December 8, 2014

The pieces of evidence move in and out of focus: a bundle of dynamite, a handful of tacks, a single bullet, a section of what looks like vertebrae. In the rumpled and wry Send for the Million Men,” Joseph Silovsky’s theatrical brief against the 1927 executions of Nicola Sacco and Bartolomeo Vanzetti, Mr. Silovsky holds each object in his hand as it is projected onto a screen for our examination. But he won’t keep his hand still, and our perspective is blurry. “Did you get a good look?” he asks, and of course that isn’t possible. Incorporating puppets, a robot and Mr. Silovsky’s customary worn old suitcases, this is a clever, complex, handmade show about a legal cause célèbre from long ago — the conviction of two Italian-born anarchists in a pair of Massachusetts murders that many believed they did not commit. Staged at Here, this is far from a grim entertainment. Mr. Silovsky takes the stage in shorts, boots and a sweater so rampant with holes that it seems to have been set upon by a swarm of giant moths. His googly-eyed robot, Stanley, plays the mustachioed anarchist Vanzetti, and proves as poignant and dignified as C-3PO.