Berkeley Rep has kept up such a high standard of excellence in recent years that it stands head and shoulders above regional rivals. Even New York, unaccustomed to acknowledging that things occasionally happen elsewhere, has taken notice as its stages have become filled with acclaimed productions that started at Berkeley Rep, including Eurydice, Bridge & Tunnel, Brundibar, and Passing Strange. Going on to hit runs both off and on Broadway, Passing Strange won an Obie Award for best new theater piece and three Drama Desk Awards for outstanding musical, music, and lyrics this year, and won one of the seven Tony Awards for which it was nominated. Berkeley Rep's fortieth season had more visiting productions than usual, but the offerings from Theatre de la Jeune Lune, Steppenwolf, and Mary Zimmerman were so sublime that it is churlish to grumble that there should have been a few more homegrown productions. Next season promises world premieres by Itamar Moses (Yellowjackets, about Berkeley High) and Sarah Ruhl (The Vibrator Play). Zimmerman again with The Arabian Knights, Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, Martin McDonagh's The Lieutenant of Inishmore, and Delroy Lindo directing August Wilson's Joe Turner's Come and Gone.