Recommended by Doug DeVita

  • The Switch
    15 Apr. 2021
    This three-part one-man show – not quite monologue, not quite stream-of consciousness invective but with elements of both – fascinates and holds attention by its audacious switches, as it gets darker and more savage with almost every word. Relying on audience participation, it will be interesting to hear how this element is handled in its upcoming audio version (via Fresh Fruit’s Radio Play Series); however it’s done, I’m excited to hear it. And hopefully, one day, see it.
  • The Tip of the Tongue
    15 Apr. 2021
    Provocative, powerful, steamy… Allison Moon examines the fine line between what constitutes art and what constitutes child pornography – the subjects in question are 17, not quite children but not yet of legal age – with a jaggedly sharp but nonetheless focused lens; her characters are equally likable and detestable, and she gives them dialogue that is both effortlessly natural while also being high-flown and artistic, befitting the subject matter and personalities involved. An excellent work, and I am looking forward to hearing the imminent audio version, coming soon via The Fresh Fruit Festival’s Radio Play Series.
  • Mother Road
    12 Apr. 2021
    The restless core of the American spirit is deep in the heart of Octavio Solis’ modern day continuation of Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath.” Brutally honest and searingly beautiful, Solis evokes the landscape of America both then and now, honoring the source material while crafting a work that stands on its own as a winning piece of contemporary theatre. Vividly drawn characters, and oh so theatrical in its conception, MOTHER ROAD is a stunner with so many opportunities for directors, actors, and designers to physically embody the world Solis has created for them, and for us.
  • Tracks
    11 Apr. 2021
    Gut wrenching. Magical. Intense. And gorgeous. So gorgeous. Playing with time, space, and expectations with mesmerizing theatricality, Bray takes us on a journey that is both literal and metaphoric, with characters we learn to love even as they break our hearts. As I said: it’s a gorgeous piece of writing, and one I'd love to see staged.
  • Orion and the Goatman
    11 Apr. 2021
    A nifty two-hander benefitting from its naturally flowing dialogue, its genuine portrayal of two half-siblings, its rising line of tension, and best of all, its being meant to be performed in an actual isolated, woodsy setting. I imagine a staged production would work just as well, but man… being performed in its natural environment would give it a truly riveting edge. Especially with S’mores. And maybe chili.
  • Visitation
    9 Apr. 2021
    Martineau grabs you by the throat right from the get go in this tightly written two hander; specific yet elliptical, it packs quite an emotional punch as we get drawn into the lives of this mother and son who are so bonded even time and space can’t come between them. Devastating, touching, and ultimately beautiful.
    9 Apr. 2021
    This is a wonderful little jewel of a play! Lermond effortlessly creates ¬– and sustains – a terrifically atmospheric sense of time, place, and mood, and her two characters are so beautifully lost that when it becomes clear they’re about to be found by each other, you just melt with happiness.
    9 Apr. 2021
    Melisa Tien chronicles ten years in the life of Boyd, from age 11 to 21, as he grows up in a rural American town during the chaotic years between 2011 – 21. This is an extraordinary work that both touches and angers; Tien perfectly captures the awkwardness, creativity, and later hopelessness of a boy with limited ambitions trying to find his way in a country that embraces the ambitious and wealthy. Tien surrounds him with equally disarming characters, giving them all terrifically natural dialogue and situations to play while making quite a powerfully moving statement about their options.
  • Pilates of the Carob Eaten: An Autocorrected Play
    5 Apr. 2021
    John Busser has let autocorrect dictate the direction in which his script goes, and predictably it goes into some hilariously inappropriate, surreally absurd places – even for Busser. And yet somehow it all hangs together. Bravo, John, for this inventive experiment, and for the result. While I don’t necessarily approve of giving that ducking autocorrect the upper hand, in this case it works; I needed the laughs.
  • Let Maisy Rest in Peace
    5 Apr. 2021
    Small town politics in rural Alabama come in for quite the drubbing in this side-splitting yet ultimately touching comedy in the Frank Capra-esque vein of 1930’s style screwball social satire; one can see all of Capra’s stock players inhabiting the roles, while still imagining how it plays in contemporary terms. Absurd situations, convulsively funny lines, and over-the-top but nonetheless human characters all combine to make this a delight from beginning to end.