Stupid Fu**ing Bird
Closed 2h 15m
Stupid Fu**ing Bird

Stupid Fu**ing Bird NYC Reviews and Tickets

(66 Reviews)
Members say
Clever, Great acting, Entertaining, Ambitious, Edgy

About the Show

The New York premiere of Aaron Posner's "sort of" adaptation of Anton Chekhov's classic 'The Seagull.'

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Member Reviews (66)

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Clever, Ambitious, Intelligent, Refreshing, Entertaining

See it if you want to see a refreshingly original and thought-provoking interpretation of Chekhov's The Seagull.

Don't see it if you are a traditionalist who prefers conventional adaptations of classic plays.

Ambitious, Clever, Original, Quirky, Absorbing

See it if you like quirky humor, enjoy the fourth wall broken, think Chekhov could use a good ribbing, care for a modern take-off on The Seagull

Don't see it if you regard Chekhov as a master who cannot be violated, don't like the f-word which is used a lot, don't like actors talking to audience

Raw, Resonant, Messy, Exciting, Great writing

See it if you want to see the artifice of everyday life stripped away and raw emotions on display.

Don't see it if an experimental deconstruction of a play doesn't interest you.

Great writing, Great acting, Edgy, Intense, Original

See it if An fantastic and surprising retelling of Chekov's The Seagull. Wonderfully acted by all. Clever set design.

Don't see it if You don't like long shows. You want to see a traditional play. This is NOT The Seagull although it is based on it.

Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Must see, Original

See it if You are tired of seeing dreary Chekov plays performed as they were written. Watch great actors perform a very creative play. Best of Pearl

Don't see it if You are offended by nudity and sexual scenes You only want to see the classics performed as they were written. You have no imagination.

Thought-provoking, Riveting, Must see, Funny, Intelligent

See it if you have good taste and want to see a play with great acting, compelling storytelling, and leave the theatre pondering some of the issues.

Don't see it if you are dismissive of modernizations of classic plays, are offended by foul language and gun violence, don't like direct address to audience

Clever, Original, Edgy

See it if You like experimental theater and unusual stories and characters.

Don't see it if You do not like angst and enjoy traditional sequential happy stories.

Quirky, Edgy, Ambitious, Great acting

See it if You like an open and fluid play.

Don't see it if You don’t like audience participation.

Critic Reviews (16)

The New York Times
March 28th, 2016

"A raw, theatrically audacious version of this Chekhov classic presented in a viscerally well-acted production…Exploding the wistful, melancholy atmosphere that pervades so many Chekhov productions, Mr. Posner’s version reminds us that Chekhov was a relentless truth teller...Mr. Posner’s play is at its most trenchant and funny when it doesn’t just collapse the distance between Chekhov and today, but also encourages us to forget Chekhov entirely."
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The Wall Street Journal
March 31st, 2016

"I was—rather to my surprise—impressed...Most of 'Stupid Fu**ing Bird' is at once bluntly funny and unnervingly bleak...Davis McCallum has given 'Stupid Fu**ing Bird' a lively staging that underlines the comedy without undercutting the emotion, and everyone in the cast is adept at balancing laughter and anguish...Posner’s play is derivative by definition, but it’s more than just a commentary on Chekhov, and McCallum’s production lifts it far above the common run."
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Lighting & Sound America
April 1st, 2016

"A playwright who honors a classic by way of turning it upside down...Without any evident strain, Posner finds a modern expression for a great many of Chekhov's devices and ideas...Under Davis McCallum's direction, the flow of events, from farce to heartbreak to resignation and back again, is entirely natural, with two or more tones taking up residence on stage at the same moment...Another example of how a playwright takes borrowed materials and deftly makes them his own."
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March 31st, 2016

"Aaron Posner’s brilliant, Americanized, updated and deconstructed 'sort of' adaptation of Chekhov’s 'The Seagull'...restores the punch that this play must have had for its original audience as well as making it entirely and successfully contemporary...Davis McCallum has interpreted the new text with some debatable choices. However, this does not keep the play from being a brilliant example of meta-theater."
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Theatre is Easy
March 30th, 2016

"Tremendous work by a skilled acting ensemble, smart designers, and the keen, firm grip of director Davis McCallum; 'Stupid Fucking Bird' is good fun...Posner has taken all the complex characters, the brilliant monologues, the rich symbolism, and raised the bar for contemporary America. It’s angry, honest, smart, sensitive, and deeply moving...McCallum never lets go of what could be a confusing mess, comfortably finding an important tone in this ensemble of gifted makers."
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Theater Pizzazz
March 29th, 2016

"Conrad, dazzlingly portrayed by Christopher Sears, emits enough electricity to light up all of Manhattan…Bianca Amato lights up the sky as Emma Arkadina, the famous actress...'Stupid Fu**ing Bird' has been skillfully and effectively directed by Davis McCallum, who’s brought all the innovation of the concept to fruition…The one weakness of this presentation is Trigorin who comes off as a cypher...This is a stunning production."
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March 28th, 2016

"A devilishly amusing riff…The Pearl is fortunate to have director Davis McCallum on board to help the actors make this radically new and original adaptation work as smartly and enjoyably as it does...Those familiar with 'The Seagull' are more likely to fully appreciate the way this adaptation has captured so much, and yet comes off as a completely original and hilarious entertainment."
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Front Row Center
March 29th, 2016

"Director Davis McCallum wrangles all of the manic elements of an over-the-top script with the skill of Ben Hur at his chariot. So much could spin wildly out of control and yet it does not…The acting is excellent, particularly the bravura performance of Sears...He is at times overwhelmingly manic, but that is perhaps unavoidable, given the relentless motion of the writing...Trigorin has flashes of steeliness and lust, but in the end I was not convinced of his casting."
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Stage Buddy
March 29th, 2016

"A towering achievement that challenges the notion of theatrical form…So raw and free of self-consciousness, that it almost feels improvised...The way in which the actors and brilliant crew play with the form is astonishing...A single visit to The Pearl Theatre might be insufficient to take in all of its richness. For a show to be so generous in its sharing of intellectual ponderings, while providing undeniable entertainment is truly a strange, beautiful thing to behold."
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March 28th, 2016

"An overwrought case on the state of relationships, romance, angst, and the thing we call the theatre…Whatever goes awry is not the fault of the splendid cast or the efforts of director Davis McCallum. The seven cast members throw themselves headlong into the conflicts of their characters and their engaging performances drive the plot successfully…Meta-theatrics become mostly the-same-as-usual in 'Bird'....Where is the risk here? The fresh approach to theatre? The innovation?"
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Theatre's Leiter Side
March 29th, 2016

"Posner’s 'sort of' adaptation is a deconstruction that reduces Chekhov’s cast from 14 to seven, revises their names, highlights only their most salient features, chops out much of the plot, and adds a lot of new stuff. Much of the time it seems he's replaced Chekhov's text with its subtext, a reductionist strategy that doesn't always work. The players...often struggle to find the proper tone for embodying both their characters and themselves as the actors playing those characters."
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March 29th, 2016

"Splendidly acted and thoroughly engaging…Truly a 'Seagull' for our time. The playwright translates Chekhov’s themes for modern audiences in this self-styled 'sort of' adaptation better than anyone else writing for the theater today...'Stupid Fucking Bird' does what all great adaptations should do; it honors the original while bringing something new to the table. Kudos to all involved in this masterful production, from the fine cast, to director Davis McCallum."
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March 29th, 2016

"'Stupid Fu**ing Bird' straddles genres like a hotheaded bull rider. It takes a little time to kick in, time during which you may wonder to what self-indulgent turmoil you’ve bought tickets. At some insidious point, however, there’s a gotcha! moment and you start having a very good time. It could be edited, but take the ride. Much of this sprawling brouhaha is smart, poignant, or astringently funny. Playwright Aaron Posner’s got his mojo on. Direction by Davis McCallum is inspired."
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The Huffington Post
April 1st, 2016

"Written by Posner, the play captures Conrad’s familial and artistic frustration and torment, as well as his drive to create a new art form, a key Chekhovian concern. Conrad makes cogent points about the state of current media. And yes, he feels compelled to kill a seagull. Posner, like Chekhov, explores theater’s relevance. Plus, he follows the classic’s trajectory. It’s an interesting effort. But the feverish pitch means there is more attention paid to rants than revelation."
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Show Showdown
March 28th, 2016

"Aaron Posner's 21st-century riff/recreation of 'The Seagull,' is well-directed, well-acted, well-designed, and a great deal of fun. Its meta approach, with actors speaking directly to the audience, silly songs, and a fresh point of view, brings energy to the familiar story...But beside entertainment--which is, of course, nothing to sneeze at--'Stupid Fucking Bird' offers little...It's a light and amiable romp, which is also nothing the sneeze at. It just seems to want to be more."
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As Her World Turns
April 12th, 2016

"'Stupid Fu**ing Bird' is among my favorite theater-going experiences of the past month. It uses Brechtian distancing effects superbly—direct address, musical interludes, some audience interaction...Playwright Aaron Posner’s take on this classic is bold, original, and in-your-face. It pulses with an undeniable current that answers Conrad’s non-rhetorical question: yes, theater can still bring originality and excitement."
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