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Raison d'Etre: An Evening of Pirandello

From 2 critic and 16 member reviews
Members say: Clever, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Quirky, Great acting

About the show

This celebration of the work of Italian master Luigi Pirandello takes his seminal play, "Six Characters in Search of an Author" and infuses it with characters and themes from two of his notable one-act plays. More…

This modern interpretation weaves together three works that showcase Pirandello’s markedly unique style and his examination of the various personas that people choose to wear or that society forces upon them.




85
Picture This Post

"It’s a mash-up: the brilliant conceit of 'Raison D’Être' is that six characters in this case manage to intrude on two, otherwise unrelated works by Pirandello...A ninety-minute performance that skillfully combines Pirandello’s off-kilter comedy with his puzzling irony and sudden bursts of affecting drama...With great aplomb Linden, Allouche, and the rest of their ill-starred family make it seem entirely reasonable that their misfit Characters belong exactly where they are." Full Review

70
L'idea Magazine

"Judging by the applause at Theatre 71, this bold stroke succeeded with members of the audience, some of whom were perhaps meeting Pirandello for the first time...The show-stopping moment when the 'six characters' interrupt a rehearsal of 'Chee-Chee,' advancing onto the set from backstage, looking almost as morbidly attired as the Addams Family, was wonderfully executed and memorable...Alas, the cast’s ability was uneven...Some puzzling choices popped up." Full Review


91
Clever, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Quirky, Entertaining

See it if You are interested in theatre history, storytelling, Pirandello, clever staging costumes and movement. Truth

Don't see it if You want a standard play that's been done before

90
Funny, Well staged, Smart, Beautifully costumed, Well played

See it if you'd like to see a smart retooling of 3 plays by an Italian precursor of the Absurd into a delightful evening of quirky but engaging drama.

Don't see it if you don't like to think in the theater.

Also Events like “RAISON D'ETRE” remind me why I live in NYC with its super... Read more Read less

90
Absorbing, Delightful, Enchanting, Profound, Great staging

See it if You like Pirandello in a new and interesting light with an excellent translation and a complete artistic vision.

Don't see it if You like something that is light-hearted and without much meaning and doesn't make you think.

88
Ambitious, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you like thought provoking plays that deal with reality vs illusion.

Don't see it if you like realistic plays with a linear plot.

85
Well-acted, Great costuming, One-third comic, Two-thirds profound, Strong drama

See it if you love the way Pirandello makes you think about things you never thought about before: what literature, acting and life mean.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy dialogue-centered drama, or aren't willing to sit through the rather overplayed comic segment.

80
Great acting, Quirky, Relevant, Existential

See it if you are a literate theater maven who enjoys & can debate off-center, avant-garde plays & characters from the like of Beckett, Ionesco;

Don't see it if you're looking for a straightforward, play with an easy to understand storyline & characters; don't like off-beat productions

Also Jennifer Jewell as "The Man With the Flower" was the highlight of the ... Read more Read less

80
Absorbing, Clever, Quirky, Great costumes

See it if you'd like to see 3 Pirandello plays that have found an author to put them together into a compelling, insightful evening of absurdist drama

Don't see it if you don't like absurdist or meta-theatre; you need high production values [tho it's wonderful to see what this co. does with a small budget]

Also Note: Hang out in the small hallway in the lobby just before the show ... Read more Read less

80
Clever, Great acting, Intelligent

See it if You like to see thought provoking, original productions.

Don't see it if You just want to see "run of the mill" plays where you do not like to think.

Also Although the set design was minimal, the actors gave great performance... Read more Read less

79
Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Great writing, Mixed bag, Slow beginning

See it if you like rich metafiction without the pandering of metatheater. 4th wall happily intact.

Don't see it if Uneven cast tethers a script that could fly. Some subtle & commanding performances, but some others are tiresome or so-so.

Also Slowly but surely won me over. There are weak aspects that made me win... Read more Read less

79
Clever, Quirky, Confusing, Interesting, Entertaining

See it if It look like a few stories in one. One looked aliitle punk. They want a real story told.

Don't see it if If you want a easy story to follow and makes you think.

Also It's took me sometime to understand what was happening, Now I want to ... Read more Read less

79
Clever, Great acting, Confusing, Entertaining, Great costumes

See it if You are interested in classical plays shown in new ways, great costumes and acting. Well worth a trip to the UWS.

Don't see it if You aren't interested in Pirendello or are looking for a fully staged spectacle.

78
Clever, Quirky, Pirandello remix, Clever steampunk costumes, Imaginative hats

See it if you'd enjoy seeing 3 shorties by Luigi Pirandello remixed with minimal staging; if you're OK with comedy mixed with deep sadness + farce;

Don't see it if if you need a big budget show; if Pirandello is not your thing; if you like musicals; if you prefer a linear narrative played to the end

Also In "The Man with a Flower in His Mouth" [L'uomo dal fiore in bocca] th... Read more Read less

74
Thought-provoking, Resonant, Slow, Dated

See it if Pirandello is of interest to you. Three of his plays are mashed together. His ideas and language are clearly represented.

Don't see it if you are a purist about these three works.

70
Ambitious, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Slow

See it if I don't think I get the real message the writer tried to deliver. Maybe it doesn't matter... Although the acting was good, it was confusing

Don't see it if You prefer something lighter or meaningful.

65
Clever, Confusing, Slow

See it if You have some knowledge of his previous work and appreciate intricate adaptations of theatre.

Don't see it if You want a strong, clear idea of what's going on.

50
Ambitious, Confusing, Disappointing, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy Pirandello and any of these plays. The company gives it a good try and succeeds about half the time.

Don't see it if you mind these plays being fractured and put together. Each of them is diminished. The performers are game and in some cases, skillful.


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Cast & Creatives (16)