When I was in school my composition teacher always told me to answer the questions “Who, What, When, Where, Why?” I’m fairly certain I barely passed some of these courses, and this might be the only thing I remember from 6th grade (other than a smattering of embarrassments which drove me into therapy as a damaged adult), but it seems an appropriate way to address Circle’s “5 Reasons You Oughtta” blog topic, this time about I Love You, San Diego. 5 Reasons. 5… prepositions. Err. Gerunds. “Where” is a gerund, right?
1. WHO. The Company: Circle Circle Dot Dot, the most innovative and interactive theater company in San Diego today. This is their arena and you’ll know why when you see the show. The Writers: Sam Ginn and Julio Jacobo, who you have seen featured in hilarious and critically acclaimed shows like Circle’s own Deconstruction of a Drag Queen and Diversionary’s Scrooge in Rouge. They each bring their unique perspectives—on comedy, love, and life—to bear upon the pieces, and the writing is fresh and snappy while retaining the authenticity that makes this a worthy way to spend an hour and fifteen minutes. The artistic sensibilities of Ginn and Jacobo, while different, both provide a laughter-colored canvas upon which the love story of the main characters is told to us. The direction, shared by Jacobo and CCDD’s Patrick Kelly, allows the words to unfold with the gentlest of nudging toward an affecting charm. The words are the finest dust, and the actors breathe life into them variously and skillfully, giving us different perspectives on the same characters which is a refreshing take on romance.The Actors: a showcase of some of San Diego’s most memorable performers including Kathi Copeland, Ashley Toolan, a deeply sympathetic Durwood Murray, the hilarious Michael Parrott, and several performers relatively new to San Diego theater audiences.
2. WHAT. San Diego, I Love You 2.0 is a series of vignettes which tell the story of one couple over the course of their lives, and the actors are well selected to portray these divergent stages which will be familiar to any human being, who ever loved anything, ever. Even better, they do so in a succession of riotously funny period-appropriate costumes. At the conclusion of each piece, you feel not only as though you’re moving to the next location, but through time in the lives of this couple, whose story is deeply affecting, familiar, and true. Their story is narrated by your guide, who is also their child. Confused? Don’t be. Although if you have a drink at each stop which permits, you could be by curtain call. There are plenty of ingredients which bring the San Diego flavor- the unique considerations of military life, the famous laid-back attitude of our fellow residents, and amusing references to local specialties like the California Burrito. Much like the character who moves here for love , we re-discover these charms one by one, and if you don’t smile when you recognize and remember them, you aren’t a San Diegan yet. Seeing this show will help you get your Member ID Card.
3. WHEN. The show takes place February 8th, 9th, 15th, and 16th, with shows at 1:00pm, 1:30pm, 2:00pm, 2:30pm, 3:00pm, 3:30pm. Running time is about 75 minutes, but it will feel like less. You'll move quickly from location to location at the conclusion of each scene. If you choose to buy a drink when you can, be sure not to pace yourself! Pound it. Next location. Take a moment, get settled. The scene begins. You’ve just rushed over from the last location, but the words take you into a moment and you forget where you are. You’re a romantic voyeur. Finish your drink. Next.
4. WHERE: (Warning! Gratuitous alliteration ahead!) Several secret locations are the setting for the second annual effort of Circle Circle Dot Dot’s site specific show. (My screen is slathered in saliva from saying so.) This year, CCDD takes you to University Heights, which you’l see in a new, more personal light as you travel from place to place. When it’s over, you’ll realize that you only traveled within a 4 block radius, but you’ve seen a lot, considering. (All locations are wheelchair accessible.) It’s an awesome peek into some unexpected places you might not see otherwise, some of which are so intimate you are literally an arm’s length from the actors. It will fulfill every voyeuristic urge, it will draw you in to every moment, and when it’s over, and you’re outside again and the sun is shining and you’ve finished that last drink, you might linger and have another. You’ve seen the characters lives progress, from start to… what adventure is next for them? Linger awhile more and have another drink with your fellow audience members and talk about it. Love is in the air. Love for comedy, love for romance, love for theater, love for San Diego. Show a little love for Circle Circle Dot Dot and see this charming and one-of-a-kind performance. You will have fun and be reminded of why you Love San Diego.
5. WHY: Have you been paying attention??? I thought I covered this.
Jerry Burkey is a board member of Circle Circle Dot Dot, and an actor, writer, and filmmaker. He is cranky and intractable but has a weakness for cat pictures and red velvet cupcakes. And good, homegrown theater.