Monday Night PlayGround
Alumni Night
September 19, 2016 at 8pm
performing at Berkeley Repertory Theatre


Last October, PlayGround signed a long-term lease on the Thick House theatre, located in the heart of San Francisco’s Potrero Hill neighborhood and where PlayGround has produced its festival and numerous co-productions over the past nine years. We’ll close the theatre on November 21 for renovations and the theatre will open mid-January 2017 with a new name, air conditioning, seats, lights and more.

To celebrate the grand reopening of Thick House, PlayGround has invited alumni playwrights, representing some of the Bay Area’s best new writers, to collaborate on a new work to deepen and celebrate our connection to Potrero Hill. In association with partners Potrero Dogpatch Merchants Association (PDMA) and the Potrero Hill Archives Project (PHAP), the artists will create a new play, the Potrero Nuevo Project, comprised of 6 original short works inspired by the past, present, and future of Potrero Hill, integrated into a seamless, meaningful, and entertaining evening of theatre. Partners PDMA and PHAP bring a wealth of expertise crucial to this project’s success. For PDMA, the Potrero Nuevo Project represents a significant opportunity to celebrate the unique history of the Potrero Hill community and the contributions of those who live and work there, while strengthening the ties between local merchants and residents, and further animating the 18th Street corridor. PHAP has a 30-year history of preserving and honoring the history of the Potrero Hill neighborhood, through its oral histories documentation, archiving of historical artifacts, annual Potrero Hill History Night, and many other events and programs.

Potrero Hill has a rich and storied past and a complex future to mine for theatrical material. A former Native American hunting ground, the region was named “Potrero Nuevo” or new pasture by the Spanish missionaries in the 1700s, later granted to the ill-fated de Haro twins by the Mexican government in the 1840s, and served as home to such notables as Lawrence Ferlinghetti and SF mayor Art Agnos. Today, the neighborhood is at the epicenter of San Francisco's change and transformation, struggling to find the balance between old and new, between longtime residents - including many artists - and high-priced housing or commercial development.

Below are additional links/articles on Potrero Hill and its history:

Potrero Hill Archives Project
Pier 70
California Digital Newspaper Collection (search for “Potrero” or by street name)
Potrero View Newspaper (search archives or “One Block” articles)
Wikipedia on Potrero Hill