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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child returns to SF / The Band’s Visit / The Life of Dr. King

Potter and Cursed Child - Line Up with Wands – Photo By Matthew Murphy.jpg
Matthew Murphy
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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, starts January 11 at the Curran Theater in San Francisco.

This week in On the Arts, KALW’s radio magazine for the Bay Area performing arts, host David Latulippe talks about the return to San Francisco of a newly staged Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, starting January 11 at the Curran Theater. Also, conversations about the musical The Band’s Visit (Jan 11 - Feb 6) at the Golden Gate Theatre; and about The Life of Dr. King, Darryl Van Leer’s electrifying one man play, on The Marsh’s digital platform, MarshStream (Jan 14-17).

This week in On the Arts, KALW’s radio magazine for the Bay Area performing arts, host David Latulippe talks about the return to San Francisco of a newly staged Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, starting January 11 at the Curran Theater. Also, conversations about the musical The Band’s Visit (Jan 11 - Feb 6) at the Golden Gate Theatre; and about The Life of Dr. King, Darryl Van Leer’s electrifying one man play, on The Marsh’s digital platform, MarshStream (Jan 14-17).

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child returns to San Francisco’s Curran Theater (445 Geary St.) as a newly staged, single-show magical adventure. We talk with Steve O’Connell (Ron Weasley) and Lily Mojekwu (Hermione Granger) who were also part of the original San Francisco, pre-pandemic cast, when the story was spread out over two separate plays.

For its return to North America, the creative team has restaged Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as one singular performance. The story is set nineteen years after Harry, Ron, and Hermione saved the wizarding world. Harry Potter is now Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement at the Ministry of Magic, and his younger son, Albus Severus Potter, is about to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

We talk with actor Sasson Gabay about the stage musical The Band’s Visit, running from January 11 - February 6 at the Golden Gate Theatre (1 Taylor St.) in San Francisco. Based on the 2007 Israeli film of the same name, the musical tells the story of the Alexandria (Egypt) Ceremonial Police Orchestra, which mistakenly gets stuck in an isolated desert town, while on tour in Israel. Under the spell of the desert sky, with beautiful music perfuming the air, the band brings the town to life in unexpected ways.

The Band's Visit opened on Broadway at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre in November 2017. It is one of four musicals in Broadway history to win the unofficial "Big Six" Tony Awards, which include Best Musical, Best Book, Best Score, Best Actor in a Musical, Best Actress in a Musical, and Best Direction of a Musical. The book of the musical is written by Berkeley native Itamar Moses.

Plus, we talk to actor Darryl Van Leer, about his solo performance The Life of Dr. King, streaming live on The Marsh’s streaming platform MarshStream, January 14-17.

Based on the essential writings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr The Life of Dr. King opens with a narration describing the tribulations of the Montgomery Bus boycott. King’s testimony of these events is given in his passionate sermon Early Days. Next, the audience is transported to the year 1963, to witness King’s historical speech I Have A Dream.

Audiences will also get a first-hand look from a church congregation view, experiencing some of the rare sermons that made Dr. King the truly great orator that he was, including A Knock At Midnight.

On the Arts, with host David Latulippe; heard live on Thursday, January 6 at 1pm, to be archived at this location until the internet dies. Listen now or anytime…

Niels Swinkels is a freelance journalist, musicologist, sound engineer, and radio producer. Born and raised in the Netherlands, he studied English and Musicology at the University of Nijmegen. Before moving to San Francisco, he was the Arts Editor, and Senior Classical Music & Opera critic for Brabants Dagblad, a Dutch daily newspaper. In addition to producing KALW’s Open Air, a weekly radio magazine for the Bay Area Performing Arts, he is also a wine guy at Trader Joe’s Nob Hill in San Francisco...