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Brooklyn | 1h 0m | Already closed

Sea of Common Catastrophe

From 5 critic and 13 member reviews
Members say: Confusing, Disappointing, Ambitious, Enchanting, Excruciating

About the show

In this new drama, when a compelling stranger arrives in a tiny seaside town and initiates radical changes to the community, three long-time residents begin to lose their sense of home.  More…

Dramatic lighting and video, live music, and innovative set design create a swiftly changing landscape of upscale living and chic restaurants that suddenly transforms into a magical sunken world. Inspired by a passage from Gabriel Garçía Márquez’s novella 'Sea of Lost Time' — a town drowns on a Sunday afternoon but persists, submerged, in its daily life, as if the deluge had never occurred — 'Sea of Common Catastrophe' challenges its audiences and its artists to consider the exploitations and the opportunities inherent in profound shifts of urban communities.

1h 0m | Already closed | Irondale Center (Brooklyn)


90
Berkshire Fine Arts

"Immersion theater at its best...We never worry about the meaning of what is happening before our eyes or hugging our ears. Instead we are swept along...Becker often works with the same artists, and the comforts of collaboration are clearly felt...'Sea of Common Catastrophe' offers the pleasure of single vision, Jeff Becker’s inspired by Marquez. The surprise of the unfamiliar in two actors and chorus add to the moving mix...This show is well worth the trip.” Full Review

85
The Theatre Times

“A vivid, experimental production...The text itself is solid and effective yet there is a decided lack of realistic dialogue...Thankfully, ‘Sea’ delivers on various fronts, including solid acting, lovely songs...and nuanced blocking. Were the show merely a display of visual dexterity, it would be memorable...A dynamic evening of non-traditional theater festooned with rich imagery sure to delight the sophisticated theatergoer." Full Review

85
Wanderlust ATLANTA

for a previous production “A beautiful performance piece that moves the mind and heart. It shows not just the horror that so many who were affected by Hurricane Katrina, but a vast array of emotions—and lack of emotions—the natural disaster wrought on New Orleans...The cast's performance and symphonic movement is outstanding. There was one cast member who I was most moved by...Shattuck, who plays Tobias...Every look, every turn, every nuance is tethered to your own heart." Full Review

75
Best of New Orleans (Gambit)

for a previous production “An ensemble-generated show...An abstract, figurative work about New Orleans and some of its inhabitants...Performances are assured, and the show is polished...The piece has emotionally resonant moments about soul searching and perseverance. Some scenes seem to be about setting a mood more than telling a story, and the piece can feel too introverted, as in some longer dance scenes and songs. The show is often poetic but also at times elusive.” Full Review

70
BurnAway

for a previous production “As a work of theater, ‘Sea of Common Catastrophe’ might disappoint. There’s no clear plot. The characters interact through song and movement, but not through dialogue. All of this, though, is intentional...It’s a whimsical performance that offers a poetic and sometimes absurd reflection on how to handle what we consider catastrophes...The show is a timely reminder that imagination and collaboration are the best responses." Full Review


90
Beautiful, Epic, Unusual, Great staging, Enthralling

See it if you're a risk-taker 'cause this scrappy multimedia dance-theater piece has magic in store for people willing to take an unconventional ride.

Don't see it if you grow impatient easily. This imagistic show starts off as pretty strange but culminates as something many-layered and unexpectedly deep.

76
Clever, Inventive, Quirky, Confusing, Great staging

See it if ...themes involving Home interest you. Imaginative theatre-dance hybrid; smart yet simple set, projections. Innovative. Beautiful singing

Don't see it if ..you only like traditional plays. Confusing. The gentrification theme did not become clear to me until halfway through.

75
Ambitious, Enchanting, Quirky, Refreshing, Great singing

See it if You want to see something different , very creative staging and props. Not sure what exactly the message is but it's not bad to watch

Don't see it if You simply are looking for thrills or excitement.

73
Ambitious, Quirky, Confusing, Visually interesting

See it if You like interesting and unusual visual experiences and don't mind enigmatic characters and an unclear plot.

Don't see it if You can't live without AC or a linear plot. I had to read the notes to understand the point of the show, but I still found it enjoyable.

70
Clever, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if you want to see a great attempt at something a bit different. The effort is there. Great restaurants in the area.

Don't see it if Something doesn't quite make it for the effort involved. .. Maybe the limited A/C at Irondale was a factor on a quite warm night???

70
Ambitious

See it if you enjoy free-form structure and inventive scenic/lighting design

Don't see it if you require a linear narrative or polished technical elements

Also This piece has some really stunning ideas and images inside it, but it... Read more Read less

63
Confusing, Incoherent, Conceptual, Potential, Multi-genre

See it if you like conceptual multi-media visual experiences with an interesting use of sets and sound. Parts of it are visually interesting.

Don't see it if you want to understand the point of the piece. It was hard to grasp the connections between the scenes. I felt a bit lost.

60
Absorbing, Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Disappointing

See it if u like impressionistic music and dance drama. Not much is spelled out, so you have to dig for meaning. But that can be fun for some.

Don't see it if You're looking for a straight-forward drama. Even as far as dance/opera/song cycles go, this piece really makes you work for understanding.

48
Confusing, Disappointing, Excruciating, Slow

See it if You enjoy abstract theater in an interesting but unairconditiined venue. No plot, little dialogue, some good singing, amateurish dancing

Don't see it if You expect a story, plot or even loosely based connection to Marquez novella. I had no idea what I was watching.

46
Confusing, Disappointing, Unique

See it if You don't mind not having any idea what is going on in a show.

Don't see it if You like a story or at least a good execution of aniet abstract piece

Also There are abstract pieces that I like, but apart from the fact that I ... Read more Read less

45
Confusing, Disappointing, Excruciating, Slow, Uncomfortable

See it if You like abstract concepts, dancing, and unique staging with a projector. You like metaphors.

Don't see it if You like plot. You want to hear the actors. You don't want to be excruciatingly hot the entire time. You have something better to do.

36
Enchanting, Disappointing, Excruciating

See it if You have a friend in the cast. You want to see a handful of pretty images.

Don't see it if You like strong direction. You like understanding the words spoken. You want a story or a point. You don't want to fan yourself for an hour.

Also No AC in playing space or lobby. Not a very accessible theatre. House ... Read more Read less

100
During previews
Ambitious, Clever, Edgy, Enchanting, Great staging

See it if Its a fever-pitched performance art musical. Its a play that would be in a Wes Anderson film.

Don't see it if Its not linear. Its not traditional storytelling.


Cast & Creatives (13)