See it if you enjoy a very moving play based on a real story about soldiers and a Christmas truce during WWI. Simple but wonderful staging.
Don't see it if you have no heart or like comedy only. Read more
See it if Beautifully rendered choral oratorio surrounding horrors of WWI Personalized portraits of soldiers well wrought & moving Artfully vocalized
Don't see it if Pacing can slow as Christmas "truce" approaches True horrors of war only glancingly told but still forceful Any faults minimal at best
See it if Powerful reminder about war.Very effective acapella singing. All male cast of 10 each performing 2 or more roles.75 minutes. MORE
Don't see it if No female roles ...Partner not as enthused...Seats at Sheen not modernized for raking but double armrests are great.. 75 minutes Read more
See it if Sentimental historical holiday wartime journey told only through affecting song.Beautifully blended all-male chorale of both Brits & Germans
Don't see it if No plot. No set. Just emotional all-male singing. Try not to shed tears during "Silent Night." A little over an hour.
See it if You appreciate a lovely historical music piece.
Don't see it if You are not interested in history of war and holiday songs done accapella
See it if Deeply moving true WW1 story told thru song, letters, evocative staging. Music a pastiche of the era, plus traditional Christmas-lovely all.
Don't see it if Don't like a cappella choral work, war stories, or need more plot/production. This is 75mins of letting yourself fall under its spell.
See it if You like beautiful songs and singing with a historic story behind it.
Don't see it if You don't like a loose story based around excellent singing
See it if A Capella singing by a great ensemble of 10 men who play different roles, how singing led to a brief truce between soldiers on diff. sides
Don't see it if Simple dark staging that reflects the darkness of war; due to accents may be hard to understand brief spoken bits between songs* Read more
"The arc of 'All is Calm'...is coolly predictable, urging the men from enlistment to deployment to battle to détente to battle again, and the choice of song and excerpt aren’t so surprising either...More extraordinary is the beauty of the songs...The plangent tenors, lush baritones and rumbling basses are in excellent voice, and when they come together, the sensation is tremendous and the musical chill effect engulfing...A staunchly apolitical and warily genteel work."
“Hands down, the most emotionally moving Christmas show I've ever seen...Lichte and Takach's gorgeous a cappella arrangements of popular songs...underscore testimonies in multipart harmony, making the play feel like a live Ken Burns documentary...Rothstein stages it all with cinematic fluidity...A true ensemble piece...It's hard not to get choked up with performances as honest and unvarnished as these.”
“An extraordinary moment in twentieth-century history is the subject of this carefully wrought, deeply moving piece...That it is likely to be a familiar tale matters not at all: From the moment that the company of eleven emerges from the darkness - this story feels freshly imagined and deeply felt...Music is the thread that holds the evening together, providing an emotional bridge that crucially supports a story made up of a collage of anecdotes.”
“A touching musical tribute to that brief time when peace on Earth reigned over desolate battlefields...A sincerely affecting music-theater work that resonates with beautiful singing, 'All Is Calm' suggests how essential humanity can triumph—even if only briefly, as here—over the most horrible of circumstances...The actors confidently perform...and they make extremely handsome music together...An unusually inspiring musical event for the holiday season.”
"In this deeply moving production, the actors give voice to the real-life words of a variety of soldiers who took part in the unorthodox celebration. After a character speaks his piece, he identifies himself by name, stating the division in which he served. It's a little like the tags in the narration of letters and diaries in a Ken Burns documentary. But these speeches are only a part of the soundscape. The production is suffused with music-all of it a cappella vocalizing by the cast. "
“’All Is Calm’ is the kind of work that makes you want to shout its greatness from the rooftops...It’s the studied minimalism of ‘All Is Calm’ that gives it its power, driving an emotional tempest that won’t soon be forgotten...As the story unfolds Rothstein reveals a work of visual poetry...The cast comprise a singular, well-oiled machine, their acting versatile and compelling. But it is their vocal prowess that’s electrifying. Every voice is a musical instrument.”
"The production is certainly polished and occasionally poignant. But 'All is Calm' strikes me as not quite the staged version of a Ken Burns-like 'docudrama' that its creators claim for it; it’s best appreciated as a beautifully sung, intelligent Christmas concert...There is no question that some of what they say hits home...For all the dramatically-lit haze and stoic faces, the 10 performers speaking the words of 39 men have little time to develop characters or create scenes."
"One of the most special of the well over 200 shows I've covered this year…The company gives remarkably harmonious voice to song after song, with Lichte and Takach's exquisite arrangements...They also deliver their spoken lines with truth and theatrical force…The set is merely an arrangement of wooden boxes, allowing Rothstein to move his ensemble about in gorgeously arranged tableaux, given exceptionally beautiful chiaroscuro lighting by Marcus Dillard."