Brian Copeland presents the Best of San Francisco Solo Series!
Updated May 13, 2017

SEVEN of the Bay Area's most critically-acclaimed, award-winning, and beloved solo shows from the Marsh, San Francisco Fringe Festival, and Berkeley Rep presented live in Napa! 

THE SHOWS

brian golfdigestBRIAN COPELAND: NOT A GENUINE BLACK MAN
Three performances: 8pm Fri Sept 30/8pm Sat Oct 1/2pm Sun Oct 2, 2016

In 1971, Fair Housing advocates considered San Leandro was named one of the most racist suburbs in America. CBS aired a special in the situation. The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights conducted hearings. The next year, eight-year-old Copeland and his African-American family moved in. In an evening of laughter, tears and sociology, "Not a Genuine Black Man" is a hilarious and insightful look at Bay Area history, and at the ways in which our upbringings make us who we are.

"Not a Genuine Black Man" broke records as the longest-running solo show in San Francisco history and brought Copeland critical acclaim as one of the city's most talented and engaging solo performers.

"A beautiful mix of wry humor and heartbreak, indignation and inspiration, a singular story of extreme isolation that speaks to anyone who's ever felt out of place."
—San Francisco Chronicle

donreed-east14th-photoDON REED: EAST 14TH STREET
Two performances: 8pm Sat Oct 29/2pm Sun Oct 30, 2016

Don Reed (HBO/Showtime/Sprint) stars in this double nominated NAACP solo performance (Best Actor & Best Playwright) that chronicles the true story of young Don growing up in 1970's Oakland. His stepfather forced him to be a God-fearing, straight-A student. So he ran away to live with his real Dad. But he had no idea he was a pimp. He just thought he was really into hats. The show ran Off Broadway in New York the entire summer of 2008 and in the Bay Area for 3 years.

"Hilarious. Energetic. Enchanting... An irresistible presence... an underground hit! A graceful, genial performer... It's hard not to love 1970's funk and soul and Don Reed."
—New York Times

 

jewelryboxBRIAN COPELAND: THE JEWELRY BOX
Three performances: 5pm, 6:30pm & 8pm on Sun Dec 18, 2016

In this hilarious and heartwarming prequel to his hit show "Not a Genuine Black Man," beloved actor-playwright Brian Copeland recounts two memorable weeks in his youth when he took to the "mean streets" of Oakland to buy his mom the perfect Christmas gift. Rife with references to 1970s Oakland, "The Jewelry Box" follows six-year-old Brian's adventures as he scours the help-wanted ads, applies for jobs and collects bottles, inching his way toward the coveted present, a jewelry box at the Hegenberger White Front store.

"Destined to be a holiday classic!"
—SF Examiner

"'The Jewelry Box' is a gift in itself... it glitters with bright comedy, sharply observed local color and deftly drawn characters as well as genuine warmth."
—San Francisco Chronicle

varonCHARLIE VARON: FEISTY OLD JEW
Three performances: 8pm Fri Jan 13/8pm Sat Jan 14/2pm Sun Jan 15, 2017

At age 83, here's what Bernie hates: yoga studios, tattoo parlors, boutiques of all kinds, medical marijuana dispensaries, $6 cups of coffee, young techies and what they’re doing to San Francisco. It's a hot October Sunday and Bernie is tired of waiting for a cab. He sticks out his thumb and is picked up by three 20-somethings in a Tesla with a cappuccino maker in the dashboard and two surfboards strapped to the roof. By the time they get to the beach, Bernie has convinced the kids to let him surf for the first time in his life, and bet them $400,000 that he'll ride a wave.

Charlie Varon has been called "wildly entertaining" (San Francisco Chronicle), "very funny" (The New Yorker), and "hilarious" (The Washington Post).

"Comic gold."
—San Francisco Chronicle

jeff-greenwaldJEFF GREENWALD: STRANGE TRAVEL SUGGESTIONS
Three performances: 8pm Fri Mar 24/8pm Sat Mar 25/2pm Sun Mar 26, 2017

Audience members step onto the stage and spin a huge, colorful wheel. Round and 'round it spins, and where it stops—there are 30 travel-related "themes" on the Wheel—the story begins. Greenwald never knows which tales he is going to tell during any show, so the audience embarks on an expedition with him, from one spin to the next, as partner and companion.

"I love this show! Jeff could take a trip to Costco to buy socks, and I'd want to hear the story. Sixteen thumbs up!"
—Mary Roach, author of Stiff and Gulp

"Funny, keen-eyed, utterly engaging. Wherever it leads, it adds up to quite a trip."
—Rob Avila, SF Bay Guardian

mark kenward-nantucketMARK KENWARD: NANTUCKET
Three performances: 8pm Fri Apr 7/8pm Sat Apr 8/2pm Sun Apr 9, 2017

It happened in an instant. On a gray winter's day, on an island thirty miles out to sea, 16-year-old Mark Kenward witnessed a violent act that would shatter his family and shock the local community. Thirty years later, Kenward has shaped his family's story of their migration from Normal, Illinois to island "paradise," into the critically acclaimed drama "Nantucket."

The Oakland Tribune hailed the show as "astounding, funny and breathtaking" and The Stark Insider marveled that "so powerful was his hold on the audience, the only evidence that anyone was even breathing was an occasional gasp."

 


jillviceJILL VICE: TIPPED & TIPSY
May 12-14, 2017

Come to HAPPY'S! Meet the bartender, Candy, three of her regulars, the lascivious bar owner and an assortment of other saloon denizens. Ponder the magic forces that keep a drunk on his bar stool! Honor acts of alcohol induced courage! Celebrate the traditions of the bar that transform a bunch of lonely drunks into a loving family! And mostly join Candy in her efforts to keep her favorite regular from drinking himself to death.

With her remarkable physical performance skills, Jill brings to life 14 characters in this hilarious and touching send up of American Bar Culture.

"With a love of the underdog and strong writing and acting at its core, 'Tipsy' breezes by, leaving a superlative buzz."
—Rob Avila, SF Bay Guardian

For more information email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 707-266-6305. 

Note: Due to mature language and themes, this series is recommended for ages 15 and up.

© Brian Copeland.

 
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