San Francisco is home to one of the best theater scenes in the country, featuring famous actors and award-winning productions in landmark venues, as well as performances in more intimate settings. Whether you’re visiting the Bay Area for the first time or a longtime resident, seeing a play is one of the top things to do in San Francisco.

The San Francisco Theater District is adjacent to the Union Square shopping district. The American Conservatory Theater is internationally recognized for its groundbreaking productions of classic and contemporary plays, such as Endgame & Play, an evening of two landmark plays by modernist master Samuel Beckett. The Actors Theatre of San Francisco specializes in 20th Century classics like David Mamet’s Glengarry Glen Ross. The Curran Theatre features stars like Kathleen Turner in High and Jonathan Pryce in Harold Pinter’s The Caretaker, as well as War Horse, which won the 2011 Tony Award for Best Play.

Other key theaters are located in Jackson Square, the Civic Center, Hayes Valley and SOMA. And beyond the theaters, Free Shakespeare in the Park is a Bay Area tradition that takes place every year at the Presidio and other San Francisco parks. The series is just one of San Francisco’s theater festivals held each year.

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