See it if you follow Caryl Churchill, enjoy quirky yet serious comedy mixed with dystopian points of view,
Don't see it if you don't enjoy talk of the end of the world or funny but banal talk of four women in a backyard
See it if you are a fan of the absurd. This post apocalyptic piece is smooth and polished but can be confusing. Churchill at her best.
Don't see it if stream of conciousness, absurdism is not your cup of tea
See it if What is this world and the place it may become - a future that we cause or that we deserve? No one is completely honest or sane. Anxiety...
Don't see it if ...rules in this sunny nightmare. But the production is overly stagy, the actors spin out stale roles that do not carry to the balcony. Meh.
See it if You're ready for a challenge. It's a super short play that is elliptical and confusing but also funny, moving, and daring.
Don't see it if You have no patience for this sort of thing. If you hate Samuel Beckett's work or want a clean and clear storyline.
See it if you like talky, experimental plays; hidden pasts; character breakdowns; Huis Clos; or dire dystopian sketches.
Don't see it if you want a clean narrative or plot; a traditional play structure. Read more
See it if divinely creative, challenging playwriting is important to you; insightful, clever, demanding, subtle, superb actors.
Don't see it if you are looking for an easy well-made play that doesn't ask you to think. Read more
See it if You love Caryl, obviously. You're willing to grasp joyfully for the text, hope to get as much as possible. It is very dark, and funny too.
Don't see it if You are not willing to work. It is hard to catch the meaning in an hour of sentence fragments in heavy British accent.
See it if you like shows that you can enjoy by letting them just wash over you and not sweating the somewhat confusing details.
Don't see it if you prefer a straightforward linear story with character arcs.
"A short and wondrous play that plumbs the depths of 21st-century terrors, large and small...Has the effect of a restorative tonic, and you may find a new bounce in your step as you leave it...No one in theater these days is better at exploding and reassembling traditional modes of language and storytelling...This magnificent writer’s latest variation on that form reaffirms such tales’ power to warm us even as they warn of the unspeakable dangers in the wide, dark world beyond."
"Interruption and suspension are the texture of Caryl Churchill's latest play; the themes, appropriately enough, are loneliness and the end of the world. But 'Escaped Alone' still manages to be a floating, bewitching experience. It is gravely intended, but somehow nothing in it registers as weight...The atmosphere manages to stay light as a soap bubble, but Churchill's implications are devastating."
"The life Churchill depicts is as bleak as the form she employs is brilliant. In both, her economy is breathtaking; pretty much all that happens over the course of an hour is that four late-middle-aged English women sit yakking away a summer afternoon, or several afternoons, in a fenced-in backyard. It’s more than enough to gut you...Though some of this is quite funny, Churchill never condescends to her characters, nor does the superb cast."
"Under James MacDonald's direction, the ensemble members are initially delightful, with their characters' complexities gradually seeping out though finely nuanced performances...Clocking in at less than an hour, Churchill proposes ideas and leaves audience members with sufficient post-theatre time to devise conclusions."
"While the writing in 'Escaped Alone' is certainly gut-wrenching in its simplicity and precision, it is also deeply funny...It’s her skill with language that allows for so many interpretations...What makes the production so powerful is that director James Macdonald, along with his singular cast of four incredible actors, manages to bring Churchill's script to life in the clearest way possible."
"The remarkable Caryl Churchill is offering her most devastating prophesy yet on the future of our planet. Called 'Escaped Alone,' it’s her latest, deadliest play...It’s one that creeps up on you, grabs you by the throat, and chokes you...A stellar quartet of veteran British stage and screen actresses lend both disarming comfort and frightening credibility to Churchill’s vision."
"‘Escaped Alone’ is elliptical, even cryptic, on the page. Macdonald and the four actors find rich meaning and vast emotion in the interstices of the playwright's lines....The play, at least as performed by the extraordinary Royal Court cast, is a Rorschach image ready to reflect any horrors or injustices festering in a spectator's imagination on a particular day as he or she contemplates this stunning production."
“A captivating exploration of friendship, isolation and catastrophe and even with its short running time, it is indeed satisfying…The piece holds us tightly. In the lighter moments we join in their backyard reverie, but it is in the darker moments where the richness in their vulnerability, defenselessness, and ruination are the most thrilling to witness...When Mrs. Jarrett finally bids adieu, we also must say our goodbyes. It’s joyous in that moment, and we owe that to the delicious work of all."