All stories by Robert Michael Oliver on BroadwayStars

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Review: NEA Jazz Master Lee Konitz’s Birthday Celebration at The Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

Nonagenarian jazz–what is it? It’s Lee Konitz leading a quartet that includes George Schuller on drums, Jeremy Stratton on bass, and Dan Tepper on piano. And it couldn’t be…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:28AM
Friday, October 13, 2017

Review: ‘The Price’ at Arena Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

Arthur Miller is best known for his two American classics: Death of a Salesman and All My Sons. American high schoolers still know him for his third significant work, The Crucible. Although …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 08:38PM
Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Spine: Love in the Time of Big Pharma, ‘The Effect’ at Studio Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Big Pharma is not only big, it’s growing bigger by the panic attack, by the back spasm, by the botched terrorist attack. We want that pill that makes us happy because that happy is our lat…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 05:09PM
Saturday, October 7, 2017

Spine: Love and Menace in ‘The Lover’ and ‘The Collection’ at Shakespeare Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

Early Pinter is marked by menace. The Room, The Birthday Party, and The Homecoming leave a chill in the air, and in the audience’s agitated brain. We are disturbed as much by what …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 09:35AM
Sunday, September 17, 2017

Review: ‘Lela & Co.’ by Factory 449 at The Anacostia Arts Center by Robert Michael Oliver

The story of Cordelia Lynn’s Lela & Co. is a universal story, told across many borders and many nationalities, ethnicities, and races; during wartime and peacetime, at Super Bowls,…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 08:03PM
Thursday, September 14, 2017

Review: ‘The Arsonists’ at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

Woolly Mammoth’s The Arsonists is not so much an entertainment, even though I laughed frequently, psychotically–and loud, as it is a paratheatrical event during which an absurd p…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:54AM
Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Spine: What’s Left of America’s Makers, ‘Skeleton Crew’ at Studio Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Lord, in a bourgeois town It’s a bourgeois town I got the bourgeois blues Gonna spread the news all around Any Washington theatregoer who craves a working class show, where the charact…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 12:37PM

Review: ‘In Cabaret We Trust’ by TBD Immersive at Blind Whino by Robert Michael Oliver

Tradition Be Damned Immersive has taken over a desanctified church at 700 Delaware Street, SW, Washington, DC. Known as the Blind Whino, or better by the fanciful colors that electrify the c…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:24AM
Saturday, September 9, 2017

Review: ‘M. Butterfly’ at Everyman Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Though written 30 years ago, few contemporary plays speak so profoundly to America’s current situation in the world as does David Henry Hwang’s M. Butterfly, now playing at Bal…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 05:06PM
Thursday, August 31, 2017

Spine: Bessie Smith and ‘The Devil’s Music’ at Mosaic Theater Company of DC by Robert Michael Oliver

Fresh from World War I and a devastated Europe, The Roaring Twenties indeed roared across America. In the midst of a raging economic boom fueled in no small part by the advent of film and ra…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 06:25PM
Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Review: ‘Big Fish’ at The Keegan Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Family-friendly musicals are relatively rare these days. Family-friendly musicals that have adult themes are even rarer. Big Fish, with book by John August and music and lyrics by Andrew Lip…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 05:22PM
Friday, July 21, 2017

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘Welcome to Fear City’ by Robert Michael Oliver

Fear City is the South Bronx in July 1977. There is nothing particularly unique about that July in that year in that place. Fear, it seems, is a way of life in the South Bronx. Kara Lee Cort…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:10PM

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘Everything Is Wonderful’ by Robert Michael Oliver

The Amish with their horse and buggy, 19th century culture; their simple, old world uniforms and habits; their infamous Rumspringa where the teenage Amish is given the opportunity to choose …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:44AM
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘The Niceties’ by Robert Michael Oliver

Eleanor Burgess’ The Niceties is a political play that takes the gloves off. It’s bare knuckled and it’s bloody, though no bones are broken and no souls crushed. But who kn…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:23PM

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘Byhalia, Mississippi’ by Robert Michael Oliver

Evan Linder‘s Byhalia, Mississippi pulls theatre-goers into familiar territory: the “white trash” world of Laurel and Jim. Once there, however, the unfamiliar takes shape: amid…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 06:06PM

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘We Will Not Be Silent’ by Robert Michael Oliver

David Meyers’ We Will Not Be Silent places American audiences within an interrogation room in Nazi Germany in 1943. Leaders of the White Rose, one of several resistance groups to Hitler an…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 03:02PM
Monday, July 17, 2017

Review: Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF): ‘Wild Horses’ by Robert Michael Oliver

Last year there was Not Medea; this year there is Wild Horses, Allison Gregory’s rollicking one-woman ride through a 13-year-old’s adventures in horse country. Though structurally not as…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 07:13PM
Monday, July 3, 2017

Capital Fringe Preview: ‘HOWL’ in the Time of Trump’ at Sanctuary Theatre’s Performing Knowledge Project by Robert Michael Oliver

I am not a specialist. I’ve never wanted to be a specialist. In fact, I’ve always wanted to be a non-specialist: someone who encounters life across many disciplines and many love…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 06:33PM
Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Review: Source Festival 2017: ‘Through the Wall’: Artistic Blind Date by Robert Michael Oliver

A Source Festival Artistic Blind Date brings together three area artists of different disciplines for an adventure in performance art. In five months they need to create and perform a perfor…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:51AM
Friday, June 23, 2017

Spine: ‘When We Were Young and Unafraid’ at The Keegan Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Stepping back 45 years, America is in the midst of a social revolution, and feminist consciousness-raising sessions are underway. Radical feminists, cultural feminists, and political feminis…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:29AM
Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Review: ‘The Return’ at Mosaic Theater Company of DC, Part of the 2017 Voice From a Changing Middle East Festival by Robert Michael Oliver

Mosaic Theatre Company of DC concluded their 2017 season with a riveting, deeply provocative examination of a State’s National Security apparatus on dissident individuals living and lo…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:05PM
Sunday, June 11, 2017

Review: Source Festival 2017: ‘Exquisite Depths’: Artistic Blind Date by Robert Michael Oliver

One of the elements of the Source Festival 2017 is two Artistic Blind Dates. These collective creations bring together area artists from different disciplines to devise an original performan…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:10PM
Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Spine: ‘Ulysses on Bottles’ at Mosaic Theater Company of DC, Part of the 2017 Voice From a Changing Middle East Festival by Robert Michael Oliver

Last night, Gilad Evron’s Ulysses on Bottles opened the Mosaic Theater Company’s 2017 Voices From a Changing Middle East Festival. Described as an allegory, Evron’s Ulysses…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:41PM
Saturday, May 20, 2017

Review: ‘Mercy Killers’ at Taffety Punk Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

Joe in Michael Milligan’s one-man show Mercy Killers is, indeed, your average Joe: he listens to Rush Limbaugh, he works on cars as a mechanic, he has no college degree, and (yes) he p…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 09:31AM
Monday, May 15, 2017

Review: ‘The Father’ at The Studio Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Some plays are more difficult to watch than others; some plays activate your imagination and pull you into their stories whole-body: those plays pull you into the psychological realities the…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:27AM
Sunday, May 14, 2017

Spine: ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’ at Synetic Theater by Robert Michael Oliver

The spectacle of movement has always been Synetic’s star attraction. When those primal, emotional moments fuse with a strong narrative throughline, Synetic’s brilliance shines br…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 05:14PM
Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Review: ‘The Arabian Nights’ at Constellation Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

One Thousand and One Nights, the collection of classic Islamic tales upon which Mary Zimmerman built The Arabian Nights, now playing at Constellation Theatre Company, could not have a more v…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:21AM
Sunday, May 7, 2017

Review: ‘Laura Bush Killed a Guy’ at The Klunch by Robert Michael Oliver

I didn’t know that Laura Bush had killed a guy. It really had never crossed my mind. Well, after seeing Ian Allen’s Laura Bush Killed a Guy, now playing at the Klunch at Caos on…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 04:12PM
Friday, April 28, 2017

Spine: ‘Three Sisters’ by the Maly Drama Theatre at the Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

With the Maly Drama Theatre’s Three Sisters, playing through April 30 at the Kennedy Center’s Eisenhower Theatre, theatre lovers will feast on every slow motion wonderment, every…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:33PM
Friday, April 21, 2017

Review: ‘Smart People’ at Arena Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

As soon as the lights come up on Lydia R. Diamond’s Smart People, now playing at Arena’s Kreeger Theater, the focus is clear. Or is it? Are four really “smart” people…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 12:39PM
Thursday, April 20, 2017

Spine: ‘Or,’ not as in Either, at Round House Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

First of all, for theatre lovers, there is nothing as delightful as watching three top notch actors have fun on stage, and with Holly Twyford, Gregory Linington, and Erin Weaver you’ll…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:28AM