Nov. 21

Mike Daisey: The Secret War

A new monologue about the power of political and personal secrecy




Ticket Info

Purchase Tickets Online or by phone at 505-988-1234

Tickets: $10-$20/discounts for Lensic members

Event Description

The Lensic Performing Arts Center proudly presents the return of groundbreaking writer, actor, and monologuist Mike Daisey, performing his new work, The Secret War, on November 21 & 23. The Secret War explores the power of personal and political secrecy—and how America’s relationship with war has changed us all.

Daisey (The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, If You See Something Say Something) explores why things are made secret, why we keep secrets, and the power secrecy has over the world. He looks at three men who were driven to reveal secrets: Edward Snowden, the NSA contractor who exposed how America spies on its citizens; Chelsea (Bradley) Manning, the Army private who leaked classified information about war crimes; and Daniel Ellsberg, the former military analyst who released the Pentagon Papers, which ultimately changed the course of the Vietnam War. These men have become polarizing figures and have been called traitors, heroes, whistleblowers, and villains. By focusing on the human, Daisey provides a startling new look at the price we pay for secrets.

Directed by Daisey’s longtime collaborator and spouse, The Secret War is the first piece in his new War Trilogy, a series of three linked monologues, to be launched over the next three years, about  how America’s relationship with war has changed us. The second monologue, Life During Wartime, will focus on the lives of veterans after they come home, and on Daisey’s father, who counsels veterans. The final monologue, No Man’s War, will be about the ways war has been corporatized to become the nation’s biggest business.

Daisey comes to the Lensic just weeks after his acclaimed 29-night stint at New York’s Public Theater,  “All the Faces of the Moon,” which featured a completely new monologue each night. He last performed at The Lensic in 2008, when he presented If You See Something Say Something, his monologue about homeland security.

Praise for Daisey
“A worthy successor to Spalding Gray . . . Mr. Daisey has a remarkable ability to grab and hold an audience.” 
—Charles Isherwood, The New York Times

“Daisey, a brilliant monologuist in the tradition of Garrison Keillor, only darker and foulmouthed, is commenting on how Americans are influenced by pop culture in a way that, according to him, makes this time in history not our finest hour.”
—The New Yorker, on Daisey’s “All the Faces of the Moon” at New York’s Public Theatre

About Mike Daisey
Mike Daisey has been called “one of the finest solo performers of his generation” by The New York Times for his groundbreaking monologues that weave together autobiography, gonzo journalism, and unscripted performance to tell hilarious and heartbreaking stories that cut to the bone. His controversial work, The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs, was recognized as one of the year’s best theater pieces by the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and other newspapers.

Since his first monologue in 1997, Daisey has created more than twenty monologues, including the critically-acclaimed The Last Cargo Cult, the controversial How Theater Failed America, the twenty-four-hour feat All the Hours in the Day, and the four-part epic Great Men of Genius.

His transcript of The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs was downloaded more than 100,000 times in the first week it was made available. Under a revolutionary open license, it has seen more than eighty productions around the world and been translated into six languages. It has been adapted into a musical, restaged with shadow puppets, and produced from Paris to Kazakistan. The first Chinese production opened last year in Beijing.

Daisey has performed in venues on five continents, ranging from Off-Broadway at the Public Theater to remote islands in the South Pacific, the Sydney Opera House, and an abandoned theater in post-Communist Tajikistan. He’s been a guest on Real Time with Bill Maher, the Late Show with David Letterman, a longtime host and storyteller for The Moth, as well as a commentator and contributor to The New York Times, Harper’s Magazine, The Daily Beast, Vanity Fair, Slate, NPR and others. He is currently at work on his second book, an anthology of his monologues.