Closed 1h 30m
Twelfth Night (The Public Mobile Unit)
East Village
83

Twelfth Night (The Public Mobile Unit) NYC Reviews and Tickets

83%
(47 Reviews)
Positive
96%
Mixed
0%
Negative
4%
Members say
Entertaining, Funny, Delightful, Clever, Great acting

About the Show

The Public Theater's Mobile Unit presents a stripped-down take on Shakespeare's gender-bending, heart-mending comedy in a new production reset in Florida in the mid-90s.

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Member Reviews (47)

90
Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining, Exquisite, Hilarious

See it if You enjoy Shakespeare done MASTERFULLY. A brilliant take on the story, with characters so funny and alive it was impossible not to go again.

Don't see it if You don't like your Shakespeare re-imagined for modern times. Or Shakespeare at all. Or wonderful actors portraying super fun characters.

83
Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Banal, Indulgent

See it if you'd roll w/a freewheeling Cliff's Notes version of Twelfth Night. The actors shine though this version's pared down in the wrong places.

Don't see it if you're a staunch Shakespeare traditionalist.

Critic Reviews (10)

April 28th, 2017

“This frantic staging does offer some amusements…But it also suffers the fate of many an outreach show produced by institutional theaters including the Public: It’s not as good as the usual fare…It’s a convoluted and ridiculous plot that demands clarity in performance but mostly doesn’t get it from this erratic production, whose pared-down script adds to the confusion…The lively Latin and house music is entertaining…But there is an overwhelming forced merriment in the pursuit of laughs.”
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May 3rd, 2017

“A funny and colorful freestyle riff on Shakespeare's romantic comedy…With the complicated plot compressed to an hour and a half, there's little time for subtext, but the company is obviously having a blast playing the comedy's broad strokes in a festive atmosphere of frozen drinks and poolside fun. It's a terrific intro to Shakespeare for kids and other first-timers.”
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May 9th, 2017

“A fast, funny production that is designed to let Shakespeare speak to modern audiences…The approach works because it is solidly grounded in the text, and because the words are so well spoken….A couple of staging bits go a little far over the top for my taste, but never mind: This festive production is both an engaging introduction to Shakespeare for the inexperienced and a thoroughly enjoyable updating of an old favorite for the initiated."
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April 27th, 2017

"Unrelieved, and unrelievable, madcap abandon, with each new scene and complication colliding with the one before it as though it's trying to outswim a shark. This robs the play of a lot of its elevated poetic nuance, and makes the fun almost entirely visceral...It works for what it is: an ultra-quick and dirty distillation...The play can be more textured than this incarnation, but...when you're basking in the beaming rays it delivers, chances are you won't find that much to complain about."
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May 1st, 2017

"Not only one of the best versions of this beloved play, but any of the Bard’s other works you’ll have to opportunity to see in your lifetime. It isn’t merely that this Caribbean-themed, laugh-a-second show is stylistically fun, but also because it perfectly captures the story’s complexities, nuances and gorgeous language, making the contemporary setting fit naturally with its 17th-century dialog...This production is astonishing in that it features one praise-worthy performance after another."
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May 2nd, 2017

“Although this production goes way over-the-top at times with its comic energy, the acting troupe really connects with the audience…What does come across is Shakespeare's vivid language…A few principals carry the play through to its moving denouement...The rest of the cast either overplay their comic roles or overdo their characters' quirkiness...Happily, 'Twelfth Night' is pretty much an unsinkable play. This production, though flawed, deserves a bravo."
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April 28th, 2017

"A devil-may-care production, hysterically funny, rapid-fire acting at a neck-breaking pace…One of Shakespeare’s best comedies...You’ll be delighted with gorgeous Cuban music and dance, costumes and chunks of iambic pentameter spoken in Spanish. ‘Twelfth Night’ has never been so sexy and raunchy and funny. Olivia played by Ceci Fernandez is Carol Burnett slapstick and Carole Lombard screwball charm all in one."
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May 1st, 2017

"A fantastic and high-energy production...The impeccable cast members rove throughout the space...The audience surrounds the 'stage' facing each other and house lights are never turned off, so there is a sense of community and shared experience. And what an experience it is. Boisterous, bawdy, uproarious and colorful, the Mobile Unit’s 'Twelfth Night' is Shakespeare at its most youthful...This production provides pure escapism for 90 minutes of sexy, 17th-century century fun."
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May 9th, 2017

"The nine-member cast is having a hoot from the moment the audience starts arriving...That Ali does such a raucous job of bringing 'Twelfth Night' so alive and kicking is creditable...But there is a drawback...He has Fernandez go for laughs from first to last, thereby bleaching Shakespeare’s multi-level composing of its more baleful layers...Still, a revival like Ali’s that gives so many patrons a pungent taste of Shakespeare’s abundant pluses has to be embraced."
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May 6th, 2017

“Subtlety is naturally lost in all the hijinks, but the high spirits come across loud and clear. The staging is simple…Here, little new is unearthed and certain elements are obscured but it’s an enjoyable romp with a game cast. I wasn’t thrilled with Ceci Fernandez’s campy take on Olivia but she grew on me…As dull as Cohen was in romantic mode, he was twice as fun as the live-wire Sir Andrew…I do question the cutting of director Ali.”
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