Already closed | 1h 45m | Gramercy

TERRA FIRMA

From 91 member  reviews
Members say: Ambitious, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Slow, Disappointing

About the show

In a not-so-distant Beckettian future, years after The Big War, a tiny kingdom wrestles with the problems of running a nation, sparring with the concepts of what makes a citizen, a country, and a civilization. More…

From the show:

TERRA FIRMA is set in a not-so-distant Beckettian future–years after a conflict known as the Big War, in which a tiny kingdom wrestles with the problems of running a nation–and opposing notions of what makes a citizen, a country, and a civilization. The play is inspired by a real-life event and its aftermath: In 1960’s Britain, a retired WWII army major claimed an abandoned aircraft platform in international waters off the coast of Essex as his own sovereign nation, planted his flag, and coined a motto, E Mare Libertas! (From the Sea, Freedom!). TERRA FIRMA was originally a commission for the Royal Court Theatre, the premiere venue for new writing in the UK. This production is co-presented with Baruch Performing Arts Center. 


Member Reviews (91)

MEMBERS SAY:

Ambitious, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Slow, Disappointing

80
Thought-provoking, Quirky, Entertaining, Ambitious, Clever

See it if u'd like an unconventional comedy (think Beckett/Ionesco/Monty Python/Gilligan's Island mashup) about isolationism, nationalism & autocracy.

Don't see it if u haven't enjoyed the works of Bedlam, from which The COOP has largely been formed; u prefer ur politics unequivocal, not allegorical.

Also Terra Firma is astonishingly based (loosely, I presume!) on a real sto... Read more Read less

70
Indulgent, Slow, Ambitious, Great acting, Disappointing

See it if Production values & edgy acting - all top-notch - save this existential drama from calling an SOS A four star production for a two star play

Don't see it if This doomsday allegory starts out strong - Beckett overtones mixed w/a gallows humor But it attains its ideas quickly & then stalls at sea

83
Indulgent, Entertaining, Great ensemble work, Highly original, Quirky

See it if innovative, imaginative ensemble work excites you. The performers are magical together.

Don't see it if your willing suspension of disbelief isn't fully engaged. Not a lot of back story given.

79
Resonant, Great staging, Great writing, Intelligent, Ambitious

See it if A fledgling UK isle nation of slab and concrete in a sea of chaos under watery attack, forges a constitution to serve both cog and citizen.

Don't see it if Blasts on a well-built stage. "A nation under attack has the right to go on/A nation's ideals are only as pure as the souls of its citizens"

Also "All nations yearn for peace and the day that peace comes to stay"

83
Clever, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting

See it if You enjoy Gilligan's Island. You want to see a powerhouse cast of theater veterans (including Broadway) try to survive & build a new land.

Don't see it if You don't have earplugs, as there are several loud booms (which are explained later) that will startle; fireworks are very loud too. 1hr45.

Also Found this way more fun and involving than a Beckett play. Folding cha... Read more Read less

72
Quirky, Confusing, Great acting

See it if You enjoy seeing plays even though the story is confusing performed by good actors

Don't see it if You enjoy musicals and comedies

70
Great staging, Slow, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you are interested in interesting thoughts about what makes up - a nation, - a constitution, a citizen? Utopian but based on a true incident

Don't see it if you can not sit still for ~100 mins without an intermission. The play is a bit repetitious and could probably be shortened by 10 - 15 mins.

80
Smart, Thought-provoking, Quirky, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if Drew me in, kept me interested, made me guess how it would end.

Don't see it if One has to care about what is happening

87
Delightful, Thought-provoking, Great staging, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if You want to have some fun. It's laughable, interesting, full of actions. I would imagine what's like the end of the world may be from here.

Don't see it if You prefer something more serious, or dramatic.

Also Extraordinary stuffs. I don't know how they survived based on the pres... Read more Read less

78
Relevant, Intelligent, Funny, Delightful

See it if existential drama in the tradition of the plays of Bedlam, from which The COOP has spun off from

Don't see it if don't like theater of the absurd

80
Clever, Thought-provoking, Quirky, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if You like good acting and writing and are not bothered by absurdity. The show does a lot within the limitations of the narrative.

Don't see it if You seek resolutions or don’t care for existential themes.

72
Well-designed!, Slow, Relevant, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if you like a theatre of ideas with characters who are based on dialecticals, mostly men onstage, dystopian themes & some violence & absurdity.

Don't see it if you want character-based family drama or Naturalism - this is not that. I expected more Beckett/Absurdity, but this doesn't quite manage it.

92
Great writing, Great acting, Funny, Clever, Delightful

See it if you like quirky, well-written, smart, possibly end-of-the-world, absurdist plays

Don't see it if you don't like all of the above. But, really... this is so smart!

70
Thought-provoking, Slow, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if like plays with absurdist elements that present challenging themes.

Don't see it if you like straightforward realistic comedies and dramas.

77
Confusing, Great staging, Clever, Great acting, Thought-provoking

See it if Cutting edge theatre, so beautifully acted, however the play itself doesn’t quite bring it home with the allegory it seems to want to make

Don't see it if Absurdist or new plays

77
Thought-provoking, Intense, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if excellent dramatic acting based on a true but rather unbelievable story. Thought provoking commentary on today's political landscape

Don't see it if You are not into heavy drama and loud noises (simulated explosions). If musicals and light comedy are your thing this is not your show.

70
Disappointing, Great acting, Confusing

See it if You like surreal shows that deal in metaphors for life.

Don't see it if You were looking for a story drawn from real life.

70
Edgy, Quirky, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Entertaining

See it if ...you want to support a wonderful new theatre company who is doing engaging and stimulating work!

Don't see it if ...you don't want to be reminded of the political climate we live in and face the reality out there!

71
Thought-provoking, Slow, Great acting, Clever

See it if you love a new, exciting theatre company.

Don't see it if You don't love a Beckett Play.

82
Relevant, Great staging, Funny, Entertaining, Clever

See it if you appreciate absurdist theater or if you are considering starting your own country

Don't see it if you have a fear of water or open spaces

Also remarkable set and the cast was excellent.

97
Profound, Relevant, Intelligent, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you love Beckett, Albee and/or Ionesco.

Don't see it if You have a hard time sitting for longer than 90 minutes (the show is about 100 minutes long with no intermission).

100
Funny, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you love beautiful, strange, funny, poetic, wonderfully original writing that makes you think, imagine and laugh, be moved and afraid.

Don't see it if you have no desire to see proper theater!

Also The performances are across the board wonderful, the set is magnificen... Read more Read less

84
Slow, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great singing, Absorbing

See it if See it if you wish to see a reflection of the world in which we live today.

Don't see it if Don't see it if you do not care about art, theatre, the world as it is headed.

During previews
79
Strong acting, Thought-provoking, Absurdist, Clever, Ambitious

See it if you like absurdist works th expose RL absurdities. Why have royalty? What makes a nation, a fulfilling life? Loosely based on true story.

Don't see it if you want a consistent approach. Script is clever but confusing, repetitive, long. Mostly strg ensemble. Gr set/lighting/theater space.

Also An impressive first offering fr The Coop. Sophisticated, intelligent, ... Read more Read less

During previews
78
Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Quirky, Absorbing, Relevant

See it if You want a real thinker. A futuristic farcical dystopian look at our present political and social situations. Interesting set. Good acting.

Don't see it if You don’t want to think...a lot. Not sure my interpretation is even correct...but it’s what I got...so...it’s correct for me.

Also This was good. I can’t say it was great because I’m not even sure I go... Read more Read less


October 10th, 2019
"In ‘Terra Firma,’ a Wee Wet Country on the Brink: This inaugural offering from the Coop squeezes whimsy, character comedy and ecological allegory into one crowded play."
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October 10th, 2019
"The inaugural production of the COOP, of which Nichols is the artistic director, 'Terra Firma' achieves only some of the many things it wants to."
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October 10th, 2019
"'Terra Firma' Imagines a Tiny Country Surviving the Rising Waters: Barbara Hammond's world-premiere play marks the dawning of the Coop, a new off-Broadway theater company."
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October 15th, 2019
"Barbara Hammond's 'TERRA FIRMA' Takes It's Cue From A Quirky Bit of International Politics"
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Cast & Creatives (3)