Twelfth Night (The Public Theater)
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Twelfth Night (The Public Theater)

Twelfth Night (The Public Theater) NYC Reviews and Tickets

(112 Reviews)
Members say
Entertaining, Delightful, Great singing, Clever, Refreshing

About the Show

The Public Theater's Free Shakespeare in the Park presents a re-imagining of Public Works’ 2016 musical adaptation of 'Twelfth Night.'

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Member Reviews (112)

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913 Reviews | 928 Followers
Fun, Entertaining, Creative, Great music

See it if Great musical reimagining of the classic. Very fun and fast paced. Keeping the best/doing away with the rest.

Don't see it if You want your Bard served classic.

888 Reviews | 1017 Followers
Clever, Refreshing, Entertaining, Funny

See it if A modern refreshing musical take on Shakespeare. Clever adaptation with great music. Accessible for everyone and 90 min!

Don't see it if You are a purist and don't like different takes on a classic.

1085 Reviews | 265 Followers
Great acting, Great staging, Must see, Masterful, Resonant

See it if If you like Shakespeare, this is one of the best shows I have seen. Public did a great job with this one. Great directing Great all around

Don't see it if If you do not like Shakespeare. If you not like shows outside.

1015 Reviews | 420 Followers
Entertaining, Great singing, Clever, Understandable, Funny

See it if You enjoy Shakespeare in The Park. This is a fun show. Lots to look at. (Maybe too much at times.) Original and fresh.

Don't see it if You don’t like Shakespeare. They’ve made it more understandable than it often is’s still Shakespeare.

982 Reviews | 343 Followers
Exuberant, Delightful, Clever, Diverse, Joyful

See it if you want to feel better abt humanity. While TN doesn't closely follow WS, Taub's musical captures its essence. You'll find yourself smiling.

Don't see it if you only like traditional WS...or dislike musicals...or only like professional actors on stage. The aim here is different and it succeeds! Read more

754 Reviews | 124 Followers
Enchanting, Great staging, Great singing, Fluffy, Ambitious

See it if you want a fun evening out of doors. The heart of the play is intact while the costumes, music and jokes keep the audience entertained.

Don't see it if you want a traditional rendering of the Bard's work. The huge cast and constant movement can be distracting.

677 Reviews | 190 Followers
Entertaining, Musical, Funny, Colorful, Unfulfilling

See it if you think the Bard needs a composer & lyricist; you'd rather see an original musical based on Twelfth Night and not the actual play itself.

Don't see it if you're a Shakespeare purist [His language is heavily redacted]; you don't like Shaina Taub [This is very much in her voice]. Read more

484 Reviews | 130 Followers
Entertaining, Colorful, Communitytheatre - esque, Unfocused, Too much going on

See it if high energy, colorful, new musical take on 12th Night with lots of community actors & handful of seasoned pros will float your Bardic boat

Don't see it if need your Shakespeare unadulterated, need focus on who's speaking/singing, hate messy, don't know story before hand, dislike outdoor shows

Critic Reviews (37)

The New York Times
July 31st, 2018

"A sweet alternative reality...summoned by Kwei-Armah and Eustis, and Taub...What they and their team have conjured is a Platonic ideal of the crazy salad that is New York City in the silly season...Taub and Kwei-Armah have extended the original play’s consideration of the ambiguities of identity to address an age in which the divisions between sexes and classes paradoxically feel both more porous and unbridgeable than ever....It’s empathy that makes this production feel like such a blessing."
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Time Out New York
August 1st, 2018

“Colorful, free-wheeling musical adaptation...As fast as it is loose: It has been trimmed to a fleet 90 minutes...Not much of Shakespeare's language remains, but the storytelling is lean and clear. In addition to Taub, who has a knockout voice, a few other seasoned performers anchor the cast adeptly...This production is about the spirit, not the letter; it's about making theater as accessible as possible...It's block-party Shakespeare, and everyone's invited."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
July 31st, 2018

“I found myself spending long portions of the ensuing ninety minutes wondering why, despite my sincere desire to be swept up in the show’s cheerful shenanigans, my heart wasn’t quite in it...The play’s tale...remains intact—and, I should say, perfectly legible—but the heartbeat of its text is dulled somewhat, chopped up to make room for songs instead of speeches...There’s a buoyant, throw-it-all-at-the-wall kind of energy at work that at times is successfully infectious.”
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The Hollywood Reporter
July 31st, 2018

“Illyria has never been so welcoming...This freewheeling version...proves a consistent delight. Purists may blanch, but everyone else will be thoroughly charmed....Despite the broad humor on display, the adaptation doesn't stint on the piece's emotional power...It's the amateur performers who truly make the evening shine, their energy and enthusiasm at being onstage entirely infectious...There have been other musical versions of the play before, but none as giddily pleasurable as this one."
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Entertainment Weekly
July 31st, 2018

“A 90-minute sprint that tosses out a lot of 17th-century verse in favor of contemporary lyrics. At times that does give the impression of two shows sewn, artfully if not seamlessly, together...Even the sometime use of sign, plus a brass band that trails Olivia, a smattering of sword play, and just the sheer size of the cast gives this 'Twelfth Night' a gleeful all-in feel. It rarely hits hilarious highs but delights with a steady insistence and overwhelms with a tidal wave of enthusiasm."
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July 31st, 2018

“The kind of outdoor summer theater that transcends bad weather...The co-creators take Shakespeare’s themes and wrap them in an ebullient package, making sure everything about this production says ‘welcome’. With a score of catchy tunes and ardent performances, it’s a happy marriage of a classic play with a contemporary execution...The co-directors create bursts of energy as they cram the stage with the colossal ensemble and draw gratifying performances from the cast."
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The Wall Street Journal
August 2nd, 2018

"At least as good as any of the new musicals that have opened in the past decade, and better than all but a handful of them. Indeed, Ms. Taub’s tuneful pop-soul score is reminiscent of a big-budget Disney show, only without the soul-shriveling slickness of a cold-hearted commodity musical like 'Frozen'... I can do no more in this space than suggest its limitless pleasures, not the least of which is a fetching performance by Ms. Taub as Feste, who is an accordion-toting street singer."
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July 31st, 2018

“Vibrant, contemporary and very funny...This colorful, spirited production is a joy from start to finish...Taub’s lyrics cleverly convey the Bard’s tale with a decidedly contemporary edge...So generous in spirit is this production that even the vain Malvolio gets a big, Broadway-style number, not to mention some respect and compassion."
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