Already closed | 1h 30m | Brooklyn

17 Border Crossings

From 21 member  reviews
Members say: Clever, Absorbing, Great staging, Entertaining, Relevant

About the show

Part of the 2015 Next Wave Festival, this solo show features director, designer and raconteur Thaddeus Phillips as he takes a trip around the world through story, armed with a chair, a table, and a bar of lights. More…

The itinerary: a worse-for-wear Communist-era train traveling from Prague to Belgrade; the wheel well of a transatlantic jet to Heathrow; and 15 other border crossings recreated by theater director, designer, and raconteur Thaddeus Phillips. A chair, table, and bar of lights become the imagined settings for invasive body searches at Charles de Gaulle, ayahuasca experiments in the Amazon, KFC-smuggling in Palestine, and run-ins with Ace of Base on Croatian ferries in this engrossing look at the perplexing ins and outs of our fragile right of passage.

1h 30m | Already closed | BAM - Fishman Space (Brooklyn)

Member Reviews (21)


Clever, Absorbing, Great staging, Entertaining, Relevant
Avg Score

Relevant, Great acting, Ambitious, Clever, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy stories about our current immigration system and those of other countries in the recent past. You like performance art.

Don't see it if You don’t like one actor performances. You are wanting to see a stand up comedian, this is far from comedic.

Original, Intense, Great writing, Entertaining, Clever

See it if A one-man show by a very entertaining man. It details several of the border crossings he has made. Fascinating stuff.

Don't see it if If you don’t like one-man shows or have no interest in what goes on in the rest of the world.

Clever, Resonant, Relevant, Masterful, Ambitious

See it if This one-man show is nothing short of remarkable. Thaddeus Phillips paints a picture and recreates the borders he has crossed over time.

Don't see it if don't like solo shows, don't want your imagination to take you someplace else. Can't make quick transitions.

Also The energy expended in this show is frankly astonishing--and Phillip's... Read more Read less

Poorly crafted storyline, Indulgent, Disappointing

See it if performance appeals more than clear storytelling and messaging in a one person performance piece

Don't see it if you are impatient with pastiche approaches and time spent waiting for insights that enlighten and enliven

Boss and floss cross

See it if A dizzying world tour in ninety minutes.

Don't see it if You hate the minimalism of one man shows and their sets.

Also Tad Phillips is borderline genius in crafting and performing this play... Read more Read less

Thought-provoking, Entertaining, Witty, Funny

See it if you'd like a one-man comedy show with great props; if you travel a lot

Don't see it if You only like fully sketched out plays with complete story arch and a full cast. This is a very funny one-man show

Intense, Relevant, Intelligent, Great staging, Absorbing

See it if You care about being a global citizen, and don't mind a show that might overstate in the end.

Don't see it if you don't like one-person shows.

Refreshing, Funny, Clever

See it if you like to travel and have some experiences of it.

Don't see it if you don't like travel or one-man shows

Also This was a lot of fun with some minor slow parts. If you have done any... Read more Read less

Slow, Disappointing, Great staging

See it if you like solo performer shows. The staging is very creative and the lead does a good job of becoming multiple characters.

Don't see it if you have high expectations for a play that addresses border crossings. Some of the crossings are thought-provoking, others are just boring.

Profound, Great staging, Exquisite, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if even if you don't like one man shows. simple concept, exsquisite realization, profound relevance. The reviews don't do it justice.

Don't see it if you aren't prepared to listen.

Educational, eye opening, entertaining, Absorbing

See it if you like thinking about the world and what happens to those who are singled out.

Don't see it if you don't like one person shows.

Delightful, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You like a different evening in the theatre, expert staging and compelling storytelling and acting. it's out of the box.

Don't see it if You like traditional theatre with a plot.

Relevant, Absorbing

See it if You Enjoy a Solo performance built on personal interviews with disenfranchised members of society

Don't see it if You want a lighthearted theatrical experience

Refreshing, Quirky, Intelligent, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if You like great storytelling with a bit of political edge. NYTW has another winner

Don't see it if You are expecting a big stage production

Energetic!, Delightful, Clever, Absorbing

See it if like thought-provoking and clever theater. Mr. Phillips is fantastic and impressive. The play is well written, directed, designed, acted.

Don't see it if you don't like one-person shows.

Edgy, Ambitious, Great acting, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if intriguing approach to the meaning of border crossings, meaning not limited by space and time, hitting hot spots

Don't see it if you want a plot with character development or a musical or comedy

Great acting, Great staging, Entertaining, Clever

See it if You enjoy seeing other cultures through others' eyes, you enjoy imagining along with the actor(s)

Don't see it if You want a traditional linear story

Also Thaddeus Phillips takes on a great journey with stories of his travels... Read more Read less

Great staging, Clever, Absorbing

See it if Brilliantly staged with minimal props, Evocative incidents rather than story arc. Lightest political by incl 2 others' tough crossings

Don't see it if If you don't like monologuists or spare evocative productions. Or if you want a narrative that progresses clearly.

Great staging, Absorbing, Clever

See it if inventively staged & lit, well-performed monologue, not about travel but about crossing borders for fun / necessity.

Don't see it if You don't like one-person shows, flat (but interesting) writing, or lack of dramatic arc and conflict

Thought-provoking, Funny, Ambitious, Intelligent, Relevant

See it if You're interested in works that explore geopolitics in a humorous way.

Don't see it if You're not a fan of one man shows or don't like obvious political statements in theatre.

Quirky, Intense, Dizzying

See it if You like one-person performance art. While the performance has its moments it lacks a thematic thread or cohesive narrative.

Don't see it if You don't like one-person performance art. Also, the overwhelmingly poor lighting design made it nearly impossible to watch the show.

October 2nd, 2015
"The set is deceptively simple: just a table, a chair, a lamp. But the director, Tatiana Mallarino, has an agreeably inventive approach to staging. Those items are repurposed in a dozen different ways. If the staging compels, as do several of the tales, the text itself doesn’t. The storytelling i...
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November 17th, 2013
for a previous production "We armchair travelers participate in the discoveries that virtual travel affords. Even as Phillips’s fancy footwork throughout his rich space-and-time travel extravaganza entertains, we may learn something too, beyond the abuses of officialdom and the acquisition of some foreign words."
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July 18th, 2013
for a previous production "Thaddeus Phillips's brilliant piece, '17 Border Crossings,' is a series of monologues based on his own extensive travels. Some of these stories last only a few seconds and some are longer; some are funny, others frightening or sad. They carry implications that go to the heart of what it means to...
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July 25th, 2013
for a previous production "There are plenty of poetic moments...Phillips is a compassionate, gifted storyteller with a very fine ear for how people speak their truths. A riff by a Mexican immigrant on why he likes the world 'alien' is a thing of simple beauty."
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