SFist loves live theater (or "theatre" if you're getting all highbrow on us). We think everyone should take in a play here and there instead of a movie -- it's more intimate and frequently more daring (note: we're not talking about here). Unfortunately, too much of the time the larger houses can be priced out of the range of the younger among us, unless you happen to be on top of it and catch the pay-what-you-wish nights. California Shakespeare Theater wants to remedy that. In their Young and Cheap program, anyone 30 or under can call before 3:30pm Tuesday-Friday for a $10 ticket to that night's performance. Beginning next week at Cal Shakes is Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest (August 11-September 5), directed by the company's artistic director and featuring one of our favorite local actors, L. Peter Callender, as Reverend Chasuble. Sure, you may have read it in high school. Your high school may have even put it on. Hell, you might have seen the recent movie version. But much as we love Dame Judi, we think the play is better as a play. And if you haven't been out to the Bruns Memorial Amphitheater, it's a terrific place to see a good piece of theater. Go early and bring a picnic dinner with you (they also sell food there -- the brownies are pretty good). Take BART to the Orinda station and catch the shuttle up to the theater. Bring a blanket with you, too -- it can get a little chilly, but it's worth it.

Phantom of the Opera