Aisle Seat

I Fall for Pieces
The benefit reading of selections from Pieces of the Quilt made for a remarkable evening of theater. The performances were extraordinary, the pieces astonishing. Julia Sweeney (God Said, "HA!") read excerpts from Tony Kushner's Sermon for St. John the Divine, Episcopalian National Day of Prayer for AIDS. Sunday, October 9, 1994. "I am in the habit of hoping," the unnamed character says, pointing out to God that a cure for AIDS, for sexism, for homophobia is certainly not beyond his power; neither would it be impossible for God to change the hearts of the politicians who revel in hate. Sean San JosŽ Blackman performed Silica, by Octavio Solis, with defiant exuberance. It is intricately crafted, filled with hope and pain, laughter and metaphor -- kind of like life. Clinic con Class, Danny Hoch's brilliant dissection of the politics of AIDS, rounded out the evening. Hoch's play contains what may be the greatest line ever written for the theater. In response to Savion's (Hansford Prince) suggestion that Mike (Blackman) might not know how to use a condom, Mike insists that he does. After all, Mike says, "that shit is some self-explanatory shit." Byron couldn't have said it more graciously. If these three pieces are at all representative of the whole, Pieces of the Quilt, which premieres at the Magic this fall, will be one of those rare theatrical events treasured in the memory and the heart. All money above production costs will be donated to AIDS service organizations. If you're kicking yourself now because you missed the benefit, send a tax-deductible donation to Magic Theatre, which plans to raise all production costs prior to the opening so 100 percent of the ticket sales will go to persons living with HIV/AIDS. Call 441-8001.

"Adventures in Playwriting" is a three-day celebration of contemporary works that begins Saturday, March 9, at SFSU. The sessions include readings, discussions, and panels with, among others, Eugenie Chan, Erik Ehn, Carey Perloff, Joel Schecter, and Amy Freed. It's free; call 439-2469.

Food for Thought
If you've got a can of corn and a buck, you've got a ticket for ACT's Dark Rapture at the Geary Theater Thursday, March 7, at 8 p.m. Tickets for this "bring what you can and pay what you wish" performance go on sale at 6 o'clock on show night; ACT promises at least 100 seats will be available. The food benefits Project Open Hand. The El Paso Natural Gas Foundation is the generous underwriter of the food-for-tickets project, which will also include performances of The Cherry Orchard (April 4) and The Matchmaker (April 18).

By Deborah Peifer

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