710 Van Ness – Ste 187 Fresno, CA 93721



2022 Show Reviews

See a show? Leave a review! Rogue audiences are the only opinion that counts, so leave your recommendations and feedback here. Be sure to include things like:

  • Title of the Show
  • Name of the Performer
  • What you liked
  • What could be better
  • What surprised you
  • Who you think would love it!

49 thoughts on “Reviews

  1. Objects in the Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear; Paula Balakian, etc al; this was a compilation of recollections that helped shape Paula into the strong woman she is today. These recollections were told with insight that comes with experience, emotion, and humor. It was a very delightful evening!

  2. Lark is Mad for Trad ….A really wonderful music group. Very good Irish and North American music. Terry Berret has played about every instrument made. He’s a master. Larry and his son are great. Larry on the bagpipes and other instruments. Neil does a good job on vocals and flute. Bruce does a bang up job with the mandolin (big ass mandolin).

  3. Objects in the Mirror are Closer than They Appear. Storytelling at its best.
    From the Sea of Cortez to Eastern Europe to a sad but spiritual ending of a life,
    Paula Balakian brings a simple structure for storytelling at the Rogue along with Britt Monahan and Lydia Bustos.
    Their stories will make you smile and cry but more important, identify with your experiences and your stories.
    All that was needed was a campfire.

  4. “Magic of Eric”
    Eric at Goldstein’s Mortuary and Delicatessen
    A fun magic show in a quite intimate space tucked into
    the back patio (enter around the back of Goldstein’s).
    Eric (assisted by his wife as the stage hand appearing
    from behind a small black curtain) has a series of entertaining
    magic tricks, which appropriately leaves one wondering “how
    did he do that?” Several of the tricks involved substantial
    audience participation; the performance I attended had a nice
    group of animated friends who added much to the enjoyable

  5. “Jaguar Is A Liar”
    Comedy routine by Jaguar Bennett at Veni Vidi Vici
    Good all-around, well-deserved polemical comedy providing
    humorous political education about the evilness of this church’s
    attempt to circumvent the statutes and policies supporting the
    long-term survival of the businesses and community of the
    Tower District. Good place to acquire and remember talking points
    for when any of the Tower Theater issues come up for public
    hearings when all should turn out to support the Tower District
    and save the historic Tower Theater, while getting some good

  6. “Murray Girls”
    Momma Murray and two of her three daughters at Veni Vidi Vici
    Momma has a lush, lustrously fluid voice with beautiful
    bell-like low tones, with which she harmonizes on several
    song where the leads are sung by the daughters, who also
    have voices which also blend well, especially when all three
    are doing the three-part harmony songs. The songs are
    great fun with catchy melodies and clever lyrics with
    dashes of great raciness in song.

  7. “Lark Is Mad For Trad”
    The four member group Lark at the Spectrum Art Gallery
    Each man plays multiple instruments including the Irish pipes, guitar,
    violins, mandola, flute, with Terry Barrett doing some mean hoe-down fiddling
    on a couple of the songs, all of which are enjoyable. Several songs with
    words are sung by the flute player, who has a nice masculine voice suitable
    for the songs. All songs are out of the Celtic, Irish, Scottish, Appalachian traditions.
    Arrive early for the best seats. Show is popular; the artists well-known locally; seating
    a bit problematical for one’s preferred view, although the sound is fine.

  8. “Accordian Fight Show”
    Strangely at Hart’s Haven
    This is the top “Don’t Miss” show of the Rogue. Arrive early if
    possible for a seat of your choice, as the venue is narrow but deep (All
    seats are good, however.)
    This is a one-man musical and humor show of a talented musician, singer, raconteur,
    and athlete, who could have taught Gypsy Rose Lee a thing or two about
    tasteful stripping. Some wonderful American classic songs one may not have heard
    for decades (or perhaps never before! “Sam McGee” ring any bells?). Some
    sing-a-long audience participation songs. Several instruments played.
    And Hart’s Haven is a delightful venue. Oh, and there is a kayak, too!
    Altogether a great tour de force.

  9. If you like to have a character grab you from the moment you sit down and pull you into their every emotion, go see Donna Kay Yarborough performing Rosegold! We were on the edge of our seats until the last frightening moment. Gave me shivers!

  10. Objects in the Mirror are Larger Than They Appear
    If you like compelling stories told well, go see this show. Paula Balekian, Britt Monahan, and Lydia Bustos do a great job.

  11. Objects in the Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear; Lydia Bustos… every time I have seen this amazing girl perform, I end up crying! She is so amazingly talented. Anyone of any age could attend her show and feel connected to her character and story.

    1. Thanks so much! I was so humbled you joined us and hear these stories. It’s touching to hear your heart.

  12. Go see “Father, Daughter, and Holy Ghost”. It is a joyous and honest exploration in end-of-life issues from the view point of a daughter/caretaker. Very funny, realistically blunt, and a fine way to honor a one-of-a-kind dad.

  13. ” Born Again in Berkeley”‘ performed by Theresa Donahoe was a delightful bio of a young woman in the San Francisco Bay area but not in its progressive areas, in Martinez, then Concord. Over time she learned that with her youth group she had worked in campaigning supporting right-wing issues she disagreed with, including researching a Phil Donahue show criticizing of the church’s campaign. Theresa entertainingly plays all the characters in the encounters along the way.

  14. Shane “Scurvy” Spears in “Jerk-Off Our Egos” has a warm-up storyteller saying us he’s been telling stories for years and regales us with an incident confronting a terribly rude customer, helping the clerk, at a 7-Eleven. Then Scurvy takes over with his rapid-fire, metaphor-rich story in the mode of Poe’s “Telltale Heart.” of going stir-crazy during COVID sequestration.

  15. Fresno’s Willian Saroyan Society offers Fresno a Saroyan short play by our distinguished author of the previous century entitled “The Hungerers.” It is introduced by the Saroyan character as a play “that should not be applauded,” but “read, and performed by families at home.”
    Of course, the central character is a young writer. He doesn’t want to be interrupted but permits people to enter his place to get out of the rain, and correctly assumes they are hungry, and haven’t eaten. But he has no food for them. But they have a typewriter to sell and love for each other. Now I know that Saroyan dabbled in theater of the absurd.

  16. “Father, Daughter & Holy Ghost” by Barbara Brady is an extremely well written autobiographical story about the ups and downs of family life. Brady cleverly infuses humor throughout this poignant and touching piece about a season of life that affects us all one way or another.

  17. Bennet Caffee gives us permission to laugh at his “crazy” stories in the show, “My First Miracle-Adventures in Bipolar Disorder”. Don’t feel guilty about seeing the humorous side of his misadventures in and out of the psych ward- he doesn’t. It’s entertaining and informative all at the same time

    1. Thanks Theresa – You’re right, some people have said they didn’t feel comfortable laughing because my situation seemed too serious. Please laugh if you want. It goes down easier that way.

  18. Barbara Brady’s “Father , Daughter and the Holy Ghost ” is one of the most touching and impactful shows I have seen in all my years as a Rogue goer. I have been a part of the Rogue since Marcel tapped me 20 years ago to help on the very first festival. Barbara’s show touches on the most tender nerves while making you laugh and cry at the same time. Something that only a true storyteller can pull off. A show worth seeing!

  19. Although I have a coffee mug that says so – I have no actual proof. that Jaguar is a Liar. But I will testify he presents an interesting, unassailable case about the Tower theater controversy with plenty of laughs along the way.

  20. All I knew about ROSEGOLD coming in was that I am a fan of its creator Donna Kay Yarborough and that the show was a runaway hit, BEST OF FEST AWARD WINNER at the biggest Fringe Festival in the U.S..

    Honestly, that’s not a bad way to come in – cuz the mystery and slow (but captivating!) build are a big part of what makes ROSEGOLD such a satisfying Rogue show experience.

    Imagine a Stephen King character telling her story at a 12-step meeting…and maybe telling too much!

    Highly recommended.

  21. Return of the Son of One Hit Wonders
    aka The Excursions: Woody Moise, Jeff Single, Mike Brown, Willie Barrera, Lizabeth Laury, Pete Favela and Marc Wise with special guest Misty Sullivan on lead vocals.

    I absolutely loved this show. If you have been alive in the US for the past ten years or more you have heard half of these songs at least once. They are all songs that charted in the top 10 on Billboard dating back to probably 1960 and were the only “hit” the performing band ever accomplished. The Excursions put together a very tasteful setlist of “one hit wonders” segueing smoothly from one song to the next in the form of medley or interspersed with fun factoids about the band or the era from when the song was a hit. We were also asked pop trivia questions to help bring us back to that time period. I was thoroughly entertained through the whole show. The arrangements, vocals, and overall musicianship was top notch. So much so I intend to return with some more friends on the 12th for their final performance at Veni Vidi Vici (1116 N Fulton St).

    Before I went I was worried that it would be too cold for an outdoor show and was pleasantly surprised how warm it is on their patio. When I arrived and saw two sets of drums I was worried but the drummers are tasteful and blended in perfectly. The entire band supports who ever is singing lead with solid harmony. I sang along on almost every song, what a great time.

    I would only improve it by raising the vocals on a couple of the mics. Other than that the show was a hit.

    1. Marianne has said it much better than I can so I’ll just pile on. It was such a joy to stumble on to this show. I had no idea what to expect. This guys and special guest Misty Sullivan are outstanding – well rehearsed and tight. Playing for the sheer joy of it, certainly not for the money. Makes me think of “The Sultans of Swing”. I can’t recommend this show enough – see it if you can!

  22. Theresa Donahue is hilarious in breakout moments of her show “Born Again in Berkeley”. As a devout atheist I’m surprised how quickly I found myself rooting for her as she confronts prejudice as a “Christian” in liberal Berkeley. I must confess, I’ve watched Theresa develop her show in San Francisco. It was a true pleasure to see her perform the finished piece here at the Rogue. Her story is compelling and truly unique for our community – Bay Area that is. Really? A show about being a Christian? Do not fear even if you’re a heathen like me you will love this show.

  23. “The Father, Daughter and Holy Ghost”. Barbara Brady says despite the dire need, there are no assisted living facilities for aging nerds in Silicon Valley. She returns home to care for her terminally ill father who’s “only moving out of the house is feet first”. She and her younger sister share caregiving duties and which lead them to comical conflicts about how to maintain the house. Meanwhile her intelligent yet comically nerdy father shows his love the only way he knows, sharing scientific trivia. It’s a story about love and how it goes down in the end. Surprisingly light and enjoyable considering the topic

  24. I want to give y’all a heads up, go see the Excursions doing the One Hit Wonder show. Aside from the multiple definitions of a “one hit wonder” these guys stuck to the ones we all became familiar with out of the 60’s 70’s and 80’s, including the Eve of Destruction by Fresno’s own, Barry McGuire, Devo’s Whip-it, Get Together and so many more. The medleys segued from one hit to another and the band played on.
    If you get a chance, go see The Excursions at Vini Vidi Vici this weekend.

  25. Born Again In Berkeley
    Theresa Donahoe

    If you have not yet seen Born Again in Berkeley by Theresa Donahoe, I recommend that you do. Theresa is a wonderful performer. She snaps from one fun character to the next with such precision, and there is so much humor in this show. She tells the story of how a naïve, well-meaning kid, who just wants to be part of a loving Christian community, gets bamboozled into supporting a political stance she never believed in. She grows up, gets out and shows us that you can’t paint all Christians with the same brush.

  26. Blood Harmony
    by The Murray Girls
    Super fun show, led by astonishing vocal harmonies. The momma Murray is a crack up and can sing whatever she needs to. There was only 2 daughters performing her this time… I think they can use any lineup and pull off these beautiful harmonies. Im not sure who’s voice I enjoyed the most… it was dark and beautiful and fun and bright.

  27. Blood Harmony doesn’t disappoint. The Murray Girls, Mama Leigh and her daughters, have been singing together for years, and it’s always a pleasure to hear them. Although some songs were familiar from previous years, there were some new ones as well. I love the way Mama lets each of her girls shine. Definitely for fans of harmony singing. Most of the songs are old but not necessarily well-known folk songs, and there are newer songs thrown in as well. Good singing and lots of personality. Don’t miss it!

  28. Jaguar Bennett knocks another one out of the park with Jaguar Is a Liar: What I Saw During the Fight for the Tower Theatre. He is witty, as always, and justifiably angry at the situation with the Tower Theatre, Adventure Church, the City of Fresno, and the abuse he and others have suffered at the hands of Nazis welcomed as allies by the current owner and tenant of the Tower Theatre. I expected to hear a cogent analysis of that situation, but I was surprised to learn more about the history of the Tower neighborhood and Jaguar’s own connection to it. This isn’t just preaching to the choir; it’s a well-written and delivered account of what is going on and how we got here — and also very funny.

  29. If you enjoy singer-songwriters who paint a pictures with their songs and can do some excellent finger-style picking guitar work, you’ll greatly appreciate Andrew Potter and his show, “I Haunt My Own House.” Andrew plays a 55-minute set (starting first on the keyboard) of original songs from his recent album. He’s got a warm voice and friendly presence, and his lyrics are humorous, poignant, and tell many tales we can all relate to. Catch one of his last two shows at Spectrum: Friday night at 10:00; Saturday at 5:00.

  30. Objects In The Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear:
    Paula Balekian, Britt Monahan and Lynda Bustos brought heartwarming, thought provoking stories of Paula’s life to the stage. Stories that come to life with lots of humor, some sadness, and love.
    Thank you for a wonderful evening of theatre.
    Joanne & Giovanni

  31. Objects in the Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear is outstanding! True life experiences told in a delightful storytelling manner. I laughed. I cried. I was in awe of the experiences Paula Balekian shared of her life with the help of the amazing Lydia Bustos and Brit Monahan. Bravo!

  32. Objects In The Mirror Are Closer than they Appear…Honestly didn’t know what to expect… from the beginning to end I was captivated with the storytelling…Lydia you are an amazing performer as well as the other ladies….I can’t wait for your next performance 🤍

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