Fuzzy thebirds tablet 02
Brooklyn | 2h 0m | Already closed

The Birds (St Ann's Warehouse)

From 5 critic and 23 member reviews
Members say: Confusing, Disappointing, Entertaining, Clever, Ambitious

About the show

Following its world premiere at the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus and in Athens, Greece, this vibrant restaging of Aristophanes’ ancient classic brings two Athenians to the country of the birds.  More…

Originally performed in 414 BC, Aristophanes comedy tells the story of two middle-aged men who, fed up with their city and the gods who rule over it, ask the birds to build them a new utopia. 

Performed in Greek with English supertitles.

2h 0m | Already closed | St Ann's Warehouse (Brooklyn)


85
New York Magazine / Vulture

"Its audacious, celebratory silliness, its sheer irreverent vitality, actually feels more revolutionary, more slyly political and politically effective than 99 percent of the productions you’ve seen that have puffed up their chests and flailed their fists and hammered on seriously about Serious Things...The play is a festival; a heady, loopy, two-hour jamboree that’s kind of like a mental mosh pit...Have turned a nearly 2,500-year-old text into a jubilant full-throttle carnival of the senses." Full Review

85
Theater Pizzazz

“Nikos Karathanos’s wild revival of 'The Birds'...feels as fresh, as topical, and as timely as if it were written today...A phalanx of riotous, bare-breasted birds, costumed in colorful plumage...As Greek choruses go, you couldn’t find a more entertaining one...Karathanos’s stagecraft is a marvelous, creative synthesis of ancient and pop-culture. You sit in St. Ann’s auditorium, looking down at a spectacle whose primal, orgiastic energy transcends two millennia.” Full Review

80
Exeunt Magazine

“Infuses Aristophanes’ ancient texts with an energy that’s both present and timeless: in spite of the language barriers, the message is accessible...What’s disappointing was the ex-machina resolution...Nevertheless...a magnificent work of beauty...The cast’s evocative performances will resonate...An ambitious attack on the text...beautifully crafted piece of theatre...The importance of language becomes almost minimal as we absorb the story through its superb physical movements.” Full Review

65
The New York Times

"The greatest thrills and chills here come from watching the ways in which the show’s avian population resembles people from news footage caught up in the frenzy of a populist movement...Two uninterrupted hours of such fare can eventually wear on the nerves...Nonetheless, 'The Birds' offers sights and sounds you won’t catch anywhere else in this city...The first, full-throated example of the birdsong...It isn’t pretty, exactly, but it’s harsh and hypnotic, primal and ethereal at the same time." Full Review

50
Village Voice

"The adaptation has so defanged itself that it seems inert, despite two hours and ten minutes of constant choreography and insistent revelry...Lost in the relatively low gloom, it’s difficult to imagine this cloud-cuckoo-land is a paradise...Substituting movement and noise for argument and salience are certainly any theatermaker’s right, and many audience members seemed delighted to be invited to the party. But I kept peeping around for something to mean anything." Full Review


100
Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if One of the best plays I’ve ever seen. It’s an absolute must-see for anyone interested what theater could/should be. Also it's a wild party!

Don't see it if you prefer dusty broadway revivals

95
Ambitious, Riveting, Entertaining, Unlike anything i have seen before

See it if You are ready for a real adventure in theatrical interpretation of a classic full of energy, humor and strange insights.

Don't see it if Reading supertitles is not for you since this is in Greek

91
Funny, Clever, Must see, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if Classic theater. Wildly funny. Very creative.

Don't see it if There are subtitles...it’s in Greek!

85
Ambitious, Dizzying, Great acting, Confusing, Great singing

See it if if you want to see something refreshing, unusual interpretation of classic play and hear (modern) Greek!

Don't see it if you have issue with nudity, also if you don't want to see a 2 hours play w/n intermission.

79
Absorbing, Ambitious

See it if you're curious about an updated version of a Greek comedy; you want a show blending theater/dance/song that isn't exactly a musical

Don't see it if you're bothered by nudity or subtitles, you want a traditional production of this Aristophanes play

Also I really enjoyed the dance/movement aspects of the piece, particularly... Read more Read less

75
Delightful, Quirky, Entertaining

See it if Energetic, enthusiastic ,pretty over the top company of young actors. Great space, staging. If you liked the play hair, you will like this.

Don't see it if You expect to see the authentic old comedy of aristophanes and if you dont like a lot of nudity.

73
Ambitious, Quirky, Confusing, Entertaining, Silly, in a good way

See it if you enjoy alternative theater that is particularly creative. The staging of the birds is great.

Don't see it if you require a sensible and comprehensible narrative

71
Absorbing, Dizzying, Confusing

See it if You are so used to watching the super quick super titles. You enjoy satiric productions.

Don't see it if You don't like seeing a lot nudity and being hit by some toy guns.

71
Clever, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Entertaining

See it if you enjoy a play in a different language, and that is based on a Greek Classic.

Don't see it if you want to have some easy entertainment, and if you do not like seeing nudity on the stage.

Also Very interesting, but clocking in at two hours, it can seem a bit long... Read more Read less

70
Quirky, Indulgent, Confusing, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if you enjoy Greek language drama interpreted in a contemporary format. Many current references to our world today. The cast is exuberant .

Don't see it if you enjoy linear plays that seem to flow, The Birds seems to explode outwardly in all directions. Contains nudity and use of toy guns.

68
Clever, Enchanting, Indulgent, Confusing, Odd

See it if You like re-imagining of classic Greek work, inventive staging, or foreign language theater.

Don't see it if You want something with a more linear narrative or stronger plot.

63
Ambitious, Dizzying, Quirky, Confusing, Disappointing

See it if you can focus on the beauty of the Greek poetry in the midst of unnecessary exhibitionism and chaos. It is a comedy but this is more hostile

Don't see it if you are offended by gratuitous nudity and if you are looking for more structure and coherence

55
Confusing, Disappointing, Undecipherable

See it if you like non-narrative, non-linear theater with fantastical creatures

Don't see it if you expect a plot, a narrative arc or a comprehensible script

54
Confusing, Disappointing, Great staging

See it if you are interested in international productions, like movement-driven pieces, or like shows that fully utilize the given space

Don't see it if you have a hard time with subtitles or are opposed to nudity

Also There were some nice moments of theatre magic (the gigantic light-up g... Read more Read less

38
Indulgent, Disappointing, Slow, Cheap and ugly looking

See it if you would like to join the performers on stage for a (wet) scene or you want to see several women bare their breasts for no apparent reason.

Don't see it if you want to be reminded of the worst shows you've ever seen at The Flea and want to pay five times what those amateur-hour shows cost you

60
Banal, Confusing, Disappointing, Insipid, Overrated

See it if you're curious about this independent Greek theatrical group

Don't see it if you mind self-indulgence masquerading as profundity

Also In the absence of intermissions many audience members left as they cou... Read more Read less

96
During previews
Clever, Delightful, Adventurous, Slightly raunchy, Music is miraculous

See it if great music saves everything; you like a Shkspr in the Park approach to classics—less academic but uncovers all latent entertainment value

Don't see it if you strongly prefer uptown over downtown theater, illusionism; must understand everything; you don’t expect to see people acting like birds

Also Rocked my world. But could be excruciating to the next guy. I do think... Read more Read less

96
During previews
Delightful, Must see, Moving, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you want to see a pure sensational theatre. It does not move you by language, but it moves you by actions and sounds.

Don't see it if you are not a big fan of watching performance and subtitles at the same time.

76
During previews
Lively, Repetitive, Raucous, Diffuse, Dionysiac

See it if you are interested in or curious about ancient Greek comedy.

Don't see it if you prefer your comedy polite, or realistic, or drawing room, or coherent, or topical, or neat.

Also This production misses some opportunities, but I’m glad I saw it. Old ... Read more Read less

60
During previews
Entertaining, Fluffy

See it if You are happy to trade much of Aristophanes wit for a visual feast of dance, song and casual nudity.

Don't see it if You would prefer to indulge in the political satire and jabs at human behavior, and have the means to buy a good translation.

58
During previews
Confusing, Disappointing, Chaotic

See it if you are interested in modern versions of ancient Greek plays.

Don't see it if if you are not willing to see a chaotic/boring adaptation that mixes dance and hystrionic acting.

58
During previews
Disappointing, Messy, Ridiculous, Raucous, Buffoonish

See it if u speak Greek (2 hrs of it w/ English projected titles), are a fan Greek mythology, or r interested in an absurd hectic squawking lame mess

Don't see it if you are expecting a tight performance with a moral message based in mythology (like I was). It was like a provincial art school performance

44
During previews
Disappointing, Excruciating, Cliched, Insipid

See it if I can't tell anyone to see this, I was done after 20 minutes and wish I could crawl over everyone to leave.

Don't see it if It's felt like a bad show presented as La Mama from 1974.


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Cast & Creatives (26)