Daisey Does America

In early reviews, Mike Daisey was often compared to monologist Spalding Gray. Nowadays, it's Mark Twain because, from 2001's 21 Dog Years: Doing Time at Amazon.com to 2013's Fucking Fucking Fucking Ayn Rand, Daisey has deftly reflected the conceits of Western civilization through a prism of personal confession, wry observation, compassion, and humor. Even the scandal, caused by Daisey's embellishments of facts in 2010's The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, could not stop the monologue from becoming This American Life's most sought-after episode. Daisey's fans, like Twain's, think truth should not stand in the way of a good story. Last fall, Daisey performed All the Faces of the Moon, a 44-hour monologue spread across 29 days — proof, even to critics, that the storyteller is at the top of his game. Sadly, the feat is unlikely to be replicated. Instead, we are offered a reprise of 2012's vociferous American Utopias. Written soon after Daisey's spike in notoriety, it follows the humorist through landscapes of strained optimism — from Disney World to Burning Man to the beginnings of Occupy in Zuccotti Park.

May 16-17, 7:30 p.m., 2014

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