Already closed | 1h 15m | East Village

A Hunger Artist

From 25 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Clever, Absorbing, Edgy, Ambitious

About the show

The Tank and Sinking Ship present this new solo adaptation of Franz Kafka's tragicomic tale about the only person who remembers a very peculiar artist. More…

A man sits alone in a cage, starving himself for your entertainment. Once cheered by thousands, the Hunger Artist is now forgotten by everyone except his one-time manager. What begins as a simple nostalgic story transforms into an inventive trip into the nature of memory, art, performance, and spectatorship. Actor, puppeteer, and Sinking Ship co-artistic director Jonathan Levin stars.

1h 15m | Already closed | Connelly Theatre (East Village)

Member Reviews (25)

MEMBERS SAY:

Great acting, Clever, Absorbing, Edgy, Ambitious
86
Avg Score

79
Wild, Wacky, Woebegone, Witty, Wonderful

See it if you like weird Fringe prodns. Ingenious staging, costumes, props, lights, sound. Strange story fr Kafka w/many interpretns. Clever/moving.

Don't see it if you're impatient. 1st part drags! Meaning's unclear. Aud particpn. Levin's very thin;I'm worried. Fascinating, but friend dozed. Not for all

81
Profound, Masterful, Great staging, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if A great not seen very often kafka body of work that focuses on one individual and his life. Great acting, enjoyable show.

Don't see it if If you dont like shows like private Peaceful that deal with dispear.

93
Resonant, Great acting, Creative, Profound, Edgy

See it if Intense solo performance that goes in deep, unexpected directions. Entertaining veneer falls, and reveals truths about what keeps us alive.

Don't see it if You don’t want to see a visceral show about a man with an eating disorder in 1900. But it is about a lot more. Some audience participation.

88
Absorbing, Edgy, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if creative solo performance excites you. Best solo piece I have seen! Uses a variety of techniques and creates convincing alternate characters

Don't see it if you are disturbed by issues related to starvation and obsessive disorders.

95
Clever, Enchanting, Great acting, Great staging, Great design

See it if you search out the best-of-fringe fare; you like really well-conceived, well-produced solo gems, Kafka, or enjoyed Gelb’s The Black Crook

Don't see it if you avoid one-man shows and irony

Also *Revival happening Jan 6-18, 2020... Read more Read less

85
Masterful, Edgy, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if The most unusual one man show I have ever seen. Jon Levin is all over the place and at times, so is the audience. Weird to say the least.

Don't see it if If you don't like solo shows or if you need a linear play, this will not be for you,

88
Delightful, Clever, Enchanting, Masterful, Resonant

See it if Highly evocative of 1930's German expressionist cinema.

Don't see it if You want a straightforward anything

88
Absorbing, Clever, Ambitious, Great acting, Masterful

See it if you want to see an absolutely amazing, masterful performance and amazing inventiveness. Really wonderful stuff, if a little long.

Don't see it if You want a linear plot line or don't like puppetry and one-person shows. But even if you don't think it is your kind of show, give it a try.

95
Clever, Delightful, Absorbing

See it if amazing visuals achieved by remarkably modest setup. Exquisite and varied acting that never feels like a typical solo show. Quite charming!

Don't see it if There is some audience participation that worked out fairly well when I attended but YMMV.

98
Clever, Disturbing, Exquisite, Delightful, Dizzying

See it if you love highly-theatrical, hilarious, unexpected shows that take you by surprise and hold your attention. Truly magical, terrifying.

Don't see it if you are sensitive to or triggered by ideas or plays containing themes of starvation or depictions of extreme thinness.

85
Great acting, Masterful, Profound

See it if you like something out of the ordinary.

Don't see it if You really don't like 1 man shows. ( I usually don't like them, but this was good!) But I wouldn't bring kids.

Also When it first started, I thought I wasn't going to like it. Accent was... Read more Read less

98
Absorbing, Funny, Great acting

See it if ...you like ambitious, thought-provoking one-man shows with great production values.

Don't see it if ...you don't. (But see it anyway, and your mind might be changed!)

Also Kudos to all involved for taking an allegorical Kafka short story and ... Read more Read less

95
Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Quirky, Edgy

See it if You like theatre that strays from the norm; something different that you don't see often, if ever.

Don't see it if You don't like shows that are outside your comfort zone, or if eating disorders are a trigger for you emotionally.

85
Edgy, Clever

See it if If you like strange one man shows based on classic literature. Performer was talented. Show crept up on you

Don't see it if If you are easily bored and/or have short attention spoan

100
Absorbing, Great acting, Resonant

See it if You enjoy physical theater and inventive storytelling

Don't see it if You don't like adaptations

88
Clever, Masterful, Quirky, Refreshing, Experiential

See it if you are looking for a show that fights to break the mold. A meditation on being an artist for one's self.

Don't see it if you'd rather classic playwriting form. Also if you can't really get behind expressionism, bare intimate theatre, and anxious experiences.

Also I love finding theatre that makes you aware of the ephemeral experienc... Read more Read less

49
Confusing, Dizzying, Edgy, Thought-provoking, Masterful

See it if You like weird shit

Don't see it if You get confused easy

100
Thought-provoking, Funny, Entertaining, Absorbing, Clever

See it if See it if you like the story and are ready to be immersed in it viewing it as a spectator and seeing the artist’s perspective as well.

Don't see it if If you don’t like quick paced, thought provoking shows don’t see it ;)

90
Profound, Thought-provoking, Great acting

See it if you like old-school vaudeville with a patina of existential dread, and are into physical proficiency and unusual puppetry.

Don't see it if you like fast-moving, plot-heavy theater or are put off by physical extremity.

70
Quirky, Great acting, Funny, Disappointing, Indulgent

See it if You're younger than I am

Don't see it if Quirky isn't enough for you

During previews
73
Great acting, Slow, Resonant, Ambitious, Quirky

See it if You appreciate physical acting, clowning, puppetry & performance art. You want an unique theatrical experience.

Don't see it if You don't like clowning or a story that's told mainly by physical acting. You dislike audience participation.

During previews
69
Ambitious

See it if A brave and ambitious attempt to bring a complicated short story to the stage

Don't see it if You need fully developed theatre with a point of view

During previews
87
Absorbing, Clever, Intelligent, Edgy, Thought-provoking

See it if you are able to appreciate simple but brilliant means of taking a profound Kafka novella and creating a moving & unique theatrical experiece

Don't see it if it would take big budget devices to induce you to contemplate the exploitation underlying "entertainment"; you dislike serious theater.

Also One of the best pieces I've seen recently, using many theatrical devic... Read more Read less

During previews
70
Clever, Great staging, Ambitious, Fluffy, Edgy

See it if Great costumes, sound, lighting; packed with a variety of performance techniques (puppetry, shadow puppetry, pantomime, immersive theater)

Don't see it if You prefer big budget productions; first half could use more focus, but second half retelling artist's decline was absolutely absorbing

During previews
94
Ambitious, Great staging, Masterful, Must see, Intelligent

See it if You want to be constantly surprised and delighted... you want to see a superb actor in an expertly written and directed show.

Don't see it if You don't want to see something new.

Also This show works on so many levels: large and small, light and dark, th... Read more Read less


January 10th, 2020
"Has transformed Kafka's disturbing story into a showcase for all manner of visually stunning, old-fashioned theatrics….seems content to focus on creating the bleak, creepy atmosphere without offering a clear point of view as to what Kafka was trying to say."
read more
June 9th, 2017
for a previous production “Mr. Levin is an easy raconteur, and he holds the audience in the palm of his hand in this early section of the play. But then comes an audience-participation scene, and the spell shatters…This is a 'Hunger Artist' of deliberately shifting moods, and its early humor is largely subsumed in the dar...
read more
June 7th, 2017
for a previous production "It’s hard to come away from the story unscarred. But at the Connelly Theater, where the physical-theater company Sinking Ship is presenting a surprisingly lovable version of it, any scarring is light. Josh Luxenberg’s sweetly drawn bouffon adaptation of Kafka’s parable is full of jokes and sudde...
read more
June 8th, 2017
for a previous production "So delightful and original is this trio's approach that I don't want to spoil it for you; safe to say that 'A Hunger Artist' begins as a riotous vaudeville and darkens by degrees as the title character descends into melancholy and squalor...One of the eerier offerings to be found on a New York s...
read more

Related content


Cast & Creatives (5)