Wednesday, March 18, 2009

My latest email update:

I have returned from my time on a remote South Pacific island where the last cargo cult in the world can be found. Here is the first thing I've written about the experience:

Last month I gave a keynote manifesto for the PuSh Festival in Vancouver on art, commodification, and the war for our culture. You can listen to a recording of that speech here:

My monologue
HOW THEATER FAILED AMERICA plays this week in Los Angeles at the Kirk Douglas Theatre. We're thrilled to be bringing this work to LA, and are hoping to reach theater artists and lovers across the city—details are at the end of this message, along with an incredible ticket offer of $10 for people on this list. Please spread the word to folks you know in LA—a trailer for the monologue can be seen here:

We'll also be doing a workshop of our new monologue,
THE LAST CARGO CULT, this Sunday afternoon for five little dollars:

Next week we'll be performing
MONOPOLY! in Colorado Springs with Theatreworks. I'm looking forward to this last engagement in what has been a continuous three month tour,  because Nikola Tesla had an infamous laboratory in Colorado Springs. You can see a film of me visiting Tesla's final laboratory, in Shoreham, Long Island, here:

Details can be found at the site,, and tickets are available here:

Be seeing you,



4 nights only at Center Theatre Group's Kirk Douglas Theater
March 18-21

Following successful runs Off-Broadway and in Washington D.C., and Seattle, master storyteller Mike Daisey makes his L.A. debut by sinking his razor-sharp wit into a subject he knows well: the American theater, from the sublimely crass to the genuinely ugly. 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. Fearlessly implicating himself and the system he works within, Daisey seeks answers to essential and dangerous questions about the art we’re making, the legacy we leave the future, and who it is we believe we’re speaking to.

"A funny, surprisingly supple performance about life in the theater, the ecstatic highs and the aching, humiliating lows, rendered here with explosive humor and a dark edge of tragedy."

"A sardonic rebuke to the corporate types who hold American theater hostage and a powerful sense of the wonder of theater. A remarkable performer."

"Blending political anger with striking personal stories, this piece should reach anyone who believes in live performance."

Watch a trailer on YouTube here:

Get $10 tickets to any performance using code DAISEY here:

Read a New York Times profile here:

Get tickets to THE LAST CARGO CULT workshop here:

"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."

"His transfixing delivery underscores his central point: theatre is a wave, not a particle, and the current system isn't doing it—or us—justice."

"A rollicking, entertaining evening that's as inspiring as it is cautionary."

"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."

"Daisey creates an alternately exhilarating and frightening picture of the contemporary American stage—a startlingly accurate diagnosis of its condition"

"Though theater may have failed, Daisey nicely succeeds."

"Wildly funny and a passionately engaged critique—it will remind you of everything you once thought possible and make you wonder whether it can't be possible still."

"Pungent, profane and hilarious...Daisey can evoke the thrill and absurdity of theatrical passion with the surreal bravado of a modern-day Swift."

"An engaging, witty, and impassioned critique of what's wrong with the way theater is currently being done -- and who is responsible. He manages to make the audience understand the weight of everything he's saying while transforming the material into some of the funniest stories I've ever heard. At the heart of all of his tales is an element of truth that makes clear not only his critical opinions, but also his love for the art."