Recommended by John Minigan

  • You Haven't Changed A Bit
    7 Feb. 2019
    This is a clear, thoroughly engaging play that opens up its story to us just as it opens up possibilities to its characters, especially to Lottie. The two characters receive great gifts in this story--hope and the grace of a human connection. Hoke gives us the same gifts. A lovely, masterfully constructed gem.
  • In the End
    7 Feb. 2019
    This beautiful, poetic one-act begins with a compelling mystery and weaves a central character through a series of events that capture people in moments of tremendous stress and transition. Throughout, the play has us questioning how we have become so cruel to one another and what has become of mercy in the world. Near the end, its two continuing characters find warmth through a human touch in a cold world while still questioning where we go. It's breathtaking--and leads to a stunning, rich final moment. There is so much pain and power in this lovely piece.
  • PARTNER OF —
    31 Jan. 2019
    This play tells a story of horrors that affect the lives of its characters in the home of one of America's "great" men, and the multi-generational aspect of those horrors reflects the way both suffering and survival strategies have become part of the American legacy. There is a timelessness to this piece and a devastating, poetic rendering of pain inflicted and pain suffered.
  • The Bedroom Summit
    10 Dec. 2018
    I don't know if I've ever seen or read a ten-minute play that captures so much: young love, the pain of both the bullied and the bully, the fear of self-knowledge, and the way possibility and heartbreak weave together. Bedroom Summit is a powerhouse about the ways oppression and repression work on all parties. Beautiful and devastating work.
  • The Boy Who Cried Werewolf
    31 Oct. 2018
    It's no surprise that this wonderful, hilarious riff on werewolf stories has had so many productions. Its characters and situations are clear, the dialogue is sharp and funny, it builds to a very satisfying reveal, and it has maybe the best canned ham running gag in all of dramatic literature. Great for any ages and any group interested in comedy or in a different spin on a classic horror genre.
  • THE BEARDED LADY OF PITTSBURGH
    30 Oct. 2018
    This is a remarkable play--a clear, often hilarious, but totally unexpected look at questions of gender and identity through a historic lens. Its characters--their ambitions and their dreams--are captured with distinction and clarity and their situations feel remarkably resonant. The action builds beautifully to a joyous, hope-filled celebration. And then Arms crafts a brilliant theatrical moment that somehow does the opposite of pulling the rug out from under: it creates a greater emotional response and a broader meaning, even as it shifts our perspective on what we've been seeing. A great mix of comedy, truth, and power in this.
  • JOHNNY RIVERS, AMATEUR FASHION CORRESPONDENT, LIVE ON ELECTION DAY: A MONOLOGUE
    24 Oct. 2018
    When you laugh out loud reading a monologue on a laptop screen, you know it's working. Johnny Rivers knows his audience, engages his audience, and if he isn't moving that audience to get themselves to the polls and vote, then there's no hope. And that he is a middle school age character makes him that much more endearing. The overall effect of this is celebratory--of Johnny, of the folks he encounters in the line, and of the act of getting to the voting booth, no matter what you look like. Fabulous work.
  • I-talian
    24 Oct. 2018
    Bryan Stubbles has written a fast-paced, compelling play that pairs a fresh take on the idea of assimilation with a coming-of-age story, against the background of World War II and the challenges of immigrant life. The play is filled with dynamic, engaging relationships--especially between the protagonist Itala and her best friend Beatriz, as we see them negotiate love, friendship, bullies, family, and their own identities. A wide range of theatrical techniques--including stage combat, dance, and sharp, witty dialogue--make this totally engaging. And fabulous, compelling, complex high school age roles for four young women.
  • The Subtle, Sublime Transformation of Benny V.
    22 Oct. 2018
    Plays like this remind me that the power of wonder in our lives is what can transform all of us. The action shows us how wonder opens up closed-off Benny like a flower. And when the play brings all of what we think he has achieved crashing down around him--it reminds us and assures us that it's our own ability to transform that is the real wonder in our lives. Highly theatrical, mixing expressionism, realism, a sense of circus. A beautiful, resonant work.
  • Conlangified
    17 Oct. 2018
    Conlangified is a totally engaging mix of coming-of-age/coming-to-success in the world and rom-com, crafted with a highly theatrical sense of interplay between realistic scenes, a Greek (or Geek) Chorus, and moments when social media or chat rooms or video/TV or dreams moments come to life. Vansant's command of craft is considerable, and the metaphorical levels of the piece are captivating--with the creation of a new "conlang" (constructed language) paralleling the evolution of the relationship of two characters, and the "ways language can change" working in parallel with the changes in the main character. Really strong, clear, delightful storytelling.

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