Already closed | 2h 35m | Brooklyn

The Life of Galileo

From 23 member  reviews
Members say: Ambitious, Clever, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great acting

About the show

Irondale Ensemble presents a new staging of Bertolt Brecht's drama about the legendary astronomer and physicist and his battle between his scientific principles and the Catholic Church. More…

"Galileo" follows Galileo as he worked to prove the Copernican theory that the sun, not the earth, is the center of the universe. Galileo’s findings and claims challenged the Catholic Church’s omnipotent religious rule. Accused of heresy and brought to trial, Galileo forcefully recanted his findings and was confined to house arrest for the rest of his life, forbidden to continue to write further about a moving earth or a stationary sun. The adaptation also showcases a new political system coming into power and the extreme intellectual conflict experienced by technology and information.

2h 35m | Already closed | Irondale Center (Brooklyn)

Member Reviews (23)


Ambitious, Clever, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great acting
Avg Score

Resonant, Relevant, Profound, Intelligent, Slow

See it if A very well acted story good acting. Scientist vs religion and the conflicr was interesting to watch.

Don't see it if Very, very long. First act about hour and a half. If you want a lighter show, a comedy ect.

Thoughtful, Probative, Contemporary, Enjoyable, Faithful in its fashion

See it if you are a Brechtian who understands that fidelity to Brecht means probing his work for what it has to say to a contemporary audience.

Don't see it if you either don't like Brecht or only like Brecht as he was written.

Also I found Irondale’s production of Bertolt Brecht’s “THE LIFE OF GALILEO... Read more Read less

Quirky, Intelligent, Resonant, Entertaining, Ambitious

See it if Reworked classics interest you. The always innovative Irondale applies Brechtian ideals to augmenting his play reflecting current issues.

Don't see it if you have difficulty following complex plots where actors play multiple rolls without changing costumes.

Ambitious, Slow, Quirky, Dizzying

See it if You’re really well versed in Galileo and the Renaissance and a great fan of Berhold Brecht

Don't see it if You’re looking for a fun evening

1st act slog sets up 2nd act fireworks, Recant olympics, 17th century inquisition storyline, Truth vs power vs science, Undermining recantation

See it if Interested in progression of thought, science and truth telling via actual 1600s historical persona finally vindicated in the 20th century

Don't see it if Have no tolerance for many words and/or listening to them, expect not to have to participate/think not necessarily be entertained at theatre

Ambitious, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Profound, Intense

See it if You are interested in the intersection of politics and science.

Don't see it if You can't handle a long play that is sometimes odd.

Question everything, prevent suicide by mob

See it if Brecht's messages ring your bells, as do historical and thought-provoking theater. Four actors creditably carry at least 16 parts.

Don't see it if you can't plumb the messages of both Brecht and Galileo: is your thesis or hypothesis completely worthless? Question, read, teach & learn.

Also Brecht's message: assume nothing. Verify. Seek scientific proof. ... Read more Read less

Quartet of resourceful actors, Intimate but not epic, Stripped-down brecht, Ambitious

See it if you like your Brecht without bombast, cheekily adapted for a cast of 4; ably abetted by duo of live musicians

Don't see it if not interested Brecht; aren't up for leaning into a long evening (2 1/2 hours plus, 90 min first act) that--like much Brecht--has its lulls

Also A lively and intelligent mounting of Mark Ravenhill's streamlined tran... Read more Read less

Sunny tone, Earthbound, Galumphing pace, Glib, Gorgeous space

See it if you want another visit to an ambitious theater in a grand theater space; enjoy Brecht and contemporary takes on older work.

Don't see it if you have a weak bladder. The first act is 90 minutes. Worse, every scene has the same weight. The ensemble has the same take on each role.

Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Good acting

See it if You are familiar and enjoy Brecht's plays or want to see a modernized drama about life of Galileo

Don't see it if You want to see a musical, lavish production, dislike Brecht's work or have no interest at all about Galileo's controversies.

Ambitious, Indulgent, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Insipid

See it if a 20th century classic more relevant than ever. earnest well meaning production.

Don't see it if production values just don't make sense. questionable direction muted the very potent messages of the play.

Also Irondale reminds me of a community theater in the boonies. they remind... Read more Read less

Berthold brecht. also awesome staging.

See it if You like Berthold Brecht, and appreciate great contemporary staging.

Don't see it if You want to see a lavish Broadway musical.

Absorbing, Great acting, Quirky, Relevant

See it if You are interested in plays about people speaking truth to power

Don't see it if You dislike plays that sometimes veer into political polemics

Also The previous reviewer did not like the modernization of set and costum... Read more Read less

Clever, Ambitious, Disappointing

See it if An ambitious and mostly successful staging of an ultimately disappointing script. Impressively natural use of many anachronisms on stage.

Don't see it if Brecht's plays are often a tad too straightforward and on message for my taste, and this one is one of those. There is a lot to enjoy here

Also if this doesn't bother you.

Great acting, Funny, Clever, Absorbing

See it if You're interested in what was going on during the time the great astronomer lived

Don't see it if You cannot sit longer than 2hrs.

Disappointing, Indulgent, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if if you think it's important to see theater that makes you think about the role of science in today's world.

Don't see it if you are not prepared to sit through over two hours of very slow develoment.

Also I enjoyed very much Irondale Ensemble's productions in the past (espec... Read more Read less

Confusing, Ambitious, Great acting

See it if you like historical and thought-provoking theater with professional actors pulling off at least multiple roles.

Don't see it if you don't like long plays that can get a little slow and occasionally go off in to the weeds

Clever, Ambitious, Unconventional

See it if a loose and spirited take on science history sounds appealing.

Don't see it if bohemian theater is going to make you feel antsy.

Intelligent, Great acting, Entertaining, Clever, Ambitious

See it if You enjoy good acting and a creative approach to historical stories.

Don't see it if you are hard of hearing. The live music is so loud at times that despite the actors' strong projection their raised voices can't be heard.

Intelligent, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Confusing, Clever

See it if You like to see an intelligent show about how scientific discoveries challenged the status quo.

Don't see it if You expect a well polished show or broadway fairytale

Clever, Relevant, Resonant, Thought-provoking, Experimental

See it if You are interested in the implications of innovations, science and discovery for society and religion and if you like experimental theater

Don't see it if You don't like experimental staging of classical plays.

Banal, Disappointing, Excruciating, Insipid, Slow

See it if you enjoy wasting money and an evening.

Don't see it if you want to like what you watch and connect to likable characters.

Ambitious, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Slow, Confusing

See it if You like history and stories regarding science, astronomy and the church’s view on Galileo’s theories. At times confusing.

Don't see it if You like fast paced stories or dislike discussions regarding scientific theories or the influence of the church on early scientists.

February 22nd, 2019
"Irondale’s innovative and triumphant 'Galileo' is Bertolt Brecht at his most excellent, cradled by an ensemble of dynamic and invested performers and pitched inevitably toward its audience with a playful, conscious eye toward its own didactic mission...As much a top-notch production of the play ...
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