Following their sold-out run at the 2016 BAM Next Wave Festival, The Civilians' playful and idiosyncratic take on the classical trip to the land of the dead comes to 59E59. More…
Drawing on The Civilians' multi-year exploration and myriad conversations with shamans, morticians, and hospice workers, two actors portray a constellation of quirky characters to dive headlong into the anxieties and mysteries of mortality. This play takes the idea of the recorded interview and pushes it into surprising (and personal) new places.
See it if you like experimental theater, or are deeply interested in how societies & individuals confront death.
Don't see it if you have little appetite for experiment in the theater, or if looking at death makes you squeamish.
See it if you want to see some excellent projections designed by Tal Yarden.
Don't see it if you enjoy plays with character development, an arc, and a plot. Don't go if you feel tired—the slow pacing will be sleep inducing.
See it if you want a play about mortality based on real interviews - embalmer, philosopher, woman with cancer, someone who lost friends to Aids
Don't see it if the two actors act out the roles of the various interviewees with varying degrees of success - more in the very beginning and the rest drags
See it if You are a Civilian completist. A new slant on their well researched works, this one is a bit sleepy (or I was) in its investigation of death
Don't see it if You want a play, not a folksy report on views of death, passing over, and whether there is something after.
See it if You like workshop style musings on death and dying with some clever stage effects
Don't see it if You want profound insight or a developed story or characters
See it if You want to see two very good actors handle complex and thought-provoking questions of death and afterlife.
Don't see it if You don't want to see a show that is too long for the amount it has to say.
See it if you want to see superb actors who take on more than one role.
Don't see it if you are looking for insights on death. You won't find that in this play.
See it if for a meditation on mortality told through several stories
Don't see it if you are looking for a more profound experience; it just covers the surface
See it if You’d like to confront your death anxiety and like documentary style or intellectualized plays
Don't see it if You need a story, an emotional connection with the characters and are avoidant of thinking about death
See it if You want to see something unusual and ambitious but ultimately not particularly interesting or well done.
Don't see it if I don’t think anyone should bother seeing this.
See it if you like shows that look at death and near-death.
Don't see it if you want a lot of action and entertainment. It gets a bit lost in thought at some points.
See it if You like innovative staging and good acting, regardless of content.
Don't see it if you won't spend 2 hours (no intermission) with 2 boring persons and phrases like "existential angst" and "fear of death is fear of life".
See it if Great acting and use of voice. Creative use of technology. Thoughtful portions
Don't see it if You are put off by unpleasant descriptions of accidents or embalming; Good ideas repeated more than necessary
See it if You're looking to get in out of the rain and your dentist is booked.
Don't see it if You enjoy well-written, well-directed and well-acted plays (though I feel sorry for the actors who signed up for this mess).