Dorothy Velasco

Theater Reviewer

Dorothy Velasco has reviewed productions at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival for KLCC since 1985.

Dorothy Velasco reviews Oregon Shakespeare Festival's production of UniSon, a musical based on the poetry of August Wilson.

Dorothy Velasco reviews the Oregon Shakespeare Festival's production of The Odyssey, adapted for the stage by Mary Zimmerman.

Photo by Jenny Graham

Guilt, anger, revenge. Riotous hilarity, mortal enemies, Falstaff bigger than life, Prince Hal in a hoody. Yes, it’s “Henry IV, Part One” at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s intimate Thomas Theatre, to be followed in the summer by “Part Two.”

As directed by Lileana Blain-Cruz, Shakespeare’s great history play, peppered with surprises, is staged in the round and set in modern times. We can almost reach out and touch the actors, and the actors certainly touch us with their electrifying emotions.

Photo by Jenny Graham

If you wake up each morning worried about the world, relief is available at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. “Shakespeare in Love,” a stage adaptation of the award-winning 1998 film, will dazzle you with raucous wit, inspired bedlam, pleasing music and sumptuous costumes.

Photo by Jenny Graham

In “Mojada, A Medea in Los Angeles,” playwright Luis Alfaro manages an impressive feat, melding a Greek tragedy with a heartbreaking story of Mexican immigrants.

Now playing at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, with sensitive direction by Juliette Carrillo, this play follows the life of Medea, a young indigenous woman from Michoacán now residing in Los Angeles with her beloved Jason, pronounced Ha-sohn, their son Acan, and Tita, an old family friend. All are mojados, wetbacks, illegal.

Photo by Jenny Graham

When I studied Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” in high school it seemed like ancient history having nothing to do with me. Well, now it’s ancient history that relates perfectly to our times.

photo: Jennie Graham

“The Wiz,” a surprise Broadway hit over 40 years ago, has now landed on the outdoor stage at Ashland’s Allen Theatre. This funky black version of “The Wizard of Oz” won a Tony for best musical, but “Hamilton” it’s not.

photo: Jennie Graham

“Vietgone,” now playing at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, is a lively new comedy about Vietnamese refugees creating their version of an American life from scratch.

Ashland Review: Roe

Jul 12, 2016
Photo: Jennie Graham

Lisa Loomer’s new play, “Roe,” about the Supreme Court ruling of Roe v. Wade which legalized abortion in 1973, may well be this year’s most important American play. 

photo: Jennie Graham

Many people consider Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” the greatest play ever written. They must be right because a full house sat through the play’s rainy opening night at Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s outdoor Allen Theatre.

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