All stories by Robert Michael Oliver on BroadwayStars

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Review: ‘Antigonón, un contingente épico’ at The Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

As the audience gathers in the Eisenhower, antique footage rolls on the screen: people gathering, moving, marching. José Martí, Cuban national hero, poet, and revolutionary flashes on the …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:19PM
Monday, March 20, 2017

Review: ‘What Every Girl Should Know’ and ‘Dry Land’ in Rep at Forum Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

One hundred years separate the young women in What Every Girl Should Know and Dry Land, now playing in rep at Forum Theatre. In Monica Byrne’s What Every Girl Should Know, the fou…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 04:40PM
Friday, March 17, 2017

Review: ‘Needles and Opium’ at The Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

Sometimes the viewer of a theatrical experience can only sit in wonder at the spectacle, not because elephants dance on soccer balls or trapeze artists spiral on silken threads, but becaus…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:20PM
Thursday, March 2, 2017

Review: ‘The Select (The Sun Also Rises)’ at Shakespeare Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

The Elevator Repair Service’s production of The Select (The Sun also Rises) opened at the Lansburgh Theatre Monday, and I’m certain that Earnest Hemingway’s 1926 debut nove…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:20AM
Saturday, February 18, 2017

Review: Regina Carter: ‘Simply Ella’ at The Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

Regina Carter and her violin: a human voice has never sounded so true. If you get a chance to experience Regina Carter: Simply Ella, the jazz quintet composed of Regina Carter (violin), Marv…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:11PM
Friday, February 17, 2017

Review: ‘All My Sons’ at The George Washington University’s Department of Theatre and Dance by Robert Michael Oliver

Some plays survive the test of time. Arthur Miller’s All My Sons is such a play. And the production mounted by The George Washington University’s Department of Theatre and Dance …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 02:39PM
Thursday, February 16, 2017

Spine: ‘King Charles III’ at The Shakespeare Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

They sure don’t make kings like they used to. And maybe that’s a good thing. Mike Bartlett’s historical fantasy, King Charles III, based loosely (very loosely) on the curr…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 02:15PM
Monday, February 13, 2017

Review: Jazzmeia Horn at the Kennedy Center Jazz Club by Robert Michael Oliver

To understand the voice of Jazzmeia Horn — whether it’s embodying her own ballad, the cleverly romantic, soft “Legs and Arms,” or taking on the role of an instrumenta…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 07:23PM
Friday, February 10, 2017

Review: ‘Watch on the Rhine’ at Arena Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

Lillian Hellman’s Watch on the Rhine came to DC for a command performance on January 25, 1942. The occasion: Franklin Roosevelt’s 60th birthday. America had just entered World Wa…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:27PM
Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Spine: Love and Wit in ‘As You Like It’ at the Folger Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Now playing at the Folger Theater, a new adaptation of Shakespeare’s As You Like It, directed by Gaye Taylor Upchurch and produced in association with Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festiva…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:33PM
Friday, January 27, 2017

Spine: ‘Mack, Beth’ a ‘Macbeth’ for the Cyber Age at Keegan Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Mack, Beth by Chris Stezin, now playing at The Keegan Theatre, is a Macbeth for the Cyber Age. Set in a world where death by dagger is replaced by death by fake news, Mack, Beth makes a pers…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 12:41AM
Saturday, January 21, 2017

Spine: Consciousness, Conscience, and ‘The Hard Problem’ at The Studio Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Tom Stoppard’s The Hard Problem isn’t so much about consciousness and the existence of subjectivity, “the hard problem” elucidated by contemporary Australian philosop…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 06:08PM
Monday, January 16, 2017

Spine: ‘Silent Sky’ at Silver Spring Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

On occasion, a play comes along with a bit of history, a bit of uncovered history, and that history changes the nature of the universe. Silent Sky is that sort of play. Lauren Gunderson’s …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:50AM
Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Review: ‘The Gabriels’ at the Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

For those who are familiar with Richard Nelson’s 4-play cycle, The Apple Family Plays, his The Gabriels: Election Year in the Life of One Family, now on stage at the Kennedy CenterR…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 09:50AM

Spine: ‘Charm’ at the Mosaic Theater Company of DC by Robert Michael Oliver

Philip Dawkins’ Charm takes on a high order: it wants to charm you. And to do that its lead character, Mama, has to be more than charming. She has to charm your disbelief, your cynical…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 12:53AM
Sunday, December 18, 2016

Review: Handel’s ‘Messiah’ by NSO at The Kennedy Center by Robert Michael Oliver

Messiah is perhaps the best known of the German-born but London-settled composer George Frideric Handel. Profoundly religious, the three-part Oratorio moves from the prophecy of Christ to h…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 01:26PM

Spine: Pointless Theatre’s ‘King Ubu’—No, That’s Not Donald Trump You See Sitting on That Crapper by Robert Michael Oliver

Ironically, and full of unintended consequences, while watching Pointless Theatre’s production of Alfred Jarry’s King Ubu  (yes, that’s who wrote this play, translated afresh by G…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:29AM
Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Review: ‘The Greatest Holiday Special (N)ever’ at Silver Spring Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

The Greatest Holiday Special (N)ever, by Silver Spring Stage in collaboration with The Coil Project (a local company that writes and produces original work), is the perfect Christmas show fo…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:13PM
Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Review: ‘Picnic’ at The Catholic University of America by Robert Michael Oliver

Picnic comes to Catholic. And by the time it’s over, lives are overturned, dreams are rekindled, and who knows what will happen next. William Inge, master playwright of the heartland, cap…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:30AM
Sunday, November 27, 2016

Spine: ‘Moby Dick’ Inside Jonah’s Whale at Arena Stage by Robert Michael Oliver

“Jonah,” I said to myself as soon as I laid eyes upon the set of Lookingglass Theatre Company’s Moby Dick. Large, curved rib-bones thrusting upward, form a cradle: “I…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 09:47PM
Friday, November 18, 2016

Spine: The Second City’s ‘Black Side of the Moon’ at Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company by Robert Michael Oliver

“We are not a monolith! We are not a monolith! We are not a monolith!” chanted the six-member cast at the start of Woolly Mammoth’s Second City’s Black Side of the Moon. And,…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 03:36PM
Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Spine: ‘Straight White Men’ by Young Jean Lee at The Studio Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Young Jean Lee’s theatre, entitled Young Jean Lee’s Theater Company (2003-2016), was dedicated to producing “shows written and directed by Young Jean Lee.” The compan…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:49AM
Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Spine: ‘Milk Like Sugar’ at Mosaic Theater Company by Robert Michael Oliver

America is but an expensive iPhone. If you’ve got that, and its Pink with a sexy ringtone, then you’re in, as in the “in” crowd. Now, all you need is a baby. Or so se…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 12:04PM
Monday, November 7, 2016

Review: Sheila Jordan at the KC Jazz Club by Robert Michael Oliver

Sheila Jordan loves jazz. Sheila Jordan loves singing. Sheila Jordan really loves jazz singing. And we feel truly blessed to have spent an evening in the presence of that love. For those who…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:04PM
Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Spine: ‘Rameau’s Nephew’ at Spooky Action Theater by Robert Michael Oliver

The 18th century French playwright and philosopher Denis Diderot is known best among theatre folk for his theoretical writings: on the actor, the 4th Wall, and the emergence of scenography…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 09:59AM
Saturday, October 29, 2016

Review: ‘City of Angels’ at The Catholic University of America by Robert Michael Oliver

The 1989 musical City of Angels opened last night at Catholic University’s Hartke Theatre, offering its appreciative audience a glimpse into the past through its double filtered lens. …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 05:36PM
Saturday, October 22, 2016

Review: ’43 1/2: The Greatest Deaths of Shakespeare’s Tragedies’ at the Logan Fringe Arts Space by Robert Michael Oliver

Five actors, a stage manager, an audience, and a lot of blood. Nu Sass Productions has remounted its 2013 Capital Fringe hit, complete with gags and cornball and puppets. The pace might not …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 02:42PM
Monday, October 17, 2016

Review: ‘The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat’ at UrbanArias by Robert Michael Oliver

Oliver Sacks’ non-fiction book, The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat, consists of a series of neurological case studies. Each study examines one of Sacks’ patients, each of who…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 04:39PM
Sunday, October 16, 2016

Review: ‘Wild Lines: Jane Ira Bloom Plays Emily Dickinson’ at the KC Jazz Club by Robert Michael Oliver

There is nothing quite like “a vast morsel.” When Jane Ira Bloom plays her soprano saxophone, her wiry body jutting and jagging to the notes popping out of her horn, vastness of …

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:45AM
Sunday, October 9, 2016

Review: The Gary Bartz Quartet at the Kennedy Center Jazz Club by Robert Michael Oliver

The KC Jazz Club opened its 14th season last Friday with a soul-tossing river of jazz. Gary Bartz starts the evening with a prayer: “Sadness must leave this room,” as Paul Bollen…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 11:16PM
Thursday, October 6, 2016

Spine: For the Love of ‘Angels in America: Perestroika’ at Round House Theatre by Robert Michael Oliver

Part II of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America opened last weekend at the Round House Theatre. A joint production with the Olney Theatre Center, the restaging of Kushner’s modern da…

Linked From DC Metro Theater Arts at 10:59AM

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