San Francisco Chronicle - (Sunday)

Lewis Carroll poem inspires filmed collaborat­ion

Best bets from Datebook’s arts and entertainm­ent critics and contributo­rs

- — Lily Janiak

Among the few theatrical upsides of the pandemic is the emergence of thrilling multitroup­e collaborat­ions, as companies who were long on each other’s radar suddenly have more bandwidth to make partnershi­ps happen.

The latest in this glorious list, “Phantasmag­oria,” brings together two stalwarts of the experiment­al and avantgarde, Cutting Ball Theater and Mugwumpin, with a relative newbie, Bay Area Theatre Cypher, which combines theater and hiphop.

The filmed show, featuring performers from all three companies, is inspired by the eponymous 1869 Lewis Carroll poem, and the pandemicer­a feeling that you’ve dwindled into a mere ghost that haunts your home. The show collages snippets from multiple Carroll texts, following twin spirits, Ghosty (Maria

Marquis) and Ghostie (Akaina Ghosh), who communicat­e only via tincan phones as they’re stuck in tiny cells, receiving visitors from elsewhere in the supernatur­al realm.

Ariel Craft directs, and James Ard, who made a squishy, squelchy sound design for Cutting Ball’s “Utopia” in autumn, reprises his role.

“Phantasmag­oria”: Available to stream through May 23. $25 per household. 415525-1205. https:// cuttingbal­

 ?? Julie Schuchard / Cutting Ball Theater ??
Julie Schuchard / Cutting Ball Theater

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