AlterTheater Article

Chad Jones has a fascinating article up about a theater company that this SF/Berkeley-centric playwright had never heard of: Marin’s Alternative Theater Ensemble, or AlterTheater.

They put on plays guerilla-style: working out of storefronts, getting furniture and costumes donated by Goodwill:

Now in its fourth season, AlterTheater has made this formula work by performing in storefronts all around San Rafael – art galleries, furniture stores, you name it….

“In many other companies, the first thing cut is actors and Equity contracts,” Harrison says. “The first thing we cut is the production budget. We do a lot of collaborative partnerships so that we can borrow or get donated most of the things we need for a show. One of our sponsors is Goodwill, which has been a wonderful relationship for us. We’re able to use what’s in their stock and return it at the end of the show. Also, when people donate items to us, we pass them on to Goodwill. In Moscow they have a theater position called `the procurer,’ who basically reads the script, determines what’s going to be toughest to find, then sets out to procure those items. That’s a little like what we do.”

Their current play is Justin Warner‘s American Whup-Ass, a spoof of the election process about a Senator who’s challenged to a wrestling match on national TV. Sounds like it’s worth the drive. And a new link in the list of theaters off in the right column there.

Through Nov 9 at 1299 Fourth Street (at C Street), San Rafael. 415-454-2787 or

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