commissioned and produced by Clubbed Thumb, Summerworks 2017
"You know you're in for something extraordinary when even the turn-off-your-phone announcement is wonderful. Before Alex Borinsky's school-pageant-styled Of Government begins, we're plied with cookies and pie—each, we are assured, P.T.A.-made... If ever a political play were huggable, this would be it... Borinsky can write like blazes—and he likes to prove it—so amidst the forest of naturalistic dialogue, huge gouts of monologue suddenly rear up. Tawny goes loquaciously mad in one scary scene, which seems necessary to the plot, but how to explain Beth Dixon's aria about a small town losing its grocery store? Who cares! It's a comic masterpiece, and all I can say is it seemed necessary at the time. But all this hilarity does not disguise the fury at the show's core." Helen Shaw, Time Out
"Me, I see a point in this play’s amiable restlessness, or I think I do. It’s something to do with both the insecurity and serendipity of the way we live now." Ben Brantley, New York Times
Photo by Ian Douglass
incubated and presented as part of the Performance Project at University Settlement Artist-in-Residence program, 2016-17
Nesting structure. Open frames. Shelves and tables and arrangements of things. A pillow fort. A box the size of a bed full of yarn and markers. We've been dancing together Sunday afternoons. Take off your shoes. We have a class grandpa. School lunch. Short chairs. Every little cell in my body is tingling cause every little cell knows everything.
"John Dewey, the 20th century education reformer, believed that the primary function of school was not for learning facts, but for how learning how to learn, and learning how to be in relation with other people. The classroom, he argued, should be a model for the society we will grow into.
"I loathe audience interaction, but while watching Weird Classrooms I gladly sat in a circle, raised my hand, and covered myself in flour. When the entire audience becomes the stage, there is no spotlight on anyone.
"Weird Classrooms made me feel hope for a kind of theatre that asks for something. For theatre that has actual civic possibilities."
from Rachel Kauder Nalebuff's reflections on the project, here.
"I should tell you that this play is marvelous. I should tell you to go see it. I should tell you that by the time you are reading this it is no longer running... I should tell you that if you have any clout in this town, or just a few hundred bucks and an empty room, then you should program this play." Jerry Lieblich, Culturebot
Photo by Eileen Meny
Brief Chronicle, Books 6-8
available in print from 3 Hole Press, online and in local bookstores
"Brief Chronicle, Books 6-8 is a remarkable creature of our shattered and shuttered time. Borinsky’s theater examines everything that it encounters—including the various artifices of theater itself, i.e. character, costumes, boxes, supposed emotions (real or imagined), action as it would have its way, place/s, and all the supposed ends and means of the theater making apparatus—with a scrupulous but loving attentiveness. There is no one quite like him writing and making theater today." Mac Wellman
"In this big, small play, people learn who they are as they say things, punctuation makes gaps where lonely spirits and dances live, and stuff gets sticky between tender, selfish hearts. This is a battle cry for doing the daily work of becoming better in America." Jennie Liu