Brett Steven Abelman

About Brett Steven Abelman

Brett Steven Abelman is a DC-area native, a teller of stories, and a member of The Welders 2.0. Last year, he conceived and co-devised Balloon Plays at Capital Fringe (his third self-production at the festival) and he and the company continue to tour the show. His work includes Curiouser; Attack of the Killer Bugs, the musical; The Water Plays; Prodigal Daughter; over 100 short plays; and others in development. His work has been produced, stage-read or workshopped at Spooky Action Theater, Rorschach Theatre, LiveArt DC, Pinky Swear Productions, DC 1-Minute Play Festival, with the dearly missed eXtreme eXchange DC, amd more. Brett also acts, works backstage, plays drums, writes features and criticism for, and, for his day job, works as a professional organizer (

Synetic’s wordless Taming of the Shrew, take 2 (review)

A viscerally entertaining romp about a grieving woman tortured until she falls in love with her captor, Synetic’s wordless-Shakespeare adaptation of Taming of the Shrew is a quality showcase for the company’s famed high-energy theatrics. First produced in 2012, it returns to the stage with most of the original principal cast, a few updates to the […]

Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls at Maryland Ensemble Theatre (review)

Half of MET’s production of Top Girls is a nightmare staged like a dream; the other is a dream staged, if not so badly as a nightmare, then at least as a bit of a mess. The famous first portion, a dinner party involving historical and fictional women interacting with modern power-executive Marlene, ends up […]

Pointless Theatre’s absurd – or is it? King Ubu (review)

The time may have come around when we need anti-art bombs like Ubu again. Regardless of your political leanings, you must admit that reality has once again become too strange and ridiculous for serious theatre to address by itself. Which is to say, don’t go see Pointless’ Google Translate-aided adaptation of the proto-absurdist King Ubu […]

An ideal production of Copenhagen from Perisphere Theater (review)

A major transition or two could be given more time to breathe, an actor occasionally misses a subtlety, a light cue is rarely a little obtrusive in Perisphere Theater’s production of Michael Frayn’s Copenhagen. But it’s essentially an ideal production.

Anne of the Thousand Days at Chesapeake Shakespeare (review)

Sexism, and the responses women make to it, do not seem to have evolved in any simple or linear way, if Anne of the Thousand Days is any indication.  Written in 1948 by Maxwell Anderson, some of its depictions of the relationship between Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII are shockingly modern – you almost want […]

Kushner’s Angels in America: Perestroika at Round House (review)

The standard take on Perestroika, the second part of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America, is that it is not of equal quality to the masterful first. Perhaps this is why there’s a slight sense of trying too hard in this Round House Theatre-Olney Theatre Center production, where director Ryan Rilette occasionally overuses back-wall projections and […]

Antony and Cleopatra from Brave Spirits (review)

You might be forgiven for wondering how Brave Spirits will pull off a sea battle, given the extremely minimalist aesthetic they’ve assembled for Antony and Cleopatra. The play begins with the beat of a martial drum, and that drum, a few pieces of cloth, and some painted poles are all that accompany the Bard’s words […]

Angels in America, Part I: Millennium Approaches at Round House (review)

Recent reports of the death of Angels in America’s relevance are greatly exaggerated. If anything, the recession of the AIDS crisis in America (or, at least, in the mainstream American consciousness) and the gay marriage victory allow Tony Kushner’s masterwork to leap out of its epoch and become truly timeless. As with the English monarchial […]

Fat Kids Are Harder to Kidnap, Capital Fringe (review)

  It can be fun reaching into a mixed bag – not knowing whether you’ll get something good or something so-so is a kind of entertainment in itself. Whether you find that the bag of little candies called Fat Kids Are Harder to Kidnap has enough of the good stuff depends on your taste in […]

Let Trump Be Trump (review)

Apologies to the one Trump fan who goes to DC theatre and is reading this, but there is perhaps too much wrong, unbelievable, or historically unprecedented about The Donald’s candidacy to fit in one theatre piece.

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