The Sacramento Bee, January 5, 2017
New works: Joe Rodota’s “Chessman” and Jerry Montoya’s “Love and Baseball” are two fine, very different plays. Both B Street Theatre world premieres benefited from the company’s sincere commitment to new works and its gung-ho attitude toward putting those works on stage.
The Sacramento Bee, October 17, 2016
Director Buck Busfield lets the realistic drama unfold with a smooth fluidity. There’s fine support for the two principals from Elisabeth Nunziato as both Bernice Brown and Chessman’s mother, Hallie. Nik Duggan plays the young Jerry Brown, slipping away from the Jesuit monastery while glimpsing the complex lattice of politics, the family business he would soon enough embrace.
The Sacramento Bee, October 13, 2016
The production attempts to capture the international, O.J. Simpson-like frenzy and divisiveness that surrounded Chessman for more than a decade, while also asking the audience to look beyond its cast of iconic California figures to a family split by a deeply personal, ethical dilemma.
Los Angeles Times, October 12, 2017
He was called the “Red Light Bandit,” and he was executed in 1960 for several crimes, but none of them was murder. He made himself internationally famous, giving interviews and writing books about crime, law, and himself. Madame Tussauds had a wax version of him on display. Luminaries from Aldous Huxley to the Rev. Billy Graham argued against putting him to death. The case was a harrowing one for California's governor, Pat Brown, and for his family, including his son, the future governor, a young Jerry Brown. The Brown family and Chessman’s case are the subject of Joseph Rodota’s new play “Chessman,” which opens this week at Sacramento’s B Street Theatre.
BroadwayWorld.com, July 25, 2017
B Street Theatre, Sacramento's Resident New Works Theatre, is thrilled to present the World Premiere of Chessman, a family drama and legal thriller based on the true story of Caryl Chessman.