Bookwaves/Artwaves – October 20, 2022: Vauhini Vara – Bill Irwin

Bookwaves/Artwaves is produced and hosted by Richard Wolinsky.

Links to assorted local theater & book venues



Vauhini Vara, author of the novel,  “The Immortal King Rao,” in conversation with host Richard Wolinsky. Recorded via zencastr September 8, 2022.

Vauhini Vara studied at the Iowa Writers Workshop, worked as tech reporter at The Wall Street Journal and wrote for the business section of The New Yorker. She is a contributing writer at Wired. Her upcoming collection of short stories, This is Salvaged, will be published in 2023.

The Immortal King Rao tells two stories, that of a fictional tech billionaire who grew up in humble beginnings in the 1950s in southern India and eventually came to the United States, and during the novel flashes forward a hundred years to a dystopia in which algorithms determine the success or failure of any individual.
Vauhini Vara webpage. 
Complete 45-minute interview.



Richard Wolinsky & Bill Irwin, 2017

Bill Irwin, creator and performer of “On Beckett,” which was performed at the Toni Rembe (formerly Geary) Theatre, October 19-23, 2022, interviewed by Richard Wolinsky when the show was first performed in 2017.

Bill Irwin won the Tony Award for his portrayal of George opposite Kathleen Turner’s Martha in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf.” on Broadway. He performed as both Lucky and Vladimir in productions on Broadway of Samuel Beckett’s “Waiting for Godot,” and performed in A.C.T.’s recent production of Beckett’s “Endgame.” A veteran of several TV shows and films,  currently he appears regularly on the TV show “Law & Order: SVU” and appeared previously on “Sleepy Hollow,” and “Legion.” A founder of the legendary Pickle Family Circus, he has also appeared in San Francisco and New York in the shows “Fool Moon” and “Old Hats.”

Bill Irwin’s interest in Nobel laureate Samuel Beckett (1906-1989) goes back to college and his performances of Beckett not only include the mentioned plays but other works as well.

The interview was recorded January 9, 2017 in a dressing room at the Strand Theatre in San Francisco.
2017 Interview podcast.


Review: “Indecent” by Paula Vogel, at San Francisco Playhouse through November 5, 2022.



Book Interview/Events and Theatre Links

Note: Most in-person events still require proof of full vaccination for all audience members over 12 and masks. Many venues will require proof of boosters. Shows may unexpectedly close early or be postponed due to actors’ positive COVID tests. 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  Highlights from this year’s Festival, May 7-8, 2022 and upcoming calendar.
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. See website for Book Club guests in upcoming months.
Kepler’s Books  On-line Refresh the Page program listings.

Live Theater Companies
Actor’s Reading Collective (ARC). 
See website for past streams.
Alter Theatre. Upcoming: Snag by Tara Moses, Pueblo Revolt by Dillon Chitto
American Conservatory Theatre On Beckett, written and performed by Bill Irwin, Toni Rembe (Geary) Theatre, Oct. 19-23. All Hallows Gala, October 28, August Hall. A Christmas Carol, November 30 – December 24, Toni Rembe Theater.
Aurora Theatre Colonialism is Terrible, but Pho is Delicious by Dustin Chinn, November 4 – December 2, in theatre. Streaming: December 3-4.
Awesome Theatre Company. Terrorama in Space, October 14, 15, 21. 22. 28, 29. Exit Theatre.

Berkeley Rep Jerrod Charmichael: Ari Told Me I Lack Focus, November 8-13, Peets Theatre. Wuthering Heights, adapted and directed by Emma Rice, November 18 – January 1, Roda Theatre.
Boxcar Theatre. All Hallows Eve, October 28, 29, 31, The Palace Theatre.
Brava Theatre Center: See website for events.
BroadwaySF: Moulin Rouge! The Musical,  through November 6, 2022, Orpheum. Jagged Little Pill, through November 6, Golden Gate Theatre. Ain’t Too Proud November 9 – December 6, 2022, Golden Gate. Hadestown returns September 12-17, 2023 at the Orpheum.
Broadway San Jose: The Book of Mormon, Nov. 22-27, 2022
California Shakespeare Theatre (Cal Shakes). 2023 Season to be announced.
Center Rep: Clue based on the screenplay, Lesher Center, Walnut Creek, October 29 – November 20, 2022.
Central Works The Museum Annex by Mildred Inez Lewis, Oct. 15 – Nov. 13, 2022.
Cinnabar Theatre. Misery, based on the novel by Stephen King, October 14-30, 2022.
Contra Costa Civic Theatre Upcoming show to be announced.
Curran Theater: An Evening with Nigella Lawson, November 14, 2022.
Custom Made Theatre. Shoshana in December. November 18 – December 18, Phoenix Theatrre, 414 Mason St., San Francisco.
42nd Street Moon. Gypsy In Concert, November 3-4, Heritage Theatre; November 12-13, Alcazar Theatre.
Golden Thread  The Language of Wild Berries by Nagmeh Samini, October 14 – November 6, 2022. Potrero Stage.
Landmark Musical Theater. The Addams Family, October 22 – November 20, 2022.
Lorraine Hansberry Theatre. Halie! The Mahalia Jackson Musical, world premiere. December 2 – 24, at the Magic.
Magic Theatre. The Travelers by Luis Alfaro, February 15 – March 5, 2023. See website for other theatre events at the Magic.
Marin Theatre Company Two Trains Running by August Wilson, November 25 – December 18, 2022.
Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts Upcoming Events Page.
New Conservatory Theatre Center (NCTC) A Picture of Two Boys by Nick Malakhow October 21 – November 27, 2022. Oy Vey in a Manger, by the Kinsey Sicks, December 7 – 31, 2022.
Oakland Theater Project. Book of Sand: A Fairy Tale by Lisa Ramirez, November 11 – December 4, livestream/on demand November 26. The Oakland Theatre at FLAX.
Pear Theater. Frankie and Johnny at the Claire de Lune by Terrence McNally, December 1- 18, 2022.
PianoFight. Calendar of shows.
PlayGround. See website for upcoming shows.
Presidio Theatre. Sleeping Beauty: Panto at the Presidio, December 1 – 30, 2022.
Ray of Light: See website for upcoming productions.
San Francisco PlayhouseIndecent by Paula Vogel, September 22 – November 5, 2022.
SFBATCO See website for upcoming streaming and in- theater shows.
San Jose Stage Company: Sex with Strangers by Laura Eason, October 12-30, 2022/
Shotgun Players. Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812 by Dave Malloy. November 5 – December 30, Streaming November 17, December 1.
South Bay Musical Theatre: The Spitfire Grill, January 28-February 18, 2023.
The Breath Project. Streaming archive.
The Marsh: Calendar listings for Berkeley, San Francisco and Marshstream.
Theatre Rhino  Bad Hombres by Guillermo Reyes, October 6-30. 2022. A Slice of Life, world premiere by John Fisher, November 5-27. At Theatre Rhino (formerly Spark Arts). Streaming: Essential Services Project, conceived and performed by John Fisher, all weekly performances now available on demand.
TheatreWorks Silicon Valley. Little Shop of Horrors, November 30 – December 24, Lucie Stern Theater, Palo Alto.
Word for Word. See schedule for live and streaming works.

Misc. Listings:
On View calendar for BAM/PFA.
Berkeley Symphony: See website for listings.
Chamber Music San Francisco: Calendar, 2023 Season, starting February.
Dance Mission Theatre. On stage events calendar.
Oregon Shakespeare Festival: Calendar listings and upcoming shows.
San Francisco Opera. Calendar listings.
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 MontfortAmberNarada GuitarUMG - Narada Productions, Inc.
AlloinyxWerewolves and PopcornBerlin EngineeringiM Electronic (EU)
RockwellSomebody's Watching MeSomebody’s Watching Me (Deluxe Edition)UMG - UNI/MOTOWN
Average White BandStop the RainStop the RainWMG - Atlantic Records