Theater Review: Hang Up and Dial Again

The pandemic shutdown, now entering its seventh catastrophic month, has necessitated a certain creativity if any theater at all is to be produced or consumed.

Mostly, this has been through Zoom-derived entertainments, which as clever as some may be are, are usually no fun for the already Zoom-fatigued working stiffs from home.

Other theater companies have filled the void with fully filmed plays from their vaults, streaming online. Which are pretty much movies.

But one new electronic variation is eschewing the visual altogether by relying on the old fashioned touch-tone telephone.

The Telephonic Literary Union is a rotating New York collaboration of playwrights who have been creating little interactive audio bits since even before the pandemic (if anyone can remember back that far).

They were the choice to open an all-digital season at the Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company called Woolly on Demand, which will accompany its in-person attempts.

It’s quite an impressive list of theatrical lights involved in the project, including Sarah Lunnie,  a dramaturg for such interesting turns as “What the Constitution Means to Me,” “A Doll’s House, Part 2” and “Hillary and Clinton.” Also on board: Stowe Nelson, production manager at public radio’s “This American Life,” and Yuvika Tolai, an associate producer at The Public Theater.

The current work, “Human Resources,” includes the work of playwrights Brittany K. Allen, Christopher Chen, Hansol Jung and Zeniba Now.

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