Press and Reviews

Cyrano

“…a sterling, illuminating new translation by Michael Hollinger…His mostly rhymeless version bubbles with dialogue that honors the play’s period (17th century) and dishes as easily as, say, the ladies on The View…a joy to watch—funny, touching, pathetic, kinetic. A story well told.”

Philadelphia Inquirer

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 “…well-crafted, rhythmically beautiful, humorous, emotionally resonant and convincing…Hollinger removes the original’s many allusions to French society and norms and lets the audience enjoy modern equivalents, reflected mostly through language. He drops the blank verse (which dominates most prior translations), except strategically, to emphasize a point, sometimes underlining it with rhyme…Hollinger gives his actors plenty to work with." -BroadStreetReview.com.

“…the eponymous hero is as magnetic and touchy as ever…an entertaining script.” —Washingtonian.

“This version of Cyrano de Bergerac is interesting and entertaining…a thoughtful piece of work which makes many bold choices…This is by far the funniest CYRANO you will ever see.” —DCTheatreScene.com.

“…a good, practical adaptation for modern audiences…a show that can make you feel again as deeply and unashamedly as you did when you were 17 serves a great purpose. And CYRANO, with all of its heartbreaking panache, achieves that in aces. Three cheers and a flourish of a feathered hat to that.” —Oregon ArtsWatch.

Ghost-Writer Winner of the 2011 Barrymore Award.

"An absorbing tale. GHOST-WRITER works marvelously well—a finely wrought piece of entertainment that does just what it sets out to do."       

Wall Street Journal

 

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"Tantalizing, understated and lovely. This engrossing, old-fashioned play is about the drama of writing—and typing—and creativity and love. People who care about semi-colons (and you know who you are), this show is for you…[An] extraordinary marriage between fiction and theater." —Philadelphia Inquirer.

"It's many plays in one—a love story of the utmost restraint, an unbiased portrayal of a lover's triangle, a portrait of a seamless working partnership and a meditation on the act of creation. All that rolls out in about ninety minutes without a misplaced word or a surplus syllable." —Palm Beach Daily News.

"The scenes that most crackle with English-language love are the working moments between Myra and Franklin, and not only because their sexual tension is as thick as cement. Between the rat-a-tat-tat clatter of the typewriter and Franklin's oral dictations and debates over syntax and punctuation there lies a deep understanding of the workings of an author's mind—the cerebral nuts and bolts that coalesce into what we call writing, ghostly or otherwise." —Broward-Palm Beach New Times.

An Empty Plate in the Cafe du Grand Boeuf

"…operatic looniness…"

NY Times

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"…[a] treat on the Off-Broadway menu…" —NY Daily News.

"…without ever sacrificing the prevailing zaniness of the situation, [Hollinger] flavors it all with enough sadness about dashed hopes and inertia to make this a menu filled with food for thought as well as laughter." —CurtainUp.

"…an absurdist tragicomedy…that manages to pay homage to Hemingway and Beckett in an…often hilarious existential romp." —Boston Globe.

Tooth and Claw

"One of the most compelling, riveting, and thought-provoking plays to grace the American stage in recent memory."

Talkin' Broadway

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"TOOTH AND CLAW may be a play about tortoises, but it sweeps along at a bracing pace more often seen in hares, bringing the momentum of a thriller to the sometimes dry arena of science plays. Rich in issues of evolution and ecological meddling, all the more so because it was inspired by actual events." —NY Times.

"An exhilarating exploration of an exotic, but heartbreakingly familiar, world." —Courier-Post.

"Scintillating, witty and intelligent. [Hollinger's] most audacious and artistically successful work to date." —Reading Eagle.

Red Herring

"It's a knock-out—a surprising, clever comedy that keeps you laughing and even thinking all the way."

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

 

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"Exceedingly funny. A genuinely human comedy about six people in search of love in a mixed-up world. A thoroughly engaging piece of theatre." —Philadelphia Inquirer.

"Hilarious. A valentine celebrating love and marriage. A fun, engaging, farcical romp with a cleverly complex plot and a loving heart." —Main Line Times.

"Very funny and perceptive…sharp, witty, and entertaining." —Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

Incorruptible

"A lightning-fast farce, rich in both verbal and physical humor."

American Theatre

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"Everything fits snugly in this funny, endearing black comedy. Hollinger understands how to balance verbal and physical humor, how to sketch personality in a few deft strokes, how to pause here and there to allow his audience to catch its breath, how to bring on a new character at just the right time, and how to write dialogue that's an artful blend of the mock-formal and the anachronistically breezy. A piece of remarkably dexterous craftsmanship." —Philadelphia Inquirer.

"A farcical romp, scintillating and irreverent." —Philadelphia Weekly.

Hope and Gravity

 “Brilliantly structured and hilariously written.  The structure of this artfully non-linear script places these seemingly unrelated people in various situations, usually in pairs.  Although they come from different directions and head for different goals, their lives intersect in surprising ways.” 

Dallas/Fort Worth Star-Telegram

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“A satisfying, crowd-pleasing puzzle play, with nine scenes in two acts, but not in chronological order." - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“Some of the scenes are laugh-out-loud funny; others are tenderly poignant.” -Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

“Hollinger balances frequent, and unabashedly, poetic language with shameless low humor and seasons the whole enterprise with intelligence, compassion and just good old-fashioned quality playwriting.” - Pittsburgh City Paper

Under the Skin

 “What Under the Skin does magically is explore the way that we build up expectations of our parents and our children in ways that are unrealistic and, in fact, downright harmful.  It’s a wonderful play, a story that hits home to just about every living, breathing human on earth.”

Philadelphia Weekly

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“Under the Skin, Michael Hollinger’s touching new play about what it means to have and to give, is a gem of a play that is a gift in itself.” - Broad Street Review

“There’s little inherent humor in a guy needing a kidney, but evidently no one told that to Hollinger.  He runs with it, devising an engrossing tale that touches on such sad issues as wrecked families.  The word heartwarming can denote easy, sentimental claptrap.  But this play really is heartwarming.  Hollinger lays down his plot like a weaver at a loom.  I won’t spoil the surprises, but rather than constructing a generalized story and then working in characters’ views, Hollinger uses his highly developed sense of pacing and riposte to prioritize the characters as they bond, clash, and articulate or conceal their viewpoints and inner lives.  Characters, not generalities, carry the ideas, angst, and laughs across to the audience.” -Phindie

“Hollinger has written a substantial play with a swift narrative and convincing twists.” -Newsworks

 

Opus

"Sex, drugs and chamber music! OPUS considers the matter of music making with an intimate, appraising eye, showing us the sweat, the drudgery and the delicate balance of personalities that lie behind the creation of a seemingly effortless performance. An absorbing new play, marked with a nuanced intelligence in its depiction of the complex relationship between musicians' lives and their art."

NY Times

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"A taut, smart, thoroughly entertaining drama." —Newsday.

"A tart and witty chamber piece about the politics and passions that threaten a classical string quartet. Like a good quartet, OPUS is an intimate, intense and profoundly moving conversation among artists." —Time Out NY.

"From its opening strains to its stunning climax, OPUS is worthy of scores of bravissimos." —BroadwayWorld.com.