Venue Details

126 Star Starred
Roda Theatre at Berkeley Rep
2025 Addison Street Berkeley, CA 94704
Venue website Get directions
1 events
1 review
0 stars
Parking in garage right across the street from Berkeley Rep. Reasonable at $5.00 for the whole evening up until 12:00 am, when the parking garage closes.
star this tip starred
122 events
71 reviews
41 stars
Find out which shows offer discussion before or after the play and go.
star this tip starred
View all 289 tips

Reviews & Ratings

"Concerning Strange Devices from the Distant West"
18 ratings
2.8 average rating
  • 3
  • 4
  • 3
  • 3
  • 5
37 events
14 reviews
20 stars
attended Mar 02 2010

It was boring and the acting was horrible. This suprised me because I have generally enjoyed what I have seen at Berkeley Rep. But the acting of the male actors seemed like a high school play. There just spitting out their lines as fast as they...continued

star this review starred report as inappropriate
787 events
411 reviews
316 stars
attended Mar 02 2010

Truly a huge disappointment. As others have stated most productions are stellar at Berk Rep. This was lack luster and unimpressive. The female actors and a few of the male actors were decent. The male actor with the gray hat (the husband), he...continued

star this review starred report as inappropriate
201 events
42 reviews
74 stars
attended Mar 07 2010

Overall, I liked this piece for a combination of reasons: imaginative set (with the panels and use of photographs and lighting); the costumes and temporary tattoo work; its interlocking parts; and the layers of plots and subplots and how the...continued

star this review starred report as inappropriate
View All 12 Reviews
More Information



Well before the digital age, the camera selected, filtered and obscured the truth—even as it promised to provide an authentic look at distant lands. Naomi Iizuka explores the intersection of art and authenticity in a haunting play commissioned by Berkeley Rep: Concerning Strange Devices from the Distant West.

Taking its title from a treatise on photography translated into Japanese, the play shifts between the present and the 1880s when a weird new technology first seized the world in freeze frame. Cameras capture images of geishas, monks and shrines and send them to the future in a flash—where we continue to seek meaning through lenses of exoticism and xenophobia. The intricate parts of this world premiere nestle together like a delicate puzzle … or erotic glimpses of an enigmatic tattoo. Experience the mystery of Strange Devices.

Naomi Iizuka’s plays have been seen at major theatres in Boston, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle. Berkeley Rep also presented the world premiere of her 36 Views before it played off Broadway.

Les Waters, associate artistic director, won an Obie Award for Big Love. His shows have ranked among the 10 best plays of 2007 in Time, 2006 in the New York Times and 2005 in TimeOut New York.

About the Ticket Supplier: Berkeley Repertory Theatre

Known for its amazing and adventurous audience, the nonprofit has provided a home for emerging and established artists since 1968. With two stages and a Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre, Berkeley Rep premieres exhilarating new plays and reimagined classics. In the last five years alone, the company has helped send five shows to Broadway: Green Day’s American Idiot, Bridge & Tunnel, In the Next Room (or the vibrator play), Passing Strange and Wishful Drinking. Come see tomorrow’s plays today at Berkeley Rep.

Berkeley Rep operates two performance spaces: the Roda Theatre, a state-of-the-art 600-seat proscenium theatre, and the intimate, 400-seat Thrust Stage. The Theatre is located in the heart of downtown Berkeley’s arts district, just a half block from the Berkeley BART station, near lots of restaurants, cafe, pubs, and cool retailers.