This is a minority report: all the big reviews are ecstatic. Not that this J. T. Rogers drama doesn’t have its strong parts. The Bartlett Sher direction in the Lincoln Center Theatre is fluid – actors moving furniture on and off a large bare stage, augmented by video clips on a huge screen of events relating to the 1993 Arab-Israeli peace negotiations. The subject of peace in an intractable war is worthy. Jennifer Ehle is winning as the wife of one participant and an observer/commentator. Other parts are not just acted, but SHOUTED. Maybe Mark Rylance has spoiled us on how to project on a stage. The problem is not that “Oslo” is long, but that the ending is predictable and its telling not “gripping human drama” (one reviewer). It is admirable that the cross-cultural friendships endured, even if the peace did not. Nor did we – we left at the interval, as did several others we’ve heard from.

Ken Roman


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