Told through a playful mixture of phone calls, voicemails, and live radio spots, Page 73's 'Today is my Birthday' is a new comedy about loneliness in the age of connection. More…
Emily, a would-be writer, retreats home to O’ahu after Manhattan finally gets the best of her. Trading one island for another doesn’t help, though, and when she stumbles into a gig as an actor on a shock-jock radio dating show, she finds herself strangely determined to turn fantasy into reality.
"A hilarious, intricate new comedy...'Today Is My Birthday' is a gift. Most playwrights today get our phone-obsessed, zero-contact reality wrong, but Stanton nails it...Director Kip Fagan turns the New Ohio into a recording studio; Emily often is standing in front of us while the others are walled off in booths behind glass. It’s a rollicking show—you’ll laugh and laugh—but it’s bitter underneath." Full Review
"The problems that Emily has encountered are problems of communication...Stanton dramatizes this cleverly...The plot, though certainly contrived, gives Ms. Stanton room for genuine comedy. The supporting cast, under Kip Fagan’s swift but refreshingly unfevered direction, also delivers the laughs...If 'Today Is My Birthday' sometimes feels too narrowly driven to justify its own premises, it is also capable of great humor and poetry." Full Review
“Telling a story this way can quickly lose its novelty, and when Stanton's story meanders midway, our attention does too. But Fagan guides this unconventional work with enough energy and humor to keep us curious about its soul-searching main character...With the dominance of texting nowadays, however, the play already feels dated...Still, the play's continuous stream of voices adds to the alienating hurly-burly of sound that gives 'Today Is My Birthday' its resonance.” Full Review
“The theatrical equivalent of light comic fiction...None of this is unpleasant, and some of it is honestly amusing, but Stanton juggles so many subplots that the script boils down to a series of comic premises sorely in need of development...These problems are alleviated in part by the charming leading lady and a supporting cast skilled at delivering characterizations with the ease of quick-sketch artists...Results in a play that amuses and irritates in equal measure.” Full Review
See it if you are interested in seeing a play in which sound design takes center stage. Glorious performances by the entire ensemble.
Don't see it if you are not interested in theatre that stretches boundaries.
See it if You enjoy excellent acting in a somewhat novel format. The sound engineer is one of the stars of the show. Topic is very relevant.
Don't see it if you don't like small, intimate plays. The audience is basically on the set! There are only three rows of seats which encircle the stage.
See it if You want to see an engaging show with a different type of narrative told in a really innovative way.
Don't see it if You want to see something more traditional or less about the time we live in.
See it if you're up for something completely different. The story unfolds mostly through phone conversations and its unfolding held my interest.
Don't see it if you prefer more standard and then this happened structure.
Also Very enjoyable, humorous with touches of sadness -- like life.
See it if you're a fan of innovative ways of telling stories that are still deeply satisfying narratively.
Don't see it if you refuse to accept that 1hr40min of people talking on the phone can be compelling theater (which it totally is in this case).
See it if You like light contemporary drama about communication and the nature of relationships
Don't see it if You prefer big stage productions that will leave you whistling a happy tune
See it if Stanton's clever, witty dramedy about interpersonal connections via non-personal devices strikes a resounding topical chord Funny & poignant
Don't see it if Several sub-plots get somewhat muddled and the 'happy ending' a tad forced but just minor glitches Ikeda a winning lead and soundscape A+
See it if you’d like to witness a masterful exercise in sound design and are interested in the way technology has made us increasingly lonely.
Don't see it if u want action that involves direct connection between human bodies. The novelty of sound dependence wears off halfway through and story sags
See it if a quirky, noisy, sometimes humorous play about the tribulations, in work, love, & self-awareness of a 29-year-old woman interests you.
Don't see it if a play where communication takes place via cell phones, texts, & voice mails will eventually irritate you and seem like a gimmick.
See it if Clever use of communication modes in this day of missed connections. Energetic, lively performances. Great cast.
Don't see it if You prefer the volume dialed to 5 or so. This isn't sedate.
See it if you are interested in how external factors impact personal relationships
Don't see it if you're adverse to keeping up with current technology and it's interruption of personal relationships
See it if you want a dynamic, engrossing experience with staging that makes surprising and wonderful use of the space. A beautiful, funny, sad script.
Don't see it if you'd be uncomfortable with non-standard playwriting, since characters rarely interact face-to-face, instead communicating via phone.
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