Blackfriars Repertory Theatre and the Storm Theatre Company present this verse drama exploring the horror of trench warfare as experienced by two of the greatest poets of the First World War. More…
Featuring the poetry of Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, 'Death Comes for the War Poets' asks: How does one cope with the horror of war? Is there room for hope? And what of the Spirit of Death? Can Death itself be changed?
"Impeccably directed by Peter Dobbins, the haunting production gives horrific insight into trench warfare and makes a powerful anti-war statement that resonates now and for all time...All three actors turn in flawless and affecting performances...The top-notch cast and director are supported by a first-rate design team that skillfully augments the theme and the mood...A rare and meaningful work with historic relevance, an inventive format, and a powerful message." Full Review
"'Death Comes for the War Poets' is a beautiful demonstration of poetry in motion...The actors transform every poetic verse into details of the characters’ lives, and they give voice to the visceral poetry of war...The production elements are bare and effective...As a revelation of such visceral poetry, and as a commemoration of artists and soldiers, 'Death Comes for the War Poets' is a moving theatrical piece of poetry in and of itself." Full Review
"More than a recitation of Sassoon’s and Owen’s writing. It’s a moving metaphysical explosion, a modern danse macabre about the soul’s yearning for its true homeland...Pearce beautifully imagines the two men conversing through poems in the hospital, discovering a brotherhood running deeper than love of country...Through Pearce’s magnificent play, their words continue to bear much fruit." Full Review
"Such relief that this 70-minute play never just sat in its heaviness but danced and sang its way through the poetry of War and Death, never hitting us over the head with a dark melancholy. Ever surprising us with hope, love, and spectacularly beautiful imagery. Much of this has to do with the fine directorial choices made by Dobbins, and the spirited performances by both Carriere and Raver." Full Review
“Carriere and Raver are absolutely terrific…Their readings of the poems are marvelous…As Death, Sarah Naughton is as skillful as the two men on stage, but she has less interesting material to work with…Mr. Dobbins has directed this highly formal piece very well, delicately, expressively but without showiness...Mr. Pearce doesn’t really give enough shape to the raw material he’s chosen. It’s the Sassoon and Owen poems themselves that keep us engaged.” Full Review
“Impenetrable in content but a wonder to the eye…If poetry isn’t your forte, this was an excellent showcase for the trio on stage. Capturing the essence of the poets, each actor brought a variety of emotion and physicality upon the stage…Along with his design team, Dobbins took some giant risks, not all of which paid off…Had an exceptional cast and a stunningly beautiful design not aided ‘Death Comes for the War Poets,’ it may have been hard to sit through.” Full Review
"Deficiently conceived but well-presented...There are some very effective sequences relating to The Great War particularly life in the trenches, but these are sidetracked by cluttered and unrealized ambition...Director Peter Dobbins’ vigorous staging has a brisk pace and visual accomplishment...As jumbled as it is, 'Death Comes for the War Poets' has merit as an exploration of the eternally fascinating and sad subject of the 'War to End All Wars.'" Full Review
See it if you're open to theatrical experiences that wash over you in flashes of feelings and emotions without explaining themselves.
Don't see it if you need a linear plot.
Also Beautiful performers, an ambitious, poetic piece.
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