See it if NY Deaf Theatre brings a fascinating & intelligent spin to Harrison's "back to the 50's" drama Hard working cast (esp Corrigan's Dean) shine
Don't see it if Harrison doesn't quite resolve the questions that drama raises but the points made are solid Lengthy set-up slows story but actors prevail
See it if You appreciate Deaf representation and productions involving ASL. You enjoy thinking about socio-political themes.
Don't see it if You want to be wowed by the interesting themes. These were less resonant than they could have been.
"'Maple & Vine' is hilarious and uncanny in inventing forms of oppression, which the characters engage in willingly, even enthusiastically...This ASL production of 'Maple & Vine' not only makes the play accessible for a broader range of audiences, but also creates additional layers of meaning by using different languages. It is not merely a translation, but a successful experiment in building an intricate Rubik’s cube, which I keep spinning in my head many days after the show."
“A sharp, 90-minute social satire desperate to reveal itself...This particular production is also about how we communicate and how we stay silent...ASL, captioning and voiced dialog are all integrated here, a welcoming scenario for deaf theater-goers and an eye-opening experience for hearing members of the audience...Film director Dameron has a field day exploring her options of communicating to the audience...Dameron’s cinematic eye also accounts for a strong opening moment.”
“In the revival...the actors and the audience enter the world of the deaf...A more complicated world, but also an intriguing one...There are some thought-provoking moments about the nature of language and communication...The playwright hasn’t fully worked out all the details in the world he conjures up...nor created very deep characters...But the point is to explore why people are nostalgic for an era with fewer choices...'Maple and Vine' has become shockingly more timely."
“A thoughtful, accessible production...Only hints at the mid-century vibrancy that gives the era much of its nostalgic allure...Still, the production offers a quiet, complex view into this nostalgic world through its strong performances and Harrison’s thoughtful writing. Though...slightly too long at three hours, it offers a complex view of the past and how we relate to it that will captivate both deaf and hearing audiences alike."
“A timely piece...Dameron’s direction allows for a goofy rhythm that serves the humor and honors the camp urgency called for by the narrative...Supertitles expertly guide the hearing audience through a play performed entirely in American Sign Language...Seeing, or rather, hearing this play, one is surprised by how they see themselves in its text. The specificity is effectively universal, in the age-old paradox, and the ritual is only more powerful enacted through ASL.”