Already closed | 1h 20m | East Village

The Transfiguration Of Benjamin Banneker

From 24 member  reviews
Members say: Great staging, Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining, Resonant

About the show

This experimental, multi-disciplinary spectacle celebrates the life of Benjamin Banneker, a free black man living in Maryland from 1731 to 1806. More…

From the show:

The Transfiguration of Benjamin Banneker is a multi-disciplinary spectacle with a marching band, 12-foot puppets, shadow puppetry and moving projection screens. The band is an award-winning group, the Soul Tigers, young men and women who attend Benjamin Banneker High School in Fort Greene, Brooklyn.

This event celebrates the life of Benjamin Banneker, a free black man living in Maryland from 1731 to 1806, who taught himself mathematics and astronomy, and made important scientific discoveries. In addition to Banneker's life, students from the high school contribute autobiographical material to the performance and will participate alongside professional performers.

Member Reviews (24)


Great staging, Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining, Resonant

Disappointing, Indulgent, Ambitious, Banal

See it if If you want more of a history than a play. Some good acting, and multi visual. If you like a story rather than a play.

Don't see it if Show is all over the place andslow at times. If you do not like puppetry. If you want a traditional more focused play.

Disappointing, Slow, Resonant, Intelligent, Great staging

See it if You want a history lesson instead of a play as told through a narrator and puppets then this might be for you.

Don't see it if you are looking for a play with dramatic interaction, this is not it.

Also The puppets are fantastic but the level of sophistication in the story... Read more Read less

Great use of light, Great puppets, Great choreography, Ambitious, Disappointing

See it if you want to see High School students perform excellently whether in choreography, puppetry or drum line. Excellent use of multimedia.

Don't see it if you want to see a well written play. The narrative is all over the place. Often repetitive, misogynistic and totally unfocused.

Also If I was scoring this as a short movie (what I often felt I was watchi... Read more Read less

Good use of multi-media and puppetry, story not fleshed out well enough, earnest but amateurish, disappointing but entertaining in parts, imaginative

See it if you’d enjoy earnest, creative but not always well articulated stories about episodes in black history.

Don't see it if you’re looking for sophisticated story telling, aren’t interested in the black experience, don’t like loud music or hour long performances.

Also This piece has a lot of heart and they were quite creative with what I... Read more Read less

January 26th, 2020
"‘The Transfiguration of Benjamin Banneker’ Review: An Unwieldy Ride A tale about the 18th-century African-American mathematician includes actors, a vibrant marching band and wackadoo puppetry."
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January 27th, 2020
"A euphoric fantasia about the obscure 18th century African-American astronomer and renaissance man using puppetry, dance, spoken word and a marching band."
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January 25th, 2020
"In this gorgeous, enlightening and ambitious -- if over-stuffed -- hour-long theatrical collage, Theodora Skipitares uses the eerie visual splendor of puppetry to illuminate…the fascinating and little known story….a kaleidoscopic look at African-Americans and space exploration."
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Cast & Creatives (2)