San Diego outdoors: Aida, animal tracks, rugby, SUP with dogs, 1800s Old Town, waterski and wakeboard
Indoors: WWI San Diego, complete history of theater, Christopher Plummer, pickles, Van Gogh-Gaughin, Martina McBride
11:50 a.m., June 28
Louisa May Alcott's March sisters — shy Beth, selfish Amy, vain Meg, and temperamental Jo (i.e. Alcott herself) — come to life at the North Coast Rep. Alcott originally published the novel in two parts (in 1868 and '69), and Jacqueline Goldfinger's stage adaptation concentrates on the first, in which the sisters go on a Pilgrim's Progress, in their Concord, Mass., home, vowing to overcome a flaw of character. Along with the popular story of four very different women, the book depicts daily living 150 years ago, during the Civil War. Kirsten Brandt has smartly cast and directed this "play with music," which includes familiar period songs done as live background. Marty Burnett's excellent set moves indoors and outdoors (on a turntable) and has such sharp detail it could be Alcott's famous home, "Orchard House." Mary Larson's period costumes define each sister with precision. And the cast, individually and as an ensemble, is uniformly solid, Caroline Kinsolving's Jo and Linda Libby's Marmee, the mother, being foremost among equals: Kinsolving for Jo's emotional range (like a kite without a tail, both soaring and tumbling) and Libby for Marmee's grounded strength.