Bookwaves/Artwaves – February 3, 2022: Art Spiegelman – Octavia Butler

Bookwaves/Artwaves is produced and hosted by Richard Wolinsky.

Links to assorted local theater & book venues



Art Spiegelman, co-editorr of the series “Little Lit,” and author of “MAUS” and “MAUS II”, in conversation with  Richard A. Lupoff, aired originally on December 7, 2000.

On the day before Holocaust Remembrance Day, the McMinn County Board of Education voted 10-0 to ban Art Spiegelman’s graphic novel memoir of his father’s experiences during the Holocaust, MAUS, from county classrooms.

One of the most important records of the Nazi extermination of Jews during World War II, MAUS, by virtue of his graphic nature — as well as its use of mice as Jews and cats as Nazis, has been a necessary history book since its publication in 1980.

In this interview aired on December 7, 2000 on Richard Wolinsky and Richard A. Lupoff’s Cover to Cover program (the forerunner to Bookwaves) while Richard Wolinsky was on vacation, Spiegelman mostly discusses “Little Lit,” which translates fairy tales into comic book form. He also talks about the history of comics, about underground comics, and about MAUS. Richard A. Lupoff (1935-2020), along with co-hosting Probabilities and Cover to Cover with Richard Wolinsky, was a noted science fiction and mystery writer, and the author of a history of comic books, All In Color for A Dime.

This interview has not aired in over twenty years, and was digitized and edited in 2022 by Richard Wolinsky.

Image from Art Spiegelman’s inscription on Richard Wolinsky’s copy of MAUS II.

Complete interview.


Review: “Swept Away” at Berkeley Rep’s Peets Theater through March 6, 2022.



Octavia Butler and Richard A. Lupoff in 1983.

Octavia Butler (1947-2006) in conversation with Richard Wolinsky and Richard A. Lupoff, recorded in 1983.

Octavia Butler, who died in 2006 at the age of 58, was one of the giants of modern science fiction. Winner of multiple awards for her short fiction and novels, her work explored issues involving gender, race, and power and featured protagonists often at odds with their societies. At the time she began writing, there were no other African-American women writing in the field, but she was not merely a pioneer: she was a master of the genre. Her first novel, Patternmaster, was published in 1976 and was followed by a series of sequels. Along with those books, she wrote a stand-alone novel, Kindred in 1979. It’s a masterpiece, a time travel story of a modern African American woman suddenly finding herself in the racist antebellum South.

By 1983, with her handful of novels and a growing reputation within the field, she made a visit to a science fiction convention in San Jose California, where she met up with Richard Wolinsky and his co-host Richard A. Lupoff. At that time, she had yet to win her first Hugo or Nebula Award, and was still unknown outside the field. This interview was the first of two recorded with Octavia Butler.

Complete 1983 Interview.  Complete 1998 Interview.


Review: “Freestyle Love Supreme” at ACT’s Geary Theater through February 13, 2022.



Book Interview/Events and Theatre Links

Note: Most in-person events require proof of full vaccination for all audience members over 12 and masks. Many venues will require proof of boosters starting February 1, 2022. Shows may unexpectedly close early or be postponed due to actors’ positive COVID tests. Other shows have already been cancelled (see below). Check the venue for closures, ticket refunds, and vaccination status requirements before arrival. Dates are in-theater performances unless otherwise noted. All times Pacific Standard Time.

Book Stores
Bay Area Book Festival  Bay Area Book Festival, May 7-8, 2022,
Book Passage.  Monthly Calendar. Mix of on-line and in-store events.
Books Inc.  Mix of on-line and in-store events.
The Booksmith   Monthly Calendar. On-line events only.
Center for Literary Arts, San Jose. Danielle Valore Evans, Feb. 3, 7 pm; Esme Weijun Wang, March 10, 7 pm.
Kepler’s Books  On-line Refresh the Page program listings.

Live Theater Companies
Alter Theatre. Upcoming: Snag by Tara Moses.
American Conservatory Theatre Freestyle Love Supreme at the Geary Theater through February 13, 2021.
Aurora Theatre This Much I Know postponed until September, 2022. Please contact the box office for refunds.
Awesome Theatre Company. On-line now: The Jersey Devil Play, on Vimeo.

Berkeley Rep Swept Away, January 9 – March 6, 2022.
Brava Theatre Center: See page for updated listings.
BroadwaySF: Touring companies: The Band’s Visit, January 11 – February 6, 2022, Golden Gate.
Broadway San Jose: Rent 25th Anniversary Tour, April 8-10, 2022.
California Shakespeare Theatre (Cal Shakes)  Romeo y Juliet May 25 – June 19, 2022.
Central Works Escape From the Asylum by Patricia Milton, Mar 19Apr 17, at the Berkeley City Club.
Cinnabar Theatre. Amy and the Orphans begins February February 11.
Contra Costa Civic Theatre Anton in Show Business by Jane Martin, March 4-20, 2022.
Curran Theater: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child playing now.
Custom Made Theatre Zac & Siah, or Jesus in a Body Bag postponed.
42nd Street Moon. Fun Home, February 3-22. 2022, Gateway Theater. Full Moon Friday cabaret, live & streaming, January 28, 8 pm: featuring Moon veterans, and local Bay Area artists Martín Rojas Dietrich and Noel Anthony Escobar,
Landmark Musical Theater. You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown, March 11 – April 10.
Lorraine Hansberry Theatre. Upcoming schedule to be announced.
Magic Theatre. The Kind Ones by Miranda Rose Hall, February 2-20. Colman Domingo, live at the Strand, Feb. 14, 8 pm as a benefit for the Magic.
Marin Theatre Company Pass Over by Antoinette Chinonye Nwandu, January 27 – February 20.
Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts Upcoming Events Page.
New Conservatory Theatre Center Dot by by Colman Domingo, March 4 – April 3. Getting There by Tipika Guha has been cancelled.
Oakland Theater Project. 2022 season starts with Shakespeare’s The Tempest, February 11 – March 6, 2022, at FLAX art & design, 1501 MLK, Oakland.
Pear Theater. In Theater: Mountaintop by Katori Hall, January 21 – February 13, 2022.
PianoFight. Calendar of shows. Expansion to The Flight Deck in Oakland. SF Sketchfest, January 7-23.
Ray of Light: Upcoming shows to be announced.
San Francisco Playhouse. Twelfth Night, a musical adaptation. On Demand extended through January 29, 2022. Heroes of the Fourth Turning January 26 – March 5, in theater only.
SFBATCO  I, Too, Sing America on the main stage, January 28 – February 13. See website for upcoming streaming and in- theater shows.
San Jose Stage Company: Strange Courtesies by L. Peter Callender, scheduled to open in January, has been rescheduled to spring, 2023. Coming next: August: Osage County, March 30 – April 24, 2022.
Shotgun Players. Babes in Ho-lland has been cancelled. Contact the ticket office for refunds. Passing Strange by Stew, March 5 – April 10.
The Breath Project. Streaming archive.
The Marsh: Calendar listings for Berkeley, San Francisco and Marshstream.
Theatre Rhino Staged Reading: Kingdom by Michael Allen Harris, February 9, 7 pm, 4229 18th St., SF. Hold Me the Forgotten Way, now streaming. Free staged reading: Kingdom by Michael Allen Harris, Tuesday Feb 8, 7 pm. 4229 18th St. SF, or on Zoom. Streaming: Essential Services Project, conceived and performed by John Fisher, all weekly performances now available on demand;  Saturday, February 12, 5 pm: Bedroom on Zoom or Facebook Live, live from New York. SHARK!, conceived and performed by John Fisher, live performance only, Sunday Feb. 27, 2 & 4 pm EST, 12 St. Marks Place, NYC.
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley. Hershey Felder as Chopin, scheduled to open in January, has been postponed until August 17, 2022. Sense and Sensibility, a musical, music and lyrics by Paul Gordon, March 9 – April 3, Lucie Stern Theater, Palo Alto, also available streaming.
Word for Word. See webpage for WORD for WORDcast streaming availability.

Misc. Listings:
Current film series.
Berkeley Symphony: Renew, first Symphonic Concert of the 50th Anniversary Season, Sunday Feb. 6, 4 pm. Zellerbach Hall.
Chamber Music San Francisco: Calendar, Feb. 13 – May 8, 2022.
Dance Mission Theatre. On stage events calendar.
Oregon Shakespeare Festival: Calendar listings and upcoming shows.
San Francisco Opera. Calendar listings, January 16 – June 10, 2022.
San Francisco Symphony. Calendar listings.

Playbill List of Streaming Theatre: Updated weekly, this is probably the best list you’ll find of national and international streaming plays and musicals. Each week has its own webpage, so scroll down.
National Theatrical Streaming: Upcoming plays from around the country.
Filmed Live Musicals: Searchable database of all filmed live musicals, podcast, blog.

If you’d like to add your bookstore or theater venue to this list, please write [email protected]





Artist Song Album Label
Matthew MontfortAmberGuitar WorksNarada Productions, Inc.
Ozay Moore;Sareem Poems;Tall Black Guy;Tall Black Guy, Ozay Moore & Sareem PoemsBlack Is...Black Is...Coalmine Records
Average White BandStop the RainStop the RainWMG - Atlantic Records