Philadelphia playwright Greg Giovanni offers a touch of Japanese artistry in A Minor Cycle: Five Little Plays in One Starry Night. This is the first collaboration between Giovanni and the Theater of Yugen, a San Francisco-based ensemble of artists who create works influenced by classical Japanese dramatic forms of Noh, a musical drama featuring masked men, and Kyogen, shorter comic theater. Performed side-by-side, each one-act play promises to be fun, rife with passion and sentiment, and of course, just a little bit crazy. Set to musical compositions by Bay Area native and Mills graduate Edward Schocker, audiences of all ages are reminded of forgotten childhood stories performed by dragons, ghosts, and toy soldiers in the intimate, 50-seat theater venue. Sheila Devitt designed and directs the puppets, while Hideta Kitazawa delivered the masks. In the first act, The Chronicles of Narnia is reimagined as magic textbook, The Gramarye, followed by Steadfast Memory, inspired by The Steadfast Tin Soldier.She Moved Through the Fair becomes St. Matthew’s Fair, and Lady Jingly Jones cribs off The Courtship of the Yonghy-Bonghy Bo. The performance concludes with George, Agnes, and the Dragon, based on the legend of St. George, but not without a brief intermezzi of original songs based on Peter Pan.
Dec. 11-13, 7 p.m.; Fri., Dec. 14, 8 p.m.; Sat., Dec. 15, 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 16, 1 p.m.; Dec. 19-20, 7 p.m.; Dec. 21-22, 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 23, 1 p.m.; Dec. 26-27, 7 p.m.; Dec. 28-29, 8 p.m.; Sun., Dec. 30, 1 p.m., 2012