Best Small Theater Company 

Shotgun Players

They are sometimes hard to find, but the Shotgun Players are never hard to take seriously. Now in their eleventh season, they have consistently embodied all the qualities that make East Bay theater so vibrant. Like so many other Berkeley/Oakland companies -- SubShakes, CentralWorks, Impact, and TheatreFIRST -- the Shotgunners have found a way to turn small and underfunded into quick, innovative, and sharp. Since their inception in the basement at LaVal's, they've tackled both the classics and contemporary work, nurtured and showcased rising stars, and presented plays that challenge, educate, and excite audiences. Hopefully this is the last time we'll refer to them as an amateur theater company; next year at this time they'll be safely ensconced in their own space at 2216 Allston Way. We're eager to see what settling down will make possible for a company that has spent a decade working out of a battered white-panel truck.

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