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"A piece that cries out for simplicity and gets digital distraction instead. Oh, Mariner, those overly literal visual aids fight you for our attention at every turn, breaking the mood in the bargain...It all registers as a lot of visual noise. The sound design is not quite as obtrusive, but it, too, is part of a layering that suggests that the director doesn’t trust the script. As for Mr. Evett, he is best when the production leans on him, not on design." Full Review
“A gripping one-man show…’Albatross’ is an exciting and dramatic portrayal of a mariner's extensive journey…Benjamin Evett's solo performance as the mariner is stunning as he captures the drama, tension, and occasional humor of the show. He masters the physically and emotionally demanding role…The creative team has done a wonderful job of bringing ‘Albatross’ to the stage…’Albatross’ is a riveting and affecting theatrical piece that you will long remember.” Full Review
“Evett is a powerful presence with oceans of technique at his disposal, but his performance would be infinitely better if he cut the intensity level by at least thirty percent...His full-throated, aim-for-the-balcony approach becomes wearying, then assaultive…'Albatross' seems to exist entirely to give its leading man a workout—and the result is something of an ordeal for the audience. All the additional detail only has the effect of making one appreciate how neatly Coleridge told his tale." Full Review
“Spengler and Evett created an intense one-man play around Coleridge's poem, famous for its place in the early history of Romanticism. Evett himself performs the title figure in a tour-de-force of acting chops and physical stamina...The 85-minute play, perhaps 15 minutes longer than it has to be, makes demands that test his endurance and, when the rains begin pouring down on him late in the play, you're happier for the actor than the character that he's finally got water, water, everywhere.” Full Review
"It’s definitely an attention grabbing opening, and one that doesn’t let us down moving forward...Through the vessel that is Evert and the direction of Rick Lombardo, we are given a rowdy and engaging telling of this tale of guilt and remorse...It’s an exciting tale, shocking, moving, and arresting. Magically and effortlessly told, Evert grabs us and yanks us willingly throughout this 85-minute monologue, leaving us fulfilled and uplifted on the shore of our newly acquired awareness." Full Review
“The only thing amiss with this script are repeated, thoroughly annoying references to the present, which rip us away from the power of the chronicle and back into our theater seats. A big mistake…Benjamin Evett brings terrific physicality to his role…It might serve the piece to vary emotional level a bit more. Starting aggressive/maddened without respite means we’ve less far to go. Mostly, Lombardo needs to keep an eye on his star. Production values are simply marvelous." Full Review
"Matthew Spangler and Benjamin Evett have turned this very long story poem into a fascinating drama featuring Mr. Evett as the narrator, the mariner and every other character. As directed by Rick Lombardo, this 'Albatross' is uneven in its storytelling, but still totally involving, mostly due to Evett's tireless performance. This dramatization of the famous, previously much maligned poem, strips away the clichés and finds its dramatic heart." Full Review
"Visually rich for a drama featuring only one actor...The play quotes Coleridge's verse and its antiquated language, but most of the text is lively prose that's easy to follow and accessible to the contemporary ear...As a performer, Evett has no difficulty holding spectators' attention for the play's 85 minutes. His high energy never flags; his demeanor is at once dauntless and natural...At certain points, the theatrics and the molto agitato tempo are more distraction than enhancement." Full Review
"Matthew Spangler and Benjamin Evett’s script revives Coleridge's ancient poetry and makes this 18th-century stock character relevant. With humanity’s negative impact on nature and cruelty to animals, the Mariner’s story deserves even more urgent attention...My one critique concerns the projections, which become more of a distraction than an enhancement...Yet they ultimately do not prevent 'The Albatross' from being a stirring production centered around a masterful performance." Full Review
"Benjamin Evett gives us a surpassing performance in a magnificent play…It’s a tragic story with a possible, ambiguous redemption–redemption here less clear than in Coleridge’s poem. What courage to take on a famous, iconic poem, what confidence of vision! These contemporary authors meet that challenge fully. This play is written with a passionate, raw, vernacular poetry of its own that makes the telling of the story near-to-overwhelming." Full Review
"The story is classic, but through the use of modern technology, multimedia projections, strong sound effects, and a multipurpose set, the play feels of the moment...And there is no better actor to create this world than Benjamin Evett...It is a raw and emotional role to play, and Evett does so flawlessly by putting his whole heart and soul into the role...Hats must be tipped for what is a top-notch performance, but what also must be an exhausting one." Full Review
"The venture becomes muddled, beginning as something of a parody and ending as a fairly faithful adaptation of its source material...Evett is fully equipped to hold us at attention throughout...His stamina and consistency as a performer are tested by the script’s inability to decide what it wants to do with the mariner’s story...Whether intended or not, it doesn’t come close to capturing the terror of reading Coleridge’s poem silently." Full Review
"The corn in the husk, Evett‘s acting, coupled with some dramatically psychedelic effects, offers a number of niblets to nibble on throughout. The problem is the husk. The lumbering exposition that takes up so much of the play adds little of any substance to the figure of the Mariner...'The Albatross' doesn’t really interpret Coleridge’s poem or engage with it in a meaningful, personal way; it more or less just adds a lot of unnecessary fat to the haunting skeleton of the source material." Full Review
"We should all be so lucky to have this man’s energy, at his age...Evett has converted this story into an environmental tale...A tremendous, if obvious, message...Do you want to go hear this message handed to you, heavily? Heavy-handedly?...Evett’s got gale-force power; it’s a bit much for a small theater. Black Dog in a black box? Biting off pieces of someone’s shoulder, swallowing them, and then blowing chunks? 'Is it too much?' You be the judge." Full Review
for a previous production "The framing devices do go on a bit long...The piece reaches full speed once the mariner’s yarn reaches South America, and there’s a wonderful sense of growing dread...Evett imbues this piece with a Bard-like sense of man’s ability to observe, but not alter, the inexorable progress of fate. Evett’s charisma forges the sense that 'Albatross' would be just as captivating an experience if he stood atop a sea chest and recited it in broad daylight on Boston Common." Full Review
for a previous production "It's a stirring piece of theatre, inventively staged with rigging and ragged sailcloth strewn about the stage to great effect, while Evett himself makes use of ladders, ropes and all to spin the yarn. It does, however, have a slight misstep of a moment, as several references to modern life are well-intentioned but feel somewhat forced, especially as the message is well enough captured in the actions of the Mariner himself. Overall, this is a show well worth the admission." Full Review
for a previous production "A visually enthralling saga…Evett dominates the stage and owns it completely. From the shockingly coarse tongue of a true-blue sailor to the smooth recital of Coleridge’s poem, the narration flows easily and naturally…The second half of the show is profound…The ending is sublime…The first half hour is slow, however. It takes a while to ramp up to the actual story...But director Rick Lombardo has brought new life to a familiar poem." Full Review
for a previous production "This piece zips by due to its combination of masterful storytelling, beautifully simple yet visually stunning effects, and an acting performance of real quality and stamina-induced intensity by Evett himself...The truthfulness of his performance makes the entire spectacle truly absorbing…While arguably the piece might be shortened slightly, with its opening perhaps the weakest part as the character is established, it is Evett’s tour-de-force performance which is the real champion." Full Review
for a previous production "A wild ride of gripping theater, performed solo by the remarkable Benjamin Evett…Evett is powerful and mesmerizing, as is the unique play…Backing up Evett's spectacular and physically demanding performance are marvelous special effects…There is nothing static about this one-man tour de force…It seems surprisingly relevant in today's world…Put this show on your must-see list." Full Review
for a previous production "A strikingly dramatic text, one that demands the power and versatility of an actor of Evett’s calibre. Leaving aside his impressive vocal performance, Evett’s physical dexterity is dazzling. He effortlessly shifts from the bawdy clowning of the Italian jester to miming the agonizing strains of a seaman’s labors…The production’s design elements and storytelling are nimbly integrated." Full Review
for a previous production "Alongside his boundless vigor and flawless recital of his script, Evett’s performance is at times astounding…But such is the nature of one-man plays that the story gradually becomes a little flat. As Evett’s character narrates his own painfully slow death of thirst aboard his ship, some audiences will begin to long for a different form of story telling, or at least a new narrator…Ultimately, it is difficult to fault the performance and production. For this alone 'Albatross' is worth seeing." Full Review
for a previous production "The style is captivating; the storytelling transcends the fourth wall with fantastic energy. Whilst remaining utterly true to the rough, ready and foul-mouthed sailor that he is, Evett's performance exudes professional polish, incorporating impressive variations of tone and staging. Evett's dynamism is undeniably the focus of this one-man show…With touches of human honesty, 'Albatross' draws on Coleridge’s symbolism delving into the depths of disbelief, sin, suffering, sorrow, and God." Full Review
for a previous production "'Albatross' offers us as much history as it does poetry, and as much earthy expression as transcendence of language…Evett’s performance is spellbinding, Rick Lombardo’s direction is dynamic and focused, and the finely attuned production design serves as a living argument for the poetic possibilities of the theatrical form." Full Review
See it if you enjoy well acted one man shows which are a bit unusual and require the use of you imagination.
Don't see it if you prefer a clearly developed story not solely dependant on the actor and some stage tricks.
See it if you enjoy accomplished one-man performances. The actor commits entirely and is appealing in the role.
Don't see it if you'll get annoyed that it runs 90 minutes but only holds your interest for about 60. Or if you don't like the poem it's inspired by.
See it if This one-act retelling of the Rime of the Ancient Mariner humanizes the protagonist and reminds us of personal responsibility & culpability.
Don't see it if It is a little raw (we're with sailors) and it is a one actor production, but mostly you'll enjoy it. Could use a bit of editing, too.
See it if An intense experience. All out performance brings new perspective to old poem ("The Rime of the Ancient Mariner") Knowing the poem helps.
Don't see it if you don't like one-man shows. This unsanitized version may be unsettling for some. Not for the faint of heart.
See it if want to see the rime about a sailor and albatross revealed in a vivid way. Evett was masterful as he switched characters to tell the story.
Don't see it if if you are not ready to pay attention to the script as you miss some of this mostly dark story; or if you don't like one man shows.
See it if You like intense one-man shows without intermissions. Emotional and raw acting.
Don't see it if You don't care for unnecessary background, loud wooden chest noises, and lengthy and sometimes confusing narrative. Actor was great, but.meh
See it if If you love tall ship culture. Mr Evetts performance is stunning and riveting as a kidnapped navigator on a pirate ship. Amazing Performance
Don't see it if If you don't love me one man shows
See it if You enjoy an intense one man show in an intimate theater. If you like a classic poem reenacted with added material.
Don't see it if You do not enjoy one man shows, profanity nor can tolorate graphic descriptions of violence. You do need to use your mind.
Also If your not familiar with the poem. Read it before you attend.
See it if You want to be drawn into an intense 90 minutes of storytelling, you like the original source story and want to hear it fleshed out.
Don't see it if you're bothered by swearing or descriptions of dark, near-death situations. I have a high tolerance found this intense.
See it if you like retellings of old stories. It takes Rime of the Ancient Mariner and makes it easier to understand and connect with.
Don't see it if you don't like projections, fog, or strobe effects. Or swearing. He swears like a sailor. Can get a bit slow in places.
See it if You're interested in maritime history, or just to see a man give everything in a solo performance.
Don't see it if you need a lot of action or sets to keep your attention. This is straight storytelling so you just gotta listen.
See it if you enjoy engaging, poetic, exhausting fabulous one man shows.
Don't see it if you are looking for something uplifting or light and fluffy. This will knock the wind out of your sails.
See it if Like reimaginings of classic literature, solo shows and poor/found theater, know the original Rime but wouldn't object to changes
Don't see it if Have sympathetic acrophobia, expecting to hear the original text, need a "why"
See it if You like intense 1 man show w/bizarre theme, creative staging & an actor who has an agenda other than performing before an Audience
Don't see it if You want a feel good performance with a traditionally staged show
See it if One man delivers a sprawling narrative of all aspects of the voyage in the poem -- what Coleridge wrote about and what he did not. Grabs you
Don't see it if Benjamin Evett gives his all. Fascinating but slow at times. Read the poem for context before you see the play. Little of the poem in script
See it if You want to hear an intense story. You wanted to be immersed in an intense story of a mariners plight. You like simple yet effective staging
Don't see it if You don't like one person performances. You don't want to hear a mariners story. You like elaborate staging and productions.