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Performer Match: Derek O'Brien

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Bethany out of Saturn?
Theatre En Bloc's new show explores a world of economic desperation.
DAILY Arts  May 21, 2014, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"...Last time Theatre en Bloc complicated the boards, it was with Derek Kolluri directing Neil LaBute's Fat Pig...."

American Bear
In the subgenre of family reunion plays, this new entry struggles to compete
Arts Review  December 2, 2011, by Adam Roberts
"...The twists can be spotted easily before they're revealed, and the dialogue moves at a plodding tempo. Though the company's website indicates that "there are tones of great playwrights like O'Neill or Shepard in the piece," Bear struggles mightily to live in the shadow of its older, more mature siblings Jenny Lavery (Lonnie), Derek Kolluri (Jules), and Deven Kolluri (Eddie) attempt valiantly to scale the script, but the footholds just aren't there to support them, and none of the characters ever reaches its summit...."

'Austin Is a Place (You Are Here)'
Theatre en Bloc sparks a conversation about the city's growth on the gateway to the Eastside
Arts Story  April 19, 2013, by Dan Solomon
"..."Our whole thing is that art doesn't change a damn thing," Derek Kolluri, co-director of Theatre en Bloc, says when talking about his company's new play, Austin Is a Place (You Are Here). It's an unexpected point from a theatremaker who has spent the last several years putting active, politically minded work on Austin stages, but Kolluri isn't a pessimist...."

Two Actresses, Fat and Thin
Staging Neil LaBute's 'Fat Pig' is a heavy proposition
DAILY Arts  October 2, 2013, by Wayne Alan Brenner
"...The show's director, Derek Kolluri, confirms this – as does supporting actress Jenny Lavery...."

Salvage Vanguard Theater's With Great Difficulty Alice Sits
Hannah Kenah's new play presents an unsettling battle of wills between a mother and daughter before birth
Arts Review  November 17, 2016, by Elizabeth Cobbe
"...The baby's father, Heath (Derek Kolluri), seems much more engaged with the idea of a baby. He even seems to be looking forward to the whole concept of parenting..."

Making Room to Play
Create Space Austin kicks off the drive to secure more performing venues in the city
Arts Story  April 14, 2016, by Elizabeth Cobbe
"...Christina J. Moore, executive artistic director of the playwright service organization ScriptWorks, helmed the mini-conference, along with performer/producer Jason Phelps and director Derek Kolluri, as the new­ly formed organization Create Space Austin...."

The Austin One-Minute Play Festival Is Back!
ScriptWorks presents another round of locally penned 60-second dramas – 70 staged back-to-back
Arts Story  August 13, 2015, by Stephanie Carll
"...After the plays are submitted, 1MPF founder/Producing Artistic Director Dominic D'Andrea and Associate Producer Caitlin Wees, who curate the festival, identify thematic and stylistic through lines and sort plays into "clumps." These clumps – along with ensuing challenges – are then passed along to eight directors (who meanwhile have blindly assembled casts of 6-10 actors), and the rehearsal process begins (roughly 10-15 hours for each clump). Participating director Derek Kolluri of Theatre en Bloc praises the process for requiring "greater levels of specificity and detail in pursuit of telling a story as cleanly as possible." Directors must distill moments to the critical core..."

Jacob's Ladder
The hero of this Theatre en Bloc premiere wrestles with ethical issues while working for FDR
Arts Review  April 9, 2015, by Elissa Russell
"...Under Derek Kolluri's smart direction, Theatre en Bloc overcomes these minor roadblocks and once more delivers high-caliber theatre. The visuals are gorgeous, from Leslie Turner's smooth, abstract scenic design to Steven Shirey's soft, blue-toned lighting..."

Top 10 Reasons (+3) I Stayed in Love With Theatre in 2014
Valentines to theatre and comedic craft played a large part in making 2014 a memorable year in theatre
Arts Story  December 31, 2014, by Robert Faires
"...4) COCK (Theatre En Bloc) A simple chalk circle marked the ring in which a pitifully indecisive man and the two lovers he was torn between battled like boxers. We never saw a punch thrown, but Derek Kolluri's incisive direction and the taut ensemble let us see – and feel – the impact of each psychological and emotional blow...."

This Theatre en Bloc show depicts love as a fight and is as exhilarating and aggressive as a contact sport
Arts Review  October 23, 2014, by Robert Faires
"...What we see is their relationship to one another in space, how they position themselves close to and away from the person they're with and how that affects the scoring of points in this contest. Under the direction of Derek Kolluri (which shows the rigor of a choreographer – or better yet, a boxing trainer), the actors' moves often mimic those of prizefighters, maneuvering around each other, looking for an opening in their opponent's position, a place of vulnerability where one can land a quick punch and leave the other weakened, staggering, unable to strike back..."

Theatre En Bloc delivers a tough and disturbing social critique on suburbia and adversity facing single mothers
Arts Review  June 5, 2014, by Stacy Alexander Smith
"...He's brilliantly cast and utterly repulsive as he assures us that, among other things, God wants us to be rich. His prey is the sadly culpable Crystal (Lara Wright), a reluctant squatter sharing temporary shelter with an unwashed stranger named Gary (Derek Kolluri)..."

Austin Is a Place (You Are Here)
Theatre En Bloc experiments with telling the story of our city's growth but fails to be specific about it
Arts Review  April 26, 2013, by Dan Solomon
"...There are a number of neat devices – the ladders come to represent high-rises, more shoes get dumped onto the mounds, the passage of time is marked by recurring explosions of cedar fever, an exercise bike is used to clever effect – but there's not much else to hang on to. The script, devised by the ensemble (which includes Theatre En Bloc co-producing directors Jenny Lavery and Derek Kolluri), is a mush of bland nonspecificity..."

Gruesome Playground Injuries
Kelsey Kling makes a distinguished directorial debut with Rajiv Joseph's gem of a love story
Arts Review  February 1, 2013, by Jillian Owens
"...Rajiv Joseph's 2011 gem of a love story, Gruesome Playground Injuries, is no exception. But Cap T is less famous for the program that makes them most unique: New Directions, an annual opportunity for a promising young director to shine (most recently, Gary Jaffe and Derek Kolluri)..."

Dead White Males
This critique of public education loses grade points on acting choices
Arts Review  September 3, 2010, by Barry Pineo
"...While Downs' script is bothersome, director Derek Kolluri's choice to have his actors play two entirely different styles proves somewhat more bothersome. Sometimes the acting works..."

Nowhere to Play
The Cost of Art, Part I: Austin's growth and rising rent take out theatre venues, one by one
Arts Story  January 24, 2014, by Elizabeth Cobbe
"...Derek Kolluri, who leads both Theatre en Bloc and the Sustainable Theatre Project, has begun the process of seeking a more permanent space to occupy, both for his companies and for the many other nonresident arts groups in Austin. The timeline for a new venue to open is a long one, however..."

Mayor's Omnibus Resolution: The Arts Commission Hustle
City group gets moving on policy plan for Austin creatives
DAILY Arts  August 8, 2016, by Robert Faires
"...Patti Neff-Tiven, executive director of Ground Floor Theatre, the Springdale Road performing arts space that was shuttered by the city and has been fighting to reopen under code, related some of the challenges that theatre has encountered in that effort and concluded, "Building a theatre is cost-prohibitive in this city." Joshua Green of Pump Project also spoke to code issues and the difficulties they pose for nonprofits with minimal resources to make expensive infrastructure changes. He was the first to suggest that this be made a priority, with Fusebox Festival Managing Director Brad Carlin and theatre director Derek Kolluri chiming in with calls for the city to develop policy tools that will enable more and better public-private partnerships on creative space projects, à la thinkEAST (Carlin), and to complete and refurbish the city's existing cultural facilities such as the Carver Museum and Library, the Emma S..."

Then There's This: Redemption, Texas
Theatre en Bloc Brings one gay rights activist's fight to the stage
News Column  September 14, 2012, by Amy Smith
"...Led by co-directors Derek Kolluri and Jenny Lavery, Theatre en Bloc operates under the motto "great art fosters great communities," and as such hopes that by shining a spotlight on the work of Dianne Hardy-Garcia – the inspiration for Bailey's play – the show will inspire others to lend their voices to causes that strengthen communities. As Lavery tells it, Hardy-Garcia was profiled in a chapter of Brave Journeys that Bailey co-authored with David Mixner in 2000..."

The 2014-15 Austin Critics Table Awards
Top honors to Salvage Vanguard's Thr3e Zisters, LOLA Austin's Femme Bohème, and Texas State's Kiss Me, Kate
Arts Story  June 4, 2015, by Robert Faires
"...DIRECTION Derek Kolluri, Cock/Jacob's Ladder Yuri Umov, Thr3e Zisters..."

Everything Is Exemplary
The 2014-15 Austin Critics Table Awards
DAILY Arts  June 3, 2015, by Robert Faires
"...Direction Derek Kolluri, Cock/Jacob’s Ladder Yuri Umov, Thr3e Zisters..."

Art Par Excellence
The nominees for the 2014-15 Austin Critics Table Awards
DAILY Arts  May 20, 2015
"...Derek Kolluri, Cock/Jacob’s Ladder..."

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