It’s the characters of Melanie and Chet and their current-day interactions that dazzle in “Rough Magic,” written by DC-native Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa. Olivera has a deadpan wit and a likeablity that makes her curious abilities and quirks sympathetic. The interactions between her, Chet, and the Fury-turned-drag queen (it’s a long story) snap and crackle with liveliness and laughter.
When a vengeful fictional character steps out of the pages of Shakespeare and into modern Manhattan threatening death and destruction, who in the world can save the day? A dramaturg.
The play works best when it makes knowing fun of this goofiness, and so does Jenny McConnell Frederick’s low-budget production. The smoothest element of “Rough Magic” is Tracy Lynn Olivera, whose deadpan style as Melanie perfectly suits the dry, bookish single gal caught up in a supernatural whirlwind.
— Washington Post (CLICK HERE for the full article)
If you see only one play during the six-month-long Shakespeare in Washington festival, see Rough Magic. Now, the Rorschach Theatre troops are gonna slap that sentence into a Web ad within the next five minutes, never mind that the actual production they’ve staged had more than a few bumpy spots on opening weekend. But more marketing power to ’em: Even a rough take on Rough Magic turns out to be kinda fun, if only because the play itself proves an inspired choice for an impoverished but balls-to-the-wall theater company taking part in a big, citywide celebration of all things Shakespeare.
— Washington City Paper (CLICK HERE for the full article)
As a festival entry, this one’s a smart pick – it’s not your typical modernist revision or classic choice. Rough Magic toys with Shakespearean characters with afffection and without undue reverence.
–DCIST (CLICK HERE for the full article)
Tracy Lynn Olivera is a vulnerable, delightfully ditzy, reluctant heroine who can deliver every shade of comedy from romantic to sarcastic, slapstick to erudite, and she shines in this role.
Guadamuz brings 3.5 dimensions to his tortured role as the two-dimensional Caliban. When Prospero’s curse brings out the beast in Caliban, Guadamuz has a comedic field day.
–DC Theatre Scene (CLICK HERE for the full article)
Mr. Aguirre-Sacasa’s writing is pithy and ironic, as he weaves a tale of love, magic and horror — with a bit of drag and sarcasm thrown in.
–Curtain Up (CLICK HERE for the full article)