The Potrero Nuevo Project is a collection of eight short plays about the history of the Potrero Hill neighborhood. They are comedic, dramatic, emotional, and informative.
The funniest play is Full Steam Ahead, the story of Fritz Maytag and the birth of the craft brewing movement. It describes how Prohibition lead to the consolidation of brewing for decades after its repeal. Jessica Bates does a fantastic job portraying an old-timey bartender being introduced to the new beer. The only thing missing was beer flowing for the audience as they could practically taste if from watching the great performance.
In a very close second place is Tent City, which compares the current homeless situation to the aftermath of the 1906 earthquake. When talking about the tent on the sidewalk in front of his home, the husband, excellently played by Soren Oliver, says it is unacceptable here in Potrero Hill. “After all, this isn’t The Mission!” The audience cracked up at this shot about their closest neighbors. The scene then changes to 1906 with the homeowners offering food and support to the person living in the tent who just lost their home to the natural disaster. It effectively makes the case to be more humane to the homeless population.
The finale, Potrarium Unbound, is a vision of the city demolishing buildings in Potrero Hill to make way for a new hyperloop. It brings back characters from the other plays in the form of holograms for an aquarium of Potrero’s past, aka, a Potrarium. It’s a funny examination on the politics and effects of economic growth at the expense of the current population.
The choice of “Changes” by Bowie is a great choice to close out the show.
Get tickets now for The Potrero Nuevo Project through February 19th!