But it’s Nanna Ingvarsson, her French accent as musical as Chopin and richer than creme brulee, who first unlocks the show’s laughter. As Berthe, Bernard’s grouchy maid and reluctant accomplice, Ingvarsson slouches on and offstage with an expression so sour she looks like she might spit.
The Washington Post
By Nelson Pressley, April 24, 2013
Nanna Ingvarsson plays the maid, Berthe, with a hand-on-hip slouch, a disdainful curl of the lip, the disgusted shrug of a shoulder and the dismissive gesture of a hand. The audience liked it when she muttered whole phrases in French, like “My God, these people!” Every time she came out from the kitchen, I found myself gleefully anticipating her humor.
By Yvonne French, April 21, 2013
Six Characters in Search of an Author
… when Ingvarsson’s Mother erupts in anger and frustration, her anguish fills the stage, and the audience reels with her pain. Through her and her silent, damaged children, we understand the difficulty any troupe of actors would have recreating this family’s lives on stage
I don’t know which of the principals to praise more: Bruce Alan Rauscher as the director (I saw him recently in Marathon 33, marvelous there too), the great Brian Hemmingsen as the father, the truly perfect (such an off-putting word but it’s accurate) acting of Nanna Ingvarsson who is pitch perfect down to the way she walks so lightly at one point as she moves over to the older son she is grieving for.
By ellenandjim, November 14, 2012
In addition to the directing, part of the magic comes from the exquisite casting. First of all, there is simply no one like the inimitable Nanna Ingvarsson, who, with a penetrating gaze can hold a scene in the palm of her hand and leave you breathless.
As sorcerer, she commandeers extraordinary moments, bringing visions to life for the weary well-heeled lawyer. Attended to by her muted man-servant nicely played by Aaron Bliden, Ingvarsson barks orders, conjures up visions, stalks unsuspecting minions and approaches each segment with a razor sharp stroke.
DC Theater Scene
By Debbie Jackson, May 29, 2012
This used to be the not-so-secret strength of our major repertory companies—the play might be unfamiliar, but a regular stable of actors ensured the experience of watching it would not be. These days, with standing rep companies a thing of the past, this brand of continuity is more often honored by our smaller troupes than our more established ones. When hulking Brian Hemmingsen arrives on stage in Forum Theatre’s The Illusion, making his way by glow of cellphone and growling that he seeks a sorcerer, and Nanna Ingvarsson emerges barefoot and wild-eyed from behind a scarlet curtain to help him find the son he drove away, they trail all sorts of associations: Beckett, Ionesco, Chekhov, dozens of roles in more than 30 years they’ve performed both in tandem (they’re married offstage) and apart.
Does their presence ground a show that’s about to get all hifalutin’ about love, magic, and theater? For sure….
Director Mitchell Hébert has given the young lovers some clever business—wait’ll you see the staging fillip with which he sets up a line beginning “on the other hand”—but nothing he’s done is more apt to rivet you than the fact of these two sitting on the sidelines.
The raptness of their attention turns out to be central to what you’d have to call the play’s trick ending. But it’s also fun in its own right, whether Hemmingsen’s interrupting the action to protest that it makes no sense, or Ingvarsson’s orchestrating the ticking passage of time (Aaron Bliden, giving his tongue a workout).
Washington City Paper
By Bob Mondello, June 1, 2012
The cast is practically musical, with different clusters of the ensemble working in distinctive keys. Brian Hemmingsen and Nanna Ingvarsson sound tragic notes: Hemmingsen has a brooding quality as the gruff Pridamant, watching scenes of his son’s life summoned by Alcandre, the magician played with weary wonder by the barefoot, sad-eyed, commanding Ingvarsson. You can sense both actors peering through layers of time as they observe what happens within the circus ring or what pops out from behind the heavy red curtain of Daniel Pinha’s scenic design.
The Washington Post
By Nelson Pressley, May 31, 2012
The Language Archive
…in Mary [Cho has] created a character whose suffocating sorrow feels deeper than what in some plays becomes tiresome. The playwright is aided here by Ingvarsson, for whom “misstep” remains an utterly alien concept and who slowly, impressively builds a harder and harder shell around Mary’s disappointment.
By Peter Marks, February 24, 2012
The Language Archive is an elegant, graceful confection of a play… And Ingvarsson is, as she has been in every production I’ve seen her in, absolutely convincing.
By Tim Treanor, February 20, 2012
Director Robert McNamara ensures that the play has its full life. He has cast phenomenal actors, and their timing is perfect…. Nanna Ingvarsson, as Eddie’s wife, is spectacular, riveting and charismatic. To see such quality acting is a treat.
By Pat Davis, October 22, 2011,
Nanna Ingvarsson admirably infuses a hint of vulnerability into her portrait of Eddy’s wife, though she also goes full-throttle when spoofing the character’s lusts.
By Celia Wren, Oct. 25, 2011
Davy and Ingvarsson are also a thrill, tapping into a sort of macabre melodrama that gives Greek its strange flair.
By Hunter Styles, October 25, 2011
David Bryan Jackson, brilliant and consistently hilarious as Eddy’s dad; Nanna Ingvarsson, sensual and scene-stealing as Eddy’s wife; and Danielle Davy, eye-poppingly adaptive as Eddy’s mom and the Sphinx – does a great job, both in their roles, and as the ridiculous, mugging, silent Greek chorus pantomiming in the background to illustrate Eddy’s speeches. Ingvarsson delivers one speech in particular that made be squirm and blush, and Davy’s defiant putdown of manhood as the Sphinx is hilarious.
The cast does excellent work with a fiendishly difficult text – the ladies in particular. Nanna Ingvarsson and Danielle Davy are each mesmerizing in their own ways; Berkoff’s script is rife with monologues that require herculean strength and command of phrasing from the actor, and both women offer up showstoppers by the end of the night.
Nanna Ingvarsson, who played Eddy’s wife, had one of the most scintillating performances with a scene that wouldn’t be out of place in The Vagina Monologues.
by Christian Barclay, October, 2011
The Green Bird
The old queen gets her comeuppance in the end, of course – in no small part thanks to the titular, magical Green Bird (Rex Daugherty), a former, and future, king himself. But before her day of reckoning, Ingvarsson gets to ham it up, playing Tartagliona as a sort of sexpot Cruella de Vil, or an evil Liza Minnelli: She’s sultry, strong-willed, solipsistic, utterly show-stopping. It’s the kind of performance gay men in particular relish and would normally pay two or three times Constellation’s ticket prices to see.
by Doug Rule, May 19, 2011
A flamboyant splicing of fairground clowning and once-upon-a-time narrative tropes, with a little social satire tossed in for good measure, “The Green Bird” tells of orphaned twins, singing apples, a dysfunctional monarchy, a lascivious sausage seller, talking statues and a lovesick green bird — and that’s just for starters.… the delectably villainous Queen Tartagliona (Nanna Ingvarsson) vamps and smirks like a Cruella de Vil who happens to have studied hand-to-hand combat and pole dancing.
By Celia Wren, May 12, 2011
A surrealist romp would be nothing without elaborate costumes, here mashed up by designer Kendra Ra.…They’re absolutely deliciously absurd, with some hysterically vulgar touches that embolden the actor’s choices. Watch as Nanna Ingvarsson’s evil queen caresses her sagging tit corset like a beloved kitten, or as Katy Carkuff, encased in tree branch camouflage, makes apple puppets sing with a Sesame Street poignancy.
By Jenn Larsen, May 10, 2011
As the evil queen, Nanna Ingvarsson plays the delicious role for all it’s worth, doing everything but twirl a Snidely Whiplash mustache and, at one point lapsing nasally into Brooklyn housewife-ese as she dryly repeats the two incantations she must recite without error to cast the spells.
DC Theatre Scene
Leslie Weisman, May 10, 2011
The acting star of the show is by far Nanna Ingvarsson as the mean old queen with her hanging bossom who reaches a pinnacle of success as her dramatic and comedic interactions are most profound. She also does a neat job as one of the talking statues in the production.
Bob Anthony, May 13, 2011
One Flea Spare
One Flea Spare is a play about a month spent in Hell; it is a hell of a play, and Forum plays the hell out of it… Strain also did a great job casting the piece… And as for Ingvarsson, she is good in everything she does.
DC Theater Scene February 28, 2011
By Tim Treanor
Ingvarsson is always a pleasure to watch, and here she invests Darcy with an affecting humility.
Washington Post, February 23, 2011
By Peter Marks
His wife (Nanna Ingvarsson, tightly controlling volcanoes of pent-up anger and loss) keeps her distance…. Masks come off; pasts are revealed; lust comes out of the shadows to frolic among the damned.
Washington City Paper, February 25, 2011
By Trey Graham
Sink the Belgrano!
As the vile Maggot Scratcher, Nanna Ingvarsson dazzles the audience with a complex cocktail of ruthless ambition, seductive charm, and carefully concealed insecurity. Despite her character’s monstrous nature, Ingvarsson maintains an undeniable likeability, due to her razor-tongued wit and dominant stage presence.
DC Theater Scene August 31, 2010
Nanna Ingvarsson, who played Maggot Scratcher, did a phenomenal job as the haughty, entitled, ambitious politician. In her blue suit, pearls and one black glove, she kept the action charging forward.
Washington Life Magazine, August 27, 2010
Of the eponymous heroines, Nanna Ingvarsson is particularly heart-wrenching as the schoolteacher Olga, whose face grows ever more wan and careworn.
Washington Post, January 28, 2010
…and a few graceful performances—chief among them Nanna Ingvarsson’s wistfully understated eldest sister
Washington City Paper, January 29, 2010
Bob Mondello on
Nanna Ingvarsson as older sister Olga is a marvel to watch as pseudo matriarch of the family. She is the underlying strength that holds the family together even when she feels close to unraveling herself.
DC Theater Scene, January 27, 2010
Woman and Scarecrow
Scarecrow, played with ethereal distance by Nanna Ingvarsson….The actors are all good, especially Ingvarsson walking a fine line while giving Scarecrow so many potential meanings.
Potomac Stages, May 8 2009
This is a play that requires the most confident of actors if it is to have a chance of earning the audience’s interest. Director Des Kennedy has those actors…Nanna Ingvarsson (Scarecrow) is arresting; her full lips and strong features and constant activity such a contrast to the thin lipped and slighter, bed-ridden Mendenhall. Ingvarsson’s mere presence gives a strength to the production as she feverishly struggles with Mendenhall … pushing her to not go soft. When the final black-out draws near, her brutal actions, wicked appearance and the ensuing carnage do not seem out of the realm of possibility at all.
The Sentinel, May 27, 2009
By David Cannon
The Marriage of Figaro
Nanna Ingvarsson, a woman scorned, is a delightfully forceful presence that takes over each scene she is in. She provides critical feminine gravitas to the production.
Potomac Stages, January 24, 2009
Nanna Ingvarsson (Clytemnestra) can be subtle, outrageous, clever, nuanced and right in-your-face direct as well as cloying …Hemmingsen and Ingvarsson especially are adept at rendering outward smiles and joviality that hide their core craftiness and deceit.
…verbally masterful and cunning …Ingvarsson, as the spurned wife, shows absolute malice as she speaks coyly, yet insincerely
Potomac Stages, May 17 2008
Nanna Ingvarsson portrays Clytaemnestra with a calculating, shrewd veneer. She strides across the large set with the sure steps of a huntress, stands with the backbone strength of men twice her size, plots her course and delivers, no matter how long it takes. She sets out to get whatever she has her sights on, gods be damned. While others cower in fear and trepidation, she doesn’t wait for an entity or fate to make things right and Ingvarsson portrays her “bring it on” approach with just the right seething intensity.
DC Theater Scene, May 19, 2008
…there’s a distinct frisson each time Nanna Ingvarsson’s bloodthirsty Clytemnestra stalks onto A.J. Guban’s sprawling, raked amphitheater of a set.
Washington City Paper, May 16, 2008
Scenes From The Big Picture
If one were forced to identify just a few of the sterling actors, the standouts would include Nanna Ingvarsson as an office clerk waiting by the phone for news of her missing son.
Washington Post, May 21, 2007
extremely well-acted …the production expertly captures their quiet desperation. The acting has a furtive, low-key quality, … Deal and Ingvarsson each register enough hot bitterness and grim anger to give the scenario a plausible sense of danger. But it’s an admirable paradox that while playing characters engaged in histrionics, Deal and Ingvarsson never remotely go over the top. The grievances come across in their nuanced deliveries of Genet’s seething speeches and in facial expressions that you’re close enough to read in the small theater.
And as Deal and Ingvarsson cuddle and abuse each other on this one-way trip down, the production captures a rare theatrical quality: It breathes.
The Washington Post, November 15, 2007
Jenifer Deal and Nanna Ingvarsson are astonishingly insightful in their shifting roles as sisters and maids….You may leave the theater in awe of the talents of Deal and Ingvarsson …Jakobi casts as the maids two actresses who are able to effortlessly transform themselves without camp extremes over the course of the evening as ritual dominance and submission roles shift between the sisters and between Madame and them. Deal and Ingvarrson are able to project both the visible despair of submission and the arrogance of dominance….Lit as a messenger angel she delivers a defining monologue flawlessly.
Potomac Stages, Nov 15 2007
Heady stuff, and the three actors in Scena’s production – Jenifer Deal, Nanna Ingarvasson, and Danielle Davy – are giving top-notch, truthful performances that strongly deserve to be seen.
Metblogs, December 13th, 2007
Ingvarsson lets us see how Solange’s imperturbable countenance is a sham, and when she finally lets the malice spill out in a lengthy speech near the end, we know what she knows—namely, that her hate is all she needs to sustain her.
Washington City Paper, November 22, 2007
Nanna Ingvarsson executes a star turn in the title role of one of Caryl Churchill’s more demanding texts,
Potomac Stages, 23 December 2006
Her many transformations, from ragged-looking woman in a raincoat to a young child, are impressive and show Ingvarasson’s range.
Dcist, December 12, 2006
Vampire Lesbians of Sodom
Ingvarsson, with her flashing eyes, smacking lips and extravagant gestures, is reminiscent of Bette Midler at her most flamboyantly self-mocking.
BroadwayWorld.com, July 2006
Wonderful, artless cheesiness melts through this production like a mother’s love on valium. Ingvarsson and Hammerley, neither particularly vampirish nor discernibly lesbian, ramp it up and camp it up for seventy giddy minutes.
DC Theater Scene, July 17, 2006
His fellow vampire, played by Nanna Ingvarsson, delivers her own standout performance. It’s striking how easily these two very gifted actors play so outrageously large on such a very small stage.
MetroWeekly, July 20, 2006
The Beauty Queen of Leenane
Linda High and Nanna Ingvarsson are so convincing in the roles of mother Mag Folan and daughter Maureen that you can practically smell the rancor…At first, Miss Ingvarsson evokes a touch of sympathy as the put-upon Maureen, but she slowly lets you in on her character’s disturbed mind and taste for delusion.
Washington Times, July 1, 2005
Nanna Ingvarsson lets her character’s essence come into focus much more slowly, giving a hint here and a hint there which combine into a rich portrayal that has its own fascination.
Potomac Stages, June 30 2005
Lady Chatterley’s Lover
Nanna Ingvarsson lightens things up with her confident, often comic, air as Constance’s definite sister Hilda.
Washington Times, July 2004
Fool for Love
Wilson’s Eddie and Ingvarsson’s Mae are ideally matched, as sexy and soulful as they are just plain dirty. When Ingvarsson dons a clingy scarlet shift for her date, then reaches into its bodice to slip off her bra in one fluid motion, she’s a hetero-cowboy’s wet dream come to life.
City Paper, May 10, 1996