Saturday, October 22, 2011

PLAYBILL.COM'S THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, Oct. 15-21: Relatively Speaking, Tea With Zoe Caldwell, Steve Jobs Lives On -

Monologuist Mike Daisey, who has put in a several dog years toiling at his craft (if you don't know the extensive Daisey oeuvre, you won't get that reference), finally has the biggest hit of his career.

The Public Theater has extended his latest work, The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, which weighs the human cost of must-have technology, through Dec. 4. This move came after the show was greeted by a wave of strong reviews on Oct. 17. Reviewers called the work powerful, unsettling and — given Jobs' recent death and the growing political issue of our country's dependence on Chinese labor — about as contemporary as can be. "It might not be the eulogy the former Apple CEO would have chosen, but Mike Daisey's The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs is an eye-opener," wrote the Hollywood Reporter. "This provocative monologue pulls no punches in confronting us with the dark side of Jobs' legacy and of our own mass addiction to gadgets."

A few critics admitted to leaving the theatre feeling newly guilty about owning their various Apple-made gizmos, now irrevocably tainted. That's a hard thing to do, make critics feel guilty. Good job, Daisey.