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Sam & Dede, or My Dinner with Andre the Giant

From 43 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Clever, Entertaining, Intelligent, Absorbing

About the show

The Custom Made Theatre Co. presents the East Coast premiere of this absurdist two-hander about a young André the Giant hitching rides to school with Samuel Beckett. More…

Inspired by a totally true story! 12-year-old André the Giant—already over 6-feet tall and 240 pounds—didn't fit on the school bus. To repay a favor, a neighbor offered to drive André to school in his truck. That neighbor was avant-garde writer Samuel Beckett. 'Sam & Dede, or My Dinner with André the Giant' imagines a series of scenes between the mismatched pair: a giant who could never hide and a writer obsessed with silence.


Member Reviews (43)

MEMBERS SAY:

Great acting, Clever, Entertaining, Intelligent, Absorbing

70
Ambitious, Intelligent, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Slow

See it if you like Beckett; this play, about him, is in his style. Discussions about writing and life's meaning. Some slow dialogue, but pay-offs.

Don't see it if you want a lot of plot. S&D is philosophical/character-driven. The weird premise works. Strong acting fr Andre. Where's SB's Irish accent?

Also Someone else mentioned the prolonged heavy drinking scene. It bothered... Read more Read less

78
Affectionate treatment, Good acting/direction, Smart and touching, Based on true story, Entertaining

See it if Like exploring odd/quirky friendships between very different people. Have some knowledge of Beckett plays & enjoy watching conversations.

Don't see it if Want lots of action/realistic set. It's about existentialism & knowing about/liking Waiting for Godot is helpful. Don't like 2-handers.

Also Saw this in April, 2017 at 59e59 Theater.

78
Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Quirky, Thought-provoking

See it if you are knowledgeable of Beckett's works and have an interest in plausible connection between the him and the wrestler, Andre The Giant

Don't see it if you are easily bored and have no knowledge of Beckett or his works; prefer a play with more action and less banter.

82
Charming and better than i expected

See it if you want to smile and enjoy a great show with great acting and in a tiny theater

Don't see it if you want a big flashy production. This is show is perfect is the space it was in

Also I used to do some professional wrestling so I knew I would see this sh... Read more Read less

72
The opening scenes were pulsatile the emotion so true

See it if Half a wonderful play is sufficient. There were moments in the mid and later scenes, before a nice payoff in the final scene.

Don't see it if a two hander in a small theater with minimal staging does not appeal. You are bothered by 15 minutes of excessive drinking with no reason.

79
Intimate, Thoughtful, Revealing

See it if Affecting, generous and.kind one-acter in which Beckett and Andre the Giant - who really met - converse about the state of their lives..

Don't see it if ...and hopes. Two men who crave privacy but live public lives, one who has no answers, one who lives on borrowed time. Slow start

75
Intelligent, Profound, Entertaining, Interesting, Surprising

See it if You want an interesting play about the oddest of Odd Couples you never knew about. Two men from very different worlds become friends.

Don't see it if If small plays about interesting characters are not your thing.

79
Engaging, Clever, Entertaining, Quirky

See it if you want to see a very unusual pairing of two well-known characters engage with each other - inspired by real life stories.

Don't see it if you don’t like minimalist staging, quirky characters and long conversations; not familiar with or dislike "Waiting for Godot".

Also I enjoyed seeing this quirky mix of two characters unfold and bond. I ... Read more Read less

80
Great acting, Thought-provoking, Profound, Great writing, Great staging

See it if Extraordinarily well-acted portrait of childhood by Dave Sikula. Intimate portrait of 2 giants in their field who were able to communicate.

Don't see it if if you prefer a complex plot over complex characters

83
Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you have read, or know something about Samuel Beckett, or like clever character studies.

Don't see it if if you want something totally accessible, or have no interest in the two subjects.

Also The play, as the story of the relationship between these two fascinati... Read more Read less

80
Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Intelligent

See it if you like Samuel Beckett, Andre the Giant or if you like strange truthiness.

Don't see it if you like formulaic sitcoms.

77
Interesting, Well-acted

See it if You've any interest in the lives of Andre and Beckett...interesting story based on fact.

Don't see it if You're looking for a seriously amazing play!

83
Absorbing, Clever, Quirky, Delightful, Entertaining

See it if you want to see the nearly unbelievably true friendship of the titular gents. Also if you miss or missed the Falsettos staging. Charming.

Don't see it if See it.

72
Clever, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Funny, Intelligent

See it if you know/love Beckett's work well b/c there is pleasure in recognizing him in this, philosophy is your thing, you want an original story

Don't see it if you expect to care, to root for and want these characters to achieve something, it's more of an idea piece than character-driven w/ stakes

95
Great acting, Great writing, Funny

See it if You love Beckett (+/or Andre the Giant); you enjoy clever dialogue and great acting; want to see a play about an unlikely friendship.

Don't see it if you didn't enjoy "MY Dinner with Andre" or "Breakfast with Blassie" or dialogue driven works. You don't like Beckett or Andre the Giant.

Also This was a WONDERFUL and delightful surprise, like walking into a loca... Read more Read less

91
Funny, Great acting, Edgy, Ambitious, Profound

See it if you like Beckett. You appreciate the absurdity of life. You can appreciate the influence of Beckett on the absurdity of life and vice versa.

Don't see it if you don't like two-person theater in a minimal setting in which words/concepts/the human condition are interchangeable metaphors.

77
Clever, Enchanting, Entertaining, Touching, Quirky

See it if you want to see a terrific actor play Andre the Giant over 20 years of life using theatrical staging and nice lighting.

Don't see it if you are unable to use your imagination or want to see a deeply developed Sam Beckett character.

84
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy a 2 man show with simple stage props, but very clever dialogue and excellent acting.

Don't see it if You expect to be razzle-dazzled

100
Funny, Great acting, Refreshing, Masterful

See it if You enjoy a well written play crisply acted with masterful direction.

Don't see it if You don't enjoy a meditative evening of theater.

83
Entertaining, Intelligent, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Funny

See it if You like quirky, interesting, true stories, told in a linear way, but with tangents of Becket-like surrealism.

Don't see it if You don't like intimate, black box theater productions that explore quirky, relationships that have a profound impact on each character.

95
Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting

See it if You're a fan of other classic professional wrestling, or classic theater, and don't mind a small theater space without the fluff of Broadway

Don't see it if You dislike small theater shows. This is a story that doesn't need tremendous sets or lighting.

Also Play was gripping, and had me completely lost in the story for the ful... Read more Read less

70
Great acting, Thought-provoking, Slow, Insipid

See it if you enjoy slower-paced plays that make you ponder on life, personality/societal-related things.

Don't see it if you don't like minimal staging and long conversation/dialogues.

Also Definitely not the kind of comedy I was expecting. I didn't laugh much... Read more Read less

During previews
88
Inconceivably delightful -- beckett spars with wrestler to reveal meaning in his plays

See it if you are a fan of either or both Beckett and Andre (Princess Bride). The actors capture the spirit of brains and brawn gaining mutual insight

Don't see it if while very amusing, don't expect a laugh riot. Beckett speaks just like the dialog in his plays. The wine-fueled dinner scene is memorable.

Also Beckett's real-life relationship with the child Andre is extended to h... Read more Read less

During previews
84
Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if The friendly clash of ideas and disparate lives of 2 icons intrigue you.

Don't see it if You have no interest in wrestling with ideas and philosophies

During previews
73
So-so

See it if The two actors are excellent - especially Averette the Giant. The idea is intriguing but a kind of sweet story wasn't enough for me.

Don't see it if Kept grasping to make some sort of point. Not sure what. Maybe that was the point? Sort of Beckett-lite.

Also I was waiting for the humor but every joke was based on the unspoken p... Read more Read less


March 26th, 2017
"Dilorio’s lightweight tale is an affectionate tribute...Based on a piece of trivia, the play feels pretty trivial. It’s a skit that outgrows itself. The characters incline more toward caricature and Mr. Sikula and Mr. Averett, cheerful performers both, don’t look or sound like the real men they’...
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March 21st, 2017
"A pretty frail premise for a play, and indeed 'Sam and Dede' works overtime trying to spin some kind of dramatic action out of it. Basically, the big idea is that Beckett was an intellectual giant and André was, well, a giant...Not so much a play as a compare-and-contrast essay...An eighty-minut...
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March 19th, 2017
"Cleverly written, wonderfully acted, and staged with creative simplicity...Playwright Gino DiIorio has taken this factual incident and ingeniously woven it in to a very entertaining 85-minute, two-character biographical play...The bald, hulking and charming Brendan Averett delivers a commanding ...
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March 15th, 2017
"An adoring memento to the two giants—one literal, the other literary—it portrays...It's littered with references to works by both men, references that both celebrate and satirize...Director Leah S. Abrams really succeeds in bringing the playful banter to life...Dave Sikula and Brendan Averett ha...
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Cast & Creatives (11)