From dancers performing on cable cars to sculptors building Burning Man shrines in city parks, Bay Area artists have long produced their work in unorthodox settings. Outdoor theater productions are very much part of the local culture, and the SOMA-based Boxcar Theatre company continues the tradition with nine free, al fresco performances of the ancient Greek playwright Euripides comedy Ion
. Boxcar presents the twisty-plotted story about a boy abandoned at the temple of Apollo at a variety of locations around the city. This will doubtless test the stamina of the three actors involved: Not only do Peter Matthews, Stephanie Maysonave, and Sarah Savage juggle seven characters and tackle the dramatists complicated plotting and offbeat sense of humor, they also have to pick up their togas and run the traffic gauntlet after each show to reach the next performance location on time. The schedule for May 23 looks particularly daunting, with a 1 p.m. performance in Golden Gate Park, a 2:30 show at Civic Center, and a 4:30 finale in Dolores Park. The ancient Greeks were known as much for their athletic expertise as they were for their thespian prowess, so Boxcars guerrilla approach is bound to do Euripides proud.
Ion starts at 1 p.m. at Washington Square Park, Columbus (between Powell and Union), S.F.
Saturdays. Starts: May 9. Continues through May 23, 2009