Articles by Susan Rife

About Susan Rife
Lover of arts & books; ukulele learner; therapeutic knitter; long-distance runner. Former Arts and Books Editor at Herald-Tribune.

Youth take charge in ‘Cinderella’

Riley Brown has gotten a little tired of playing boys in community theater productions, from the Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz to Jack in Into the Woods. So she’s thrilled to be able to get her princess on as the title character in South Valley Civic Theatre’s production [...]

Personas stand out in ‘Belles’ sequel

Six sisters, some more estranged than others, must face the crisis of their widowed mother behaving badly at her nursing home in Belles: The Reunion, a comedy/drama by Mark Dunn running this summer at Limelight Actors Theater in Gilroy. But the immediate issue—Mom disrobing in [...]

‘Belles’ sequel arrives in Gilroy

Limelight Actors Theater co-founder and director Kevin Heath often stumbles onto a script for the company while he’s looking for something else. In the case of the company’s summer show, Belles: The Reunion, Heath already had read the script and seen a production of the [...]

Personalities shine in ‘Gypsy’

Let’s be clear: There’s one star, and one star only, in that classic tale of show-business mothers and daughters, Gypsy. And it’s not the legendary strip-tease artist Gypsy Rose Lee. It’s her bulldozer of a stage mother, Mama Rose. South Valley Civic Theatre sticks to [...]

South Valley Civic Theatre closes out 50th season

There never was a stage mother before or since who was as horrifying as Rose Horvick, the tyrant at the heart of Gypsy, the Tony Award-winning 1959 musical that will bring South Valley Civic Theatre’s 50th anniversary season to a close. Gypsy, loosely based on the memoirs of [...]

NorCal Music Festival makes stop in Morgan Hill

The second annual NorCal Music Festival comes to a close June 6-9 with chamber music and orchestra masterworks, including guest artists the Ghaderi-Focks Duo. The pair—Kimia Ghaderi, violin, and Andrew Focks, piano—will perform a program of works by Bach, Telemann, [...]

Guest soloist joins South Valley Symphony

When Leyla Kabuli was 6 years old, her mother took her to the Mondavi Center at UC Davis where internationally famed violinist Itzhak Perlman was performing. But Kabuli had eyes only for the pianist accompanying Perlman. At the end of the concert, she insisted that she must [...]

Founding Fathers on stage

South Valley Civic Theater last presented the musical 1776, about the politically tricky process of writing the Declaration of Independence, in 2006. Then came Lin-Manuel Miranda’s huge Broadway hit, Hamilton. But rather than divert attention from the 1969 musical, with music [...]

Paisley waves

A teen cast for South Valley Civic Theatre’s production of Stephen Schwartz’s 1971 off-Broadway hit “Godspell” may be the most genius theater decision ever, as their youthful exuberance spills off the stage in brightly colored paisley waves. At the heart of this pop-rock [...]

Righteous rockout

Like its 1970s compadre, “Jesus Christ Superstar,” “Godspell” focuses on Jesus as seen through a 20th-century rock score. Unlike “Jesus Christ Superstar,” “Godspell” focuses on Jesus’s teachings more than the drama of the last days of his life. Its title is a [...]
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