EXCERPTS FROM THE REVIEW
Below are excerpts from the April 13, 2017 Washington Blade review of Los Otros.
THE BALTIMORE THEATER SCENE'S NEW PROJECTS
Everyman is so rooted in Baltimore actors that company members’ faces adorn the decor of the redesigned bank space it opened in 2012. “Los Otros” is different: It’s the company’s first musical, doubly notable as the East Coast premiere of a 90-minute suite by Tony-nominated composer Michael John LaChiusa.
The two-character piece about two very different lives (straight white woman, gay Latino man) that gradually intersect is authoritatively sung by New York-based performers Philip Hernandez and Judy McLane, with music direction by Signature Theatre’s Jon Kalbfleisch. It’s not a big, splashy show; in its essential concentration on the score (and in its fundamental social justice concern), it recalls the far more overtly political Andrew Lippa oratorio “I Am Anne Hutchinson”/“I Am Harvey Milk” last year at Strathmore.
"The incidents are vivid, which is a tribute to Fitzhugh’s lyrical economy and LaChiusa's fluid music..."
Not coincidentally, the director of these like-minded projects is Noah Himmelstein, Everyman’s new associate artistic director. Himmelstein shows utter comfort telling “Los Otros” through the alternating narrative streams set up by LaChiusa and Ellen Fitzhugh, whose book and lyrics are almost entirely free of cliche. (The story is partly autobiographical.) The incidents are vivid, which is a tribute to Fitzhugh’s lyrical economy and LaChiusa’s fluid music, played by six musicians (guitar, bass, percussion, keyboard, trumpet, reeds).
Picture the Mexican family secretly hopping off a train. Imagine illegally ferrying your new Mexican nanny across the border in your trunk. Feel the apprehension as the young migrant worker nearly gets caught by the boss with his pants down. The songs gracefully snake through long excursions, easily segueing into areas that suit the time and place: Latin rhythms, do-wop, easygoing jazz.