Tag Archives: Mike Daisey

Dealer’s Choice: The Trump Card, reviewed.

Mike-DaiseyThis took a few days longer to appear than it should’ve, for boring reasons only partly within my control. Anyway, last Friday I attended a workshop of a new monologue by Mike Daisey — an artist I’ve written a lot over the last six or seven years. I didn’t find room in the piece to mention that the monologue was directed by Isaac Butler, who has been doing some terrific writing on the theatre for Slate. The oral history of Angels and America that he and my sometimes-editor Dan Kois posted this week is marvelous piece of historical journalism. Anyway, my Washington City Paper review of the still-developing The Trump Card is (finally) here.

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Our Pottymouthed Year: 2013 on the DC Stage, Assessed.

Drew Cortese and Quentin Maré in Studio's "The Motherfucker with the Hat," a 2013 highlight. (Teddy Wolff)

Drew Cortese and Quentin Maré in Studio’s “The Motherfucker with the Hat,” a 2013 highlight. (Teddy Wolff)

We’re wrapping up a highly rewarding and admirably trend-resistant year on DC’s stages, as I aver in this week’s Washington City Paper.

Magic Thingdom: American Utopias and VANITAS, reviewed.

American-Utopias

I review Mike Daisey’s new monologue, American Utopias, in today’s City Paper.

Also: VANITAS, the new show from Happenstance Theatre Company.

The Tyranny of the Written Interview: A Transcribed Conversation with Monologist Mike Daisey

Mike-Daisey-by-Ursa-WazI’ve written about monologuist Mike Daisey a lot in the last four years, but especially last year, in the wake of damaging revelations about his show The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs.

He and I met again at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, his performing home here in DC since 2008, last Friday to talk about his new piece, American Utopias, which I review in this week’s Washington City Paper.  I’ve just posted an edited, partial transcript of that talk up on Arts Desk. Continue reading

“I haven’t had any undecided moments in my life.” Talking Capitalism with Henry Rollins

If Uncle Sam is now reading PARADE magazine, we’re screwed. Photo by Heidi May.

I’ve had the privilege of speaking with the great raconteur Henry Rollins a few times now. When I interviewed him in 2008 about his plan to play the Birchmere on Election Eve, we spoke in September, several weeks before the show. He was predicting at that time John McCain would be elected president. A few days after our conversation, Lehman Brothers collapsed, the fiscal dominoes started falling and the dynamic of the race changed dramatically.

Once again, Rollins will be speaking here in DC — in DC, where we don’t have voting representation in Congress; not the “DC area” this time, at the 9:30 Club — the night before America chooses a president. I’ll be there. I was surprised to learn when we spoke the other week that he hadn’t heard of Mike Daisey.

The interview is on Washington City Paper Arts Desk today.

Yes, Him Again: Mike Daisey, Unreliable Narrator.

I’ve already written at length about my reaction to the news that Mike Daisey — a stage storyteller whose work I’ve admired for years — fabricated the most emotionally resonant elements of his tech-manufacturing expose monologue The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs. He’s bringing the show back to the place of its birth, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, for a three-week engagement starting next week.

I spent a vacation week from my day job writing about him again. It was not at all restful. It did not help that my usual and customary stress valves — running and boxing — were both severely impaired by a record-pummeling 11-day heatwave here in Our Nation’s Capital that included the hottest day ever recorded in Washington, DC: 105 degrees Fahrenheit on July 7, if you care. On the plus side, my electricity stayed on.

But I digress! My cover story in this week’s Washington City Paper does some chin-scratching about Woolly’s decision to stage Daisey’s controversial show again, and attempts to explain why I think Daisey remains an important artist despite the poor decisions he made during his perilous crossing of the artist-activist Rubicon. I’ll take what he says on stage from now on with a grain of salt, but then I always did. The main thing is I’ll keep showing up to hear what he says. Continue reading

Mike Daisey Returns to Woolly Mammoth So People Who Knew Who He Was Back Before That This American Life Episode Aired in January Can Throw Stones at Him If They Want

Wait, wait, I'm still apologizing! Don't start the music yet!

Mike Daisey appeared for a one-hour public Q & A session last night at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, the place where his controversial monologue The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs was born — or, to use his creepy syntax, “birthed.”

It was an interesting hour highlighted by a fascinating exchange near the end, which I reproduce in my Washington City Paper Arts Desk post about it.