The Theatrical Concept Powerful Enough to Break a Trumpian Spell 

The Great German Playwright Bertholt Brecht Knew How to Jolt an Audience Out of Narrative Complacency

“All the gang of those who rule us
Hope our quarrels never stop
Helping them to split and fool us
So they can remain on top.”
— Bertholt Brecht, Solidarity Song

How strange to watch Trump’s failed insurrection on Congress unfold from one’s living room TV during COVID lockdown—sidelined by stay-at-home orders, reduced to binging the way one might devour The Queen’s Gambit or Ozark into the wee hours with snacks and pets sharing the couch. Watching an attempted coup was a strangely stupefying and passive experience.

It all looked a bit …

The Wondrous Life of America’s First Male Impersonator

Annie Hindle Scandalized and Titillated Audiences, But Her Talent Won Them Over

On June 6, 1886, Kerr B. Tupper, a Baptist minister in Grand Rapids, Michigan, presided over the marriage of a young couple. The groom gave his name as Charles E. …

The Play I Had to Write About the Murder That Haunted Me

To Forget Is to Remain Trapped in Purgatory, but Reimagining Horror Can Bring Catharsis

Mary Turner.

That name is forever etched into my memory … into my existence, as an artist, a writer, a woman, a mother, a human being.

On May 19, 1918, …

Bringing Shakespeare and Shaw Live from the Stage to the Screen

The National Theatre's Cinema Simulcasts Have Used Tech to Build Global Audiences

Since its founding in 1963—with Laurence Olivier as artistic director and Kenneth Tynan as dramaturg (plus a rep company that included new faces Michael Gambon, Maggie Smith, Derek Jacobi, and …

How We Brought a Pan-Latin Flavor to Portland Theater

For the Milagro/Miracle Company, Being a Cultural Minority Has Been a Boon

It may appear surprising or counter-intuitive to operate a bilingual, Latino-centered theater company in a city that is less than 10 percent Latino.

But for me, my wife Dañel Malán, …

La La Land’s Debt to Ethnic Musicals of Yore

Its “Burst-Into-Song” Style Echoes the Intimacy of Early Black, Mexican, and Jewish Productions

“Without a nickel to my name/ Hopped a bus/ Here I came …” So sings a young woman at the start of La La Land, the original musical film by …