makhijani.

Oakland Symphony: 8 p.m. Friday, April 22. $25-$90. Paramount Theatre, 2025 Broadway, Oakland. 510-444-0801. www.oaklandsymphony.org

-Joshua Kosman

Tom Cruise and Jamie Foxx in “Collateral.” Photo: Frank Connor/AP

Tom Cruise and Jamie Foxx star in Michael Mann’s ‘Collateral’

“Collateral” is an exceptional thriller from the director Michael Mann, starring Jamie Foxx as a taxi driver who picks up an impeccably dressed guy who, at first glance, one might assume is a young executive. But no, he is a hit man, played by Tom Cruise, and what he wants from the taxi driver is to take him to a series of places where he plans to kill various targets.

Once the taxi driver realizes what’s going on, he has no choice, despite knowing that, as the only witness to a series of crimes, his life expectancy has just been reduced by several decades.

“Collateral” is a series of intense scenes, highlighted by solid performances. The jazz club interlude, with a notable turn by Barry Shabaka Henley, is rightly famous.

“Collateral”: 3:00 pm Friday, April 22. $13.50. Alamo shooting room. 2550 Mission St, San Francisco. www.drafthouse.com/sf

—Mick La Salle

Photo: Scott Lasky/Palo Alto Players

Palo Alto Players’ ‘Allegiance’ Asks What Has Changed For Japanese Americans Since WWII

Eighty years after President Franklin Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, which paved the way for the internment of Americans of Japanese descent during World War II, anti-Asian hatred is still alive and well, manifesting itself in verbal and physical attacks and a culture widespread fear.

That backdrop makes Jay Kuo, Marc Acito and Lorenzo Thione’s musical “Allegiance,” now in a Palo Alto Players production, even more urgent. The show is inspired by the life of “Star Trek” actor George Takei, in particular the feeling of helplessness his childhood self saw in his father while his family was incarcerated in California and Arkansas. .

Two Palo Alto Players cast members, Ron Munekawa and Brandon Gruber, have family members who were institutionalized. Vinh G. Nguyen directs.

“Loyalty”: 8 pm Friday and Saturday, April 22 and 23; 2 p.m. Sunday April 24. Until 8 May. $10-$57. Lucie Stern Theater, 1305 Middlefield Road, Palo Alto. 650-329-0891. https://paplayers.org

-Lily Janiak

Four CE Studio Line outfits made in collaboration with artists Kathy Finn: Gamino, Steven Liu, Mariam Munguia and Ethel Revita, under the vision of lead designer Víctor Molina with the assistance of instructor Pilar Olabarria. Part of the new exhibition “Mode Brut” at the Museum of Crafts and Design. Photo: Photo courtesy of Graham Holoch © Creativity Explored Licensing, LLC

FashionABLE panel at Art Market SF looks at neurodiversity in garment design

Art Market San Francisco, now in its tenth edition and scheduled for Thursday, April 21 to Sunday, April 24, brings together modern and contemporary galleries from around the world in a four-day fair showcasing the best of what’s new and current in art . world.

San Francisco art studio and gallery Creativity Explored is a special partner in this year’s event, responsible for a “Mode Brut” fashion exhibit in the VIP lounge and also hosting a panel discussing accessibility at the clothing design. Chronicle columnist Tony Bravo will moderate the discussion, titled FashionABLE, with San Francisco Museums of Fine Arts Associate Curator of Costumes and Textiles Laura L. Camerlengo, Creativity Explored Curator Josefin Lundahl, co-owner of the Modern Appealing Clothing boutique, Ben Ospital, and Tokyo Gamine fashion. designer Yuka Uehara and artist Creativity Explored Jose Omolayole.

The event will highlight the work that Creativity Explored and other organizations have done to expand neurodiversity in fashion and will ask questions about how clothing design can be reinvented to be more inclusive of different types of textile artists, along with how to create clothing for a more diverse range of customers.

FashionABLE: 1:00 p.m. Sunday, April 24. $25 day pass, $50 fair pass. Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion, 2 Marina Blvd. SF https://artmarketsf.com/

— Chronicle staff

For more agenda selections and to browse our calendar of events, click here.



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