“Whether you find this story plausible or not, it works very well within the world of the play...Somewhat reminiscent of ‘Shakespeare in Love’...This isn’t a casual comedy. You’ve got to pay attention. It’s theatre that forces you to listen and think...A mid-show puppet boxing match...Ridiculous as it sounds, it somehow works - and works beautifully...The actors are wonderfully versatile...An intriguing, surprisingly enjoyable exploration.” Full Review
"A delightful new play...Directed with great skill...Hodges tells a neatly concocted tale of escape, life in hiding and the biggest hoax in world history. He gets wonderful performances from a truly lovable cast. They almost convince you that Marlowe actually did it...It’s hard to believe, though...If Marlowe wrote all those plays and became so famous, why did he never step forward out of hiding to accept the applause?" Full Review
“A nifty, literate mystery...The best scene is the battle of wits between Shakespeare and Marlowe, staged as a mock puppet wrestling match...Although the play ends on a dreary note, its illumination of the lives of the characters—each actor portraying multiple figures—keeps the audience on its toes and constantly surprised. Hodges’s easygoing direction and the talent of this five-member cast keep the stylized dialogue zipping along with intensity and humor.” Full Review
“More of an argument than a play, and the characters are not much more than mouthpieces for theories that have been more persuasively argued elsewhere. Therefore, the evening makes for, as Shakespeare might state, a very long ‘two hours traffic of our stage.’ This is a pity since there is some fine writing, and there are notable passages that nicely convey Elizabethan inflections and syntax.” Full Review
"Hodges is a more accomplished playwright and literary researcher than director, allowing a great many different English accents to be used. Not only is the acting quite broad, it is also superficial and surface. All of the actors double with second appearances as other characters often following in the very next scene which is quite confusing, though most of the actors are not adept at playing two roles differently." Full Review
“There is much confusion with the cast playing two and three roles...There was too much confusion what with Jethro Tull music playing in-between acts and the Punch and Judy show with puppets...I was lost in translation as to why much of this play was happening. Also a lot of the acting by the men seemed to border on yelling instead of layering...In need of an anchor and better direction by the playwright. Sometimes you need another eye to stage your work.” Full Review
See it if you love The Bard, are curious about the controversy surrounding his existence, or just like creative theater.
Don't see it if you're extremely parochial about your Shakespeare or don't enjoy a little mischief in a show. Not an LOL comedy, but witty and fun.
See it if every once in a while your brain needs a shake up and you've already seen Stoppard. This was great fun, everyone giving it their all--Bravo!
Don't see it if You don't want to consider that perhaps Shakespeare didn't write those plays: this makes a case in Marlowe's favor, presented effectively.
See it if the premise that Marlowe did not die but was exiled to Italy and continued writing with Shakespeare as his English front is interesting.
Don't see it if you are not interested in Marlowe or Shakespeare and are not willing to consider that Shakespeare did not write his plays, but Marlowe did.
See it if If you are interested in Shakespeare and have some knowledge of those times. I think this show is underrated. start of 2nd act was awesome.
Don't see it if If you are not interested in shakespeare at all, you will be bored at this show
See it if if you like a very unusual theory about Shakespeare and Marlowe. Very witty story and wonderful acting. Don't miss the 1st scene of Act 2!
Don't see it if if you are a purist about Shakespeare and don't like any controversy about him. You won't like this play if you have no humor.
See it if You are interested in the Marlowe/Shakespeare controversy, and are open to "what if"; a clever presentation, fun and well researched
Don't see it if you do not like historically oriented plays which poke fun at Shakespeare, and challenge your beliefs, even with puppets to add humor.
See it if you are intrigued by the “Shakespeare stand-in for Marlowe” theory and enjoy talented acting/writing albeit no climax or arc after Act I.
Don't see it if you reject that Shakespeare didn’t author works attributed to him, dislike silly pointless puppetry, want resolution/climax or shorter show
See it if you are accepting of a Marlowe/Shakespeare connection. You enjoy a show despite one poor act. You can follow multiple rolls per actor
Don't see it if you need your shows to be 100% perfect. Good acting is not enough for you. You aren't willing to think outside the box.
See it if you like Shakespeare &/or Marlowe. Gets to the premise much better than "The Shakespeare Conspiracy", although beats it like a dead horse.
Don't see it if you don't know (or care) about the never-ending Marlowe vs Shakespeare conspiracy theories, or any of their work. Very good acting by most.
See it if You're interested in a clever exposition of the Marlowe/Shakespeare theory, with an odd diversion into puppetry. Overall fun and interesting
Don't see it if You don't like talky, somewhat repetitive explanations of unproven theories, or small theatres with uncomfortable seats.
See it if You like historical references and puns. The show is different in its writing and presentation, see it if you like non traditional plays.
Don't see it if You do not like old English speech, or are seeking a full on comedy.
See it if If are a Shakespeare fan and are interested in the history or legend of how he did not write his plays.
Don't see it if if you do not like cozy settings for a play, you do not like period pieces or you are not particularity interested in Shakespearean history.
See it if A well-written script, capable actors, fine costumes and the barest but serviceable lights and set in another Marlowe/WS dust-up is enough.
Don't see it if You've no knowledge of nor interest in, Marlowe, Shakespeare or who might have written what.
See it if Act I was a really well written, well acted mini playlet about "what if Marlowe lived and wrote Shakespeare's plays?"
Don't see it if Act 2 fell apart for me; there was a verbal sparring match with dolls and in order to lionize Marlowe, it demonized Shakespeare.
See it if you are a Shakespeare or Marlowe completist.
Don't see it if you are expecting a cogent argument that Marlowe authored Shakespeare’s work, or an entertaining play that proposes as much.
See it if You are patient listening to a different take on the bard in Shakespearean prose. The woman and the man who played the printer+ were fabulou
Don't see it if You’re looking for a big book musical. The premise was interesting but very slow moving especially the smaller man who was awful.
See it if You already believe the theory that Marlowe wrote the plays that were attributed to a not-too-bright Shakespeare.
Don't see it if You have a low tolerance level for bad acting and weak arguments.
See it if You love works of Shakespeare and you are familiar with the theory that Marlowe may be the real author of the plays.
Don't see it if You do not like English drama and/or puppetry within a play.
See it if You are interested in "who wrote Shakespeare" riffs. Its a very small room and requires proportional energy.
Don't see it if You dont like broad acting. You have little interest in conjecture that can be neither proved nor disproved.
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