Already closed | 1h 30m | Midtown E

Small World (59E59 Theaters)

From 101 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Entertaining, Intelligent, Clever, Absorbing

About the show

Penguin Rep Theatre brings its 2015 comedy about the creation of Disney's classic movie 'Fantasia' to 59E59. More…

When Walt Disney hears "The Rite of Spring," he envisions the creation of the earth, volcanoes, and, of course, dinosaurs. But composer Igor Stravinsky has another vision altogether. In this provocative comedy, we go behind the scenes of Disney’s classic 'Fantasia,' where the dinosaurs aren’t the only ones doing battle.

Member Reviews (101)


Great acting, Entertaining, Intelligent, Clever, Absorbing
Avg Score

Popular art vs. high art, Talky, Clever, Well acted, No plot

See it if you enjoy polished 2-handers. Here, titans (Disney/Stravinsky) square off. Little conflict, no arc. Interesting POVs. Well drawn characters.

Don't see it if you want more than talk. Act I is strong (w/long descriptn fr Fantasia). Act 2 isn't convincing. Act 3 is silly premise. Jokes rather forced

Also SW was fun to watch. The snappy dialogue is delivered by well-matched ... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Intelligent

See it if Well written and acted. Interesting snippet of "history". Absorbing.

Don't see it if Simple staging. Conversation only. Little action. Still interesting to watch.

Clever, Intelligent, Interesting, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy "Behind the Scenes" or true stories. The subject matter I found very interesting. Good performances by both actors.

Don't see it if You dislike smaller more intimate 2 person shows shows. Aren't interested in Disney or Stravinksy

Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to see two strong performances about interesting figures. The debates are sharp and at times funny, but also thought-provoking.

Don't see it if You prefer big productions with lots of action. This is a small, intimate think-bio.

Enchanting, Quirky, Refreshing, Intelligent, Inspiring

See it if Conflict of artistic vision via opposing perspectives of pain and struggle (Stravinsky) vs. escape (Disney). Amusing and enlightening.

Don't see it if You are not interested in art about art. Though the artists disagree, they believe in their art. This transcends and unites them.

Absorbing, Intelligent, Great acting, Funny, Thought-provoking

See it if Interested in Disney and Stravinsky & curious about the use of Rite of Spring in Fantasia, enjoy witty discussions between passionate people

Don't see it if No interest in Disney or Stravinsky, don't care about history of movies, don't recall or not a fan of Fantasia, assume 2-handers not for you

Great acting, Great writing, Delightful, Intelligent, Must see

See it if You're familiar w/Disney, Stravinsky & Fantasia. You want a play about the function of art presented in an accessible & entertaining manner.

Don't see it if You have no idea or don't care about the figures above. You don't want a play about art. You don't like intimate theatre spaces.

Absorbing, Great acting, Clever, Great writing, Intelligent

See it if you love discussions of art and creativity. The meetings of the minds between Stravinsky and Disney were masterful. I loved this show.

Don't see it if you don't like discussions about the meaning of art. If you know something about Stravinsky and Disney you will appreciate their dialogue.

Also The dialogue was very pertinent to how the two men viewed their art. Y... Read more Read less

Clever, Entertaining, Good performances, Overlong, Thought-provoking

See it if you enjoy debates about high art and commercial art. Interesting concept aided by good performances and direction.

Don't see it if you do not like debates about art. Also, if you have no idea who Disney and Stravinsky are.

Also This is an entertaining evening. The play runs 75 minutes, yet it seem... Read more Read less

Good two hander.

See it if You like small two character plays that are well done and about a true incident.

Don't see it if You don't like two character plays.

Clever, Delightful, Funny, Intelligent, Enchanting

See it if You enjoy Disney and Fantasia and know something about the works of Disney. A fun look at a possible conversation between giants.

Don't see it if You need a lot of action to get through a play. This is two actors on stage having riveting and interesting conversations.

Entertaining, Great acting, Intelligent, Witty, Great costumes

See it if you want to see the clash of two creative titans with opposing artisitic philosophies.

Don't see it if you prefer action over talk.

Also A very stylishly realized comedy of ideas.... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Clever, Intelligent, Resonant, Great writing

See it if No ifs, see it!

Don't see it if You're looking for a musical

Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking

See it if you're interested in a well-crafted play about the nature of art vs popular entertainment.

Don't see it if you don't want to learn more about Walt Disney & Igor Stravinsky, or ponder what makes great art and if popular opinion should influence it.

Also Fascinating story, two great actors, well written and acted.

The first 20 minutes of this was some of the most delightful this year

See it if You have any interest in Disney and the contributions he made to orchestral music's popularization. Not to mention 'Iggy" Stravinsky.

Don't see it if You dont like Disney. You dont want to watch two talking heads on a minimal stage.

Clever, Absorbing, Entertaining, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if you are intrigued about the meaning, importance and definition of art great. This show was a fun and clever way to explore these questions.

Don't see it if you prefer livelier topics or feel that cartoons can never be real art.

Informative, Stagy, Good enough

See it if A two handed about clash between art and pop culture is of interest. Neither character appealed to me. Many references to protagonists'...

Don't see it if Work would have benefitted from visual examples. If you are not familiar with "Fantasia" plot wears thin. Ending is totally cliched.

Entertaining, Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if you like intelligent comedies. A real battle of wits. Kept me smiling from beginning to end.

Don't see it if you don't like 2 character plays or are looking for fluff.

Absorbing, Clever, Great acting, Intelligent

See it if You have the opportunity; good play about two extraordinary men; Disney fans or those familiar with his early movies

Don't see it if You dislike intimate venues, plays, or small productions

Clever, Intelligent, Entertaining

See it if If you enjoy the Historic fiction about Disney and Stravinsky. Well written and acted. A quiet but satisfying drama.

Don't see it if If you only enjoy musicals and elaborate dramas.

Clever, Funny, Entertaining, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if you have interest in either Disney and/or Stravinsky. This smart two person play provides insight and humor into their imagined interaction

Don't see it if you don't have any clue what Fantasia is and you don't care.

Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if Fascinating play about artists discussing their respective art and collaboration, reinterpretation and its place in a changing world.

Don't see it if Not much action - mostly conversation. But very accessible to us non-artists!

Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Thought-provoking

See it if Background story of the collaboration between Disney and Stravinsky, and their totally different visions of the "art."

Don't see it if You do not like 2-person, talky plays, with much of the time spent arguing about their differing views and expectations.

Absorbing, Clever, Ambitious, Intelligent, Refreshing

See it if you like 2 character plays with the subject matter based on reality; you remember Fantasia and want to know what Stravinsky thought about it

Don't see it if you don't enjoy wordy plays; you need action when you see a play

Intelligent, Masterful, Delightful, Informative, Great script/acting

See it if you want to hear more about two famous men, Disney and Stravinsky, and listen to different perspectives about art, music, meaning of life...

Don't see it if you don't like small theater spaces, prefer musicals or more action.

Also I found this show to be delightful, informative, and totally engaging.... Read more Read less

September 18th, 2017
"Whatever drama there may have been between these men in real life, none of it carries over in this Penguin Rep production...At times, 'Small World' has a certain amount of potential...But overall, the piece lacks the deep psychological underpinnings and tension to communicate both men's individu...
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September 21st, 2017
"'Small World' is an insightful and appealing play, one that will challenge your ideas about art in its different forms...This two-hander is an absorbing, entertaining, and informative show...This behind-the-scenes look at the work and attitudes of two renowned geniuses will captivate you from th...
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September 19th, 2017
"Brief, barbed, often very funny...A premise this slender could easily wear out its welcome, even with a running time of only 75 minutes, but Stroppel makes sure that both characters are never at a loss for a clever, pertinent comeback...Brancato's direction maintains the rat-a-tat pace and vigor...
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September 17th, 2017
"A lightweight yet often surprisingly perceptive comedy...It does remind us that both men had a dark side, something that deepens things beyond the earlier bantering tone...Even with its short running time, 'Small World' would benefit from some editing by dropping the after life section and a few...
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