May 16 - June 22, 2008
"A sardonic rebuke to the corporate types who hold American theater hostage...a powerful sense of the wonder of theater. A remarkable performer."
- New York Times
Written & Performed by Mike Daisey
Directed by Jean Michele Gregory
Stage Manager: Jason Reuter
General Management: Two Step Productions
Mike Daisey, called "the master storyteller...one of the finest solo performers of his generation" by the New York Times, sinks his razor- sharp wit into a subject he knows well: the American theater. From gorgeous new theaters standing empty as cathedrals, to "successful" working actors traveling like migrant farmhands, to an arts culture unwilling to speak or listen to its own nation, Daisey takes stock of the dystopian state of theater in America: a shrinking world with smaller audiences every year. Each Sunday, a roundtable forum with theater luminaries including Robert Brustein, Gregory Mosher, Jim Nikola and Oskar Eustis will follow the performance.
"Blending political anger with striking personal stories, this piece should reach anyone who believes in live performance."
"Daisey is a working man's Spalding Gray: boyish passion meshed with refined contemplation...not only vastly entertaining, it's also a call to action."
- Time Out NY
"It's an exhilarating show, as Daisey deftly coaxes the room from raucous laughter to hushed contemplation...Daisey has a knack for disarming his audience with an approachable persona, incandescent wit and a gift for virtuoso storytelling."
"Pungent, profane and hilarious...Daisey can evoke the thrill and absurdity of theatrical passion with the surreal bravado of a modern-day Swift. "
- Seattle Times
"…No matter how much vitriol is spilled, Daisey can do so without raising rancor in the hearts of his targets...How Theater Failed America sounds like career suicide. But if anyone can pull it off, it will be Mike Daisey. "
- Seattle Weekly
"…As a theatre artist whose work demonstrates one way in which the theatre has a unique power to criticize the culture at large, he's uniquely positioned to offer a devastating criticism. "